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WHI-1138 | For God so Loved the World

Posted by on in 2013 Show Archive
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In John chapter 3 Jesus tells Nicodemus that "unless one is born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God." What does this verse mean, and how has it been misunderstood in our day? What is the meaning of John 3:16, and how does it relate to our understanding of both salvation and condemnation? Why do some respond positively to the gospel while others reject the good news? The hosts will discuss these questions and more in their continuing survey of the Gospel of John.

In John chapter 3 Jesus tells Nicodemus that "unless one is born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God." What does this verse mean, and how has it been misunderstood in our day? What is the meaning of John 3:16, and how does it relate to our understanding of both salvation and condemnation? Why do some respond positively to the gospel while others reject the good news? The hosts will discuss these questions and more in their continuing survey of the Gospel of John.




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PROGRAM AUDIO

[audio src="http://www.whitehorseinn.org/whiarchives/2013whi1138jan27.mp3" width="250"]
Click here to access the audio file directly


RECOMMENDED BOOKS
The Gospel of John
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RECOMMENDED AUDIO




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  • Guest - René Mulder

    Great talk brothers!

    I have some questions and thoughts. Up untill now, I figured Jesus never really clarified what He meant, leaving Nicodemus in a state of ignorance, as a sort of "judgment" for his lack of understanding. In fact, I used to think that Jesus words ended with verse 12, and that the rest of these words were the author's. I reasoned that since Jesus had not yet ascended to heaven at that time, that verse 13 and on was John's account of the event that happened much later. So was I wrong in reading verses 13-21 as being the words of John, rather than words spoken by Jesus Himself?
    Does it matter, you may ask? Well, for me it kind of does, because I really want Jesus Himself to say the things we believe, and grab on to that. That's not to say I don't trust the words of the aposteles on behalf of the Lord.


    You guys mentioned how people might respond in saying it is unfair for God to send people to hell because they may have never heard the gospel. I hear this a lot too. I think the basic idea is "if God does that, then He is not just. And if He is not just, then I don't want Him as my God".
    They will look for really specific cases of people who might unjustly go to hell (deaf, mentally challenged) who cannot accept or even hear the gospel, to justify their disobedience.
    In such conversation I try to bring the focus back on their sin and their problem with God, and indeed the fact that people are not being condemed for rejecting Jesus but rather for being sinners. Of course, getting people to acknowledge their being sinners is impossible for me, I have learned.
    I have the privelege of working with at least 3 people who are not sinners! :) It gets a little lonely being the only sinner sometimes, but oh well.

    By the way, what does Jesus mean when He says in John 15:22 and on that:

    "If I had not come and spoken to them, they would not have sin, but now they have no excuse for their sin. 23 He who hates Me hates My Father also. 24 If I had not done among them the works which no one else did, they would not have sin; but now they have both seen and hated Me and My Father as well."

    At first glance it looks as though it is saying that everything would have been perfectly fine for those who reject Jesus had Jesus not come and done the things He has done. But surely He is not saying they would not have had any sin guilt at all, had Jesus not come? What then does Jesus mean?

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  • Guest - Mark Anderson

    Your link to the WHI discussion questions appears to be down.

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  • Guest - Bill

    First off great series, outstanding job. The series on Isaiah was incredible, thank you guys. And this one on the gospel of John is outstanding.

    Rene, John 15:22 John 15:23 and John 15:24 indicates that where the gospel is preached there ought to be fear for those that reject it. Paul teaches in 2 Corinthians 2:16 that the gospel is an aroma of death to the unbeliever. Those that reject Jesus sin gravely. The hosts of the White Horse Inn did not mention that unbelief is a violation against the first table of the law (the first and second commands), somehow they stated that we are condemned for violating the law but not for unbelief. I think this was a slip in a fast paced discussion, they overlooked the fact that unbelief and specially rejecting the gospel call is a most serious violation of the law. This is why Jesus in John 15 verses 22 to 24 charges them with sin for having witnessed to his miracles and to still disbelieve in Him. If Jesus had not come they would not have been charged with that sin (though they still would have been condemned for other sins but not for the sin of rejecting the Son of Man).

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  • Guest - Bill

    And very much related to I wrote in my post before, the hosts of the White Horse Inn maintain that the gospel call is not an imperative but more a proclamation or announcement. And here I have to disagree, in that it is botth. Certainly everybody agrees that it's an announcement of what Christ has done. Now I will add that there is also a command to repent and believe. Paul in his speech in Acts 17:30 leaves no doubt that God now commands everybody to repent and believe the gospel. Now the fact that the natrual man is incapable of believing and needs to be regenerated by God who bestows faith in him is a separate issue. To believe the gospel is included in the first and second commandments of the law, that man has no ability to keep God's law is also true, but this does not excuse him from the obligation, neither does it change the law. The command to believe the gospel is law. Paul as I mentioned in Acts 17:30 states clearly God commands everybody to repent and believe. We are not saved by keeping the law but by grace alone, faith is a gift of God and not a work. And yet it is also true that the gospel call contains imperatives to repent and believe. And the sons of disobedience will be punished for disobeying this law as John 15 verses 22 to 24 clearly teach and Ive explained earlier in my last post addressed to Rene.

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