John 5:34 “But my purpose is not to get your vote, and not to appeal to mere human testimony. I’m speaking to you this way so that you will be saved.” (The Message Bible)
Do you hate campaign ads as much as I do? Being in a large TV market like the Delaware Valley, we get subjected to ads for races in which we will never get to vote! Often these ads are about the failings of the other candidate rather than the plans and vision of the one sponsoring the ad. Jesus is speaking in the verse above and the image of voting is the translator’s attempt to be 21st century. It is not a phrase that Jesus used. But we get the idea. Jesus spoke the hard truth sometimes and not a version of the truth designed to make certain groups or individuals approve of him. If you notice, though, throughout the gospels Jesus speaks these hard truths directly to people, not about them to others. Above he says “I’m speaking to you this way” talking to the religious leaders that were giving him a hard time. And why? “So that you will be saved.” When Jesus says difficult things concerning people, he says them to their face and does so because he wants the best for them. Is this something we could/should do also?