I sat through a very long day today, as part of a group of 116 people that were selected (since we vote) to take part in serving our county in jury duty. After hours of seeing two other large groups get sent from the pool into the selection process and then eating a sub at Subway for lunch, I finally got called as part of a final group to be screened. They kept twelve of us, and let the others go (returning in the morning to sit in the pool and wait and see if we “make it” onto another jury panel.
Before being dismissed from the case, a dozen questions were asked of the possible jurors from both the state’s attorney and the defense attorney. We were asked if we thought it would matter if the defendant (being accused of the crime) took a stand and defended himself. That seemed like a shocker to a few of us. If you were innocent (which is why we were in the courtroom after all), wouldn’t you want to stand up and speak for yourself? Apparently sometimes that isn’t a good idea, but it sure seems like one to me.
After getting to the courthouse this morning, I was actually looking forward to it (even though making $20 each day isn’t going to pay many of our bills). I was looking forward most to observing the trial and seeing how the battle between the two sides took place. A fair battle that the Savior of my sins didn’t get a chance with (see Luke 23). Pilate and Herod were both stuck in a system that was destined to send Christ to the cross.
Sick people were given the freedom to have Christ crucified for no just cause. But Christ knew this, and let them have their way…..even though they weren’t aware He was willingly going there for the victory of so many that would come after Him and deserve His punishment.
Some things that I find myself thinking about after just spending a bit of my first time in a courtroom:
- We’re all flawed human and I’m not so sure an oath (to another human) does much good.
- A democracy sure seems like the utopian government, but may mistakes still happen.
- One day we all will be judged and given an eternal reward or punishment, and there will be no need of a jury – thanks to an omniscient God.
- I was told today that common sense isn’t the same thing to one person as it is to another. A reminder that our God must love us in order for us to make such a mess of simple things that we should easily agree on.
- Lawyers get paid lots of money, when the jury makes the actual decisions and gets much, much less.
- I’m looking forward to the day when Pilate and Herod both meet their maker, and the tables that were set thousands of years ago get reversed.
- Law enforcement is a good thing, but many given powers like that in our country don’t handle it correctly. There’s not an organization under heaven who follows the book and runs things perfectly (not even a church/ministry that you think might).
- It is a jury’s right to protect the freedoms of the accused in their community. Our eternal freedom has already been protected, and we did nothing but believe to deserve it.
Have you ever been a part of a jury? Maybe you work within the practice of law, and might have some thoughts or disagreements with what I’ve shared? Looking forward to tomorrow, when maybe I’ll make a jury and actually do something to earn that $20, LOL.