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LOOK TO THE SON OF GOD!

by Dr. R. L. Hymers, Jr.

A sermon preached at the Baptist Tabernacle of Los Angeles
Lord's Day Evening, November 2, 2003


"He that believeth on the Son hath everlasting life" (John 3:36).


Jesus Christ is the only proper object of saving faith. Jesus is the Second Person of the Trinity. He is God the Son. He is not the same person as the Father,

"For there is one God, and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus" (I Timothy 2:5).

Jesus is God the Son. God the Father sent His Son to die on the Cross - to pay the penalty for your sin, and to shed His incorruptible Blood so your sin could be washed away.

Jesus Christ, the Son of God, rose physically from the dead and ascended back up to the Third Heaven. He is seated up there now, at the right hand of God. Christ can satisfy the justice of God by the payment of the full penalty for your sin on the Cross. Christ can cleanse your sin by His Blood. Christ can give you everlasting life, because He has risen from the dead! All you must do is believe on Him!

"He that believeth on the Son hath everlasting life" (John 3:36).

I want you to think about three important points, drawn from this verse.

I. First, what believing on Christ is not.

The human race is fallen, and ruined by sin. Mankind has been wrecked by sin. The minds of human beings are in rebellion against God. That's why they rejected Christ when He came to earth. That's why they cried out for Him to be crucified. They did not realize that God planned for Him to die, so that they could be saved.

They hated and rejected Christ. And mankind still rejects Him.

"He came unto his own, and his own received him not"
      (John 1:11).

"He is despised and rejected of men" (Isaiah 53:3).

Human beings so strongly reject Jesus that they do something else - almost anything else - rather than believe on Him. Jesus said,

"Ye will not come to me, that ye might have life" (John 5:40).

It is so simple to be saved.

"He that believeth on the Son hath everlasting life" (John 3:36).

And yet ruined sinners will not believe on Jesus unless God's grace draws them to do so. They will do something else every time, rather than believe on Him. Catholics will try to save themselves by confessing their sins one by one. Baptists and Evangelicals will try to save themselves by "coming forward," or by saying the words of a "sinner's prayer." Pentecostals will try to save themselves by working up their emotions. People will dedicate and rededicate themselves. They will learn the words of the "plan of salvation." They will get baptized and rebaptized. They will confess their sins to a priest, or try to experience a certain emotional feeling. They will do almost anything - but unless God draws them, they will not obey our text,

"He that believeth on the Son hath everlasting life" (John 3:36).

How do you hope to get to Heaven? You cannot get there as you are. Your sins must be paid for - and you can't pay for them yourself. No act of contrition can save you. No good deeds can make satisfaction for your sins. No correct doctrine can help you. No "sinner's prayer" can do you the slightest bit of good. You can have demons "cast out" and the "Holy Ghost" cast in - and you will still go to Hell when you die! You can "feel saved" or you can "feel lost" - and you will still be cast into the fire that never shall be quenched!

"He that believeth on the Son hath everlasting life" (John 3:36).

and no one else!

II. Second, what believing on Christ is.

Believing on Christ is believing on Christ! It is not believing that He can save you! That's only a belief in doctrine. "I believe that He can save me." You have faith in a doctrine. You are still lost! Believing that He can save you will not keep you out of Hell! You must believe on Christ, Himself!

"He that believeth on the Son hath everlasting life" (John 3:36).

Believing on Christ is believing on Christ! Nothing else will do to save you!

"He that believeth on the Son hath everlasting life" (John 3:36).

Now, notice that word "on." The translators of the King James Bible bring out a subtlety here that is lost in all the modern translations. The New American Standard Bible says, "He who believes in the Son." Even the New King James has it, "He who believes in the Son." What a shame! The subtle truth is hidden in these modern translations! Only our good, old King James Bibles bring it out!

"He that believeth on the Son hath everlasting life" (John 3:36).

The English translators knew how to use the word "in." But when the KJV was translated, they knew that the word "in" didn't bring out the meaning of the Greek word "eis." Dr. Zodhiates tells us this Greek word carries "the primary of motion into a place or thing." Thus, the KJV translators could have given us

"He that believeth into the Son hath everlasting life."

