The Witness John
Text: John 1:6-8
In the first century, “Witness” was a Greco-Roman legal concept and a legal concept among Jews.The Greek word translated into English “Witness” denotes evidence given judicially: this could be a record, a report or a testimony.This is the same word used in the Gospel of Mark regarding Jesus trial before the high priest, chief priests, elders and scribes when they were attempting to obtain testimony against Jesus. (cf.Mk.14:53-65) In the first few words of the Gospel According to John we have a legal metaphor taking shape. The reason being that many who would read this text during the time that it was written and shortly thereafter would find themselves in a trial setting giving “Witness” for the hope that is in them. Isaiah (v.44:8, NASB) prophesied of “Witness” taking place:
‘Do not tremble and do not be afraid;
Have I not long since announced it to you and declared it?
And you are My witnesses.
Is there any God besides Me,
Or is there any other Rock?
I know of none.’”
John the Baptist mission was to tell people about the light coming into the world.The apostle Paul said in his epistle to the Romans, answering the question: What advantage has the Jew? They were entrusted with the Word of God. (vs.3:1,2) Though the Jewish people had the written Word of God in the Old Testament writings, they could not see that their Messiah had come into the world because of their spiritual blindness. John the Baptist was the first of many men who would testify about Jesus and John was martyred, just like many other witnesses would be martyred in the last days. Nevertheless, it is the duty of believers to testify about Jesus amongst the spiritually blind. Unlike us, John the Baptist was a forerunner, His mission was to announce the Messiah’s coming;ours, however, is to announce that He has already come, died for the sins of believers and rose again from the dead, returning to judge the earth on the last day.
I am a 21stcentury American male who works as a Registered Nurse in a hospital. I am not a prophet like John the Baptist, nor am I an apostle like the disciple whom Jesus loved, the author of our text. John the Baptist was a forerunner of Jesus Christ. The apostles witnessed the things that Jesus said and did as He walked among men, they witnessed His resurrection from the dead. I was not sent from God to testify to the coming light. Nor was I a witness to the life, death, burial and resurrection of Jesus Christ as Lord. There are no prophets among us today, but we have the written word of the Old Testament. There are no apostles among us today, but we have the written word of the New Testament. How can we who were not sent from God, nor witnessed the life, death, burial and bodily resurrection of Jesus Christ as Lord “Witness?” The answer is the Scriptures: We can give people the Scriptures and preach what is written in the Scriptures. One of the things that I enjoy doing is giving away copies of “The Gospel According to John” and explaining what is written in the book. I am not a prophet like John the Baptist, nor am I an evangelist like the disciple whom Jesus loved. I simply promote the reading of the book written by the disciple whom Jesus loved.
Craig S. Keener, The IVP Bible Background Commentary: New Testament, 2nded. (Downers Grove: IVP Academic, 2014), 249.
Olive Tree Enhanced Strong’s Dictionary, g3141.
Warren W. Wiersbe, The Wiersbe Bible Commentary: the complete new testament in one volume(Colorado Springs: David C. Cook, 2007), 229.
William McDonald, Believers Bible Commentary: A Complete Bible Commentary in One Volume5thed. (Nashville: Thomas Nelson, 1990), 1467.
Popular posts from this blog
Suffering: The state of undergoing pain, distress, or hardship.Death: The end of the life of a person.Intensive Care Unit: A department of a hospital in which patients who are dangerously ill are kept under constant observation. I cannot continue doing what I have done for the past 21 years. My last day in the intensive care unit will be January 4, 2019. I will be transitioning to Cardiac Rehabilitation. This will be a completely different type of nursing. Cardiac Rehabilitation combines my love of aerobic exercise, knowledge of cardiology and love of people suffering with heart disease. I will be able to invest in their lives in a way that I was never able to do before. These past 5 days are an example of what my work has been like for the past 21 years: I worked 4, 12 ½ hour shifts. I took care of 10 persons, all of whom suffered but some greater than others. A woman 10 years younger than I suffered a myocardial infarction (heart attack); a woman suffered greatly in the i…
Please, Please, Please open your mouth and preach the gospel! Recently I was asked to do two things: 1) Think back to my own experience of how I was evangelized and describe the experience. 2) If I could go back and give advice to the person or people who ministered to me what would it be? I began running as a young child. At the age of 5, I ran my first mile with my dad. At the age of 10, I wanted a pair of running shoes like the big runner’s wear. My dad challenged me, if I could run 5 consecutive miles at less than 8 minutes per mile he would by me a pair of running shoes. I met the challenge and he bought me the shoes. While at the runner’s store there was a flyer for an upcoming 10k race. My dad signed us both up for the race. The next year my dad was too busy with work to run with me, but we had new neighbors across the street. I noticed that this man would come home every evening and go for a run. I began running with him, at the time he was pursuing a doctorate at D. T. S., …
The defining mission of the church is to make disciples of all the nations, initiate the new disciples into fellowship through the ordinance of baptism in the name of the Triune God and teach them to observe all that Jesus commanded the first disciples; doing so by the power of the Holy Spirit. For this reason, Matthew 28:18-20 has been called the great commission because Jesus, who has all authority in heaven and on earth (Mt 28:18) commissioned his disciples to do just that. There is an utterance of this great commission at the end of each gospel account and the beginning of Acts. (cf. Mk 16:15, Lk 24:46-48, Jn 20:21, and Acts 1:8) Why? Because evangelism and discipleship are the church’s purpose for existing. For this reason, evangelism and discipleship cannot be separated. They are wholly dependent on one another. Jesus did not commission his disciples at the beginning of his ministry, but at the conclusion, and before his ascension. However, He did send them out on practice evang…