Monday, November 25, 2013

The Key to John 3:16. Tuesday 26th November 2013, Feast of St. Sylvester, Ab; St. Peter of Alexandria. BpM

The Key to John 3:16 - Bro. Peter Dimond (



"A consideration of the original Greek of John 3:36 provides a striking example of how countless people have misunderstood John 3:16 and tragically constructed a false theology as a result.


In John 3:16, we read:  "For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whosoever believes in him should not perish but have everlasting life."


John 3:16

Based on this, millions have concluded that salvation is assured if they simply believe in the Lord Jesus Christ, however they are quite mistaken, for the New Testament makes it clear in many passages and in the very context of John Chapter 3, that believing in Jesus unto salvation, means, includes and requires following Jesus and doing what He says.

Countless millions falsely interpret John 3:16 to their destruction


It isn't enough to simply believe in Him.    This is proven by the proper translation of a very verse that comes shortly after John 3:16, John 3:36.


Remember, when the Bible was written, there weren't chapter and verse divisions.     Chapters and verses were added centuries later.

John 3:16 - not the whole story for salvation


Each Book of the Bible was written as one undivided whole.    Thus, what we read in John 3:36 is part of the very same writing as John 3:16, and it comes just a few lines after it.


John 3:36 thus gives a great insight into the true meaning of John 3:16.    Many translations of John 3:36 including the King James Version read essentially this way:  "He that believes in the Son has everlasting life: and he that believes not the Son shall not the Son or rejects the Son shall not see life but the wrath of God abides on him."



In this common translation notice that the word 'believes' is found in both parts of the verse.   "He that believes in the Son has everlasting life, but he that believes not the Son or rejects the Son shall not see life, but the word of God abides on him."



However, that translation is not correct.   In the original Greek two different words are used:  A proper translation of these words reveals the true message of the Bible and John 3.



In the first part of the verse in the original Greek, we find the participle 'pisteuo, which means believing.  It is the nominative singular masculine present active participle of the verb 'pisteuo' - I believe.   In the second part of the verse, however, we find a different participle, 'apatheon.'  Apatheon means 'disobeying.'   It is the nominative singular masculine present active participle of 'apatheo - I disobey.



On P.99 of the renowned Greek-English Lexicon of the New Testament and other Early Christian Literature, by Bauer, Danker, etc., known as 'Bedag,' the primary definition of apeitheo is disobey, be disobedient.


Apeitheo is a rich verb which conveys a general and overall refusal to heed another person, in this case, Jesus.


While this refusal to obey or heed can involve a refusal to believe one's claims, it would also compass a failure to comply with a person's commands and ordinances.    That's why it carries a primary meaning of disobey.


Therefore, John 3:36 should be translated like this:  "The one believing in the Son has everlasting life: and the one disobeying the Son shall not see life, but the wrath of God abides in him," or "He who believes the Son has everlasting life: and he who disobeys the Son shall not see life, but the wrath of God abides on him."  John 3:36



As we can see the correct translation captures something of tremendous significance, a truth that's not necessarily portrayed by the previous translation.


The correct translation shows that to believe in Jesus Christ unto salvation means that you must also obey Him.   To be saved by faith in Jesus you must do what He says.    "Amen, Amen, I say to you, if anyone keeps My word, he will never see death."  John 8:51.


Matthew 19:17, "If you want to enter life, keep the Commandments."


Those who disobey the Son will not see life, but the wrath of God abides on them.


That's a striking confirmation of what we stated in our book and article on Justification, that it, the New Testament, belief in Jesus unto salvation always means and presupposes doing and observing what Jesus commanded.  That's proven by the context or by the extended context of passages that deal with salvation through faith in Jesus Christ.


                            'Once saved, always saved' is not Biblical and leads to damnation

The proper translation of John 3:36 which illuminates the true meaning of John 3:16 completely contradicts the widespread but false theologies of salvation by 'faith alone' and 'once saved, always saved.'


For 'apeithon, disobeying the Son, which results in damnation cannot be limited to a simple refusal to believe in Jesus or His claims, rather it also applies to a failure to comply with His commands and ordinances in various aspects of life.


   Billy Graham - 33rd degree Freemason - promotes false  'faith alone' doctrine


Those who promote 'faith alone' or 'once saved, always saved' contradict Biblical teaching.  It isn't enough to simply believe in Jesus Christ or profess belief in Him, they must obey Him as well or you will be damned.


That includes keeping all of His Commandments and teachings, hearing His Church and avoiding grave sin.     In fact in John 3:16, where it states that all believing in the Son will have everlasting life, it uses the participle 'pisteuon.'


That's the participle we discussed which is found in John 3:36 and directly contrasted with 'apeithon,' disobeying.     Therefore, according to John 3, there is 'pisteuon,' 'believing in Jesus unto salvation' and there is 'apeithon,' 'disobeying Jesus unto damnation.'


Since 'pisteuon' - believing, is the word we find in both John 3:16 and John 3:36, and the word is directly contrasted with 'apeithon' - 'disobeying,' in John 3:36, that demonstrates that' pisteuon,' believing in the Son unto salvation in John 3:16, include and requires obeying the Son.


Concerning the true meaning of John 3:16, another proof for our point is found in John 3 immediately after John 3:16, through to John 3:18.  

John 3:16 - John 3:18, we find the famous verse we've been discussing and a message about the necessity to believe in Jesus.


In John 3:19-21, we then read statements about what (1) a judgement or condemnation for "evil works,"  (2) people who do "wicked things," and, (3) "works being expose or convicted."


These statements come immediately after John 3:16 - 3:18.     This is another clear indication that the true teaching of Jesus and the Bible, is that faith in the only Son of God which will grant salvation, is a faith that must include persevering in good deeds and good works.


Indeed, Jesus says that "he will render to every man according to his works."  Matthew 16:27, and "cast into Hell those that do iniquity."  Matthew 13:41-42


To Jesus to believe in Him unto salvation is to follow and keep His words and His Commandments, as the correct translation of John 3:36 makes quite clear.    Faith alone will not save or justify as we read in James 2:24,  "You see that a person is justified by works and not by faith alone."

One of the most misused and misunderstood verses in the Bible by Protestants


The truth that obedience to Christ, good actions and avoidance of grave sins is necessary for salvation is found throughout the New Testament.  

 Hebrews 5:9  "...he became the source of eternal salvation to all who obey him."


Romans 6:16  "... you are slaves of the one whom you obey, either of sin which leads to death, or of obedience which leads to justification."


In fact, in 1. Corinthians 9:27 the Apostle, Paul himself, a true believer in Christ declared that he could potentially become disqualified, rejected or cast off, that is that he could lose his justification.


Faith unto salvation means obeying Christ, His Commandments, avoidance of grave sins and adherence to His One True Church


In the Greek, Paul uses the word "adokimos" meaning disqualified or rejected, a word which in the New Testament, clearly refers to a reprobate, a person in the state of damnation.


See for example, Romans 1:28 and Timothy 3:8, where forms of the same word are used to describe unjustified or wicked people.    St. Paul, a justified believer, was teaching that he could lose his justification and salvation if he did or failed to do certain things.


Of course, besides  John 3:16, there are a few verses people misuse and misunderstand to perpetuate a false Gospel of salvation by 'faith alone.'   However, the fact that faith, obedience to Christ, adherence to His One True Church, and avoidance of grave sins are all necessary for salvation, is made clear in the teaching of Jesus and throughout the New Testament."


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