But that wording would have been awkward. So they translated "eis" as "on." This is much better than "in." It shows us that Jesus is the object of saving faith. We are to believe "on" Him. None of the modern translations bring out this great truth. But there it is - in the Greek New Testament.

"He that believeth on the Son hath everlasting life" (John 3:36).

I believed in Jesus before I believed on Him. But I was not saved until I believed on Him!

Venture on Him, venture wholly, Let no other trust intrude.
None but Jesus, none but Jesus, Can do helpless sinners good.
     ("Come, Ye Sinners" by Joseph Hart, 1712-1768).

Look at verse 18,

"He that believeth on him is not condemned…" (John 3:18).

Condemnation for sin is removed when you believe on Jesus.

Look at chapter four, verse 39,

"And many of the Samaritans of that city believed on him…" (John 4:39).

These Samaritans believed on Jesus. Condemnation for sin was removed and they had everlasting life - when they believed on Christ. And that will happen to you as well.

"He that believeth on him is not condemned…" (John 3:18).

"He that believeth on the Son hath everlasting life" (John 3:36).

III. Third, what Christ gives you when you believe on Him.

The text tells us that He gives you everlasting life. Notice that it says,

"He that believeth on the Son hath [has] everlasting life"
     (John 3:36).

"Hath" is the present active indicative of the Greek word "echo." Bengel says, "Thus the life given by Christ is a present possession of believers" (John Albert Bengel, Bengel's New Testament Commentary, Kregel, 1971 reprint, volume 1, p. 579). Then Bengel quotes Jeremiah, the Patriarch of Constantinople, who said, "Dost thou see? He hath this immediately, not he shall have."

"He that believeth on the Son hath everlasting life" (John 3:36).

You don't get eternal life when you die! You don't get your sins pardoned after death. You receive forgiveness and everlasting life the moment you believe on the Son of God!

The moment a sinner believes, And trusts in his crucified God,
His pardon at once he receives, Redemption in full through His blood.
      ("The Moment a Sinner Believes" by Joseph Hart, 1712-1768).

If you want salvation, believe "into" Jesus - up in Heaven. Throw yourself into the arms of Christ - as a man throws himself from a burning building into the firemen's net below. Throw yourself into the arms of Christ, and He will save you!

"He that believeth on the Son hath everlasting life" (John 3:36).

My faith has found a resting place, Not in device nor creed;
I trust the Ever-living One, His wounds for me shall plead.

Enough for me that Jesus saves, This ends my fear and doubt;
A sinful soul I come to Him, He'll never cast me out.
     ("No Other Plea" by Eliza E. Hewitt, 1851-1920).

"He that believeth on the Son hath everlasting life" (John 3:36).

"He that believeth on him is not condemned" (John 3:18).

"And many of the Samaritans…believed on him" (John 4:39).

Jesus said,

"He that heareth my word, and believeth on him that sent me, hath everlasting life, and shall not come into condemnation; but is passed from death unto life" (John 5:24).

Jeremiah, Patriarch of Constantinople, said, "Dost thou see? [You have] this immediately, not [you] shall have [it]."

The moment a sinner believes, And trusts in his crucified God, 
His pardon at once he receives, Redemption in full through His blood.

You receive salvation in full the very "moment" you believe on Jesus!

I struggled for thirteen long hours over this simple sermon. I wanted to speak especially to a young man who has been coming to our church for some time, but he hasn't grasped this yet. He thinks he has to cling to Christ. He thinks that if his faith wavers, he will be lost! Oh, no! You haven't got it right at all! One moment of trust in the Saviour is all God requires! As the old song puts it, "There's life for a look at the Saviour!" You have full salvation the moment you believe on Jesus!

There are many illustrations and examples of this in the Bible. For instance, turn to John 3:14-15. Let us stand and read it out loud:

"And as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must the Son of man be lifted up: That whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have eternal life" (John 3:14-15).

You may be seated.

