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Reflection for the Week- February 23rd, 2015

For the narrator of the gospel of John, Jesus’ acts, in contrast to the other gospels which represent them as power manifestations, are frequently referred to as “signs.” That is, they are indicators or “sign-posts” that direct the reader towards an authentification of Jesus’ mission of revealing God on God’s behalf. Jesus, as it were, “signs in” as the Jewish Messiah, who in turn through “signing” becomes the Messiah of the world. Yet, in this story “signs” are never presented as ends in and of themselves. Physical sight or empirical investigation can too easily become “just one more time.” While the testimony to Jesus’ acts includes a dimension of sight verification; a witness to the “signed,” it still does not result in true vision. This appears to be case because the goal of the testimony is not to merely witness to the “signs” per se, but to “sign” people towards God and his Messiah, so that those who believe in him will actually “see.”

Dr. Gregory J. Laughery