16 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.
17 For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved.
18 He that believeth on him is not condemned: but he that believeth not is condemned already, because he hath not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God.
C.S. Lewis said, “All that are in Hell, choose it. Without self-choice there could be no Hell. No soul that seriously and constantly desires joy will ever miss it. Those who seek find. To those who knock it is opened.”
John 3:16 is the high point of Jesus’ conversation with Nicodemus. It is a verse full of truth and beauty that carries the essential message of the Gospel — that God sent His Son into the world to save sinners. It is a simple and powerful message, one that Paul said was “worthy of all acceptation.” Yet, we find today that many people do not accept this message.
Following the mountaintop of John 3:16, we begin to come down into the valley and deal with what Jesus said immediately after in verse 17. This verse begins with the preposition “for”, indicating that it is closely tied to John 3:16. “For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved.”
The word “condemn” means to pronounce judgment upon someone. That is not why God sent Jesus into the world. He did not come to condemn us. Unlike what some would have you to believe, God is not just itching to toss people into Hell. He gave Someone very precious to Him in order to save the world. But, the fact is that some people will end up being condemned.
You might ask, If God loves the world, and if He sent His only Son to save the world, how can some be condemned to eternal Hell? Jesus says in verse 18, “He that believeth on him is not condemned: but he that believeth not is condemned already, because he hath not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God.” Yesterday, we talked about the third action that must take place for a person to be born again based on John 3:16. The person who must take that action is identified by the word “whosoever” — you and me, any individual living on planet earth. Just as we can choose to believe and be saved, this verse indicates that we can also choose to not believe. God is not in the business of forcing people to believe in Him. He won’t drag you kicking and screaming into Heaven. He will not give you the new birth against your will.
Just as some choose to believe, there will be those who choose not to believe. And Jesus tells Nicodemus that those who choose not to believe are “condemned already.” With the word “already,” Jesus emphasizes the sealing of their fate. This word means “even now.” If you reject God’s gift of salvation through Jesus Christ today, you are even now — already — condemned.
Those who end up perishing in Hell are not condemned because God condemned them. They are condemned “because they hath not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God.” These people may think that they have valid reasons for not believing, but they will soon realize that they made a serious and costly mistake.
Those who accept Christ gain everlasting life and a home in Heaven with God; those who reject Christ will spend eternity in a place of punishment called Hell where they will be separated from God forever.
If you want to receive the gift that John 3:16 speaks of, I encourage you not to delay accepting Jesus Christ as your Saviour. Here is what you need to to believe in Him.
First, accept the fact that you are a sinner, and that you have broken God’s law. The Bible says in Romans 3:23: “For all have sinned and come short of the glory of God.”
Second, accept the fact that there is a penalty for sin. The Bible states in Romans 6:23: “For the wages of sin is death…”
Third, accept the fact that you are on the road to hell. Jesus Christ said in Matthew 10:28: “And fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.” Also, the Bible states in Revelation 21:8: “But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death.”
Now that is bad news, but here’s the good news. Jesus Christ said in John 3:16: “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.” Just believe in your heart that Jesus Christ died for your sins, was buried, and rose from the dead by the power of God for you so that you can live eternally with Him. Pray and ask Him to come into your heart today, and He will.
Romans 10:9 & 13 says, “That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved… For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.”
If you believe that Jesus Christ died on the cross for your sins, was buried, and rose from the dead, and you want to trust Him for your salvation today, please pray with me this simple prayer: Holy Father God, I realize that I am a sinner and that I have done some bad things in my life. I am sorry for my sins, and today I choose to turn from my sins. For Jesus Christ sake, please forgive me of my sins. I believe with all of my heart that Jesus Christ died for me, was buried, and rose again. I trust Jesus Christ as my Savior and I choose to follow Him as Lord from this day forward. Lord Jesus, please come into my heart and save my soul and change my life today. Amen.
If you just trusted Jesus Christ as your Saviour, and you prayed that prayer and meant it from your heart, I declare to you that based upon the Word of God, you are now saved from Hell and you are on your way to Heaven. Welcome to the family of God! I want to congratulate you on doing the most important thing in life and that is receiving Jesus Christ as your Lord and Saviour. For more information to help you grow in your newfound faith in Christ, go to Gospel Light Society.com and read “What To Do After You Enter Through the Door”. Jesus Christ said in John 10:9, “I am the door: by me if any man enter in, he shall be saved, and shall go in and out, and find pasture.”
If you accepted Jesus Christ as your Savior today, please e-mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org and let us know. There is some free material that we want to send you. If you have a prayer request, please e-mail that to us as well, and we will pray for you until you tell us to stop.
God loves you. We love you. And may God bless you.