Monday, August 5, 2013

John 3:16 and What it Means to You

John 3:16 "For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life."
"For God".  God is supreme in the universe. His name is "I AM THAT I AM". He is the beginning and the end. He created the earth, the universe and mankind. We owe God reverence. He demands that we revere Him and only Him.
"So loved the world". That's us! God loves everyone. He loves evil-doers. Guess who that is? That's you! That's me. We don't deserve that love because we disobey God all the time. He understands. He forgives us. That's called "grace". We deserve death, but he gives us another chance!
"He gave". That's mercy! Think about the person who has wronged you most, even spat upon you and cursed you. Given the chance to get even would you punish or reward? Our nature is to get even! God had that choice. He chose mercy. He gave. He gives and he continues giving, although we keep sinning. Now, that's mercy!
"His only begotten son". God sacrificed his ONLY son who was part man and part God himself. Jesus isn't another God. He IS God in the flesh. He feels pain! He is sorrowful. He is at peace. He is love!
"Whosoever believeth". That's us! Anyone who chooses to open the door when Jesus knocks. He knocks right now. He awaits your response. Will you open the door? It has to be Jesus knocking! If there is an unfamiliar "knock", it's an imposter. Jesus is the Way and only Way! The blood sacrifice of Jesus is for the sins of ALL mankind. You can do nothing to deserve it. You can do one thing to receive it. That's acceptance. Accepting Jesus and knowing that he took your sins upon his own body and died so that you might have life. We must believe! Belief is not a passing fancy, but enduring faith. Faith is the things we hope for. Faith is believing that we can live forever and the only way to do that is by accepting Jesus.
"In him". That's Jesus. He is God himself who took on the flesh of man. Flesh just as we have! He did that so that he could feel what we feel. He empathizes for us because he is not only God, but is man also!  He feels our temptation. He feels our pain. He loves and has joy just as we do. Jesus cried. He cried just as we do. He felt sorrow. He cried for us.
"Should not perish". Our present bodies will perish, but they should not! It wasn't meant to be that way! We were created with immortality, but by the sin of one man, Adam, we bear the death sentence when Adam was penalized for his rebellion against God. As Adam is the father of death, Jesus is the father of life! Since Adam, ALL men have broken God's laws. We also will pay the penalty by a mortal death. Our present bodies will turn to dust, but with salvation, we shall receive imperishable bodies. We will be physically perfect without pain, disease nor depression! We will be joyous and will rejoice in the Lord who by his mercy allowed us to live on!
And the reward which we don't deserve? "Eternal life"!  Eternal is forever. Infinity. Beyond time. If we turned a door knob once every ten thousand years when that knob was totally worn out... eternity is just beginning! I want to spend that time joyous and in heaven. Since something eternal will happen to all of us, what other choices are available? If Christ lied we will lie moldering in the grave without hope.  Since Jesus is Truth, we will either have eternal life or eternal death.  However, death will be more than moldering in the grave. Eternity will be punishment without end for those who deny Jesus and his gift.
You say "A loving God won't send me to hell!" True!  A loving God gives you a way out! He has a plan for you so that you'll never have to endure torment (hell). By denying Jesus you condemn yourself to hell!  Don't do that! Any rational person would choose eternal life over eternal punishment.  If you think about one thing, think about your destiny. That's rational thinking!
"I don't like to think about death!" you say?  That changes nothing. By drifting through life without a plan for eternity which we call "hope" you condemn yourself. God calls you to consider your future. Will you enjoy a resurrected body as Jesus did, or will you choose eternal death? Think about the wonders of God! He has shown the majesty of his creation. By what you see you know of him. Now that you know him, accept his offer... accept his gift. Accept eternal hope! Accept eternal life!

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