I really have written a few things since the last post in November; just not for the blog. To ease back into a blogging routine, I’ll use what was just finished for Sunday’s bulletin.
Witnesses in John’s Gospel
John’s gospel was written to build faith in Jesus as the Christ, the Son of God. One of the ways this is done is by recording the testimony of some of the people who knew him. Here are some “witness statements” from the Gospel according to John.
- John the Baptizer, cousin of Jesus and a prophet of God who called the people to repent in preparation for the coming of the Messiah. “I saw the Spirit descend as a dove from heaven, and it remained on him…I have seen and have borne witness that this is the Son of God.” John 1:32-34
- Nathaniel, a friend of the apostle Philip who was at first skeptical that Jesus of Nazareth could be the Messiah, but after a conversation with him declared, “Rabbi, you are the Son of God! You ae the King of Israel!” John 1:49
- The people of Samaria, who first listened because of the woman who said, “He told me all that I ever did” after two days with Jesus said, “…we know that this is indeed the Savior of the world.” John 4:42
- The people of Galilee, who followed him because they saw the signs which he did in healing those who were diseased, then stayed to hear his teaching, and ate of the loaves and fishes he multiplied for them said, “This is indeed the prophet who is to come into the world!” John 5:14
- Simon Peter, one of the first disciples called, remained after many quit following Jesus because of his difficult teaching. He spoke for the Twelve when Jesus asked if they also wanted to leave him. “Lord, to whom shall we go? You have the words of eternal life; and we have believed, and have come to know, that you are the Holy One of God.” John 6:69
- Some of the people in Jerusalem for the Feast of Tabernacles, after hearing Jesus teaching said, “This is really the prophet.” Or “This is the Christ.” John 7:41
- A man born blind, whom Jesus healed, was questioned by Pharisees who did not want to acknowledge that Jesus had such power to heal answered them simply, “He is a prophet.” John 9:17
- Martha, a woman of Bethany whose family called Jesus their friend and hosted him when he came to the area, spoke out of her grief when her brother died—a death she believed Jesus could have prevented had he come sooner. “Yes, Lord; I believe that you are the Christ, the Son of God, he who is coming into the world.” John 11:27
- Thomas, one of the Twelve, who was not with the others when Jesus first appeared to them after his resurrection, said he would need to touch Jesus wounds to believe. When the resurrected Lord did appear to him, and invited him to examine the wounds, he readily addressed Jesus as “My Lord and my God!” John 30:28
- The apostle John himself, in writing his account of Jesus’ life and teachings testifies to Christ and gives the reason for writing “…that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that believing you may have life in his name.” John 20:31
Image is a portrait of John the Evangelist from folio 291v of the Book of Kells.