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"...if anyone makes the assistance of grace depend on the humility or obedience of man and does not agree that it is a gift of grace itself that we are obedient and humble, he contradicts the Apostle who says, "What have you that you did not receive?" (1 Cor. 4:7), and, "But by the grace of God I am what I am" (1 Cor. 15:10). (Council of Orange: Canon 6)

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  • « Judge Not! by Mike Ratliff | Main | If Sinners Will be Damned »

    Understanding John 3:16 by Pastor John Samson

    The most famous verse in the entire Bible is John 3:16. Here Jesus says, "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."

    When hearing the biblical teaching on the subject of Divine election, some seek immediate refuge in a traditional and may I say, unbiblical understanding of this verse. They say this: "God can't elect certain ones to salvation because John 3:16 says that God so loved the world that gave His Son so that WHOEVER believes in Christ would have eternal life. Therefore, God has done His part in offering the gift of salvation in His Son and just leaves it up to us to receive the gift through faith. Amen. Case closed!" (emphasis theirs)

    Or so it might seem... Though this is a very common tradition, and one I held to myself for many a year, it needs to be pointed out that in spite of the emphasis made by many people here on the word "whoever", the text does not actually discuss who does or who does not have the ability to believe. Someone might just as well be quoting John 3:16 to suggest that all churches need to have red carpets in their sanctuaries! Why? Because that also is not a topic addressed in the text. The verse is often quoted, but actually it has no relevance to the subject.

    For the understanding of a text in the New Testament, we need to check the original language in which it was written, namely koine Greek. It may come as a big surprise to learn that in the original Greek of John 3:16, there is no word "whoever." The word "whoever" is expressing a phrase in Greek which is difficult to express smoothly in English.

    Literally, the text reads "in order that every the one believing in Him, not to perish, but have everlasting life." It says "every" or "all the one believing..." That's hard to express in English, but in essence, it is saying "all the believing ones." That's what is being communicated. It is saying that there is no such thing as a believing one who does not receive eternal life, but who perishes. Though our English translation says "whoever believes" the literal rendering is accurately translated as "every believing one" and the emphasis is NOT AT ALL on the "whosoever" but on the belief. The ones BELIEVING will not have one consequence but will have another. They will not perish but will have everlasting life.

    Why? Because of the main verb - because God GAVE His Son. God gave His Son for the purpose (Greek: hina) that every believing one should not perish, but that every believing one should have everlasting life.

    The text (John 3:16) actually speaks of a limitation of a particular rather than a universal redemption, for clearly, not everyone will be saved, but only those who believe in Christ. The Father gave His Son for the purpose of those who believe. The Son is given so that the believing ones will not perish, but opposite to that, have eternal life. That is the purpose of the giving.

    So, what John 3:16 teaches is:

    ALL who do A (believe in Him)
    will not B (perish)
    but will have C (everlasting life)

    What does this text tell us about who WILL believe or who CAN believe?

    The answer is: ABSOLUTELY NOTHING! The text does not address the issue of who WILL believe or who CAN believe.

    However, if you do want to know John's view on who CAN exercise faith, he does deal with that question - just not in this text. If you go back a few verses in the chapter to John 3:3, John quotes Jesus as saying "unless a man is born again he CANNOT enter the kingdom of God." That's clear isn't it?

    Jesus said that a pre-requisite, a necessary condition, that must be met before someone can enter the kingdom of God is that they are born again. We enter the kingdom of God through faith, but in order to enter the kingdom, we must first be born again, or made spiritually alive. If we are not FIRST born again, we CANNOT enter the kingdom of God.

    This same issue is certainly addressed by Jesus 3 chapters further on in John 6:44, when He said, "No one can come to Me unless the Father who sent Me draws him; and I will raise him up on the last day." (we should note that the one drawn by the Father to the Son is also raised up on the last day to eternal life). (John 6:39, 40). In John 6:65, Jesus said, "For this reason I have said to you, that no one can come to Me unless it has been granted him from the Father."

    Of course, all who exercise true faith will certainly be saved. John 3:16 clearly teaches that anyone believing in Christ will not perish but have everlasting life. But what we need to ask is "who WILL have faith?"

    The Augustinian, and I believe biblical view, is that only the elect will be brought to faith. No one can come to Christ unless God does something to enable that person to come.

    So why do people miss what John 3:16 teaches or read into it (eisegesis) what is not actually in the text?

