What is an endorsement? It is a testimonial that someone gives on behalf of a person, company, product or service. The person who endorses something may be a character admired by Americans or a successful athlete or renowned movie celebrity.
Advertisers pay famous athletes and gold medal winners to endorse their shoes, tennis rackets, underwear, cars or salad dressing. The public often believes that if the product or service is good enough for someone as admirable as a military figure, or if the shoes work for a famous basketball star, then the product or service must indeed be wonderful.
As America enters the presidential campaign season, it is interesting to note that during the thick of primaries and campaigns, candidates will appear on television with famous entertainers. The notoriety of celebrities adds credibility to the candidate some think. These celebrities have no special knowledge of government or constitutional theory but people still are influenced buy these celebrities. These people contend they have faith in the candidate and therefore everyone else should too.
However, the man born blind in the Bible is an example of a true testimonial. The account is in John 9. He had been blind from birth and Jesus found him, anointed his eyes with clay and then told him to go wash his eyes in the pool of Siloam. The Bible says the man did that and then “came seeing” (Verse 7).
After Jesus healed him, news spread throughout the town. The neighbors who had known the man all his life couldn’t believe it. The Pharisees questioned how exactly how he had received his sight and the man said that the stranger had restored his eyes.
The Pharisees even called his parents to testify. The man’s parent verified that he had been blind from birth. They summoned the man again. The Pharisees just told him to admit the stranger who had healed him was a sinner and to forget about him.
Then the healed man responded with a beautiful testimonial: “Whether he is a sinner or no, I know not; one thing I know, that whereas I was blind, now I see!” (verse 25)
True testimonials are a result from first-hand experience. This man who was healed by Jesus gave an authentic testimonial because his encounter with Jesus changed his life. He was an “eye” witness. He was not eloquent with words, Bible facts or spiritual concepts. He is just “I know what Jesus did for me.” Perhaps Christians would be much more compelling if people would say, “I just know what Jesus did for me.” Being religious is endorsing the motions of religion. Being spiritual is accepting and endorsing the work of Jesus Christ on the cross and then telling it.
Judy Brandon is an instructor at Clovis Community College. Contact her at: firstname.lastname@example.org