"on the evidence of two or three witnesses a matter shall be confirmed." (Deuteronomy 19:15)
As described in Deuteronomy, Jewish law required that there be at least two witnesses to a matter in order for it to be confirmed. In John 5, the Pharisees were seeking to kill Jesus because He "was calling God His own Father, making Himself equal with God." (John 5:18) Jesus said in verse 31, "If I alone bear witness of Myself, My testimony is not true." He then proceeded to give five other witnesses to the truth of who He claimed to be.
1. John the Baptist (v33)
2. The works that He performed (v36)
3. The Father (God) (v37)
4. The Scriptures (v39)
5. Moses (v46)
As I considered this list of witnesses, I thought about how we are also called to be witnesses of Christ. Other translations substitute the word "testify" for the phrase "bear witness." The purpose of being a witness is to testify or affirm that you have seen or heard or experienced something. With this in mind, I looked at the list again with the following questions:
1. John the Baptist (Remember that John and Jesus' mother were related - Luke 1:36)
* Would my family bear witness that I am a believer?
2. The works that Jesus performed
* Do my actions reflect and point to Jesus?
3. The Father (God)
* Would Jesus say that He knows me? (Matthew 7:20-23)
4. The Scriptures
* Do my words (written and spoken) point to Jesus?
* Would those who know me bear witness that I am a believer?
Just as John the Baptist bore witness of Christ (John 1:15, 32, 34), so are we to bear witness of Him through our words and actions, and help prepare the way for others to find our Savior.
"but you shall receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you shall be My witnesses both in Jerusalem and in all Judea and Samaria, and even to the remotest part of the earth." (Acts 1:8)