Born to Die for Our Sins
The Season of Giving
John 3:16 ”For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life.”
Before the foundation of the world God knew that He would send His only begotten Son to be a propitiation for sin as a special gift to a world of sinners in need of a relationship with Him. The translation here is so often misunderstood or misconstrued which causes much confusion. Those who are simple believers that whatever God says they believe are truly blessed, but others are skeptical and want to interpret this in very worldly ways and thus diminish the deity of Christ Jesus.
Not Just a Son
Let’s pick apart the words in John 3:16 just a little. The Greek word hyiós (υιον) would generally be rendered as “Son” but you have to look at the figurative definition to get the full impact of what this really means. Figuratively hyiós (υιον) means “anyone sharing the same nature as their Father”. I believe that the impact of the figurative definition more clearly states what God actually did in the case of the virgin birth. Monogenḗs (μονογενη) is generally rendered as “only begotten” from monos (one of a class) and genos (the only of its kind) meaning the one and only of its kind or the only one. Another interesting word is apóllymi (αποληται) from apó (away from) and ollymi (to destroy) meaning to fully destroy or to cut off entirely.
Using these definitions John 3:16 could then be rendered as:
For God so loved the world that He gave the only one sharing the nature of the Father so that whoever believes in Him (Jesus) will not be cut off entirely but have eternal life.
The gravity of that forces me to a new degree of humbleness. That God would give Himself for us in a very real and human way is something which we can never fully comprehend. But the simple requirement of believing is all that is required. Not questioning, not requiring proof, not viewing alternatives but simply believing in what God did to provide eternal life for us.
The Greatest Gift of All
Jesus, the greatest gift of all, was born on Christmas day to grow up living a simple and perfect life that He may provide for our sins a sacrifice that enables us to enter into a relationship with God Himself and to have assurance of eternal fellowship with God.
Hebrews 4:14-16 “Therefore, since we have a great high priest who has passed through the heavens, Jesus the Son (hyiós) of God, let us hold fast our confession. For we do not have a high priest who cannot sympathize with our weaknesses, but One who has been tempted in all things as we are, yet without sin. Therefore let us draw near with confidence to the throne of grace, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need.”
So as we enter this season of celebration and giving let’s not forget that the Jesus who laid in a manger is “the only one sharing the nature of the Father” and that He gave us the greatest gift that can be given.
Born to die for our sins, He gave His own precious lift for ours!
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