Published August 09, 2004
The following is the text of Terry Nichols' statement Monday at his sentencing, as transcribed by a court reporter:
TERRY NICHOLS: Thank you. With respect to the court and all who are present: First of all, I would like to say that my heart truly goes out to all the victims, survivors and anyone who has been affected by the Oklahoma City bombing.
I've had much sorrow and shed many tears for those who have experienced pain and suffering, as well as the loss of their loved ones.
Words cannot adequately express the sorrow I have had over the years for the grief that so many have endured and continue to suffer. I am truly sorry for what occurred.
I do pray that for many, that this day will be the beginning of their long-awaited healing process. And I pray that all who hold any hatred, bitterness and unforgiveness (sic) toward me, that they will find in their hearts to forgive me, as others have done, for this is the first stage toward true healing.
We cannot change the past, but we each can change how we think. And we do have the power within each one of us to choose and to use our circumstances to make us, to make us either bitter and resentful people, or better and loving people.
And though it's difficult at first, I do pray that each would choose to allow this painful struggle to make us all better, loving people. I also pray that everyone in this nation will find it in their hearts to truly turn to God and diligently make him an important part of every area of their lives; whether that be at home, with family members, with friends at work, and even in the courtrooms across America.
It's Christianity that this great nation was founded upon, and only in Christianity does one find the true freedom and liberty we all seek. Let's not lose that Godly heritage.
We must once again get back to this foundational truth and put God back into all aspects of our lives, both physically, excuse me, both publicly and privately by openly recognizing and acknowledging his authority and his sovereignty over all things, including ourselves, and to do so with reverential fear.
By the way, for those who wish to ridicule or criticize what I say here, let me say that no, I have not gotten religion, but rather, I have discovered genuine truth, and I've found a real and personal relationship with God through our living risen lord and savior, Jesus Christ. For it is only in Jesus Christ do we truly find the forgiveness of sins, genuine reconciliation with God, and true salvation and eternal life with our Lord.
Yes, only with and through faith in Jesus Christ alone can we be saved. And the only place where real truth, absolute truth can be found is in God's word, the Holy Bible.
I also wish to say that my views were never the same as Timothy McVeigh's. They may have had -- we may have had some similar -- similarities, but they were not the same. And today, my views and beliefs are far different, as the result of finding the real truth of life in this world, which only the inerrant (sic) word of scripture reveals.
When God, when the God of scripture is not the center of one's life, one's mind, emotions and actions can easily be manipulated, which in turn can result in harm and destruction to self and others.
Thus I pray for everyone to acknowledge God, make his, make his truths and ways the center of your life, accept Jesus Christ as your lord and savior, and especially that men will become the spiritual leaders of the family, the fathers of integrity, as God intended man to become.
One last thing, many people have come, have come up with various excuses and reasons to justify the jurors' deadlock in the sentencing phase of this trial, which the state was seeking the death penalty against me.
And I am sure many will disagree with me, but the truth is, the reason death was not given is for the simple and abundantly clear fact that God is in control. His hand has been guiding this trial from day one. There is no other explanation.
And it was God who, through the holy spirit, worked in the hearts of those jurors who refused to vote for death. I commend those jurors for their faith and unwavering stand for God.
Praise and glory be to God Almighty. Give thanks always to our lord and savior, Jesus Christ.
Oh yes, and if any victim or survivor would wish to write to me in an effort to assist in their healing process, I would consider it an honor and privilege to do what I can to help. And your honor, I would like to give a version of this to the court later on, OK?