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  • Writer's pictureTim Hemingway

True Testimony


“The man who saw it has given testimony, and his testimony is true.

He knows that he tells the truth, and he testifies so that you also may believe.” John 19:35.

The apostle John was absolutely convinced that he had reliably seen the soldiers arrive to break the bones of Jesus, but finding him already dead they had taken a spear and pierced his side.

I guess no one chronicled the details of the deaths of the two criminals crucified beside him. But John knows the significance of this man. The question was still hanging in the air - though many must have thought it answered now - was this man who he said he was? Was he the messiah of God? But John saw scripture about the messiah fulfilled before his very eyes.

Zechariah the prophet had spoken the words of the lord long ago and recorded the lord saying about himself “they will look on me the one they have pierced” (Zechariah 12:10). And before Zechariah, King David had written that “the lord will protect all the bones of the righteous person - not one will be broken” (Psalm 34:20).

I think John saw these two passages fulfilled at Calvary in his friend Jesus. Even though he was hanging there on the cross dead, he knew he was the messiah and he believed it. Would others if he wrote it down?

So he says with his record, effectively, I’m not mad, my testimony is true; I know what I saw.

But John wants more. He wants his readers to believe it! Perhaps because of what Isaiah said about the one who was going to be pierced: “He was pierced for our transgressions, he was crushed for our iniquities; the punishment that brought us peace was on him, and by his wounds we are healed.” Isaiah 53:5.

For our sins to be healed and for there to be peace between us and our God, Jesus had to be pierced and not have his legs broken. John knew it and he told us so that we might believe!



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