A few years from now the life and times of Judge Roy Moore will be nothing more than a footnote in American history, much like the eccentric saloon-keeper and Justice of the Peace, Judge Roy Bean (c. 1825 – March 16, 1903) of Val Verde County, Texas. Roy Bean became known as “The Hanging Judge”. It may be that Judge Roy Moore will not be remembered at all. However, in the year 2017, for a few weeks at least, his name and story is being broadcast from coast to coast, and around the world, as a story of compelling interest.
Born February 11, 1947, Roy Moore is an American politician and former Alabama judge, best known for being twice elected to the Alabama Supreme Court, and twice removed from that exalted position. On the first occasion, Chief Justice Moore was removed from his position in November 2003 by the Alabama Court of the Judiciary for refusing to remove a monument of the Ten Commandments. In a country that professes to “trust in God”, it is astonishing to many, that anyone would object to the basic moral code of every civilized society in summary form should be removed from public view. I, for one, want to stand with a man who stood for the Ten Commandments to the point that he was willing to lose a valued position in society. Nevertheless, “He is no fool who gives up what he cannot keep to gain what he cannot lose.” (Jim Elliot)
In 2013, Judge More was elected a second time to serve on the Alabama Supreme Court, but was suspended in May 2016 for directing probate judges to continue to enforce the state’s ban on same-sex marriage. Again, I, for one, want to stand with a man who believes that God made Adam and Eve, and united them in marriage. What God has joined together, let no man put asunder, or try to change the definition of marriage. If marriage is not a holy union between one man and one woman then the word is meaningless.
In April 2017, Judge Roy Moore resigned from the Alabama Supreme Court, and announced he would run for the United States Senate seat that was vacated by Jeff Sessions, who was confirmed as Attorney General of the United States.
During his Senate race, claims have surfaced that while in his 30’s, Mr. Moore pursued, and, or, sexually assaulted numerous teenage girls as young as 14. The claims appear, on their surface, to have merit, and, in a rush to judgment, the world has decided that Judge Roy Moore is guilty. No charges have been filed against him. No woman has testified under oath against him. Judge Moore has not been arrested, or sued by anyone. And yet, he is considered to be guilty as accused. Not guilty as legally charged, but guilty as socially accused by women who are remembering events 38 and 40 years ago.
I do not know the truth about the Republican, Judge Roy Moore, and neither does anyone else, except Roy Moore, the women who are making their public accusations, and God. I am happy to suspend ultimate judgment until all the known facts are presented in a fair way. Let the accused and his accusers meet face to face before a neutral jury. Another alternative is to let the people of Alabama decide the fate of the man they want to represent them in the US Senate.
No matter the outcome, there is a timeless message associated with Roy Moore.
The first part of the timeless message is this. A person’s sins will be found out. “He that covereth his sins shall not prosper.” (Prov. 28:13)
The second part of the timeless message is equally important. “Whoso confesseth and forsaketh them shall have mercy.” (Prov. 28:13) God is a merciful God, and most Americans are willing to show mercy to a person who is sorry, and changes.
Judge Roy Moore proclaims his innocence. I want to believe him. I want him to be a trophy of God’s grace, for I too need God’s forgiveness and grace.
Time may prove Roy Moore to be guilty as charged, like Bill Clinton was proven to be guilty as charged, of adultery by Jennifer Flowers, of rape by Juanita Broaddrick, and of molestation by Paula Jones.
If Roy Moore is guilty of inappropriate sexual behavior as a former Democratic Assistant District Attorney, 38 or 40 years ago, I would encourage him to confess his transgressions openly, since they are in the public domain, and seek forgiveness, having repented long ago to God. Public transgressions should be dealt with publically. Private transgression can be dealt with in private. A person’s repentance needs to be as widely reported as the transgression.
However the story of Roy Moore ends in 2017, in his election to the US Senate by the citizens of Alabama, or in the loss of his office, and reputation, based on provable facts of wrongdoing, never forget the timeless message associated with him. “Where sin abounded, grace did much more abound.” (Rom. 5:20)