Wednesday of the 2nd Week of Easter

John 3:16

“For God so loved the world that he gave his only-begotten Son, so that everyone who believes in him might not perish but might have eternal life.”

We’ve seen it on signs at sporting events.  We’ve seen it on t-shirts.  “John 3:16”.  It’s become almost a shorthand way of saying, “Yeah, I’m a Christian and I’m proud of it.”  But there’s more to this verse than meets the eye.

The verse above is from the New American Bible translation, the “Catholic” Bible.  The King James Bible, the one used by many of our protestant friends reads,

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

Notice the difference?  “might not perish” versus “should not perish”.  One little word makes a BIG difference.  If we believe(th) in Him we either might not perish or should not perish.  Sola fide, faith alone.  Are we saved just because we believe?  Or is there more required?  In the 15th chapter of the same Gospel Jesus tells us we are His friends if we do what He tells us. (John 15:14).

Much smarter people than me have debated this subject for centuries.  And, the debate will most likely go on for even more centuries.  Maybe the solution is too simple for the scholars to accept.  Maybe we should focus on the fact that our salvation is possible only because of Jesus’ Easter sacrifice.  That’s our spiritual foundation.  The rest is just semantics.


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