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Posts Tagged ‘John 3:16’

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GOD’S GIFT: EVIDENCE OF THE LOVE OF THE GIVER

The Greek χάρις (charis), is translated as “grace” over one hundred fifty times in the New Testament. However, it is translated seven times as “favor,” as well, and all of them occur in the writings of Luke (Lk. 1:28, 30; 2:52; Acts 2:47; 7:10, 46; 25:3).  Oddly enough, the writings of Luke also have χάρις translated as “grace” eleven times (Lk. 2:40; 4:22; Acts 1:23; 13:43; 14:3, 26; 15:11, 40; 18:27; 20:24, 32).  Even if the words are interchangeable, one would think the two would show up in other New Testament books.  But, that is not the case.  And after looking at the context where the word “favor” is used, I hate to admit it, but I still have no clue as to why the word “favor” was used.

Nevertheless, the Word of God supplies us with a definition of χάρις, so that there can be no confusion as to the Lord’s meaning.  Ephesians 2:7-9 gives us the meaning of “grace”: 

“That in the ages to come He might shew the exceeding riches of His grace in His kindness toward us through Christ Jesus.  For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God:  Not of works, lest any man should boast.” 

The first fact in defining “grace,” is that it is an attribute of God!  He is gracious!  Like “mercy,” “grace” is evidence of God’s love for us.  The two explain just how much God “loved the world” and what that means in John 3:16.

The second truth about God’s “grace” toward mankind, is that it cannot be earned.  It has to be a gift, or it is no longer “grace.”  The two are contrasted as opposites in Romans 11:16, which says, “And if by grace, then is it no more of works: otherwise grace is no more grace.  But if it be of works, then is it no more grace:  otherwise work is no more work.”

Finally, the text itself declares that salvation is a “gift!”  And just like you and I purchase what we give as gifts to others, salvation is a “gift” purchased by God, to give it to us:  the price?  The life of His only begotten Son (Rom. 5:15)!

 
At Christmas time, we honor God’s gift to mankind:  our Lord, His Son!

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Question: “What is the true meaning of Christmas?”

Answer: The true meaning of Christmas is love. John 3:16-17 says, “For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him.” The true meaning of Christmas is the celebration of this incredible act of love. The real Christmas story is the story of God’s becoming a human being in the Person of Jesus Christ. Why did God do such a thing? Because He loves us! Why was Christmas necessary? Because we needed a Savior! Why does God love us so much? Because He is love itself (1 John 4:8). Why do we celebrate Christmas each year? Out of gratitude for what God did for us, we remember His birth by giving each other gifts, worshipping Him, and being especially conscious of the poor and less fortunate. The true meaning of Christmas is love. God loved His own and provided a way—the only Way—for us to spend eternity with Him. He gave His only Son to take our punishment for our sins. He paid the price in full, and we are free from condemnation when we accept that free gift of love. “But God demonstrated His own love for us in this: while we were still sinners, Christ died for us” (Romans 5:8).

Got Questions about Christmas?

Should Christians celebrate Christmas?

What is the true meaning of Christmas?

How should Christians respond to the War on Christmas?

Do some Christmas traditions have pagan origins?

Should we have a Christmas tree?

Does giving gifts take away from the true meaning of Christmas?

Why is the virgin birth so important?

Was Jesus born on December 25th?

What does the Bible say about the three wise men?

What should parents tell their children about Santa Claus?

What is an advent calendar? How does an advent calendar relate to Christmas?

Should a Christian celebrate Hanukkah (Christmaskah)?

What is Epiphany / Three Kings’ Day and should Christians celebrate it?

What was the star of Bethlehem?

Does Luke’s claim that Jesus was born in Bethlehem at the time of Quirinius’ census match the historical record?

Why did the Magi bring gold, frankincense, and myrrh to Jesus?

Is it wrong to say “Xmas” instead of “Christmas”?

What year was Jesus Christ born?

Recommended Resource: The Case for Christmas by Lee Strobel.


What’s new on GotQuestions.org?

What does it mean ‘to live is Christ’ (Philippians 1:21)?

What is existential therapy, and is it biblical?

What is postmodern therapy, and is it biblical?

What is Gestalt therapy, and is it biblical?

Is being a sperm donor a sin? Is it a sin to use a sperm donor?

What is the Dake Bible?

How can the Incarnation be reconciled with God’s immutability? If God cannot change, then how can He become man?

What is the eternal state of the believer?

Can a Christian burn incense? What does the Bible say about burning incense?

Are the ‘angels’ of the churches in Revelation 1–3 real angels, or are they human messengers?


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TIME IS RUNNING OUT 

Today’s blog post is a continuation of yesterday’s. WHAT MUST I DO TO BE SAVED FROM MY SIN?

Together, they are a summary of a Middletown Bible Church’s teaching called “Terms of Salvation.”


“Holding forth the Word of Life” that we might
“grow in grace and in the knowledge of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ”
(Philippians 2:16; 2 Peter 3:18)

4.  SALVATION CAN NOT BE EARNED 

There are those who seek to add human works to the salvation equation. They insist that man must do certain things to earn salvation. Yet the Bible teaches again and again that a person is not saved by works.  Here are some examples:

 

*  Titus 3:5 – “Not of works of righteousness which we have done, but according to His mercy He saved us.”

