The Liberian night swirled around us with all of its smells. Mosquitoes were buzzing around us, but by now I had just about tuned them out. The conversation inside the house had ceased and as the men inside listened to us, they were also praying for Paul Zawolo that the Holy Spirit would enlighten his eyes and make him a new creation in Christ.
I continued, “Paul, you know that if I were to ask you just one more question, we would be able to determine that you have broken at least six of the Ten Commandments.” Paul simply nodded as he continued to look down at his feet.
Me: “Paul, James 2:10 tells us the truth about our breaking the laws of God, ‘For whoever shall keep the whole law, and yet stumble in one point, he is guilty of all.’ Therefore, according to the Bible, it does not matter whether you have broken five of them or just one and kept the other nine. It is like taking a rope with ten knots tied in it. You are hanging off the edge of a cliff onto the end of the rope that is your only lifeline. Which one of those ten knots do you want me to take a knife and sever?”
Paul: “None of them, otherwise I will die!”
Me: “That rope is like the law of God. It was given to us as a measuring stick to show that we cannot hope to attain such a level of goodness. The children of Israel could not keep them, I cannot keep them, and you cannot keep them. So, considering our verse in James, the truth is that you, Paul Zawolo from Loma County, have broken every one of God’s laws. Therefore, you are guilty and deserve to be thrown into hell forever!