The Christian testimony is a critical facet of the Church stated and exemplified by the individual members of the Church. Generally explained, the testimony relates a personal knowledge and experience with God. The testimony intends to incorporate the story of Christ’s redemptive action on the Cross. The testimony particularly points to God, His providence, and the hope He gives. It tells how God helped in certain circumstances to overcome adversity in a timely manner for blessing and comfort. The Christian testimony is not only a personal verbal presentation, but It is also pro-active expecting that we live out a consistent testimony reflecting an accurate relationship with God.
It is noteworthy that one of the Psalmists related their personal testimony. But, in giving their testimony, they seemed to raise the concern whether it was adequate enough to be effective and influential.
The whole of our testimony should aim for the same—-effect and influence. For when we give a verbal testimony or live out our own personal testimony, it should be given to have a measurable effect on the listener. Furthermore, it should be lived out to influence well the watcher for God’s honor and glory.
So, the question becomes, “Is it enough?” Is the testimony we speak enough? Is the testimony we live enough? Is our testimony effective? Is it influential? The Psalmist raises some issues to consider.
The first issue raised considers if it is loud enough to be effective and influential. “Make a joyful noise unto the Lord,” they exhort. Seen here is not only a joyful noise of praise and adoration directed to God, but also a joyful noise about God. It is quite clear that every social and political entity makes certain noise about their cause to draw attention to it. The people of the Church should not be afraid to do the same about God. There is nothing wrong and everything right that the church draw attention to God, for a lot of people outside the Church do not know about the goodness and salvation of God the way they should. If you and I are not making enough noise about God, make it more.
The second issue raised wonders if it is joyful enough: “Sing forth the honor of His name.”
Perhaps there is nothing more confusing than for one who is part of the Church to be a grievous complainer. There was once a person I knew who would sometimes stand in church and testify complainingly when things seemed to go wrong, “What did I ever do to deserve this?” That was the gist of it. Their testimony was not inspiring to others at all. A testimony that is full of mumbling and grumbling only gives others more determination not to seek out God. If it is not joyful enough, make it more.
A third issue raised—-that goes hand-in-glove with the above—-wonders if it invites others to God enough. The Psalmist testifies, “Come and see the works of God (!)” Our testimony should include an urgent invitation for people to come to God. You never know who is listening. You never know who is watching. If it does not have an invitation to others, include one.
A fourth issue raised by the Psalmist is whether it uplifts God enough. The Psalmist says, “O bless our God.” And, for good reason—-“…for we went through fire and water, but you brought us out in a wealthy place.” What a powerful statement that is! When we go through hard and difficult times, God always brings us into a “wealthy place.” This is a compelling reason why it is important to primarily uplift God in our testimony. If it does not uplift God enough, make it more.
At least one more issue is raised by the Psalmist. Our testimony should be clear about our salvation experience. The Psalmist declares forthrightly, “Come and hear, all you that fear God, and I will declare what He has done for my soul.” Our verbal testimony should be very clear that the Lord has redeemed our soul for eternal life. The testimony from our living should confirm it. If it does not, then make sure that it does.
Give a good testimony.
Pastor Ron Branch lives in Mason County and is pastor of Hope Baptist Church, Middleport, Ohio.