Depending on when you are reading this blog these terms may not be at the forefront of your thoughts. But as I write this blog, most people in the United States of America are focusing on these terms more than normal. Unfortunately, most Americans do not have a conception of what the definition of these terms are. Is there a difference between innocent and not guilty? Innocent vs not guilty, is it not the same?
How is guilt defined? Merriam Webster defines it as: the fact of having committed a breach of conduct especially violating law and involving a penalty.
- Free from guilt or sin especially through lack of knowledge of evil
- Harmless in effect or intention
- Free from legal guilt or fault
In the definition that we used for guilt we see that a “fact” is involved. A fact being something which can be clearly defined and agreed upon by all parties. In our definitions of “innocent”, the one that would apply in regard to guilt would be the third which involves determining “fault”. There must be a specific fact which is beyond doubt for which a fault can be determined.
If we were to use the first two definitions of innocent which we stated above, there would be no one which we could define as such except maybe a new born baby. That being said, should we even use the term innocent in regard to matters in trials regarding incidents which occur and are in direct opposition to the stated laws of the land?
Many like to state that our Constitution says that one is presumed innocent until proven guilty. But the truth is that it does not make that clear statement. That understanding is derived from the fact that the burden of proof is on the accuser to prove that the accused is guilty of the crime. The accused does not have to prove that he did not commit the crime. Nowhere is the term “innocent” put forward. However, no where does it say that the accused must first prove that he did not commit the crime.
The statement might be better penned that “one is presumed ‘not guilty’ until proven ‘guilty’.”
The Constitution does not address innocence. So to try to build a defense upon innocence makes no sense. The term and the definitions are too many and too varied to stake a presumption on. So the process must go forward in the understanding that one is not guilty of a crime until enough facts that are irrefutable have been accumulated to establish “guilt”, not the absence of “innocence”.
Proof of crime
Proof of a crime must be factual. What is a fact? According to Meriam Webster again, a fact is “something that has actual existence”, or “and actual occurrence.” To qualify as a “fact”, it must be corroborated by more than one person. This is not a constitutional derivative but comes from the foundation on which our Constitution was built, The Holy Bible. In the law spelled out in the Bible it states that “in the mouth of two or three witnesses shall a thing be established.” So, a fact or an incident can not be considered factual with only one witness. That is not to say that a thing did not occur, but as far as the law is concerned, it can not be adjudicated.
With the development of forensic science we know that there are different witnesses which science has been able to produce through the use of scientific laws and principles which are consistent and can be used to study past events. These, however, can never replace the veracity of an eye witness.
What we see today
What we are seeing today are people who have already determined what they wish to find. They have determined “guilt” by way of totally ignoring what the founding document of the land says is the procedure by which “guilt” should be determined.
Instead of the accuser bringing and presenting evidence that will prove the crime, they have set aside “due process” by which the accused has the right to face his accuser and hear the “facts” by which the accuser brings his accusation. According to the Constitution guilt should never be assumed prior to the presentation and adjudication of the facts.
If “facts” can not be corroborated, then they are not considered facts and can not be admitted as facts. This corroboration is where the two or three witnesses comes into play. If there is only one witness, the item can not be presented as fact.
The problem we face today is that because of ignorance which has been brought about by design, we have a group of people who are determined to undermine our system of government. One of the reasons for this is the fact that this nation was founded on the principles found in the Bible.
The spirit behind those who are driving this agenda is not the Spirit which inspired the Bible. In fact, it is the spirit which the Bible calls “anti-Christ”. You may say that these people quote the Bible sometimes to back up their agenda. So did the spirit that motivates them. Recall when the devil tempted Jesus in the wilderness.
What to do
What to do when you see things like this going on? If you are a Child of God, rejoice! Because you know that the time of redemption is near at hand.
If you are not a Child of God, get into the Bible and find out more about your Creator and what He has planned for you. As you grow in knowledge of Him you will be able to put these days in the proper perspective.
Those who are twisting the law and perverting the justice system are on the loosing side. It may not seem so at times, but be assured, they are.
What you need to do is to make sure that you are on the winning side. So when the final judgment comes you will be found to be on the side that is not condemned as guilty before the Judge of the universe.
When that day comes and you are of the family of God, He will not just declare you “not guilty”, but He will declare you “innocent”, pure and free from sin.
What about the others
To the others the Creator will say, “Depart from Me into everlasting torment in hell, because you rejected my gift of innocence by the blood of My Son, Jesus.”
How should you treat the lost
Share the “Good News” with them. Tell them how much God loves them. Encourage them to receive Jesus as their Lord. Pray for them.
As you do this, always look up, for the return of the Lord is near!