Did you know…?

Of all the books of the New Testament, there is one particular book that is most chosen or published for clear evangelism. In fact, many Evangelical circles have resorted to printing this particular book exclusively and share as a “tract” to encourage and foster accurate understanding of the gospel. I guess you already know the book I’m referring to. It is the book where the most popular verse in the Bible resides. (3:16) Many Bible printing society would print “pocket sized copies” of just this particular book.

Why this book? What makes it so unique? All books of the Bible are Holy Spirit inspired and God-breathed…so this is definitely not saying other books aren’t as important. But in terms of clarity, ease, sure and speedy Evangelical success, this particular book has been the best choice! What book is this?


The Gideons Bible Society has this on one of their websites: “…We also share pocket-sized copies of the Gospel of John in a variety of covers, again for the purpose of introducing people to the person of Jesus Christ…” (Read here)

My focus on this post is: why this affinity towards this book? We have Matthew, Mark and Luke ….but why is John the most printed? And the answer is simple. The book of John is the only book of the gospels where you will not find the word “REPENT”!

I guess some of you are surprised at this. Isn’t it interesting that a book most widely used for evangelism and also filled with so much truth about Jesus, does not have the word “repent” in it?

Now this is where you shouldn’t miss: Instead of the word ‘repent’, the word that is used is “BELIEVE”! In fact, the word ‘believe’ including all its related words (believe, believing, believed, etc.) in its entirety appears 99 times in the book of John alone! Yet not once does the word ” REPENT” show up!

Why!? Because true repentance is “right believing”!!! And every time the issue of the subject of salvation comes up….BELIEVE is the chosen word! Nicodemus would come to inquire serious issues from Jesus in John chapter 3. Jesus would talk about being born again in vs3. And to explain what “born again” means? Just keep reading till you find yourself in the 16th verse!

“…for God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, THAT WHOSOEVER BELIEVES IN HIM, should not perish but have everlasting life”!

Wow! Oh, the multitude would confront Jesus in the 6th chapter: “What must we do to perform the works of God?” (vs28) In today’s Christianity, the answer would be littered with the word “repent”! And what was Jesus’ response? “The work of God is this: to BELIEVE in the One He has sent.” (vs29).

Wow. And if you will only be patient to read on to the 40th verse of this same chapter….you hear Jesus saying…

“…For it is My Father’s will that everyone who looks to the Son and BELIEVES in Him shall have eternal life, and I will raise him up at the last day…” (vs40)

I’m reminded that the book of Matthew projects Jesus saying: “Not everyone who says to Me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only he who does the will of My Father in heaven” (Matt 7:21)

And the question will be “what does it mean to do the will of His Father”? Well, the gospel of John clarifies!

“…For it is MY FATHER’S WILL that everyone who looks to the Son and BELIEVES in Him shall have eternal life, and I will raise him up at the last day…” (vs40)

And how can a person be sure he won’t go to hell? You should contact the book of John for your answer!

“…Verily, verily, I say unto you, 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)

Believe! Believe!! Believe!!!

Now you see why it is the most printed book! Evangelicals know the gospel isn’t and shouldn’t be complicated. And the only book of the gospels that helps do away with the seeming complexity place around the gospel by men is this book of John.

Personally, I have written 3books that have sold both in Nigeria and abroad …and the forth is on the way. Like every other author, I put the reason for writing the book at the early pages of the book and call it “introduction” or “prelude”. But John chose to put the reason he wrote the gospel of John at the last pages of his book. Turn to chapter 20 and learn why John wrote this book…

“…But these are written so that you may BELIEVE that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that BY BELIEVING you may have life in His name…” (John 20:31)

Wow! And yes, I wasn’t kidding when I noted that John liked putting his reason for writing at the last pages. Apart from the gospel of John, he also wrote 3epistles which are also in the Bible namely, 1st John, 2nd John and 3rd John. Scholars tell us that in the early church the book of John is always read alongside the 1st epistle of John. What was John’s purpose for writing 1st John? Turn to the last chapter…

“…I have written these things to you who BELIEVE in the name of the Son of God, so that you may know that you have eternal life…” (1John 5:13)

Hallelujah. The only way we can restore the sanctity of the gospel back to the church especially when it comes to the subject of salvation is to bring back the word BELIEVE to our evangelical teachings. The emphasis has depreciated so much in the church to the extent that the word ‘believe’ today is used for having faith for healing, provision, protection …believing God for this or for that. While that’s nice, let’s get back to the gospel.

When you are asked “what shall I do to be saved?” Don’t be ashamed to give the answer of Paul:

“…BELIEVE in the Lord Jesus, and you will be saved…” (Acts 16:31)

And if you must use the word repent, be clear that repent refers to BELIEVING IN THE ATONING WORK OF JESUS FOR YOUR SINS! It is scripturally used thus:

“…repentance TOWARD GOD, AND FAITH toward our Lord Jesus Christ…” (Acts 20:21)

Because in the context of salvation, the sin to be repented from is the sin of UNBELIEF!

“…See to it, brothers and sisters, that none of you has a sinful, UNBELIEVING HEART that turns away from the living God…” (Heb 3:12 NIV)

I love how KJV puts it: “…an EVIL HEART OF UNBELIEF…”

Nicodemus was not a sinful person in the context of morality. He doesn’t steal, cheat or entertain an outburst of lustful deeds. He was a Pharisee. Yet he was the one who Jesus told to be BORN AGAIN! (John 3:2-3) Because a MORAL unbeliever is still heading straight eternal destruction. Hence the repentance Nicodemus needed was not to stop stealing. It was a repentance TOWARD GOD, AND FAITH toward our Lord Jesus Christ! And if a person has moral deficiencies, this BELIEVING if allowed, has the potency to create the required change in the moral life of its carrier.

We are saved NOT OF WORKS (Eph. 2:8-9) But UNTO good works. (Eph. 2:10) Once this is understood, then we will see the power of the gospel more in our Christian circles. Hallelujah.

Was this information beneficial to you? Kindly let me know. Never forget:

“…Verily, verily, I say unto you, 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)


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