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Monday, July 31, 2017

Jesus Witnesses of Himself – John 8:13-18

       Jesus has just proclaimed that He is the Light of the world. The Pharisees challenged Him. “Here you are, appearing as your own witness; your testimony is not valid.” V13 The Pharisees were referring to Deuteronomy 19:15 that states a word must be established by two or three witnesses. This tenet was repeated in Matthew 18:16 by Jesus and by Paul in 2 Corinthians 13:1. In other words, this word was affirmed three times in scripture and thus was established. The Pharisees are accusing Jesus of disobeying God’s Word. They felt that Jesus was making a claim that no one could back up by witnesses. Therefore, the Pharisees proclaim that Jesus’ testimony is invalid.
Jesus taught His disciples in Matthew 18:16, that if a brother sins against them and won’t listen, they are to take one or two others along, so that “every matter may be established by the testimony of two or three witnesses.” Timothy also in 1 Timothy 5:19 uses the need for two or three witnesses in church governing. “Do not entertain an accusation against an elder unless it is brought by two or three witnesses.” Witnesses are important to God and His ways.
       The Pharisees had a Law they knew, but Jesus is speaking of spiritual matters that they did not understand as Truth. Jesus will show the teachers of the Law and religious leaders that spiritually He does have two witnesses – the Father and the Holy Spirit. Spiritual matters are proven by the Word and the Holy Spirit, not by earthly means. Jesus is the Living Word – the Word of God brought to life in Christ’s flesh body. He is full of the Holy Spirit because He has no sin. Because Jesus is the Anointed Word of God doing the will of the Father by the power of the Holy Spirit, He is not disobeying the Word regarding “witnesses.”
 Jesus responds to the accusation of the Pharisees. “Even if I testify on My own behalf, My testimony is valid, for I know where I came from and where I am going. But you have no idea where I come from or where I am going. You judge by human standards. I pass judgment on no one. But if I do judge, My decisions are right, because I am not alone. I stand with the Father who sent me. In your own Law it is written that the testimony of two men is valid. I am one who testifies for Myself; My other witness is the Father, who sent Me.” John 8:14-18 The Father was Jesus’ other witness. Jesus and the Father stand together as One. Jesus’ testimony was valid because He and the Father are One in Spirit, Truth, Character, Actions, Faith and Justice. Therefore, any Word He speaks is Truth because He is Truth.
Jesus knew where He came from because He existed with the Father as the Word along with the Holy Spirit before anything else was created. He also knew where He was going (returning). He came from His eternal heavenly home and was returning there for eternity. Jesus’ time on earth was temporary but His home in heaven is eternal. He has no beginning or end just like the Father and the Holy Spirit.
If Jesus judges anyone or anything, His judgment is righteous because He is righteous. Jesus was judging through spiritual knowledge but His opponents were judging through human knowledge. Jesus in His flesh body understood the scriptures differently than all of the other Jewish teachers because He is holy and spiritual -- God. He is the Word, and as God, interprets the Word. He and the Father with whom He stands testify of the Truth in agreement. The Father is always with Jesus as Jesus is always with the Father because of His obedience to the Father. He had no sin to separate Him from the Father.
Jesus didn’t speak untruth because He is Truth. A witness testifies of what He has seen and heard. Jesus knew His witness was Truth because He had seen and heard the Father. Jesus also had the fullness of the Holy Spirit who witnesses to the Truth. The Holy Spirit was not poured out upon the believers in the Upper Room until Jesus died, was resurrected and ascended to the Father.
Jesus knew His witness was true but the Jewish religious leaders didn’t! They couldn’t judge the truthfulness of Jesus because they didn’t believe His words that came from the Father. They were judging with their humanness. Jesus said to the Pharisees, “You do not know Me or My Father. If you knew Me, you would know My Father also.” The invisible God who is Spirit cannot be a visible witness except in Jesus Christ who had a flesh body.

 “Where is your father?” V19

       The Pharisees considered Jesus illegitimate, so their question was tricky. The Pharisees were speaking of His adopted father Joseph. But Jesus says to them, “you do not know Me or My Father. If you knew Me, you would know My Father also.” V19 Jesus’ statement must have confused the Pharisees since they were talking about an earthly father but Jesus is talking about a Heavenly Eternal Father. The Pharisees knew about God but didn’t truly know Him because Jesus is the One who reveals the true God.

       John in his gospel spoke of seven witnesses of Christ:

1.  John the Baptist – John 1:7; John 5:33-35
2.  His disciples – John 1:43, 49; 15:47
3.  Witnessed of Himself – John 3:11; 5:31; 8:14
4.  The Father – John 5:20; 12:28
5.  Jesus’ works – John 5:36
6.  Scriptures – John 5:39
7.  Holy Spirit – John 15:26

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