Friday, December 16, 2016
Reflection: John 5:33-36
Friday of the Third Week of Advent - John 5:33-36
In this Gospel Jesus strives to educate His listeners about who He is. He says to his listeners: “You have heard John testified to the Truth. He was the lamp, burning brightly on my behalf. For awhile you exulted in his light. Yet I have a testimony greater than John’s. I have works to do that the God has given me to accomplish. The works which I perform will testify on my behalf and, moreover, God will testify on my behalf.”
Now ask yourself: how would you respond if someone approached you and spoke these words to you? I assume you might think that they needed quite a bit of counseling and perhaps hospitalization. Yet this person might be telling the truth!
In this passage, Jesus spoke about evidence as if he was in a court of law. He wanted to convince the people that He was speaking the truth about himself. He had said that God was his Father; and He also said that he had the power to “give” eternal life. Then He added that God also had given Him the authority to “judge all people (John 5:27).” Clearly with these statements, Jesus was saying that he was “equal” with God.
In Jewish law the evidence of one person was not sufficient. It was not enough for Jesus to profess these truths about himself. At least two people had to give evidence that something was true. Most human beings need “evidence”! And typically the evidence we might give will need to be substantiated by another trustworthy person.
However, Jesus had other evidence that he was telling the truth about himself. There was John the Baptist who had preached the truth. John told the people who Jesus really was. He had shown that Jesus was the way to receive God’s salvation.
Most of us do not believe in Jesus just because someone else testified on His behalf. In some cases, the person's testimony may have strengthened our belief. However, it is ultimately our personal choice to believe or not believe in Jesus. Today ask yourself: How deep is my belief in Jesus? Do I simply swallow what I have been taught? Or do I truly believe that He is walking with me every moment of my day? I pray that you trust in Jesus’ love for you and His presence with your every moment of your life! Blessings!