The story is told of a lawyer named Strange who died. His friend asked the tombstone maker to inscribe on his tombstone, “Here lies Strange, an honest man, and a lawyer.” The inscriber insisted that such an inscription would be confusing, for passersby would tend to think that three men were buried under the stone.
However he suggested an alternative: He would inscribe, “Here lies a man who was both honest and a lawyer.” That way, whenever anyone walked by the tombstone and read it, they would be certain to remark: “That’s Strange!”
Lawyers don’t seem to be seen in a very positive light (though we have no hesitancy about turning to one in times of need!). Perhaps it is true that a few “bad apples” have given a black eye to the lawyer profession. But that could be said of many other professions (including preachers).
Jesus had some rather harsh thing to say about the lawyers of his day (Luke 11:46,52), but they were not lawyers in the sense we understand the word; rather, they were “experts” in the Jewish law.
The truth is, lawyers perform a valuable service to our society, providing an advocate for those unable to speak for themselves. And Jesus is himself referred to in scripture as a lawyer!
“My little children, these things I write to you, so that you may not sin. And if anyone sins, we have an Advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous.” (I John 2:1)
The Greek word translated “advocate” means “one who pleads another’s cause before a judge, a pleader, counsel for defense.” That means Jesus is our defense attorney! As Christians stand before God to be judged for the sins we have committed, it is Jesus Christ who presents our defense. What comfort and assurance in that truth!
Praise be to God for providing us such a capable attorney!