When is a crime really a crime? That’s a great question when it comes to this bizarre and convoluted news story.
It all began July 8, 2015 when Michael Suarez of Ypsilanti, Michigan, arranged to sell a pound of marijuana for the sum of $2800. He and a couple of friends were to deliver the drugs in the wee hours of the morning to a couple who were waiting at a local mobile home park.
Here’s where it gets interesting. Suarez and his accomplices didn’t bring marijuana to the drug drop at all—instead, they brought a backpack full of dirty socks! Upon delivery of the backpack, Suarez and friends received payment of $2800 and quickly sped away.
Racing from the scene, Suarez ran a stop sign and was promptly pulled over by a vigilant police officer. Then, during the traffic stop, the officer was approached by a man claiming to have been robbed by Suarez. Upon search of Suarez’ vehicle, the officer found the $2800 in cash made as payment for the backpack full of dirty socks. It did not escape the officer’s attention, however, that the man crying “Thief!” had actually intended to buy a pound of pot!
The whole thing played out in Lenawee County Circuit Court where Michael Suarez pleaded guilty to “false pretenses between $1,000-$20,000,” while his accomplices pleaded guilty to attempted possession of marijuana with intent to deliver. In the meantime, the “buyers” of the bag of socks face charges of attempting to purchase an illegal substance.
You need a flow chart to catch all that happened in this case. First, you have Suarez, guilty of false pretenses. Then, you have the couple who accompanied him, guilty of attempted possession of marijuana with the intent to deliver. Finally, you have the couple who purchased the backpack of dirty socks, guilty of attempting to purchase an illegal substance.
Yet, not one of them were ever in possession of an illegal substance! Everything that transpired would have been perfectly legal but for the abundance of evil motivation.
Unfortunately for these 5, motive matters in the American justice system. As a result, no real weed was actually necessary for all parties involved to be guilty of playing a role in its sale.
We all know and accept this as justice in a human court. But what happens when this same principle is applied in the justice system of Heaven?
Will you argue that you’ve never committed adultery when God knows how lustful you’ve been? Will you argue that you’ve never killed anyone when God knows how hateful you’ve been?
If intent matters in a human courtroom, how much more will it come into play in the courtroom of Heaven?
"Therefore judge nothing before the appointed time; wait until the Lord comes. He will bring to light what is hidden in darkness and will expose the motives of the heart. At that time each will receive their praise from God" (1 Corinthians 4:5).
"But I tell you that anyone who looks at a woman lustfully has already committed adultery with her in his heart" (Matthew 5:8).