HEART = MIND, A BIBLICAL PERSPECTIVE

I) HEART DEFINED IN THE BIBLE

[Vines Expository Dictionary of Old and New Testament Words, [W.E. Vine, Edited by F. F. Bruce, Fleming H. Revell Co. Old Tappan, N.J., 1981, pp. 206-207]:

"The word came to stand for man's entire mental and moral activity, both the rational and the emotional elements...

As to its usage in the N.T. it denotes

(a) the seat of physical life, Acts 14:17; Jas. 5:5;

(b) the seat of moral nature and spiritual life, the seat of grief, John 14:1; Rom. 9:2; 2 Cor 2:4; joy, John 16:22; Eph. 5:19; the desires, Matt. 5:28; 2 Pet 2:14; the affections, Luke 24:32; Acts 21:13; the perceptions, John 12:40; Eph. 4:18; the thoughts, Matt. 9:4; Heb. 4:12; the understanding, Matt. 13:15; Rom. 1:21; the reasoning powers, Mark 2:6; Luke 24:38; the imagination, Luke 1:51; conscience, Acts 2:37; 1 John 3:20; the intentions, Heb 4:12; cp. 1 Pet 4:1; purpose, Acts 11:23; 2 Cor 9:7; the will, Rom. 6:17; Col. 3:15; faith, Mark 11:23; Rom. 10:10; Heb. 3:12.

The heart, in its moral significance in the O.T., includes the emotions, the reason and the will.

II) HEART FAITH VS HEAD FAITH

[Robert N. Wilkin states, 'SAVING FAITH IN FOCUS', Journal of the GRACE EVANGELICAL SOCIETY, Grace Evangelical Society, Irving, Tx, Robert N. Wilkin, Editor, p. 49-50]:

"HEAD FAITH, HEART FAITH, AND MIND GAMES

How do you convince someone that saving faith is not just faith in the gospel, that it includes commitment, turning from sins, perseverance in obedience, and the like? Since there is no verse in Scripture that identifies saving faith as anything other than believing the gospel, you'd have a hard time proving your view from the Bible. However, there is an easier way.

The best way to sell the idea that saving faith includes the kitchen sink is through the use of pejorative terms like intellectual faith or head faith. Then they espouse the idea that the Bible teaches that the faith that truly saves is heart faith.

There is a tract called 'Missing Heaven by Eighteen Inches.' It argues that you would miss heaven if you believed the gospel with your head rather than with your heart. Head faith is dangerous, it suggests, because you may think you are saved simply because you believe the facts of the gospel. Yet without the heart commitment, that 'faith' is not saving faith at all.

Heart faith can include almost anything. However, heart faith raises potential problems. How much commitment, turning from sins, obedience, and the like is enough? The biblical evidence demonstrates that this supposed distinction between head faith and heart faith is really a mind game.

First, the Scriptures never refer to the head as the source of thinking and feeling. In addition, the word head is never associated with faith in the Bible.

The word head occurs approximately 330 times in the Bible. Of those, the vast majority refers literally to the head. The figurative uses include lifting up the head, which refers to being placed in a position of honor or having one's former status reinstated (Genesis 40:13; Job 10:15), blood or wickedness being on the head, which refers to a guilt and judgment coming against persons for their wicked deeds (1 Kings 2:37, 'Your blood shall be on your own head,' 1 Samuel 25:39, 'The Lord has returned the wickedness of Nabal on his own head'), and head as ruler or authority over others (2 Samuel 22:44, 'head of the nations,' 1 Corinthians 11:3, 'the head of every man is Christ, the head of woman is man, and the head of Christ is God'). There is absolutely no biblical warrant for speaking of head faith.]

Second, of the two remaining words, heart and mind, the Scriptures often use them interchangeably.

For example, 'Thus my heart was grieved, and I was vexed in my mind' (Psalm 73:21). There is synonymous parallelism here. That is, the two halves of the verse are saying the same thing using synonyms. To be grieved in your heart is to be vexed in your mind. The same thing is evident in Hebrews 8:10, 'I will put My laws in their mind and write them on their hearts.' Mind and heart are used synonymously there.

Another example is found by comparing Luke 24:25 and Luke 24:45:

'O foolish ones, and slow of heart to believe in all that the prophets have spoken.'

