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Sixth Edition, 1915
By Dr. John Thomas (first edition written 1861)



Chapter 3


3. The Witness Faithful and True


As all the promises are to be fulfilled in and through Jesus Anointed, according to the testimony he gave in the day of his weakness, he is endorsed also as "the Witness faithful and true." He was "the Witness" by eminence. When standing at Pilate's bar, he said, in answer to Pilate's question, "Art thou King then?" "Thou sayest, for I am King. I have been born for this; and I came into the world for this, that I might bear witness to the truth. Every one being of the truth, hearkeneth to my voice." He bore the witness before the people, and at the bar of Caiaphas as well. Before these he testified, that he was "the Anointed 0ne, the Son of the Deity;" and that his enemies should "hereafter see the Son of Man sitting in right places of the Power, and coming upon the clouds of the heaven" (Matt. xxvi. 64). But, as he told Nicodemus, "We, (that is, the Father and Himself,) speak what we do know, and testify what we have seen; and ye receive not our witness." His contemporaries in the flesh rejected him as a false witness; for John the immerser speaking of him, says, "What he hath seen and heard that he testifieth, and no man receiveth his testimony." There were but few exceptions to this, yet sufficient of them to be noted, for John also said, "He that hath received his testimony, hath set to his seal that God is true. For he whom the Deity hath sent speaketh the words of the Deity" (John iii. 33,34). These words were set forth in "the Gospel of the Kingdom of the Deity," which Jesus declared he was sent to preach (Luke iv. 18,19,43); and if it might then be said that "no man received his testimony," it might with great propriety be said so now, and for the same reason, because the pious and others seek honor one of another, and "not the honor which cometh from the Deity only."

Jesus admitted, that "if he bore witness of himself his witness was not true." This was incontrovertible. The Mosaic law, under which Jesus lived, required two or three witnesses for the establishment of truth, so that if Jesus could have adduced no other evidence than his own, the people of Judah would have been guiltless in rejecting his claims to the Messiahship, and in repudiating the gospel of the kingdom to be manifested through him. No man of himself can demonstrate his own parentage. Jesus claimed to be the Son of the Deity, a claim which could only be established, in view of the natural untruthfulness of humanity, and the frailty of woman, by the Deity himself. This was publicly and notably done before the multitude on Jordan's banks, when the Spirit of the Deity descended upon Jesus in the form of a dove, and the voice came from the excellent glory in the heaven, saying, "This is my Son the Beloved, with whom I am well pleased." Thus the Father attested him; and afterwards, John the immerser, who heard and saw the wonder; and all the apostles who were present, and especially Peter, James, and John, who afterwards, in the presence of Jesus, Moses, and Elijah, heard the same declaration on the mount, with the addition of the words, "HEAR YE HIM!"

Here, then, were John the baptizer, "a burning and a shining light;" "the Father himself;" the scriptures of the prophets; the multitude at his baptism; the apostles; and the sanction of the heavenly host which announced his birth to the shepherds; to say nothing of Joseph, Mary, and their immediate kin, who might be suspected of false testimony from interested motives -- all testifying that he was "a witness faithful and true." In the salutation in i. 5, John introduces this characteristic of Jesus: "Grace," says he, "unto you, and peace ... from Jesus Anointed, the Faithful Witness." There has been none upon earth more faithful than he; therefore, he is pre-eminently the faithful one -- faithful to the truth, and to him that sent him; "faithful as a Son over his own house" (Heb. iii. 6); faithful unto death, as an example for all in him to follow. He styles himself "faithful and true" because his sayings are such. He testifies the truth in this apocalypse. The Lord God, or Adonai Yahweh, of the holy prophets -- that is, Jesus Anointed -- sent his messenger to show unto his servants, through John, the things which must be shortly done: "and he said unto me," saith John, "these sayings are faithful and true" (xxii. 6). In ch. xix. 11, the word "witness" is dropped, and the Lord the Spirit, who speaks to the Laodiceans, is styled "the Faithful and True, who judges and makes war in righteousness." He does not come then as a witness, but to perform all the things which have been promised from of old -- to destroy the Apostasy, and to bless all nations in Abraham and his Seed.




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