Not Guilty!

Mark Fackler

READ : Zechariah 3:1-2

Is not this man a brand plucked from the fire? (v. 2)

Played out in countless TV dramas, prosecutors have been both saviors and villains, champions of justice or agents of the devil’s business. Oddly, Satan’s Old Testament appearances are often in the role of prosecutor. Here Satan has every reason to accuse this bedraggled priest Joshua of failure and folly. Joshua deserves punishment to the fullest extent of God’s law. Court is in session, the honorable angel of the Lord presiding.

If you’re having trouble understanding this picture, put yourself in Joshua’s place. You are guilty of failure and folly too. All the evidence you might assemble in your favor is about to be demolished in a stunning and quite accurate cross examination. You’ll have nothing left. You’re toast. By law, Satan will own you as soon as the judge announces the verdict, about which there is no doubt. You’re a “dead man walking.” But something amazing happens. The offended party shows up. “Charges dropped,” he declares, “this man is mine.” “As for you,” the advocate continues, “Mister Evil, Nasty, Hate-filled Prosecuting Attorney, the Lord rebuke you.” Or, less politely, “Go [back] to hell!”

The gavel crashes down. Case dismissed. Joshua is remanded to the advocate’s care and keeping. Odd story. Surprise ending—saved like a stick grabbed out of a campfire! Your story, too, if you trust in Jesus our Advocate.


Lord, rescue me!