Prayer Alert! Trial Begins for Oregon Judge Targeted for Christian Beliefs
Jennifer Wishon : Apr 17, 2018
"You see a different side of God that you can only see in [a] trial and it expands your understanding of His relentless, and I mean relentless, goodness and His kindness." -Judge Vance Day
(Salem, OR)—[CBN News] Judge Vance Day is entering the Oregon courtroom Tuesday where he used to preside. But instead of sitting on the bench, he's taking a seat in the criminal defendant's chair. (Screengrab: via CBN News)
He's charged with aiding and abetting a felon in possession of a firearm, but Judge Day believes he's being targeted because of his unwillingness to perform gay marriages.
"I think this whole ordeal started when I made my original decision to quietly recuse myself from same-sex marriage," Day told CBN News.
"In Oregon, it's not a requirement that a circuit court judge marry anybody, but when the law changed I had a decision to make and that decision was to gently, quietly recuse myself and that eventually began a bit of a firestorm," he said.
It's a firestorm that's lasted more than three years. Day has racked up legal bills just shy of $1 million.
On Tuesday, the state of Oregon will begin trying to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that Day helped a disabled Navy SEAL, who was working his way through his Veteran's Court, possess a firearm.
It's a charge Day says is punishment for his Biblical views on marriage.
"In the dead of winter his [the veteran's] source of heat, which was a pellet stove, failed," he recalled. "So our team talked about it and I'm a handy guy, so I said, 'My son is going to be heading out there this weekend,' because my son had a relationship with him and was helping him get to various appointments because he lived far out and didn't have a drivers' license because he was sentenced for a DUI."
"So we went out there on a Sunday," he continued, "brought him some food and I went to work on the pellet stove and my son, unbeknownst to me, went out to his truck and got a handgun that he wanted to show the Navy SEAL."
"So the Navy SEAL picked it up—and he's a felon so he shouldn't have been handling that gun—and I was in the room and that's how I got charged with aiding and abetting a felon in possession of a firearm," Day explained.
Despite the hardships he's faced over the past three and a half years, Day says he wouldn't trade it.
"Sometimes when you're in a—I think you see a different side of God that you can only see in that trial and it expands your understanding of His relentless, and I mean relentless, goodness and His kindness," Day told CBN News.
He encourages all Americans to stand up when government challenges their liberty of conscience.
"When we have His perspective, a trial is an opportunity to walk with Him and watch Him show up in glory and majesty and I don't want to miss that," he said with gratitude.
Judge Day expects his jury trial to last at least two weeks.