“Fifth-Amendment” Believers

Saturday, March 6, 2021

These words spake his parents, because they feared the Jews: for the Jews had agreed already, that if any man did confess that he was Christ, he should be put out of the synagogue (John 9:22 KJV).

What are “Fifth-Amendment” believers?

The Fifth Amendment of the United States Constitution affords us the right to refuse to answer questions, especially in criminal trials, which might self-incriminate. In Scripture, we find such “secret” believers in Christ. They dare not publicly declare their faith, lest they be shunned, teased, or even killed!

“Nevertheless among the chief rulers also many believed on him; but because of the Pharisees they did not confess him, lest they should be put out of the synagogue: For they loved the praise of men more than the praise of God (John 12:42,43). “There was a man of the Pharisees, named Nicodemus, a ruler of the Jews: The same came to Jesus by night, and said unto him, Rabbi, we know that thou art a teacher come from God: for no man can do these miracles that thou doest, except God be with him” (John 3:1,2). (Nicodemus sneaked around in the dark, fearing his unbelieving colleagues.)

Once Jesus healed the blind man in John chapter 9 (cf. today’s Scripture), the Pharisees harass the man’s parents: “[19] And they asked them, saying, Is this your son, who ye say was born blind? how then doth he now see? [20] His parents answered them and said, We know that this is our son, and that he was born blind: [21] But by what means he now seeth, we know not; or who hath opened his eyes, we know not: he is of age; ask him: he shall speak for himself. [22] These words spake his parents, because they feared the Jews: for the Jews had agreed already, that if any man did confess that he was Christ, he should be put out of the synagogue. [23] Therefore said his parents, He is of age; ask him.”

The Apostle Paul thus besought the Ephesians to pray for him in Ephesians 6:19,20: “…that utterance may be given unto me, that I may open my mouth boldly, to make known the mystery of the gospel, For which I am an ambassador in bonds: that therein I may speak boldly, as I ought to speak.”