God’s indignation remaining?27-12-2016 - Posted by Andre Piet
He who is believing in the Son has life eonian, yet he who is stubborn as to the Son shall not be seeing life, but the indignation of God is remaining on him.
The subject in this sentence is the eonian life, which is the life of the coming eon (Luke 18:30). It is the eon in which the Son, (Israel’s Messiah) will reign over Israel and the nations. Whoever gives heed to the Son because of believing Him, will experience this eon.
The other side
The other side of this medal is that whoever is stubborn to the Son, will not experience that eon. The perish, so they will not “be seeing life”. So the indignation about which this verse speaks is death. As long as that eon lasts, all of those who were disobedient to the Son will be dead.
Remaining = forever?
Usually this Bible verse serves as proof for the idea that whoever does not believe, becomes the object of Gods endless wrath. After all, the thought is, “the indignation of God is remaining on him”. But solely on linguistic grounds, this is an impermissible conclusion. Because the four verbs ‘believing’, ‘has’, ‘is stubborn’ and ‘remaining’ are all (in grammatical terms) in the indicative imperfect present time. This means they describe actions that are currently underway. For as long as it takes. Likewise, John 1:39 says about Jesus that He ‘is remaining’ with his disciples. Exactly the same word and verbal form. Was this ‘remaining’ an endless stay? No. The same verse tells us that it was for the duration of a day.
The idea of an indignation of God that lasts forever is totally strange to the Scriptures. God shows His indignation, that is a Biblical reality. It is sometimes severe, which is also Biblical. But it is always proportional. Psalms 30:5 formulates it as follows:
For there is only a moment under His anger, but a lifetime under His benevolence..
God’s anger compares to His benevolence as moment to a lifetime. God’s anger is always fatherly anger. It is anger that has its basis in love for all who owe their existence to Him. Therefore the aim of the indignation of God has always been the salvation of his creations. Gods indignation corrects and straightens out.
Beyond the eons
But not only God’s indignation has an end, also the disobedience to the Son is limited. Because the Scriptures teach that all will be subjected to the Son (1 Cor. 15:27,28). Every knee will bow and every tongue will acclaim that Jesus is Lord for the glory of God the Father (Phil 2: 9-11). At the end of Christ’s reign this will be reality. Then the last enemy which shall be abolished is death, so that all will be vivified (1 Cor. 15:22). Christ must reign for the eons of the eons and after abolishing death, His reign will be completed. Beyond the eons disobedience will be no more. There will also be no more indignation and death. Then GOD’s plan has come to a perfect end. Exactly as we can expect from GOD as FATHER.
John 3:36 is counted as proof par excellence, that God’s wrath has no end for whoever does not believe in the Son. It is wielded as a big stick to force people to choose for the Son. But the truth is that whoever evangelizes in such a way, proves not to know the Evangel. That is sharp, I know, but an evangel in which Gods indignation is endless and in which the Son is not the “Savior of the world” (John 4:42, 1 John 4:14), is no Evangel. Because God gave His Son to save the world (John 3:17). More than this is not possible and less than this is no Evangel.