Fountain of Gardens Ministries
P.O. Box 470581
Fort Worth, Texas 76147-0581
Christian Universalism

 

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What does John 3:16 mean, if aionios doesn't mean “everlasting?” This passage of Scripture has unfortunately been misunderstood, misinterpreted, and misapplied by Christians for decades and even for centuries. John 3:16 was Jesus' statement after the serpent on the pole passage from the Torah was brought up (John 3:14) and the serpent on the pole wasn't placed where the Old Testament Israelites could see it to deal with anybody's "eternity." It was to bring healing to their bodies. It's sole purpose was medicinal for their bodies. This chapter of John's Gospel gives us another condemnation passage like 1Corinthians 11 where the context of the "condemnation" for not rightly discerning the Gospel winds up being sickness, disease, and bodily death -- not damnation and being in the lake of fire for all of eternity, which would be contrary to all of the Scriptures that say that Christ has taken away the sin of the whole world (John 1:29; Colossians 1:15-20; 1Timothy 2:6; 1John 2:1-2).

John 3:16 is about Jesus' healing ministry for the physical body. Nicodemus wasn't asking about going to heaven. He was saying to Jesus that He had to be from God because of all of the miracles. And Jesus was being affirming towards him that he couldn't even perceive God at work in Jesus UNLESS he'd been "born again," even if he didn't know what to call it or what was going on in himself. Nicodemus was saying that "there's a lot going on in Your life, Jesus, that can only be from God." And Jesus was turning the tables on him and saying, "Nicodemus, there's a lot going on in your life that can only be from God, or you wouldn't even be able to recognize God at work."

In that context, because Nicodemus was evidently asking about the miracles, the healings, etc., Jesus said, "For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth on Him (like the women with the issue of blood) should not perish, but have eonian life." He didn't mean perish for the age, but perish from the age with all of the prevalent illnesses, economic hardships, and politics that were going on in that era. He may have even been saying, "Nick, I can even touch what's been going on in your body -- that chest pain, that indigestion, or whatever -- if you believe that God has sent Me to you as well. You don't have to die of this 'cause Father sent Me."

John 3:16 is a healing verse [contextually] and not a "turn or burn" passage. It's a Matthew 8:17; Romans 8:11; 1Peter 2:24 type of passage.

 

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For the idols speak delusion; the diviners envision lies, and tell false dreams; they comfort in vain. Therefore the people wend their way like sheep; they are in trouble because there is no shepherd. Zechariah 10:2

 

Unless otherwise noted, Scripture quotations are from a solid Center Column Reference Study New King James Version Bible. Where Center Column Reference alternate renderings are preferred, they're not always noted on the site at the time of their usage in a given context, if there's a discrepancy between our quotation and a NKJV that our site's visitors use that's missing the Center Column Reference notes that provide more literal renderings, alternative Hebrew and Greek manuscript variations, etc. Sometimes an "Understood Subject" from the given chapter of the Bible or the particular book of the Bible (perhaps previous chapter) is given attention to while teaching. Reading (and rereading) each book of the Bible [in it's entirety] that's being quoted from in the midst of each subject is [always] greatly encouraged for added clarity! While we're [deeply] supportive of what's understood to be orthodox Christian doctrine on all matters, we're always looking for what God's ADDITIONALLY saying to us in each subject being taught.