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John;The Truth and the witness

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posted on May, 13 2016 @ 05:01 PM
“We beheld the glory of the Son”, says John, and that glory was “full of grace and truth” (ch1 v14).
“Grace and truth” sums up what Christ brings to replace the law brought by Moses (v17).
The truth is what is real, and the revelation of what is real.
So it needs to be made known by witnesses and their testimony.

The first is John the Baptist. His function is that he comes as a witness. His task is to bear witness to the light. The purpose of his task is that all men might believe through him –a purpose not restricted to the one nation but extended to the world (v7).

His first testimony is to the person of Jesus;
“This is he of whom I said ‘He who comes after me ranks before me [in place], for he was before me [in time]’” (v15). He’s endorsing what we learned from the opening verses, that the Word is prior to all things, and therefore greater.
The second testimony is to the descent of the Spirit at the baptism of Jesus (vv32-34).
In both cases, the core of the testimony is that Jesus is the one sent by God.

Jesus himself is testifying to what he has learned direct from the Father;
“We speak of what we know and bear witness to what we have seen” (ch3 v11).
These words are amplified at the end of the chapter;
“The one who comes from above…bears witness to what he has seen…
For he whom God has sent utters the words of God, for it is not by measure that he gives the Spirit” (vv31-34).

This lays him open to the charge that he is the sole witness to himself, which would not be sufficient under Jewish law.
He anticipates this line of argument when he’s talking about his authority;
“If I [alone] bear witness to myself, my testimony is not true; there is another who bears witness to me, and I know that the testimony which he bears of me is true”.
He means that the Father is the necessary second witness.
He knows what the Baptist told them, but he’s not depending upon John’s endorsement, though it’s useful for their salvation.
He has a greater testimony in “the works which the Father has granted me to accomplish”.
His “works” include his teaching, as well as his miracles.
The Father has also testified more directly in the scriptures which they search so avidly (ch5 vv31-40).

An exchange with the Pharisees on the Feast of Tabernacles gives us a condensed version of the same line of argument.
They say to him; “You are bearing witness to yourself; your testimony is not true”.
He retorts that his lone testimony would still be good, because he knows better than they do where he came from (and where he is going).
But apart from that, the Father who sent him acts as his second witness (ch8 vv13-18).

“The truth” is both the content of the testimony and the source of the testimony.
The testimony is a way of manifesting the Father, who is himself Truth.
That’s why Jesus says that those who do the truth (that is, the works which God has given them to do) will be coming to the light which makes his works clear.
They will want to show that their works have been done “in God” (ch3 v21).

In the same vein, Jesus told the woman in Samaria that God was looking for true worshippers who would worship “in Spirit and truth”.
God is spirit (and also truth), and those who worship him should worship accordingly.
This combination displaces the worship found either in Jerusalem (where men focus on the letter rather than the Spirit), or in Samaria (which the Jews regard as a religion of falsehood rather than truth).
It is the manifestation of God in Christ which makes the true worship possible.

So the reward for receiving the truth would be getting closer to God.
“If you continue in my word… you will know the truth [that is, you will know God], and the truth will make you free” (ch8 vv31-32).
Once again, they should know it as the truth because he has heard it from God.
Their difficulty comes from the fact that their real father is the devil, who is the opposite of the truth.
Therefore they cannot be in tune with the truth.
They do not believe him, precisely because he tells them what is true (vv39-47).
On the other hand, as he tells Pilate later, everyone who is “of the truth” will hear his voice (ch18 v38)
His disciples are to be taken out of the world and sanctified (or set apart for God) “in the truth”. For if God is truth and they are in the truth, then they are in God.

Consequently “the truth” is part of the definition of his mission;
“I am the way, the truth, and the life” (ch14 v6).
He represents what is eternal and absolute, as against what is finite.
He promises to send the disciples “The Spirit of Truth”, who will “guide you into all the truth” (ch16 v13).
The Spirit will testify about Jesus to the world, and will at the same time testify against the world itself.

The truth is also part of the self-definition which he gives to Pilate.
“For this I was born, and for this I have come into the world, to bear witness to the truth” (ch18 v37)
This complements, rather than contradicts, the other great definition;
“I have come as light into the world, that whoever believes in me may not remain in darkness” (ch12 v46)

Bacon’s famous comment on this scene is “What is truth? said jesting Pilate, and would not stay for an answer.” Perhaps a little unfair, because we don’t know that Pilate did not wait, and we don’t know that any short answer was possible.

The final testimonies come from the writer of the book, who testifies as a witness of the crucifixion (ch19 v35), and as a witness of the events of the Gospel in general (ch21 v24).

In short, there is enough testimony here to make the truth available to anyone who is willing to receive it.

posted on May, 13 2016 @ 07:54 PM
Any fool can see the limits of seeing, but not even the wisest know the limits of knowing. Thus is ignorance rendered invisible, and are all Men made fools.

R. Scott Bakker, The White Luck Warrior (Aspect-Emperor, #2

As long as we're all quoting silly books

posted on May, 13 2016 @ 07:57 PM
a reply to: Mrgone
At least my quotations relate to the topic of the thread.
This is a discussion of theology, so any comments directly concerning the specified area of John's theology would be valuable.

posted on May, 13 2016 @ 07:59 PM
Ok, when one wishes to discuss theology, he should consider that he may be wrong.

