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Read Introduction to John


14 Jesus answered and said to them, “Even if I bear witness of Myself, My witness is true, for I know where I came from and where I am going; but you do not know where I come from and where I am going.


14 Jesus answered and said to them,

Self-authentication is occasionally the only way to verify something. When it comes to perception about God, the solitary way to know Him is by revelation. The Pharisees tried to deal with Jesus as a mere human being, without recognition of the fact that He was the Father’s special revealer, the Logos.

Even if I bear witness of Myself,

There are times when one’s witness may be true even without corroboration from anyone or anything else. The demand for more than one witness was a legal matter, not a matter of truth in general.

Self-witness does not invalidate truth. In this passage Jesus took the highest ground for establishing truth by claiming His eternal preexistence as God. He justified bearing testimony to Himself by the claim to deity. The badge of deity can witness to self. Light must bear witness of itself. No person as a finite human being can do this.

Jesus previously presented several other witnesses to Himself: (1) John the Baptist, (2) the Father, (3) Jesus’ miracles and works, and (4) Scripture (Jn 5:31-39).

My witness is true,

Jesus could offer “true” testimony because He came from an eternal perspective as a member of the trinity. His opponents had only a finite viewpoint.

In John 5:31 Jesus agreed with the Pharisees that unsupported affirmations have no legal value. He did not declare that His own words were not true but only that unsupported legal evidence should not be received.

With the statement in this verse, Jesus affirmed that He was qualified to assert truth while His enemies were not. He also demonstrated that His statements were supported because the Father bore witness for Him.

for I know where I came from and where I am going;

Jesus’ testimony of Himself is exempt from human judgment because human viewpoint does not have capacity to transcend finiteness. Jesus had a unique origin; He came from eternity and was going back to eternity. Only eternity can speak from the viewpoint of eternity.

The words “I know” designates the transparent consciousness that Christ had in His existence as God in His preexistent state. He was fully conversant with His origin and destiny.

but you do not know where I come from and where I am going.

Witnesses bound to earth cannot testify of Christ because they do not have omniscient capacity. Their knowledge was purely from a finite perspective. Religious prejudice is a mightily blinding force. It exists in blank incomprehension.


Only God has the capacity to testify about Himself.


As God, Christ was the only one who could testify about infinite things. He was an exception to the rule of self-testimony; He was indeed the only person who spoke from God’s revelation. If we are going to know Christ truly, we need a different category of thinking, a different starting point than finite perspective.

Human viewpoint is always limited to the finite. Divine viewpoint is not limited. God always knows everything about everything.

When dealing with infinite truth, self-authentication by God is the only way to come to truth. Only God can know what is true about Himself. Jesus was competent to witness about Himself because He was God almighty; He had comprehensive, ultimate knowledge. This looks like exaggerated arrogance were not Christ God Himself. Only the light of the world could make a statement like this.