Daily Devotion - January 5, 2021 - The Testimony of Jesus

Pastor: Connie Belmore

Daily Devotion – January 5, 2021
Reading:
John 1:35-42
Weekly Theme: The Son of God
Today: The Testimony of Jesus

Have you ever shared your personal testimony with anyone? Many people repeat the saying that has been attributed to St. Francis of Assisi: “Preach the Gospel at all times, and when necessary, use words” to justify why they do not use words to share the Good News of Jesus Christ. While it is a very powerful statement and certainly reminds us that our actions are also part of our testimony, words are also a necessary part of our witness. There are people who do not know Jesus and may observe our actions and be moved by the Holy Spirit one step closer to Christ. However, I would encourage all Christians to write down your testimony and to know what you would say to someone if God opens a door for you to verbally share your testimony of how Jesus has changed and worked in your life. And if you are one of those people who is doing the work of the Lord by serving others, please...keep up the good work of witnessing to others in that way!

Today’s passage tells us that Jesus’ testimony was weightier than that of John the Baptist. We know that John the Baptist used words to prepare the way of the Lord. He encouraged others to repent and to join him in preparing the way. In verses 36-40, Jesus explains that the works the Father has given him to do are “weightier” than the works of John the Baptist. He passionately lets the followers of Moses, and the Law God gave to Moses, that God himself has testified about Jesus. In this passage he is referring to Isaiah 7:14 and Isaiah 9:6 that God has sent his very Son, God incarnate, to show us how to live and that all authority shall rest on his shoulders. This is Jesus’ testimony. He engages in conversation with the people who have rejected them by telling them they even study the very Scriptures that testify to his coming, yet they still think that the Scripture itself can save them and give them life. Jesus is not wanting them to glorify him but is wanting them to have the love of God in their hearts. This is what testifying is all about: telling others about our relationship with God, referencing Scripture as it relates to our unique relationship with God, and then telling people that you desire for them to experience the love of God as you have.

St. Frances of Assisi certainly is known for his powerful physical work of taking care of all of God’s creation and sharing the gospel in this way. He purposely chose to live a simple life of poverty but would also go to extravagant parties of the rich preach the gospel to them, using words. On this matter, Pope Benedict XVI adds to the notion of using words as part of our witness in Verbum Domini ( a document regarding how Catholics approach and live out the Bible), “It is not a matter of preaching a word of consolation, but rather a word which disrupts, which calls to conversion and which opens the way to an encounter with the One through whom a new humanity flowers (no. 93)”. This encapsulates for us the purpose of testimony; God does the calling through the words we say, words that cause others to pause and consider what it would be like to encounter God. Do you know your testimony? If not, consider writing it down on a couple of pages, reduce it to a 3 x5 index card, and then share it with someone else. Continue to revisit it throughout your life as God continues to impact you in powerful ways.

God Almighty Lord Jesus Holy Spirit, thank you for the many examples you give us in Your Word of how we can bear witness to your mighty acts, especially the example we see in your Son, Jesus Christ. Give us knowledge, strength and courage to know our testimony about how you have changed us and to share that witness with others. Help us to follow the example of your Son, Jesus --- God Incarnate, in whose name we pray. Amen.

 
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