*  2 Timothy 1:- “Who hath saved us, and called us with an holy calling, not according to our works.”

*  Ephesians 2:8-9 – “For by grace are ye saved through faith and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God, not of works, lest any man should boast.”

*  Romans 3:28 – “Therefore we conclude that a man is justified by faith without the deeds of the Law.”

*  Romans 4:5 – “But to him that worketh not, but believeth on Him that justifieth the ungodly, his faith is counted for righteousness.”

 

In other words, salvation is not DOING something; it is KNOWING someone (John 17:3). Salvation is not based on what we might do; it is based on what Christ has ALREADY DONE (John 19:30). Salvation is not TRYING; it is TRUSTING (John 6:47). If salvation could be earned by anything we do, then Christ’s death was a waste (Galatians 2:21). Salvation is not WORKING; it is RESTING on the WORK of Another (Romans 4:5).

5. EVEN THE DEVIL KNOWS GOD’S PLAN OF SALVATION.

“Those by the way side are they that hear; then cometh the devil, and taketh away the word out of their hearts, lest they should believe and be saved” (Luke 8:12).  The devil does not want people to be saved. The devil knows God’s plan of salvation. Therefore he does everything he can to prevent people from being saved: “lest they should believe and be saved.” God’s plan of salvation is very simple: BELIEVE AND BE SAVED! (Compare Acts 16:30-31). Don’t be deceived into thinking a person can be saved in any other way!

6.  THE THEME OF JOHN’S GOSPEL IS BELIEVE IN CHRIST.

“But these are written, that ye might believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God; and that believing ye might have life through his name” (John 20:31).  See also John 3:16; 5:24; 6:35; 6:47; 11:25-26. The word “believe” (or related words) is found 99 times in the Gospel of John. Eternal life is obtained by believing in Christ, and in no other way. Have you believed on Him?

If you are still reading this, then there is still time to trust in Jesus and be saved!

http://skipslighthouse.blogspot.com/2012/08/time-is-running-out.html

English: Photograph of an open Bible with focu...

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THE INDESCRIBABLE GIVER

Seeking the greatest blessing

“For God so loved the world, that He gave His only
begotten Son,that whosoever believeth in Him
should not perish,but have everlastinglife.” (Jn. 3:16)
We all know the joy a gift can bring. Children sometimes make gift lists (one of our sons once helpfully divided his list into “reasonable” and “unreasonable”) in the hopes of things to come. As we grow, our idea of the perfect gift grows with us.
At some point, however, we discover a joy greater than receiving. As the Lord Himself said:“It is more blessed to give than to receive.” (Acts 20:35b) At first glance, this seems counter-intuitive.Surely receiving is to be preferred! Yet, we see the truth of the Lord’s words everywhere we look.

There are those who come into a local church with the singular desire to receive. They avoid any kind of regular commitment or service. They choose only those meetings or events which suit them. One might think—on a natural level—that they would be the happiest people in the assembly since they constantly receive and never have to give. But quite the opposite is true. They are usually among the first (and most frequent) to criticize, complain,and take offense.

If you want to find those who truly enjoy the assembly, you’ll have to look somewhere else: to those who give.
What about in the family? Again, our age has no shortage of spouses whose primary goal in marriage is to be on the receiving end. Sacrifice for their wife or husband isn’t high on their priority list. They can (and do!) list the ways their spouse should change in order to accommodate them. Requests, demands, hints, bargains, strategies—all designed to get their own way. And yet, no matter how much they “get,” few people are more miserable.

Furthermore, the child who gets everything he wants; the child who has discovered that he can bend his parents (or his friends) to his will, provided he makes a big enough fuss—is he a happy child? Is he a blessed child? There’s a reason we call such children “spoiled.” Unless this spirit of receiving is quenched when he is young, he is in for a bleak, lonely, frustrating life.

No, the Lord Jesus was, as always, perfectly right when He told us that giving was the path to blessing and happiness. We understand this as soon as we love someone. Don’t get me wrong—I’m deeply grateful for the various works of fine art that my children have made for me over the years—treasures that will never grace the Louvre. But my real joy is to give to them. Not necessarily in the terms of the possessions that our society is obsessed with. There are far more important gifts to give. But seeing their faces light up is a far greater present than anything that comes in wrapping paper. It truly is more blessed to give than to receive.
But is even giving the greatest good? Let us take one step higher.

Above gifts, beyond giving, there is the great, incomparable Giver. “Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and cometh down from the Father of lights, with whom is no variableness, neither
shadow of turning.” (Jas. 1:17)
Nobody has ever given like He has. Think of the recipients of His gift: we give to those we love; He gave to His enemies. Or the extent of His giving: His giving never ends—He showers us with “grace upon grace” (Jn. 1:16). But eclipsing all, there is the cost of His gift—a gift that outweighs heaven and earth: His only begotten Son. A gift to fill our hearts with joy and blessing for all eternity.
“Thanks be to God for His indescribable gift!” (2 Cor। 9:15)
FROM THE EDITOR’S DESK by James Martin

UPLOOK / NOVEMBER- DECEMBER 2008
http://www.uplook.org/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=12&Itemid=71

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