Jesus said to the Jews: “If I testify on my own behalf, my testimony cannot be verified. But there is another who testifies on my behalf, and I know that the testimony he gives on my behalf is true. 3You sent emissaries to John, and he testified to the truth. I do not accept testimony from a human being, but I say this so that you may be saved. He was a burning and shining lamp, and for a while you were content to rejoice in his light. But I have testimony greater than John’s. The works that the Father gave me to accomplish, these works that I perform testify on my behalf that the Father has sent me. Moreover, the Father who sent me has testified on my behalf. But you have never heard his voice nor seen his form, and you do not have his word remaining in you, because you do not believe in the one whom he has sent. You search the Scriptures, because you think you have eternal life through them; even they testify on my behalf. But you do not want to come to me to have life.
“I do not accept human praise; moreover, I know that you do not have the love of God in you. I came in the name of my Father, but you do not accept me; yet if another comes in his own name, you will accept him. How can you believe, when you accept praise from one another and do not seek the praise that comes from the only God? Do not think that I will accuse you before the Father: the one who will accuse you is Moses, in whom you have placed your hope. For if you had believed Moses, you would have believed me, because he wrote about me. But if you do not believe his writings, how will you believe my words?”
TESTIMONY. In the Gospel, Jesus speaks of at least four that bear him witness: John (the Baptist), the works the Father has asked Jesus to accomplish, the Father himself, and the scriptures. Thus, Jesus is telling the Jews that he has not come of his own accord and that he has credentials so that they should listen to him. The problem, however, is that they refuse to consider these things; they have their own criteria and agenda.
It is, indeed, quite difficult to reason with people who want to listen only to their own voices instead of some objective criteria. When we accept only what we want to hear, no dialogue and no truth can be reached. The challenge in all conversations is our ability to set aside our opinions and listen to what others have to say—at least, to be open to the possibility that we may not have the whole truth or may even be wrong!