    That's easy. It is because of how they have heard John 3:16 used over and over and over again. They have an ingrained, preconceived notion of what the verse says, and fail to question that assumption and read the text for what it actually says.

    It's a TRADITION and if you dare question it, you might be accused of questioning the very word of God, rather than their traditional interpretation of the word of God, and that can create a whole lot of emotion.

    This text, of course, is just one example of many that could be quoted, but it does show us how powerful our traditions can be. We need to continuously expose our traditions to the light of God's Word. If they can be confirmed by detailed study of the text of Scripture, we can be sure that the traditions are valid. If not, then we need to dispense with them. Let God be true and every man a liar... even if the "man" here refers to our own firmly held beliefs, but not the testimony of Scripture itself.

    Posted by John Samson on June 11, 2006 08:07 PM

    Comments

    John Samson--

    You said:

    What does this text tell us about who WILL believe or who CAN believe?

    The answer is: ABSOLUTELY NOTHING! The text does not address the issue of who WILL believe or who CAN believe.

    If it is true that this verse "does not address the issue of who will believe or who can believe," why do you then proceed in your essay to do that which you claim the text doesn't, i.e., define "who will believe or who can believe?"

    You claim that "traditional" rendernings of John 3:16 are eisigesis (reading into the passage things that are not there). However, by your own admission, you do exactly this, for the entire point you are making (i.e., the identity of who will or can believe) does not exist in the text!!! Therefore, it is quite clear that you are not only guilty of eisigesis, but that you have foolishly admitted to doing it as well.

    ExistDissolve,

    I thought I was clear... I certainly did say that John 3:16 teaches us nothing about who can believe or cannot believe. This question is addressed by Jesus in the Gospel of John, just not in this particular text.

    I wrote: "if you do want to know John's view on who CAN exercise faith, he does deal with that question - just not in this text." I then went to other scriptural references (others could have been mentioned - e.g. John 10:26) where I believe Jesus made it clear as to who has the ability to believe.

    Perhaps I am missing something, but if I am guilty of trying to make John 3:16 address this issue, could you point out to me where I do so?

    I think it is quite obvious, ExistDissolve, that you based your above post on an eisegesis of what Pastor Samson wrote. With all respect, I beg you to reread his post. Pastor Samson committed no eisegesis of the John 3:16 texts. He did take looks at other texts, but those were entirely different passages.

    If you don't mind, reread what he said. It will make more sense. I say this in all respect, not to slam on you for misreading it, but to make a clarification.

    God bless!

    Your brother in Christ,

    A. Shepherd
    The Aspiring Theologian

    The Aspiring Theologian Blog: Reformed Theology & Apologetics
    The Aspiring Theologian Blog Post on Calvinism

    ExistDissolve,

    Do you understand the point that the underlying Greek phrase for "whoever believes" is "all the believing ones."

    In other words, John S' point is that "whoever believes" is simply stating the fact that those who believe do not perish but receive everlasting life.

    The text is not speaking about the moral ability (or even the inability) of man. It is not implying that man has the ability to believe in Christ.

    "I thought I was clear... I certainly did say that John 3:16 teaches us nothing about who can believe or cannot believe. This question is addressed by Jesus in the Gospel of John, just not in this particular text.

    I wrote: "if you do want to know John's view on who CAN exercise faith, he does deal with that question - just not in this text." I then went to other scriptural references (others could have been mentioned - e.g. John 10:26) where I believe Jesus made it clear as to who has the ability to believe.

    Perhaps I am missing something, but if I am guilty of trying to make John 3:16 address this issue, could you point out to me where I do so?"

    My point is that you are attempting to establish a particular reading of John 3:16 by 1.) improperly ruling out a particular set of interpretive possibilities and 2.) with this inappropriate vacuum created, you proceed to attempt to fill it correlatively with other meanings which you have imposed on other verses that may or may not have any relationship to John 3:16.

