Step Up With Steph

The Resurrection- Part One

Written by Emmanuel Iduwe

‘Court rise’!

My legs betrayed me again as I struggled to obey the clerk. But what choice did I have? A defendant doesn’t go around making matters worse for themselves by disobeying direct orders. I mustered all the strength I could and staggered to my feet. My eyes caught the judge, majestically walking to her seat. She was all that stood between me and getting stoned to death.

‘I will hear your opening statements now.’ the Judge said, as soon as she took her seat.

The prosecutor stood tall with a wry smile plastered across his face as he slowly walked forward.

‘Thank you your honor’. Frankly, this case should be easy to decide, as there are eye witnesses willing to testify. We are gathered here today, not to determine if the defendant is guilty, but to determine many years she should spend in prison…’

My mind drifted, I thought about the events that led to this moment. How Salome, Mary; Jame’s mother and I, stood afar and watched as an innocent man was punished for nothing. Tears began to well up in my eyes again as I fought to hold them back.

‘I am innocent’!, ‘I didn’t do anything’! I shouted in my head, where no one could hear.

I remembered the evil smile on the soldiers’ faces as they brought him down from the cross and handed him over to Joseph; the gentleman from Arimathea. We followed closely to where he was buried and watched as Joseph covered him in fine linen befitting of a king.

‘How are you holding up’? My lawyer jolted me back to reality. I looked at him and noticed genuine concern in his eyes. He was worried for me.

‘I am fine’ I said. ‘Jesus will help us’.

‘Defendant, we are waiting for your opening statement’ the Judge impatiently said.

‘Yes your honor’. ‘My client wishes to state that her claim of Jesus Christ of Nazareth resurrecting from the death is accurate. Thereby ascertaining her innocence beyond any reasonable doubt’.

I sat there lost in thoughts, mumbling to myself. Would things have been better if I had just kept my mouth shut? No. I had to speak. I had to let people know the truth. He is risen! Jesus is risen!

‘I call the defendant to the stand’! The prosecutor repeated with his eyes fixed on me. I lifted my head slowly and glanced around. Everybody had their eyes on me; deafening silence filled the courtroom.

‘This is it’! I thought to myself. I summoned all the power I could, and attempted to stand up, leaning on the desk in front of me for support. I walked towards the stand, stopped at the entrance, looked around and took my seat.

‘Do you swear that the testimony you will give to this honorable court will be the truth and nothing but the truth so help you God’?

‘Yes, I swear.’

‘Please state your name for the honourable court’

‘Ma…Mary, the Magdalene’ I struggled to say.

‘Could you please state to the court the events that took place the day after the sabbath’?

I was scared of this. I knew he would try to make me repeat what happened that day to the entire court. I can’t, I just can’t.

‘Ms Mary, did you hear my question’?

‘Y..yes I did. I just need a moment’ I knew exactly what I had to do. It is not going to be easy, but it is the only way to prove my innocence and prove that what Jesus had been saying all this while is true. He is the living son of God!

I began…

‘On that fateful day, Salome, Mary and I took some sweet spices to the tomb where Jesus laid to anoint his body, as it is our custom’. I paused as I noticed several people nodding approvingly. Then I continued.

‘There was a little discussion amongst us as to how we would move the huge stone blocking the entrance. When we got to the sepulchre, we found out that the stone had already been rolled away’. ‘At first, we were scared about going in, but Mary, being the bravest of us, led the way. We saw a man sitting down inside the tomb wearing a white apparel. He broke the news to us about Jesus Christ, that he had risen, and he was no longer where he was buried’.

Immediately, the court erupted with shouts of

‘How come’? ‘Impossible’! ‘Liar’!

‘Order’! ‘Order’! The Judge banged her gavel three times to quell the noise.

‘Please go on..’ the Prosecutor said, secretly glad the crowd had not believed my story.

‘We ran out of the sepulchre, afraid and confused. We didn’t know who to tell, so we kept it to ourselves…’

The Prosecutor interrupted me. ‘Tell us what evidence you have to support this ridiculous claim’

‘He appeared to me first’ I continued, slowly getting back my confidence and strength.

‘Surely you would say that.’

‘There were others’! I retorted. ‘He revealed himself to others, and they will back up my claim’

Silence once again fell on everyone in the courtroom.

‘Others’? The Prosecutor asked.

‘Yes, he appeared to others. Although they didn’t believe me at first when I told them, they soon believed after they encountered Him’.

‘So you do agree to spreading false news about a fake resurrection to people in the name of this Jesus Christ of Nazareth’?

‘Objection your honor’! ‘Prosecutor is leading the witness’ My lawyer defended.

‘I withdraw the question. No further questions your honor’ he said while walking back to his seat.

I stood up and walked back to my seat, unsure of where I stood. Unsure of what outcome to expect. I knew however that the truth would eventually prevail, as it always does, which is that Jesus is the son of God, and the Messiah we’ve been waiting for.

My eyes grew heavy, and my body weary. I managed to hear the Judge say ‘We would take a 20 minute recess and reconvene here for closing arguments’.