Characteristics of John's Testimony

 •  2 min. read  •  grade level: 12
The unfolding of particular testimony to Sonship, in contrast with the blinding of the Jews, is John's subject all through. Matthew's, as we have seen, is different; as is Luke's, who gives us the Son of man, and what is suited to the display of that truth. But there is such total and profound ignorance in all these infidel writers of the purpose of the author, that they do not understand the scope of a single passage. How should they? It is as if some wise housemaid should clean out a powerful voltaic battery, because dirty wire and plates and useless water were in it.
And I beg the reader to call to mind, that if God was writing a book, He might have such objects. Adequate evidence of the facts proving His mission in Israel among the Jews was given in Matthew's Gospel among themselves, and I suppose (it is hardly to be doubted from the evidence we have) in their own tongue as well as in Greek, before the destruction of Jerusalem. John was employed (when Christianity was now, in one sense, established, and no longer in the cradle of Judaism) to give the great leading truths concerning the person and glory of Jesus, and the presence of the Holy Ghost needed for its building up and consolidation, and the guarding it against the inroads of heretical pravity. Could anything be more suitable, more timely, or more gracious on God's part? He preserves also an apostle himself, that, as external proof, we might have an eyewitness, and one most especially intimate with Jesus—one we may reverently call His bosom friend—to show what really was the true doctrine of Christ when there was danger of departure from it, and need of building up in it; when it was no longer sufficient to believe that Jesus was the Christ in order to be preserved from the machinations of the enemy. And this is what we have in John. He is occupied entirely about the person of Christ, and the testimony of the Holy Ghost operating in the saints, whether to convict the world by, or to build up the church in, the glory of that Christ. Meanwhile, if God chose fitting instruments, the Holy Ghost Himself, as Christ had promised, was the Author and Inspirer of all, whether in Matthew or John, or any other. Now John was just the person fitted for this. The time was the time it was required, the thing done exactly what was called for: just as the general course of Christ's working was recorded by Matthew; but in Matthew hundreds of miracles in a verse or two to introduce the true character of the kingdom of heaven, which was his subject: all his detailed miracles bearing on his subject, as the few John relates do on his; and Luke's in an equally remarkable manner on his—the healing, cleansing, forgiving, and quickening of man lost in sin.