    Let me give you an example. Through your "exegesis," you claim that the rendering of "whoever" is inappropriate. From a translation standpoint, this may be appropriate, but from an interpretive view, it may not be. After all, the precise identity of "everyone who believes" is dependent upon the presuppositional framework through which one approaches the text. As you believe that God will not grant belief to many that God has created, you are forced, by your philosophical biases, to inject the corrolary ideas of "election," predestination, etc. into this admittedly imprecise verse. On the other hand, others, like myself, believe that God desires for all to be reconciled to Godself and that God, per creating humanity with personhood in the imago dei, has provided the means by which all could potentially exist in relationship with God. Therefore, your quite tedious rendering of John 3:16 is actually dependent upon the list of proof-texts which you can string on the end of it, a process that can be done successfully by anyone with a decent concordance. This, however, does not establish finally the meaning of the text nor does it, IMO, even come close to capturing the meaning that the author was attempting to convey.

    Moreover, I think it is humourous that you try to go to other passages in Scripture to imply the meaning of John 3:16, while clearly ignoring the surrounding context of the very chapter. Perhaps you've read John 3:17 before: ""For God did not send the Son into the world to judge the world, but that the world might be saved through Him." If the potential that "the world might be saved through HIm" is there, the rendering of "whoever" in 16 is not entirely without warrant (although perhaps not textually present). Of course, many will argue that "world" refers only to the elect, but I seriously doubt that these same would like to apply that hermeneutical paradigm to the whole of NT Scripture. Such would make for some incredibly awkward statements about the "elect"...

    Well, I was going to respond to ExistDissolve, but Alan, Albert and John did a fine job. This is the first verse I memorized as a child. Now that I have studied it in context and the Greek it is obvious that Jesus came to save "all the believing ones."

    In Christ

    Mike Ratliff

    Interesting and thought-provoking post.

    I feel, however, that the 'exegesis' employed proverbally misses the forest for the trees.

    Why? Because of the main verb - because God GAVE His Son. God gave His Son for the purpose (Greek: hina) that every believing one should not perish, but that every believing one should have everlasting life.

    The text (John 3:16) actually speaks of a limitation of a particular rather than a universal redemption, for clearly, not everyone will be saved, but only those who believe in Christ. The Father gave His Son for the purpose of those who believe. The Son is given so that the believing ones will not perish, but opposite to that, have eternal life. That is the purpose of the giving.

    I don't think there is any doubt that John is saying that those who believe are ones who will not perish, but are those who will have eternal life. However, there are many considerations to keep in mind.

    This very verse places the motivation of the giving of the Son in a cosmic context- John speaks of God's love for the world. Although you may feel that the world refers only to the 'elect', I see no contextual reason to assert this. If this cosmic view is what John has in mind, as he seems to (as I will explain a little more below) then Jesus is speaking of what brings about eternal life and freedom from perishing- that being faith in Christ. If John actually means world by using the word world as he does, then the qualification Jesus makes carries a clear implication in regards to the extent of potentiality for belief. Clearly, Jesus' words carry the imperative for belief.

    That Jesus would be speaking of 'the elect' is pre-empted by the very context in which he is speaking. He has been speaking to Nicodemus, a Jewish leader, who is trying to ascertain who Jesus really is. As is clear from the first chapter of John, the scope of Jesus' coming into the world extends beyond the Jews. As is also clear from other potions of the NT, the Jews, being God's elect, felt that their pedigree, their having the law, etc., was their ticket to God's favor. Paul struggles with this idea in Romans and other letters, Jesus struggles with it in the Gospels, the Council of Jerusalem dealt with it in regards to the gentiles coming to Christ. But Jesus is clear that entering the kingdom of heaven comes only from being 'born from above.' The very fact that Jesus speaks of belief in the Son as a qualification for receiving eternal life indicates that the scope of salvation is extending beyond ideas of election.

    Secondly, the remaining context of this chapter places the idea that the capacity for belief being given only to a few into absurdity. Jesus contrats those who do believe and those who don't, and even establishes the responsibility for belief within everybody. Jesus speaks of the verdict being that light has come into the darkness, but men love the darkness instead of life because their deeds are evil. The clear statement is that condemnation or lack thereof is based upon lack of belief or belief, respectively, and the implication is that there is the capacity for belief. If Jesus' words here are genuine, then the world of 3:16 evidently embraces all of the world, and not just the elect.

    However, if you do want to know John's view on who CAN exercise faith, he does deal with that question - just not in this text. If you go back a few verses in the chapter to John 3:3, John quotes Jesus as saying "unless a man is born again he CANNOT enter the kingdom of God." That's clear isn't it?

    You talk about eisegesis, and reading presuppositions into scripture, but you do the exact same thing here. I see nothing that indicates Jesus is speaking about who can or cannot exercise faith.