You can only believe so many lies before becoming one of them.

R. Scott Bakker, The White Luck Warrior: The Aspect Emperor, Book 2

posted on May, 13 2016 @ 08:04 PM
To indulge it is to breed it. To punish it is to feed it. Madness knows no bridle but the knife.

Your bronze age sky god is not the only source of knowledge. When making your points it is generally good judgement not to sight only a single source as truth. Unless you are not looking to be taken seriously by anyone but the " choir"

posted on May, 13 2016 @ 08:05 PM
I can see that your an ATS veteran so I'll bow and leave you to your thoughts.

No harm intended. Best of luck
edit on 05Fri, 13 May 2016 21:47:11 -0500920165America/Chicago by Mrgone because: (no reason given)

posted on May, 13 2016 @ 08:09 PM

originally posted by: Mrgone
When making your points it is generally good judgement not to sight only a single source as truth.

I think you don't understand how theology works.
For a discussion on theology, I need no sources other than the theological authorities of the relevant religion; in this case, the Bible.
Since I am describing what John's gospel says, John's gospel itself is all the evidence I require.

posted on May, 13 2016 @ 08:27 PM

originally posted by: DISRAELI

originally posted by: Mrgone
When making your points it is generally good judgement not to sight only a single source as truth.

I think you don't understand how theology works.
For a discussion on theology, I need no sources other than the theological authorities of the relevant religion; in this case, the Bible.
Since I am describing what John's gospel says, John's gospel itself is all the evidence I require.

true words. The chior is behind you, though.

posted on May, 13 2016 @ 11:32 PM
a reply to: Mrgone

Generally with his threads, the OP is discussing the meaning of a particular passage of the Bible, not if it is or is not true or anything else, only what it means in his interpretation of it.

For this purpose, he is absolutely correct; he does not need to cite any source other than the one he is attempting to interpret for us.

Think of it as a book discussion. You do not read the book under discussion and then read 20 or 30 other books to support your contentions about what you think the book means. Instead you simply cite the relevant passages from the text. You might cite essays or similar materials others have written about the book under discussion.

But you would essentially be correct that his audience is those who have an interest in what certain passages of Christian scripture might mean and intend to discuss that.
edit on 13-5-2016 by ketsuko because: (no reason given)

posted on May, 14 2016 @ 01:02 AM
a reply to: ketsuko

You are, of course, correct. It is a book discussion.

From now on, I shall view such biblical OPs as book discussions and keep my nose out of it. Good way to put it.

Cheers to you both

posted on May, 15 2016 @ 04:18 PM
This thread should be seen as a sequel to
The Light and the darkness
It is the same subject using a different metaphor.

posted on May, 18 2016 @ 02:07 PM
There is a set of Semitic people today who never became Christian but kept alive the church of John the Baptist all this time.

They live in Iraq and are called Mandaeans.

Mandaeans scripture John the Baptist
edit on 18-5-2016 by Parazurvan because: (no reason given)

posted on May, 18 2016 @ 02:48 PM
John was a Nozrim or Nazirite and the prophet who made Baptism an initiation into the Kingdom of God. He preached that his baptism was just a preparation for the Spiritual Baptism of fire. Fire represents burning with wisdom and is available to all who understand the meaning of Baptized with the Spirit and fire.

The water represents forgiveness of sin and that is what you get if you don't know the meaning of "Spirit and fire" and are not ready to learn the truth about the Bible and the its sources as well as the true beliefs of the people who wrote it and what their descendants believe today.

Judaism has never been monotheistic.

God tells Moses to sacrifice a goat to Azazel the god of the desert. You can tell it had been hidden because most bibles turn it into sacrifice a scapegoat and remove Azazel.

Monotheism doesn't exist. It is just an adjustment to polytheism that makes Gods into angels with one God who always has 7 spirits (Baal and Ahura Mazda had 7 spirits). But in every case you have lesser divinities be it gods or angels who perform the tasks of their individual god counterparts.

El and Baal were the most popular titles for gods but their is an El Elyon who is God Most High and Father of ALL the Gods.

Shaddai is supposedly the early name of Jehovah but it comes from the Canaanite Shaddayy who is so obscure in Canaanite mythology I had to buy a book to find it and he is just an obscure minor deity mentioned once.

All the Israelites rituals are Canaanite rituals for Baal. They also worshipped Asherah.

And then they decided to tell everyone they were always monotheistic and started to call Baal Yahweh and say that he was the only God and they are his chosen people.

Both John and Jesus were killed for teaching about God the Father. The El Elyon of the ancients who is Father of all the Gods.

posted on May, 18 2016 @ 03:26 PM
While John and Jesus were cousins they did not recognize each other when they met at the beginning of Jesus ministry.

This is because while John gathered followers preaching the coming of the Messiah Jesus was being taught at the wisdom schools in Egypt learning about more than Judaism. He came back with wisdom of the world in Alexandria from what we now call mystery schools and he learned the secrets of enlightenment and healing.

His goal was to spread wisdom. Not to change the Law of God or make a new Law or Kingdom. He was uniting people with wisdom and the rulers took him out because he was exposing them.

Grace was not one of his teachings. Paul made that up as if it was a revelation that only he was worthy to receive.

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