To give a testimony is to affirm a fact of truth or genuineness. But who defines truth and answers the questions: Who is God? Who am I? Why are we here? The New Testament is filled with testimony – the testimony of Gabriel, Simeon, and Anna; the testimony of John the Baptist, Jesus, the Father, and the disciples. And we also are instructed to testify.
I grew up in a mainline church. I am grateful for all that I learned there. I believed very strongly in God, and I believed the Bible was all true. I believed that if I dared to question the Bible, God might strike me dead. I am grateful for the truth that I receive in the United Methodist Church. However, after 14 years in that church and being “confirmed,” I did not know that I needed to be born again, as Jesus said in John 3:7-8.
The word “testimony” is prevalent in Scripture. On one hand, some verses speak of physical testimony – we testify with our mouths of someone’s innocence or guilt, to speak truth or expose lies – and on the other, some speak of spiritual testimony – that of our consciences and sins testifying against us.
I have a hard time when I go to a website selling some product and they have a list of testimonies all raving about how wonderful this product is and the miracle it did for them. I know testimonies can be fabricated. They are meaningless to me. I want some real hard evidence that there is something to this product. In Christendom as well, we have many giving testimony to some spiritual experience, some vision of Heaven or Hell, or some special word from God supposedly that we all are just supposed to believe and not question. What is the evidence that such is true? Just because they claim it is?