    This same issue is certainly addressed by Jesus 3 chapters further on in John 6:44, when He said, "No one can come to Me unless the Father who sent Me draws him; and I will raise him up on the last day." (we should note that the one drawn by the Father to the Son is also raised up on the last day to eternal life). (John 6:39, 40). In John 6:65, Jesus said, "For this reason I have said to you, that no one can come to Me unless it has been granted him from the Father."

    Once again, you completely rip these verses out of their contexts and apply a presuppsoed theology to them. While this is ultimately inevitable for anybody, you should not be so quick for denouncing others for it.

    That's easy. It is because of how they have heard John 3:16 used over and over and over again. They have an ingrained, preconceived notion of what the verse says, and fail to question that assumption and read the text for what it actually says.

    As I already stated, this argument could as easily be levied against your appropriation of John 6:44 and 65.

    It's a TRADITION and if you dare question it, you might be accused of questioning the very word of God, rather than their traditional interpretation of the word of God, and that can create a whole lot of emotion.

    You invoke Augustine, which is as 'traditional' an interpretation as anybody else's. (I think Augustine is usually invoked without warrant, since he often goes many different directions with his thought, but that is beside the point.)

    This text, of course, is just one example of many that could be quoted, but it does show us how powerful our traditions can be. We need to continuously expose our traditions to the light of God's Word. If they can be confirmed by detailed study of the text of Scripture, we can be sure that the traditions are valid. If not, then we need to dispense with them. Let God be true and every man a liar... even if the "man" here refers to our own firmly held beliefs, but not the testimony of Scripture itself.

    I agree- since the context of John 3 clearly places the idea of God's love in the sphere of including the whole world, and since clearly Jesus places the imperative for faith upon those to whom the light has come; namely, the world, then you should just as much dispense with your traditional understanding of this passage.


    "I think it is humourous that you try to go to other passages in Scripture to imply the meaning of John 3:16"

    i) John S did just the opposite. He said that we need to go to other texts to find out answers to questions that are not at issue in John 3:16. He could not have been more clear.

    ii) Do you understand that the phrase, "whoever believes" (pas ho pisteuon, all the believing ones) is not indicating a moral ability of the sinner to believe in Jesus.

    It is simply stating the fact that those who believe recieve eternal life and therefore do not perish.

    Interestingly, what this text does suggest is that Christ came to die for those that would believe on him--not for those that would have unbelief (i.e., particular redemption).

    Well said Alan. I was listening to the White Horse Inn last night and I heard them discuss that the Natural Man's theology will always be Pelagianism. That said, God must burn that away as He regenerates our hearts. Some, like John Hendryx, didn't have to spend much time in that crucible. :-) However, I did. It took God 20 years to Reform my theology from my SBC Arminian beliefs.

    In Christ

    Mike Ratliff

    John 3:16 says nothing about the ability to believe. The apostle John puts that in John 6:44 and John 6:65.These verses use universal negatives. No one can come to Christ except the Father Draws him (verse 44)and except it were given to him of my Father (verse 65). These same people the Father will raise up the last day. (verse 44). Couple that with John 3:16 and 6:37 and we can see that "all the believing ones in John 3:16 are the elect! Soli Deo Gloria!

    Alan--

    i) John S did just the opposite. He said that we need to go to other texts to find out answers to questions that are not at issue in John 3:16. He could not have been more clear.

    Yes, I understand that. However, he is using John 3:16 to create a vacuum into which he can pursue a specific philosophical presupposition. THAT is my point.

    ii) Do you understand that the phrase, "whoever believes" (pas ho pisteuon, all the believing ones) is not indicating a moral ability of the sinner to believe in Jesus.

    Yes, you've asked this question twice now, and I fully understand it. But again, by saying that this verse "does not teach about the moral ability of humanity," the original poster, per my critique, is attempting to create a vacuum in which he can insert another, philosophically presupposed meaning that, admittedly and well-established by now..., does not exist in the particular verse.

    Interestingly, what this text does suggest is that Christ came to die for those that would believe on him--not for those that would have unbelief (i.e., particular redemption).

    What?? It says no such thing. If you want to remove the "whosoever," that is fine, and perhaps textually warranted. However, to suggest that this verse, in isolation, teaches that "Christ came to die for those that would believe on him--not for those that would have unbelief (i.e., particular redemption) is a complete hermeneutical raping of the text. After all, from the verse in isolation, the "giving" of Christ is linked to God's love for the world (i.e., a universal meaning and consequence of Christ's Incarnation and death) and the "not perishing" is linked to "belief."

