Homicide Detective Jim Warner Wallace is one of the best at gathering and interpreting evidence at his law enforcement agency (LA County). My friend Peter, who researched the guy, described him this way:
“He used to work on regular homicides just like everyone else in his department. But then one day, his superiors discovered that he has an exceptional skill. Jim is so gifted at gathering and interpreting evidence, that he solved the hardest cases. In fact, he was so good, that the police department put Jim on the cases that were never solved.” –Peter Gurguis, NotAshamedoftheGospel.com
News magazine TV shows like 60 Minutes and Dateline regularly invite Jim on their programs. Dateline broadcast journalist Keith Morrison says the folks at Dateline call Jim “the evidence whisperer.”
Jim is a second generation cop, his father, also named Jim, also served at LA County. Jim was also a second generation atheist. In the video he speaks of how he grew up as an atheist, and how his atheistic beliefs were reinforced by the two groups of Christians he was exposed to at work: Christian coworkers who couldn’t defend their faith, and Christian criminals.
But then he heard a pastor talk about Jesus’ intellect. Jim says he wasn’t interested in religion, but he was interested in smart people. So he bought a Bible and began reading the “fortune cookie sayings” of Jesus. It was at this point that he became concerned. He became concerned because as he read the sayings of Jesus, along the way he was also reading the eyewitness accounts of Jesus. And as he encountered these eye witness accounts in the gospels he began using the same investigative skills and techniques he used at work, specifically, forensic statement analysis.
He found himself asking the difficult question: Am I disbelieving these statements because I don’t want them to be true, or am I disbelieving these statements because the eyewitness accounts aren’t credible? Ultimately, he came to the conclusion that the eyewitness accounts of the events of Jesus’ life were credible.
And Jim became a Christian.
(I hope you’ll watch the three minute video. Jim Wallace tells his own story better than I ever could.)
References and Resources:
J. Warner Wallace, Cold-Case Christianity: A Homicide Detective Investigates the Claims of the Gospels, David C. Cook, 2013
Richard Bauckham, Jesus and the Eyewitnesses, William B. Eerdmans Publishing, Grand Rapids/Cambridge, U.K., 2006