John 3:16 – God’s Love

For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.

– John 3:16

Thoughts on Today’s Verse…

From this verse, we can see God’s love for mankind and His promise to those who believe in Him. However, many people think that as long as they believe in the Lord Jesus, confess their sins and repent to the Lord, they will be forgiven of their sins and gain eternal life. Is it that simple? Are there mysteries unknown to us? God says, “At the time Jesus’ work was the redemption of all mankind. The sins of all who believed in Him were forgiven; as long as you believed in Him, He would redeem you; if you believed in Him, you were no longer a sinner, you were relieved of your sins. This is what it meant to be saved, and to be justified by faith. Yet in those who believed, there remained that which was rebellious and opposed God, and which still had to be slowly removed. Salvation did not mean man had been completely gained by Jesus, but that man was no longer of sin, that he had been forgiven his sins: Provided you believed, you would never more be of sin.

From here we can see, if our faith in God merely consists of verbal acknowledgment and believing within our hearts, although we confess our sins and repent to the Lord and are forgiven of our sins, we cannot receive God’s promise. It is because there are still arrogance, craftiness, deceit and greed, wicked thoughts, jealousy, and hatred within us, and we still complain about and betray God when facing trials. So, being forgiven of our sins only means we have been redeemed from sin. It doesn’t mean that we have no sin or we can gain eternal life. The things in people that are of Satan still have to be slowly removed by God’s work, then we can be completely cleansed by God in the end. Only by getting rid of sin can we gain eternal life. Just as God says, “A sinner such as you, who has just been redeemed, and has not been changed, or been perfected by God, can you be after God’s heart? For you, you who are still of your old self, it is true that you were saved by Jesus, and that you are not counted as a sinner because of the salvation of God, but this does not prove that you are not sinful, and are not impure. How can you be saintly if you have not been changed? Within, you are beset by impurity, selfish and mean, yet you still wish to descend with Jesus—you should be so lucky! You have missed a step in your belief in God: You have merely been redeemed, but have not been changed. For you to be after God’s heart, God must personally do the work of changing and cleansing you; if you are only redeemed, you will be incapable of attaining sanctity. In this way you will be unqualified to share in the good blessings of God, for you have missed out a step in God’s work of managing man, which is the key step of changing and perfecting. And so you, a sinner who has just been redeemed, are incapable of directly inheriting God’s inheritance.

From God’s words we can see, in order to save corrupt mankind, God not only has done the work of redemption to forgive our sins but also comes to do another stage of judgment and cleansing work to completely save us from sin in the last days. Only in this way can we gain the way of eternal life granted by God. All this is God’s supreme love for us!

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