    Your point had a chance before your final comment, but obviously you could not resist the propogandizing. By your flippant and obviously biased rendering of this verse, it is clear that my critique is close to accurately portraying that which is being pursued in this post as a whole.

    Exit-Dissolve.

    Your supposition that Alan is creating a Vaccum to inject or pursue a certain presupposition is invalid. Do you really understand textual criticism?

    John 3:16 must be taken in context of the entire passage. The passage in the context of the book and the book in context of the Bible. John and Alan have not violated that premise at all, however, you are forcing your man-centered theology on John 3:16. Why are you doing that?

    Exist-Dissolve said:

    "However, he is using John 3:16 to create a vacuum into which he can pursue a specific philosophical presupposition. THAT is my point."

    Pastor Samson's point was to show that John 3:16 did not mean what people commonly say it means. Whether he followed that by going to the topic of predestination (a logical followup) or not is irrelevant. You keep repeating yourself over and over, but you are only making the mistake that you wrongly accuse Pastor Samson of.

    "is attempting to create a vacuum in which he can insert another, philosophically presupposed meaning that, admittedly and well-established by now..., does not exist in the particular verse."

    Cool. I'm fine with your point, so long as you PROVE IT by showing Pastor Samson (per his request) where and how he inserted another meaning into the text. He did not insert any meaning into it. He continued his blog article by going to other texts, but he inserted zero meaning into the text. You are basing your accusation of Pastor Samson on something you inserted into what he said!

    "Your point had a chance before your final comment, but obviously you could not resist the propogandizing. By your flippant and obviously biased rendering of this verse, it is clear that my critique is close to accurately portraying that which is being pursued in this post as a whole."

    You are being unnecessarily brutal to a fellow brother in Christ. Please state your opinion in a civilized manner. Now that Pastor Samson has clarified himself, I think you should stop antagonizing everyone.

    Keep your cool, man. This isn't World War III. And don't make a point without backing it up, please.

    God be with you,

    A. Shepherd
    The Aspiring Theologian

    The Aspiring Theologian Blog: Reformed Theology & Apologetics

    I can't understand why "world" SHOULD or MUST signify "every individual ever lived in history from Adam to the end of times".

    Did God send Christ so that, for example, the aborigens of North America in the time of Christ should believe and be saved?

    Obviously not.

    If so, then already at THIS point the false inference that "world" must signify "every person ever lived in history from Adam to the end" completely falls to the ground, and every lying mouth is put to silence.

    We don't need so much exegetical skills to abandon our humanistic, false, and unbiblical presuppositions...only to ask God, in true humility, to give us eyes and ears to hear, so that we can learn from His Word, sometimes through someone who God has been pleased to enlighten, so that they can teach the way of God better to others who sincerely love Him above everything else.

    Francesco

    When reading John 3:16, do you also read John 3: 1-5 and then continue reading on after verse 16? I think that John 3:16 by itself is to take the verse out of context and to make it something that I don't think it was intended to be.

    Jesus is ridiculing Nicodemus in this chapter, and verse 16 is part of that ridicule. Nicodemus expects to have to "earn" God's love, when you can't "earn" anything from God. God's love is a pure gift, and there is nothing, NOTHING that we can do to "earn" it. We can't pick and choose who gets God's love and we can't say with any confidence that we know the criteria, because I don't believe criteria exists. God is God and we are not. God is free to give love to whoever, whenever and we need to except that.

    While "iron sharpens iron" is an analogy of what happens "when" the two are put together in a particular relationship, it doesn't state "how" they got there. Usually to "re-edge" a knife, we FORCE the two together as the one who wants to use the tools. God allows us, the irons, to come together on our own to accomplish this task. Should we ourselves be "teachable" by him through his word and allow Him to "transform" us instead of trying to "conform" one another? Be TEACHABLE!

    I am trying to understand exactly what "believe" in John 3:16 means. To me it means an action or change brought on by a repentent heart. In other words, a repentent heart is neccessary for salvation. Regards, Art Corazza

    Bible is John 3:16. Here Jesus says, "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."

