This part is the conclusion of the series addressing John 3:16. Here we mine the precious truths from the last phrase of the verse and bring it all together. The verse thus ends, “but have eternal life.” It conveys a very positive conclusion and promise that is the outcome of God providing His only Son as a gift to lost humanity. Simply said, He gives eternal life to all who believe in Him. He rescues them from a condition of reprobation and that of ultimately facing everlasting judgement and wrath to give them the reciprocal of that condition, which is eternal life. They will “have” eternal life as a possession–it is by its nature a quality of life that is everlasting. The Scriptures provide abundant teaching on the nature of this life for believers, which takes effect immediately upon believing and extends to eternity thereafter. The effects and benefits of this life over time is like a flower that starts as a bud and eventually unfolds in full bloom with increasing beauty through eternity without end. This beauty is spiritual and chiefly consists of acquiring an increasing likeness to God and fellowship with Him. It involves a special relationship with God the Son that has its zenith at the believer’s resurrection from the dead.
The Gospels, and particularly the Book of John, speak of Jesus possessing life, being the light of life, having life in Him, etc., which are allusions to eternal life. In John 14:6 Jesus famously says, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life.” In 5:20 we have, “This is the true God and eternal life.” In 3:36, “He who believes in the Son has eternal life” and finally in John 20:30, “but these things are recorded in order that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that by believing you may have life in His name.” Herein is God’s remedy for man’s lost condition–Jesus Christ, the gift of the Father to the perishing.