One Of The Most Popular Verses In The Bible That's Also One Of The Most Misunderstood - John 3:16
John 3:16 "For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life."
This is perhaps the most well-known verse in the Bible. It encapsulates the message of hope we have through the Gospel. God, who created us, loves us so much that He would offer us eternal life through His precious Son. Truly, this is "Amazing Grace."
In John chapter 3, Jesus was speaking to Nicodemus. Being one of the Jewish religious leaders, Nicodemus arranged to meet Jesus to ask him questions in secret. Their discussion revolved around the Kingdom of God and eternal life. The more they spoke, the more confused Nicodemus became. Finally, Jesus says these words to him:
"For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life. For God did not send the Son into the world to judge the world, but that the world might be saved through Him. He who believes in Him is not judged; he who does not believe has been judged already, because he has not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God." John 3:16-18
Although Nicodemus had trouble understanding, Jesus' word to him was straightforward. Jesus did not come into the world to condemn the world but to offer eternal life; whoever does not believe in the Son of God is condemned.
What makes John 3:16 misunderstood by most people is that unless you read the entire chapter of John 3, this scripture alone can lead to false conversion. You see most people who aren't already Christians don't understand that simply "believing" in Jesus isn't enough. Satan believes in him. Knows him personally. Yet, those who've studied the Bible know what God has in store for Satan and his followers.
If you simply read the entire chapter to the end through John 3:36 you'll see where it reads as follows;
"He who believes in the Son has eternal life; but he who does not obey the Son will not see life, but the wrath of God abides on him.”
Think of it compared to the law of men. You can believe that a law applies as much as you like, but if you don't obey it, you can be fined or jailed.
Actually, disobedience is even worse for those who've become Christians and then turned back to their sinful ways. You can read more on this in Hebrews 10:26-31.
The point here is to read scriptures in their entirety and if you're ever unsure of something, find a trustworthy individual in your church to help you understand, such as an Elder or Pulpit Minister.
Don't miss the promise and the warning. This is Amazing Grace; may we not condemn ourselves by rejecting the Son whom God sent.
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