John 3:16 – Gospel according to Jesus

Headline notes on each element of these precious words and promises from Jesus Himself.  Nothing said below is contradicted elsewhere in any New Testament teaching which in its proper context concerns the offer and appropriation of the salvation gifts.

God – as revealed in the Bible.  Only the Biblical revelation of the nature of God and its doctrine of the trinity allows for true divine love.
Love – can only exist and function where subject and objects act and respond out of choice and free will.
World – must of necessity mean the whole of mankind collectively and individually, without exception.
Give – entirely of God’s initiative and provision, and offered entirely in accord with the terms He sets and reveals.  Reception – or here rather, appropriation – of a gift cannot be enforced by the giver, or it is no longer a gift.  God’s gifts here are emphatically not IMPOSED on some while WITHHELD from others.
Believe – the terms of appropriation of the gift as set by God.  Active, not passive, response to the message of Jesus; requiring free will and ability to choose / decide, to accept or reject.  Freely available to all – “whoever”.  Otherwise unjust to hold people responsible for unbelief.  While active, it is not a law-work or meritorious in any sense of earning or contributing anything to salvation.  Likewise the gospel word “come” used elsewhere is an invitation not an imposition, and clearly applies to all without exception.
In Him – in the Lord Jesus Christ the Son of God (Jesus means Saviour – we need saving and only enter into the blessings of the gifts on recognising our need and His provision).  Jesus trusted personally as “the Son of God who loved me and gave Himself for me”.  The context specifically includes the cross as the means of salvation and a vital part of the content of the message, even if not mentioned in the verse itself.
Everlasting life – promised gift, which is received on believing. By definition, anything “everlasting” can never be lost after the moment of receipt.

These headlines are expanded in an extensive article to be published elsewhere.  A link will be provided when it is available.

 

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