Over the years, Dola Indidis, a lawyer and former spokesman of the Kenyan Judiciary, has been reportedly attempting to sue Tiberius (emperor of Rome, 42 BCE-37 CE), Pontius Pilate, a selection of Jewish elders, King Herod, the Republic of Italy and the State of Israel.
His aim is to bring those responsible to justice.
Indidis has been arguing that the trial and crucifixion of Jesus Christ was unlawful, and the State of Israel among others should be held responsible, Kenyan news outlet the Nairobian reported some time ago.
“Evidence today is on record in the Bible, and you cannot discredit the Bible,” Indidis told the Kenyan Citizen News.
Although those he suggests should have been convicted during the original trial have not been alive for more than 2 000 years, Indidis insists that the government for whom they acted can and should still be held responsible.
That a case is closed for 2 000 years is no reason not to take it seriously. More so, if we consider that this particular case has such significance to a large amount of people across the globe; and that Jesus’ views have had and still have such an impact on the way we act, the laws we have, etcetera.
“I filed the case because it’s my duty to uphold the dignity of Jesus and I have gone to the ICJ to seek justice for the man from Nazareth,” Indidis told the Nairobian.
“His selective and malicious prosecution violated his human rights through judicial misconduct, abuse of office bias and prejudice.”
Indidis apparently named the states of Italy and Israel in the lawsuit because upon the attainment of independence, the two states incorporated the laws of the Roman Empire, those in force at the time of the crucifixion.
He is challenging the mode of questioning used during Jesus’ trial, prosecution, hearing and sentencing; the form of punishment meted out to him while undergoing judicial proceedings and the substance of the information used to convict him.
However, here is the interesting part — and what makes this supposed “case” particularly problematic. There was no state of Israel at the time, nor one of Italy.
King Herod had little to do with Jesus directly — he died in 4BCE, before Jesus was even born; and though there is mention of him being afraid of a new usurper, there is at least 30 years difference between Jesus’ crucifixion and King Herod’s death.
Which leaves us with Emperor Tiberius — who did announce some seemingly cruel measures, but again had no direct relation to Jesus. He is mentioned in the Bible only once — one would think more mention of him would follow if he was responsible of Jesus’ death.
It is no surprise then that the ICJ is most likely to ignore this case altogether.
According to Legal Cheek: “The ICJ has no jurisdiction for such a case. The ICJ settles disputes between states. It is not even theoretically possible for us to consider this case.”
What leaves a particularly nasty smell with this case is the inherent paradoxical nature of it.
Say Indidis manages to convince the ICJ to consider the case, and by some miracle he also wins it. Then what?
Usually in such situations some sort of retribution is required, in the form of compensation (financial or otherwise), a penal sentence, or worse.
And if Indidis in some miraculous way does manage to win the case, who is this compensation going to?
Joseph and Mary are long dead, their next of kin is unknown.
Even if we forget the legal matters, there is another problem.
After all, recently numerous attempts have been made to retry philosopher Socrates. He has been found both guilty and not-guilty, depending on the judges, and the process seems to have absolutely no effect on one simple matter: Socrates remains dead and nobody really understands why we should care about this.
Now, you may retort that Socrates is no Jesus, and that is true.
But consider this: say Indidis wins the case, and we find that Jesus was wrongfully put to death, then what happens? Will it change our beliefs? Will it make us feel better for more than a few minutes? Will we celebrate and make more effort into making the world a better place?
The point is exactly that regardless of the wrongs or determinism regarding Jesus’ death, there is practically no effect on our conduct. We may have the religious belief that Jesus’ death was predetermined by God (and Jesus knew about it also); we may equally believe that whether that is so or not, a human being (at the time) has been put to death unjustly – all these beliefs have certain justification.
Sure, we could argue that this makes for good news, but is this not also what recreates a false belief in responsibilities of the past generations?
The problem, it seems, is the use of history where the consequences for life are nil. — Zambian Observer.