[John 3:16] “For God so loved the world that He gave His only Begotten Son, that whosoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.” Many people use this scripture to tell others of the great love God has for mankind. And of a truth it does indeed tell us that God loved the world (mankind) so much that He gave the life of His only Begotten Son that we might have eternal life. What does it mean to have eternal life? Eternal life is possessing the knowledge of God’s eternal plan for His creation and becoming an active participant in His plan. Eternal death results from our lack of knowledge of that plan, and for rejecting the work of God and His will for our life. The new birth experience is a new birth separate from the first, however our birth mother cannot give birth to us a second time, so our new birth is not a physical birth but rather a spiritual birth. In the new birth experience our spirit person is made alive or quickened by the Spirit of God to the knowledge that God exists and has a plan for our life. Acknowledging this fact and repenting of our sin will save our soul from destruction. Our failure to acknowledge the work He has done in our behalf, and repenting of our lack of desire to know Him is our great sin, and will result in our eternal death. Jesus Himself said this was God’s plan when He made the above statement to Nicodemus, a Pharisee. Many also use John 3:16 as part of their salvation message in an effort the help other people understand that God does not want to see them eternally separated from Him. Yesterday, as I looked the scripture over, the word “perish” caught my attention and I went to an on-line dictionary to see exactly what the word “perish” meant. Jesus told Nicodemus God does not want to see man eternally destroyed, and since we are eternal creatures confined to an earthly body, what about the ‘now life’ we live? Understanding that God loves us enough that He wants to save us from eternal death, I had to ask myself the question, “Does He care about what happens to us in our ‘now life’ where we live in the presence of our enemy?” Most people think once they are saved, God pretty much forgets about them until they die, and He then takes them to heaven where they will live happily ever after. So their thinking is that God’s salvation is just to keep them from going to hell. The rest of the time they have to figure things out on their own. That’s why their life isn’t much different after they are saved then it was before they got saved. But, my thinking is that if God loved us enough to save us from eternal death, He surely loved us enough to save us from being destroyed in this present life.
So I looked up the word, “perish”
in the on-line Webster’s Dictionary
, and I found the word perish
used in the verb form to mean: (1.) to die or be destroyed through violence, privation, (to be deprived of) etc.
(2.) to pass away or disappear.
(3.) to suffer destruction or ruin.
(4.) to suffer spiritual death.
So I understand from these definitions that God does indeed care about our present life and does not desire that any of us be destroyed, pass away or disappear, or to suffer destruction or ruin. As I thought about the things that bring suffering and destruction to our present lives, I began to see that God does not want anyone to suffer poverty, ill-health or to have unsound minds, or else the Apostle Paul
would not have told the Philippians, “My God supplies all my needs according to His riches in glory.”
Our prosperity, good health, and a soundness of mind are things that make up the core areas of our life, as well as, the core elements of the covenant we have with our heavenly Father. Maybe you know this and maybe you have never thought about it, but when Satan
attacks us, he does so in one or more of these core areas. He knows if we have a lack in one of those areas, we are not a whole person. When one part of us is being deprived of the provision God provided for us, we are not at ease, we are dis-eased, or a part of us is sick. We can be sick in our health, we can be sick in our minds, and we can be sick in our finances. Two of those three areas has to do with our external person and the third our internal being. Do you understand? If Satan wasn’t concerned about us becoming strong in those three areas of life, he would not focus his attacks in those areas. His attention and attacks would focused in an area that was more important. But since he doesn’t look further than our physical health
, soundness of mind and prosperity, we have to realize it’s because they are important to him, and we have to fortify those areas. The Apostle John
confirmed these three areas when he wrote to fellow believers in [3 John 2
] and told them, “Beloved, I wish above all things that you would prosper, and be in health even as your soul prospers.”
So we see the Apostle’s, Paul and John, writing under the anointing of the Holy Spirit
, telling their respective recipients that it is God’s will that we be whole in every area of our life.
The Greek word for salvation is “Soteria”, and means; wholeness, complete, nothing missing. So for a Christian to be complete, they must be sound in their mind, not lacking prosperity, and possess good health. And in the eyes of God, if we are lacking something He has provided for us, we are not a whole or complete person because the area we are lacking in affects the welfare of our total being and our ability to help other people. We cannot assist other people if we do not have anything to help them with. If you do not believe this to be true; one of the biggest departments of our federal government is the department of Health, Education and Welfare
. Now whether or not they designed this particular department of our government according to 3 John 2, I do not know, but I find it interesting that man would develop a department to care for the core areas of life just like God does. So after studying the definitions of the word “perish”
in John 3:16, I have come to the conclusion that God cares not only about our eternal future, but also about our ‘now life’. Thus confirming in my mind that God loves me for who I am now, and has made provision for me to be blessed in this life because I won’t have any needs when I get to heaven because my earthly temptation will have passed. It is now, that I am struggling. It is now, that I need His strength to lean on. If I couple [John 3:16] with [Matthew 11:28
-30] which reads, “Come unto me all you who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light”
I get a clear picture of the love God has for me in my “now life, and what He is willing to do for me if I will take my troubles to Him. Praise God! He didn’t set us up to fail as most people think. That’s why the devil spends his time trying to keep us in the dark about what belongs to us in this life. And when we deny these truths, we open the door to Satan to steal God’s provision from us. Do you realize that? Read the Word and be Blessed! Of course you can keep doing what you are presently doing, and Satan will keep packing away your provisions just like he has for years. You wouldn’t put up with a fox raiding your hen house and packing off your chickens, so why do you put up with Satan raiding your store house and packing off your God given provisions you need to be a whole person? DThrash