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Summary: Testimonies about Jesus. (PowerPoint slides to accompany this talk are available on request - email: gcurley@gcurley.info)

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Reading: John chapter 5 verses 31-47.

Ill:

Things people actually said in court, word for word:

(1).

• Question: “What is your date of birth? “

• Answer: “July fifteenth”.

• Question: “What year?”

• Answer: “Every year”.

(2).

• Q: When the car crashed, what gear were you in at the moment of the impact?

• A: T-shirt, jeans and Reebok trainers.

(3).

• Q: What was the first thing your husband said to you when he woke that morning?

• A: He said, "Where am I Cathy?"

• Q: “And why did that upset you? “

• A: “Because my name is Susan”.

(4).

• Q: The youngest son, the twenty-year old, how old is he?

(5).

• Q: Were you present when your picture was taken?

(6).

• Q: Was it you or your younger brother who was killed in the war?

(7).

• Q: “Doctor, how many autopsies have you performed on dead people? “

• A: “All my autopsies are performed on dead people”.

Well, this answers just goes to prove that…

• When we are looking to prove something, we need reliable witnesses.

• We want the help of those who see it right and hear it right.

• We want the help of those who remember it right and get the facts right.

• We want the testimony to be reliable and trustworthy.

JOHN CHAPTER 5 IS A DRAMA IN THREE VIGNETTES;

• Vignettes is this week’s newly discovered word;

• So I thought I would share it with you.

• Question: What does it mean?

• Answer: In theatre script and poetry writing,

• Vignettes are short, impressionistic scenes that focus on one moment;

• Or give a trenchant impression about a character, an idea, or a setting

• I suppose a more modern word, would be; ‘Snapshot’

• A short incomplete moment that reveals so much.

John chapter 5 is a drama in three vignettes or snapshots;

• Verses 1-15: A miracle – the healing of a man paralyzed for 38 years.

• Verses 16-30: A series of claims – where Jesus declares that he is equal with God.

• Verses 31-47: A defence – where five witnesses are introduced to verify his claims.

Before we meet the witnesses; I want us to note the words of Jesus in verse 31:

"If I testify about myself, my testimony is not true.

• Jesus is not saying that his claims are false;

• Here he is saying that in a court of law one witness alone is not valid.

• In Jewish, Roman and Greek law the testimony of a single witness was not accepted;

• He must have other witnesses to support his case.

• Quote: Deuteronomy chapter 19 verse 15:

• On the evidence of two or three witnesses a matter shall be confirmed.

(1). Witness number 1: God the Father (vs 32):

“There is another who testifies in my favour, and I know that his testimony about me is true.”

• If we had a copy of John’s gospel in Greek;

• The language that it was first written down in,

• The verse we read would reveal two grammatical points;

• That add more colour and flavour than we have in our English translations;

(A). NOTICE HOW JESUS INTRODUCES GOD THE FATHER.

• “There is another”.

• In the Greek it can read; “There is another of the same kind”.

• Don’t forget the section you looked at last week;

• Jesus claimed equality with God the Father;

• And he is doing so again in this simple but profound statement.

Ill:

• The ‘Nature’ of people is humanity (that never changes).

• All people are human beings (that is an unchanging truth).

• But all peoples outward form is always changing;

• We were babies, children, teenagers, adults, middle aged & elderly).

• ill: 3 ages in life!

• “When you are young, middle aged and when you are looking very well!”

Ill:

• Roses, daffodils, tulips and chrysanthemums, primroses, daises etc;

• All have one ‘Nature’ – the nature of flowers.

• But their outward form is always changing;

• They are different sizes, different colours, different appearance and different scents.

Ill:

• Aspirin, penicillin, magnesia etc

• All have one ‘Nature’ - that of drugs

• But their outward form is different to look at;

• The ‘Nature’ never changes but the outward form continually does.

So too with Jesus!

• Jesus is in ‘Nature’ – God the Son - He is unchangeably divine.

• And although his outward appearance changed (he became human ill: grow up);

• In his very core, his very nature,

• He was and is and always shall be divine.

(B). NOTICE THE LITTLE EXPRESSION “TESTIFIES” OR “BEAR WITNESS”:

• Once again the original Greek adds more colour to that expression;

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