    The only thing that spring to mind is that Jesus put their faith to the test by following all of mans rules and gods rules to see who will follow him in believing in their true creator so that faith will not die but live on A.R.E.

    Thank you for the article.

    I appreciate your clarification of the word "whomsoever" in John 3:16.

    I do have a question on the word "world" found in this verse, which in the Greek is "kosmos". How does GOD loving the "kosmos" so much that He sends His only Son to die align with pre-selection? If GOD has pre-selected people, did He die for that group specifically or for the "cosmos", as indicated in the verse?

    Please advise. Thank you.

    after studying John 3:16 and the verses that follow John 3:16 you can do all the original language you'd like and I was very blessed to have read the original post read here, thank you for your hard work. But I enjoy letting Scripture interpret Scripture. John 3:19-21 makes things rather clear to me and anyone that Lord grants understanding to: in the idea that we are all dead in sin and apart from being born-again we desire nothing of God and His holiness. that seems pretty simple to me. but here's the verses: And this is the judgment: the light has come in to the world and people loved darkness rather than the light because their works were evil. For everyone who does wicked things hates the light and does not come to the light, lest his works should be exposed. But whoever does what is true comes the light, so that it may be clearly seen that his works have BEEN CARRIED OUT IN GOD. so an evidence or fruit according to what is True or in alignment of God's word is done by God through the individual, simple. and if you believe one is dead in sin...there is simply no way around Election. Because if you are dead someone or something from outside you must resurrect you; a dead person cannot resurrect themselves. sorry it is what it is.

    And I will add another passage of Scripture, Romans 8:6-9 - For to set the mind on the flesh is death, but to set the mind on the Spirit is life and peace. For the mind that is set on the flesh is hostile to God, for it does not submit to God's law; indeed, it cannot. those who are in the flesh cannot please God.
    You(The Christian), however, are not in the flesh but in the Spirit, if in fact the Spirit of God dwells in you. Anyone who does not have the Spirit of Christ does not belong to Him. ---> so if you are without the Spirit of God you are in the flesh and cannot please God, you cannot submit to God, and, indeed, you are hostile to God. I so enjoy how the Lord has really made it so simple, but never the less because the Word deals with the brutal honesty of who we are as depraved and radically wicked sinners, God must grant understanding to us; even as Christian, because we are that hell bent on seeing it our way or the easier way. Free-will is fun to believe, it's not tough at all, it puts time and choice in the hands of the believer and leaves God just wondering when...as well leaves you with a God the died for an opportunity to be saved on the Cross but essentially not for anybodies real and literal salvation...kind of rocky if you ask me. And I do believe in Free-Will according to your nature and all one truly wants prior to being born-again is evident...not holiness! But sin, sin, sin. Jeremiah 17:9 hearts that deceitful above all; Genesis 6:5; Genesis 8:21; Ekeziel 36:26-27; and one last thought to ponder...Proverbs 16:20 - Whoever gives thought to the Word ill discover good, and blessed is he who trusts in the LORD. God bless. :-)

    Can you direct me to any resources speaking directly to this topic that addresses 2 Cor 5? Also is sprouls " What is Reformed Theology" a book that speaks to all of this? I got the book, along with so many other books, havent gotten the moment to dive into it. But I can always dive into a 15 minute article on the fly. THANKS!

    Is there no discernment out ther in the christian realm to distinguish between the world of John 3:16 and that deceived by the naughty angel in Revelation 9:12?
    The Greek word translated World in the former verse is much more focused than the latter, which has the broadest application possible i.e. the entire human race, whereas kosmos in John 3:16 principally means 1.government and 2.decoration ornament. That can only apply to God's firstborn son Israel (Ex. 4:22) the only people God had ever organized into a goverment/kingdom and the only ones collectively constituting God's wife as His decoration and ornament, a role biblically assigned to all wives.
    Yes, God's only begotten son was offered to redeem Israel to enable them to continue to run with the Abrahamic promise to become a blessing to all humans.
    That is what John 3:16 is all about. If only Christian were to consider all the plural personal pronouns used by the prophets and epistle writers to identify the audience, the Bible would properly laugh at all the nonsense John 3:16 has been commandeered for.
    My site has this related page http://www.sanctifyname.com/john316.html Blessing to all.

    My question is, if in the original Koine Greek the word "whoever" is not mentioned in John 3:16) is it the same fact that it is not mentioned in other passages where the word "whoever" is used in the New Testament?

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