Tuesday, April 22, 2014

WITNESS: TO BE...OR...TO -ING....THAT IS THE QUESTION

Greetings and Salutations O Ye Witnesses or Witnessing Ones...do ya have the Power?




In this crazy mixed up world of Christianity...we tend to jump through the hoops of semantics...or word meanings.  We build whole cases on words...syntax...semantics...and context.  As a Speech Language Pathologist...who loves a good word study...I truly believe in utilization of a Greek-Hebrew Lexicon...to bring and draw out the meaning of context of the Scriptures.


Just take the word for love...that in the Greek has multiple meanings...whereas in English we utilize the word love for everything. Think about the words PRAISE and WORSHIP.  We usually use PRAISE for singing lively songs...and then we enter into WORSHIP when we slow the songs down and get all reverent....but they both meld together as ONE COIN with TWO SIDES.  Keep this in mind when we see how TO BE or -ING in reference to the word WITNESS. Even the word...word...has a couple of meanings...that we may delve into at a later Rambling...but for now...we want to think about the word WITNESS




There are two ways to view this thing called witness...with one way being what we ARE...and the other being what we DO. I believe they are the same thing like on a two sided coin...except this coin has three sides.  The thing that is common to BEING a witness and BEARING witness is...the object of what/who is witness...JESUS.





BEAR WITNESS


"What was from the beginning, what we have HEARD, what we have SEEN with our eyes, what we BEHELD and our hands HANDLED, concerning the Word of Life (Jesus)--and the life was MANIFESTED, and we have SEEN and BEAR WITNESS and PROCLAIM to you the eternal life, which was with the Father and was MANIFESTED to us--what we have SEEN and HEARED we PROCLAIM to you also, that you also may have fellowship with us; and indeed our fellowship is with the Father, and with His Son, Jesus Christ. And these things we WRITE, so that our joy may be made complete." (I John 1:1-4)


BEAR WITNESS: martureo (mar-too-reh'-o)= to be a witness, that is, testify (literally or figuratively): - charge, give [evidence], bear record, have (obtain, of) good (honest) report, be well reported of, testify, give (have) testimony, (be, bear, give, obtain) witness.


BE MY WITNESSES

"But you shall RECEIVE POWER when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you SHALL BE MY WITNESSES both in Jerusalem, and in all Judea, and Samaria, and even to the remotest part of the earth." (Acts 1:8)

BE MY WITNESSES: martus =(mar'-toos)=Of uncertain affinity; a witness (literally [judicially] or figuratively [generally]); by analogy a "martyr": - martyr, record, witness.


Another aspect of this witness/witnessing is giving a defense for what you believe/hope to those who ask you about it.


MAKE A DEFENSE


"But sanctify Christ as Lord in your hearts, always BEING READY to make a DEFENSE to everyone who asks you to give AN ACCOUNT for the hope that is in you, yet with GENTLENESSand REVERENCE; and keep a good conscience so that in the thing in which you are slandered, those who revile your good behavior in Christ may be put to shame." (I Peter 3:15-16)


DEFENSE:  apologia (ap-ol-og-ee'-ah)=From the same as G626; a plea ("apology"): - answer (for self), clearing of self, defence.


So...we see that we are TO BE a witness...we are TO BEAR WITNESS...and to HAVE A DEFENSE of your hope to those who ask. 


On Phil Keaggy's instrumental album called BEYOND NATURE...Phil quotes St. Francis of Assisi with the following quote:


"Witness for Christ each day, and if necessary use words." (Attributed to St. Francis of Assisi)


The idea is...LIVE YOUR LIFE OUT LOUD instead of using your WORDS.  Let people see your life...verses having to "witness".  No doubt...if you don't live the life...don't speak about it. 


FINAL THOUGHTS...FINALLY


The answer to the question concerning the word WITNESS...To BE or -ING...is YESBE... -ING...and BE READY WITH A DEFENSE for the HOPE WITHIN YOU.


Love and Witnessing Kisses
Rodney "BE and -ING" Boyd























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