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Author Topic: John 3:16 - Explained  (Read 6628 times)

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John 3:16 - Explained
« on: March 27, 2008, 08:37:56 PM »

> Hi Ray,
> I continue reading your papers and listening to your tapes and thank God daily
> for your insight into God's word. May the Lord continue revealing the depths of
> his word to you so you can share it with others. This email is to share with you
> an excerpt that I have from AP Adams a writer from the 1800's explaining John
> 3:16.
> I checked the Emphatic Diaglot and surely the words "whosoever" nor "believeth"
> are there. What a major difference when the right words and tenses are used.
> It's a shame how the creeds have perverted the word of God for their own gain.
> Let me know your thoughts.
> God Bless You,
> Angel

        Dear Angel:  I'm afraid I do not share your enthusiasm for this new take on John 3:16. I will make a few COMMENTS in this person's interpretation:


        Now we will look at a passage in the New Testament; viz., that precious declaration in John 3:16, "God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten Son," etc. We will take into consideration verses 14-17 inclusive; first I will clear up several points of obscurity and error and then give the rendering as it should be. In verse 15 the words "not perish but" should be omitted; according to the best authorities they have been interpolated, probably from the following vers e; they are left out from the New Version.

        COMMENT:  What "new version?" The words "not perish but" are said to be in the Sinaitic and Vatican #1209 manuscripts. However, the Diaglott does not have it (based on the Vatican?), also the Rotherham and ASV leave it out, but Concordant and Young's retain it. So I cannot speak with authority on this point. However, verse 16 DOES contain the phrase "not perish but" in all of these Versions: Rotherham, ASV, Councordant, Youngs, AND the Diaglott. So taking it out of verse 15 does not add anything to the understanding of these verses.

        The word "whosoever" in the 15th and 16th verses should be rendered all; in the original it is the word usually rendered all throughout the New Testament; it occurs hundreds of times, and is rendered all in over nine hundred instances, and whosoever in only about forty; the rendering all then is plainly the usual one.

        COMMENT:  Actually "whosoever" is better rendered "everyone" as done by Concordant, Young's, and the Diaglott.

         The word rendered "believeth," in the original is a participle, believing; the clause should read, "that all, believing in him, should not," &c.

        COMMENT:  "BelievETH" means "believeS," which is the aorist [indefinite] tense, and is therefore the same in meaning as "believing."  For one who "believes" is surely "believing."

        The words, believing in him, are explanatory, telling us how "all,, are to be saved, viz., by believing in him. In the common version it will be noticed that the participle is, without authority, rendered by the verb "believeth," and the words, "whosoever believeth in him" are thereby made to have a conditional force, as though it read, if they believe in him, implying that some will not believe in him, and hence will perish, and be lost eternally. But this is not a correct rendering of the original, as I have shown ab ove; the clause is not conditional, but is thrown in, as a participial form, as explanatory of the manner of the world's salvation,—by believing in him; this view is fully confirmed by the 19th verse; "for God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world but that the world through him might be saved."

        COMMENT:  I fail to see the clarity of those statements?  I agree that "everyone believing in Him shall not perish."  But neither of these verses state that "all WILL believe." That is left up to other verses such as Phil. 2:9-11. There is absolutely a "conditional force" in the words "everyone believing in Him." What about those "NOT believing in Him" as those Jesus describes a little later in John 5:38? If "believing" was not a requirement, there is no need to add it to verse 16. It could simply state: "everyone SHALL HAVE eonian life." But that is not what John 3:16 is teaching. Belief is a requirement not only in this verse but in ALL verses regarding the salvation of all. Where is there someone being saved who does NOT BELIEVE?

        Now I will give the whole passage as it ought to be. "As Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must the son of man be lifted up, that all, believing in him, might have aeonial life. For God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten Son, that all, believing in him, might not perish, but have aeonial life. For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world but that the world through him might be saved."

        Thus truthfully translated this passage is one of the grandest and most sweeping declarations of the final universal triumph of God's grace in the salvation of the world, contained in the Bible. It is positive and direct, and mighty enough, could they only appreciate it, to utterly silence all those narrow, shortsighted souls who think that God will only gain a partial victory over the devil, that he will not save the world, but only a portion of it, a vast number being eternally lost. It is very plain why the translators of the common version handled this passage as they did. Their creed would not allow them to accept it just as it reads; it required only a slight change to make it conform to their own idea. They insert the unusual rendering "whos oever," change believing to "believeth," and then, punctuating it accordingly, the passage is "tinkered" so as to harmonize with the creed. Thank God for deliverance from man-made creeds! "Let God be true, though every man be false." Amen !!!

        COMMENT:  Verse 17 which reads: "For God sent not His Son into the world to condemn the world: but that the world through Him might be saved," In no way alters the required need to 'BELIEVE" in verse 16. Let's not stop with verse 17, but read also verse 18:  "He THAT BELIEVETH ['believes, or believing, or is beliving' is a REQUIREMENT] on Him is NOT CONDEMNED, but [yes, let's not fail to not this big "BUT"]...BUT he that BELIEVETH not is condemned already, BECAUSE [because why? what's missing? let's read it....] ...because he HAS NOT BELIEVED in the name of the only begotten Son of God."

        I can appreciate this person's enthusiasm for the salvation of all, but John 3:16 does not by itself prove the salvation of all, and neither does verses 17 and 18. But there are many other verses that DO prove the salvation of all.

        God be with you,

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