CCLXXXII. The Threefold Witness.

1 JOHN v. 6-8. “This is He that came by waier and blood, even Jesus
Christ; not by water only, but by water and blood. And it
is the Spirit that beareth witness, because the Spirit is truth.
For there are three that bear record,… the Spirit, the
water, and the blood: and these three agree in one.”

WE are not called on to believe without evidence. There
is a threefold testimony to Jesus. The three agree in bear-
ing witness to Him as the Christ.
I. The testimony of the water.
The reference is to baptism. The baptism of Jesus
Himself, and the baptism which He instituted.
The baptism of Jesus with its accompaniment was the
beginning of His manifestation as the Christ. He not
only submitted to baptism; He perpetuated it. When
the Gospel comes to any country it comes “with water.”
Though many superstitions have gathered round baptism,
it has borne its simple yet eloquent witness to the holy
life and teachings and purpose of Him who instituted it.
II. The testimony of the blood.
The blood shedding of Jesus was really a testimony to
His Divine Sonship; it was the price He was willing to
pay for the world’s redemption, and it was the completion
of His revelation of the Father.
This testimony of the blood abides in the Church. The
cross is interwoven into the texture of Christian thought
and feeling and language. Then the sacrament of the
supper brings us face to face with Christ Himself, and tells
us that His death was for the life of the world.
III. The testimony of the Spirit.
The Spirit which was in Jesus bare witness to Him all
His life that He was the anointed of the Father.
This Spirit He was also to impart. It has been poured
out on the Church. Also it works outside of the Church
striving with men. To reject Christ is to reject not merely
the testimony of Greek manuscripts and Galilean fisher-
men, but the testimony of an inward voice.
Thus we do not believe in Christ without evidence.
T. C. Finlayson, M.A.

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