Speaking Of Life 3025 | Eyewitness Testimony
Many movies and TV shows feature dramatic courtroom scenes where a surprise witness gives testimony that shocks the courtroom. The witness is so compelling that there is no doubt that his or her testimony is true. In real life, however, eyewitness testimony is frequently unreliable. According to the Innocence Project, since the 1990s, around 350 people have been exonerated due to DNA evidence. In 75% of those cases, innocent people were convicted primarily due to mistaken eyewitness testimony.*
The possibility of false testimony can make it hard to take people at their word. It would be wonderful to live in a world where we can believe everything people say, however, even eyewitnesses can get things wrong.
This does not mean that all firsthand sources are untrustworthy. For example, the accounts of Jesus in the Bible are based on eyewitness testimony. But if we are not careful, we can transfer our distrust of people’s words onto God and question the truth of the things he tells us.
In 1 John 5:9-13, the apostle John addresses this problem:
We accept human testimony, but God’s testimony is greater because it is the testimony of God, which he has given about his Son. Whoever believes in the Son of God accepts this testimony. Whoever does not believe God has made him out to be a liar, because they have not believed the testimony God has given about his Son. And this is the testimony: God has given us eternal life, and this life is in his Son. Whoever has the Son has life; whoever does not have the Son of God does not have life. I write these things to you who believe in the name of the Son of God so that you may know that you have eternal life.
1 John 5:9-13
God is not a liar and he does not give false testimony. What he says is true, and the truth he wants to share with us is that by grace we have life in Jesus Christ. We have evidence of the veracity of God’s testimony in the life, death, resurrection, and ascension of Christ. There is never a need to doubt God’s word.
The presence of the Holy Spirit in us: leads us into all truth, is the guarantee of our eternal future, and it also serves as proof of a new life in Jesus today. Jesus is alive with us, and he guides us as we join him in bringing his light to our families, churches, neighborhoods, workplaces, and world. He helps us offer a reliable and true personal testimony about Jesus. We can confidently trust what God says and how he leads us because we know his testimony is, was, and always will be faithful and true.
I am Jeff Broadnax, Speaking of Life.
- In case it is needed, here are three sources for the statistic: