#DailyDevotion Can I Get A Witness?
1 John 5:6-8 6This is He Who came by water and blood — Jesus Christ; not by water only, but by water and blood. And the Spirit is telling the truth because the Spirit is the Truth. 7There are three who bring us the truth: 8the Spirit, the water, and the blood, and these three have one purpose.
So we may be wondering what is John talking about here. Jesus is easy enough. But what does it mean that he came by water and the blood? Well it is probably easier than we think. Jesus came by water. He came by water when he was baptized. When Jesus was baptized he was identified as God’s Son, not only from all eternity but as Israel. Matthew concerning Jesus flight into Egypt and then back to Nazareth tells us this trip fulfills the word, “Our of Egypt I called my son.” The son in that passage being Israel. Jesus is baptized in the Jordan river. Israel passed through the waters of the Jordan entering the Promised Land. Jesus passes through the water to go into the wilderness to do what Israel did not, remain faithful to God despite the temptations of the evil one.
Jesus came by blood. This also seems simple enough. Jesus shed his blood on the cross giving his life for the world. The life is in the blood. Having given up his life, the Roman centurian cries out, “Surely this is the Son of God!” John wrote at the beginning of the epistle, “and the blood of Jesus, His Son, washes us clean from every sin.” Only the blood of the Son of God could cleanse humanity of their sins. Regular humanity has its own sins to atone for and it cannot do that. Hebrews reminds us the blood of bulls and goats could never really atone for our sins. They only point to the blood of Jesus.
The Spirit then tells us the truth about Jesus through the water and the blood. When Jesus was baptized John the Baptist recognized Jesus as the Messiah. He was told, “I saw the Spirit come down from heaven as a dove and stay on Him. 33I didn’t know Who He was, but He Who sent me to baptize with water told me, ‘When you see the Spirit come down on Someone and stay on Him, He is the One Who baptizes with the Holy Spirit.’ 34I saw it and testified, ‘This is the Son of God.’” So we get a two for one in Jesus’ baptism, the water and the Spirit. When Jesus dies on the cross at his glorification, he breaths out the Spirit giving his life.
So we have these three witnesses, the Spirit, the water and the blood. They are one. They point to the Savior of the world. They have one purpose which is to make us children of God. The Spirit’s witnes in the proclamation of the forgiveness of sins in Jesus’ name and baptism are used to give us faith, make us born of the Father’s will, born from above, regenerate us, make us alive and forgive us our sins as the blood of Christ is sprinkled upon us to give us a good conscience before God. It is the purpose of God by these three witnesses to give us eternal life so we may be resurrected on the Last Day and enter into God’s kingdom. We are further strengthened and preserved in the faith through the hearing of the Word (which is always accompanied by the Spirit), absolution, the Lord’s Supper and Christians encouraging one another with the same word they have received.
Heavenly Father, ever provide for us your witness concerning your Son Jesus Christ by the Spirit, water and blood so we may have everlasting life and live in your kingdom. In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen.