What does scripture mean when it says ‘whoever believes….’?

So many want to read John 3:16 as saying that God will enable anyone who wants to be saved to believe. But what does it say?

 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.

Its easier to see the truth when we look at scripture:
Acts 13:48

When the Gentiles heard this, they began rejoicing and glorifying the word of the Lord; and as many as had been appointed to eternal life believed.

So no, it was not that God enables people who want to be believe to do so. It is that God appoints some to eternal life and they believe.

People say that people are not Jesus’ sheep because they do not believe. But Jesus says they do not believe because they are not His sheep.

John 10:26-28

26 But you do not believe because you are not of My sheep. 27 My sheep hear My voice, and I know them, and they follow Me; 28 and I give eternal life to them, and they will never perish; and no one will snatch them out of My hand.

So ‘whoever’ does not mean that God lets those who want to believe in Christ to do so and so have eternal life. It means that whoever is appointed to eternal life believe in Christ.


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