๐Ÿ“–๐Ÿ‘‘ John 3:16

โ€œFor God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.โ€

Do you believe it?
With all your heart?
Do you believe that God gave His Son because He loved theย whole world?
Do you believe that whosoever believes in Him receives everlasting life?
Gentiles as well as Jews?
Do you believe that Johnย 3:16ย applies to this age?

We emphasize this because we have been charged of late with putting a dispensational question mark opposite Johnย 3:16.

We not only believe that Johnย 3:16ย applies to this age, but that it is more pertinent today than when our Lord first spoke it to Nicodemus.

But first let us turn to two other Scriptures, just as plain, though less frequently quoted.

In Matthewย 15:24ย we have the plain words of our Lord,ย โ€œI am not sent but unto the lost sheep of the house of Israel.โ€

In Matthew 10:5,6 we read โ€œThese twelve Jesus sent forth, and commanded them, saying,ย Go not into the way of the Gentiles, and into any city of the Samaritans enter ye not: But go rather to the lost sheep of the house of Israel.โ€

How can we reconcile these Scriptures with Johnย 3:16?

Johnย 3:16, โ€” โ€œThe worldโ€ฆwhosoever.โ€

Matthew 10:5,6;ย 15:24, โ€” None but โ€œthe lost sheep of the house of Israel.โ€

The key to this question is found in Acts 3:25,26 where Peter says to the house of Israel, โ€œYe are the children of the prophets, and of theย covenantย which God made with our fathers, saying unto Abraham, AND IN THY SEED SHALL ALL THE KINDREDS OF THE EARTH BE BLESSED. Unto you first God, having raised up His Son Jesus sent Him to bless you, in turning away every one of you from his iniquities.โ€

The Old Testament abounds with prophecies that salvation would go to the ends of the earthย through Israel. This is why our Lord confined His earthly ministry exclusively to the house of Israel. This is why Peter said to the people of Israel,ย โ€œUnto you firstโ€ฆโ€

It was no secret that salvation would go to all the world, but remember that it was to go through the covenant people.

We must not forget that Johnย 3:16ย was spoken to โ€œA RULER OF THE JEWS.โ€ This makes the words of our Lord doubly significant. It would not be at all amiss to paraphrase them thus: โ€œFor God so lovedย the world, Nicodemus โ€” not only Israel, butย the worldโ€” that He gave His only begotten Son that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life.โ€

Sad to say, the rulers of the Jews rejected Christ. The glorious message of Johnย 3:16ย would never have reached the Gentiles if God had waited for Israel to proclaim it.

As a nation they themselves rejected Godโ€™s Son. They even persecuted those who preached Christ and Saul of Tarsus became the leader of the opposition.

It was in this crisis that God arrested Saul and saved him so that He might unfold His secret purpose of grace to him and through him.

We quote a few Scriptures from Paulโ€™s letters:

โ€œWho was before a blasphemer, and a persecutor, and injurious; butโ€ฆthe grace of our Lord was exceeding abundantโ€ฆthat in me first Jesus Christ might show forth all longsuffering, for a pattern to them which should hereafter believe on him to life everlastingโ€ (I Tim.1:13-16).

โ€œWhere sin abounded, grace did much more abound: That as sin hath reignedโ€ฆso might grace reignโ€ (Rom.ย 5:20,21).

โ€œFOR GOD HATH CONCLUDED THEM ALL IN UNBELIEF, THAT HE MIGHT HAVE MERCY UPON ALL. O the depth of the riches both of the wisdom and knowledge of God! How unsearchable are his judgments and his ways past finding out!โ€ (Rom. 11:32,33).

โ€œFor He is our peace, who hath made both one and hath broken down the middle wall of partition between usโ€ฆfor to make in Himself of twain one new manโ€ฆand that he might reconcile both unto God in one body BY THE CROSSโ€ (Eph. 2:14-16).

This message ofย grace abounding, ofย grace reigningย was revealed from heaven by the Lord Jesus Christ to the apostle Paul. He says in Ephesians 3:2,3: โ€œIf ye have heard of the dispensation of the grace of God which is given me to you-ward, HOW THAT BY REVELATION HE MADE KNOWN UNTO ME THE MYSTERY.โ€ This was Godโ€™s eternal purpose, โ€œkept secret since the world beganโ€ (Rom. 16:25), โ€œhid in Godโ€ (Eph. 3:9), โ€œin other ages not made known,โ€ (Eph. 3:5), โ€œhid from ages and from generationsโ€ (Col. 1:26), โ€œTHE MYSTERYโ€ (Rom. 16:25; Eph. 1:9; 3:3,4,9;ย 6:19; Col.ย 1:26,27; 2:2; 4:3).

And now, thank God, though Israel, through whom the nations should have been blessed, gropes in darkness and staggers in unbelief,ย any poor sinner, Jew or Gentile, may rejoice that โ€œGOD SO LOVED THE WORLD, THAT HE GAVE HIS ONLY BEGOTTEN SON, THAT WHOSOEVER BELIEVETH IN HIM SHOULD NOT PERISH, BUT HAVE EVERLASTING LIFE.โ€ source

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