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JMPC Sunshine 8.9.2020

How do we prove things to be true? In court, there are basically two ways. Direct and circumstantial evidence. Direct evidence is what people see, hear, feel, smell or taste. Circumstantial evidence is what can be reasonably inferred from what people see, hear, feel,smell or taste. Both are valid. But while direct evidence has always been preferred, it is extremely rare. You can’t take a jury back in time to observe the event under scrutiny. Yet, we can’t just throw our hands up in the air and say, “Well, I wasn’t there so how can I know?” There was a time when judges of disputes wanted a “sign” that proved who was in the right. A trial by ordeal, perhaps. A duel, perhaps. God would reward the righteous, it was thought, and so the winner or survivor must be in the right. That was accepted as direct evidence. Happily, we don’t do it that way anymore. We are satisfied with circumstantial evidence that a party’s claim in a case was true. What evidence? Witness testimony, documents, opinions of experts and so forth. The jury’s job is then to look at the evidence and make a decision on what the evidence proves. The jury is to use its collective common sense, experience and general knowledge to analyze the evidence in order to decide. The jury might want a “sign”, but must, instead, use their brains. In this week’s text,some fairly smart folks refuse to look at the evidence and instead ask for a “sign” from Jesus to confirm his identity. Jesus’ response is not what they wanted to hear – or was it? Log on
Sunday, August 9 at 9:30am to the John McMillan Presbyterian Church Facebook page to hear Pastor Jeff preach “Proof!” You can also watch te recording later on Facebook or YouTube. See you (virtually) then!

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