25 Years in Prison for a Crime He Didn’t Commit.
That’s what happened to Michael Morton of Williamson County, Texas. In 1986 his wife Christine was brutally murdered in front of their three year old son. Even though he was at work at the time, authorities still suspected him and he was arrested, tried, convicted, and sentenced to life in prison. Many years later it was discovered that the prosecutor had suppressed evidence that may have shown his innocence. After the evidence was tested for DNA it proved Morton was not guilty and soon another violent criminal was convicted of his wife’s murder. In 2011, after nearly 25 years in prison, Morton was released from prison.
Whenever we hear an account such as this, we are saddened and angered. However this is just a small illustration that might help us understand the message of the gospel. Jesus Christ, who was completely innocent, was convicted and paid the ultimate sentence for crimes He did not commit. He suffered and died and bore the wrath and punishment for OUR crimes – for our sin against a Holy God. Rather than being saddened or angered that the Innocent One was so brutally punished for crimes He did not commit, we rejoice in grace and mercy that God has shown to us through Christ!
Right after His baptism, Jesus passed a test that proved His innocence and sinlessness. This was His temptation by Satan in the wilderness. Jesus proved His innocence and worthiness to become the perfect sacrifice for our sin. This is the subject of this week’s study at the West Virginia capitol as we consider “When the Innocent is Condemned…”
- Pray that the legislators, elected officials, lobbyists, and staff who attend the study or who read the notes as they are distributed throughout the statehouse might understand the enormity of what Christ did for us.
- Pray that each of might grow in our love and worship for Christ as consider the Innocent who was condemned in our place.