John 3:16 NKJV
For God so loved the world
that He gave His only begotten Son,
that whoever believes in Him
should not perish
but have everlasting life.
This is the fulfillment of what Isaiah prophesied hundreds of years before:
Isaiah 9:6 NASB For a child will be born to us, a son will be given to us; And the government will rest on His shoulders; And His name will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Eternal Father, Prince of Peace.
This verse declares:
- That God is love.
- That He loved the world instead of hating it.
- That He so loved that he gave his Son.
- That He came to keep men from perishing.
For God so loved the world
Nothing else but the free love of the Father is the beginning of our salvation.
Points to the immense “love of God” to that perishing world, measurable only, and conceivable only, by the gift which it drew forth from Him.
He gave His only begotten Son
The Christ is He in whom our righteousness and salvation dwells.
Jesus Christ came to save us by healing us from our sin, and transgressions. (Isaiah 53:5).
Like the people of Israel that were bitten by poisonous serpents were cured, and lived by looking up to the brazen serpent (Numbers 21:6-9), we have all been bitten by that old snake (Genesis 3:1), and we all will surely die, because of the poison of sin, that runs in our veins, if we don’t look at Jesus, Who like the snake was “lifted up” on the cross at Golgotha.
The devil knows to wrap sin beautifully, he knows to make the allurements of sin very nice and charming, but at the end it bites like a serpent. (Proverbs 23:30-32). So we all need this gift from God.
He so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son,” or, in the language of Paul, “spared not His own Son” ( Romans 8:32 ), or in that addressed to Abraham when ready to offer Isaac on the altar, “withheld not His Son, His only Son, whom He loved” (Genesis 22:16).
God’s gift is a powerful remedy, the only remedy for us, to be healed from sin, and it’s consequences.
The case of poor sinners is deplorable; but, thanks be to God, it is not desperate!
There is healing from this deadly sin!
The Son of man was lifted up, as the serpent of brass was by Moses, which cured the bitten Israelites.
Let us look for a moment at that brass serpent and see how it is a type of Jesus.
- Brass is bright; we read of Christ’s feet shining like brass (Revelation 1:15).
- Brass is durable; Christ is the same.
- The serpent was made in the shape of a poisonous serpent, and yet had no poison, fitly representing Christ, who was made sin for us and yet knew no sin; was made in the likeness of sinful flesh and yet not sinful; as harmless as a serpent of brass.
- The serpent was a cursed creature; Christ was made a curse.
- That which cured them reminded them of their plague; so in Christ sin is set before us most poisonous and deadly.
- The serpent was lifted up upon a pole, and so the Son of man be lifted up; Was it not necessary for the Christ to suffer these things and to enter into His glory?” (Luke 24:26)
Whoever believes in Him
Faith is the instrument or means by which we apprehend our salvation.
Should not perish
Should not be destroyed
But have everlasting life.
Everlasting life is that which is set before us to apprehend.
The stupendous gift which God gave is not only the deliverance from impending “perdition,” but also the bestowal of everlasting life
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