After the Hebrew people left Egypt, they wandered in the wilderness. Then they spoke

"against God, and against Moses, Wherefore have ye brought us up out of Egypt to die in the wilderness?" (Numbers 21:5).

God sent snakes among them, and they bit the people, and many died. Then the people asked Moses to pray for them to be saved from these serpents.

"And the Lord said unto Moses, Make thee a fiery serpent, and set it upon a pole: and it shall come to pass, that every one that is bitten, when he looketh upon it, shall live…and it came to pass, that if a serpent had bitten any man, when he beheld [looked at] the serpent of brass, he lived" (Numbers 21:8-9).

The Scofield note says, "The brazen serpent is a type of Christ…in bearing our judgment" on the Cross (note on Numbers 21:9). Dr. Ryrie says, "Only those who believed God and looked on the bronze serpent lived" (Ryrie Study Bible, note on Numbers 21:8-9). They looked at the brass serpent, and they were saved. This is a picture of Christ, lifted up on the Cross, and now lifted up into Heaven. Jesus said,

"And as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must the Son of man be lifted up: That whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have eternal life" (John 3:14-15).

How many times did a Hebrew have to look at the brass serpent to be saved? Just once! "When he beheld [looked at] the serpent of brass, he lived" (Numbers 21:9). How many times must you believe on Christ to be saved? Just once! He says,

"Look unto me, and be ye saved" (Isaiah 45:22).

Is that too easy? Lost mankind thinks it is. But the Bible tells us that this is the only way to be saved!

The jailor asked the Apostle Paul, "What must I do to be saved?" And Paul said, "Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved" (Acts 16:30-31). It's as simple as that!

If you from guilt are longing to be free, Look to the Son of God;
To justify you, He died on Calvary, Look to the Son of God.
Look to the Son of God, Look to the Son of God,
For He alone is able to save you, Look to the Son of God.
     ("Look to the Lamb of God" by H. G. Jackson, 19th century,
        altered by R. L. Hymers, Jr.)

"He that believeth on the Son hath everlasting life" (John 3:36).

Turn one last time in your Bible to John 6:47. Let's stand and read what Jesus said out loud,

"Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that believeth on me hath everlasting life" (John 6:47).

Listen to what Martin Luther, the great Reformer, said about that verse,

Here Christ directly promises eternal life to him that believes on Him. He does not say: Whoever believes on me will have eternal life, but: As soon as you believe on me, you already have it…[Christ says that when you believe on Him] you are saved, and eternal life is already bestowed on you (Martin Luther, What Luther Says, Concordia, 1994, p. 719).

"He that believeth on the Son hath everlasting life" (John 3:36).

"He that believeth on me hath everlasting life" (John 6:47).

I would like to speak with you about believing on Jesus. Why not believe on Jesus and be saved, once and for all, right now? While we sing that chorus, get out of your chair and come and stand here in front of the pulpit. After you have come, we will go up into my office and talk this over.

"He that believeth on the Son hath everlasting life" (John 3:36).

Let's sing that chorus, that Mr. Griffith sang before the sermon. While we sing, you come, so we can talk about it.

Look to the Son of God, Look to the Son of God,
For He alone is able to save you, Look to the Son of God.

(END OF SERMON)

Scripture Read Before the Sermon by Dr. Kreighton L. Chan: John 3:17-18, 36; 4:39.
Solo Sung Before the Sermon by Mr. Benjamin Kincaid Griffith:

"Look to the Lamb of God"

(by H. G. Jackson, 19th century, altered by R. L. Hymers, Jr.)

THE OUTLINE OF

LOOK TO THE SON OF GOD!

by Dr. R. L. Hymers, Jr.

 

"He that believeth on the Son hath everlasting life" (John 3:36).

(I Timothy 2:5)

I.   What believing on Christ is not, John 1:11; Isaiah 53:3; John 5:40.

II.  What believing on Christ is, John 3:18; 4:39.

III. What Christ gives you when you believe on Him, John 5:24; 3:14-15;
Numbers 21:5, 8-9; Isaiah 45:22; Acts 16:30-31; John 6:47.

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at www.rlhymersjr.com. Click on "Sermon Manuscripts."