'And He opened their understanding [lit. mind], that they might comprehend the Scriptures.'

Those two passages are talking about the same thing. The disciples were slow of heart to believe the prophetic teaching of the Old Testament Scriptures regarding His resurrection. So what did Jesus do? He opened their mind that they might comprehend those Scriptures. There is no difference whatsoever here between believing in the heart or believing in the mind. Compare also 1 Samuel 2:35; Psalm 26:2; Jeremiah 11:20; 20:12; and Ephesians 4:17-18]

Both [expressions] refer to the inner self where one thinks and believes and feels.

The mind is associated with believing in at least three passages (Luke 24:45; Romans 14:5; Ephesians 4:17-18). In these three passages the words believe and faith do not occur. However, synonyms are present. Luke 24:45 [was previously discussed]. In that text, opening of the mind is shown to be antithetical to being 'slow of heart to believe' (verse 25). Romans 14:5 reads, 'Let each be fully convinced in his own mind." Ephesians 4:17--18, which, like Luke 24:45, equates the heart and mind, says, 'The Gentiles walk in the futility of their mind, having their understanding darkened... because of the blindness of their heart.

Third, the mind is not viewed as being inferior to the heart in Scripture. In one of the most famous verses on sanctification in the Bible, Paul exhorted the believers in Rome, 'Be transformed by the renewing of your mind' (Romans 12:2). Similarly, he exhorted the Ephesians believers, 'Be renewed in the spirit of your mind' (Ephesians 4:23), Paul spoke to the Corinthian believers of having 'the mind of Christ' (1 Corinthians 2:16). Luke said that the Lord 'opened [the disciples'] understanding [literally mind in Greek], that they might comprehend the Scriptures,' that is, the Old Testament Scriptures, concerning His resurrection (Luke 24:45).

Fourth, while the words believe and faith occur approximately 450 times in the Bible, only a few passages specify where belief takes place. They speak of believing as though the reader of Scripture knows what that means and where it occurs.

One passage, Romans 10:9-10, directly speaks of 'believ[ing] in your heart.' That is set in contrast with 'confess[ing] with your mouth.' The former is internal; the latter external. The former is by faith alone. The latter includes works. 'Confessing with your mouth the Lord Jesus' is the action that involves commitment, obedience, and turning from sins, not 'believing in your heart that God raised Him from the dead.' Nor is believing with your heart defined as some special kind of faith that might rightly be called heart faith. Paul is merely indicating that saving faith takes place internally, as opposed to confessing Christ in word and deed, which takes place externally....."

**** EXCERPT FROM ROMANS CHAPTER 10 ****

[Ro 10:9-10]:

(Ro 10:9 NAS) that if you confess with your mouth Jesus as Lord, and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved.

(Ro 10:10 Greek) "Kardia .......gar pisteuetai

..............................."With heart for .[one] believes (3sing pres)

eis ...........dikaiosunEn ...stomati ................de ....

to [for] .righteousness .with [the] mouth and

homologeitai .........................eis ...........sOtErian"

[one] confesses .(3sing pres) to [for] .salvation"

(Ro 10:10 NKJV) For with the heart [one] believes for righteousness, and with the mouth [one confesses] for salvation"

SALVATION FROM GOD'S ETERNAL WRATH UNTO THE RECEPTION OF ETERNAL LIFE IS RECEIVED WHEN ONE BELIEVES WITH THE HEART UNTO RIGHTEOUSNESS EVEN BEFORE ONE HAS A CHANCE TO CONFESS JESUS AS LORD

(Ro 3:21) '''But now a Righteousness from God, apart from law, has been made known, to which the Law and the Prophets testify. (Ro 3:22) This Righteousness from God comes through faith in Jesus Christ to all who believe. There is no difference, (Ro 3:23) for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, (Ro 3:24) and are justified freely by his grace through the redemption that came by Christ Jesus... (Ro 4:5 NAS) But to the one who does not work, but believes in Him Who justifies the ungodly, his faith is reckoned as righteousness. (Ro 4:23 NAS) Now not for his [Abraham's] sake only was it written that it was reckoned to him, (Ro 4:24 NAS) but for our sake also, to whom it will be reckoned, as those who believe in Him Who raised Jesus our Lord from the dead, (Ro 4:25 NAS) [He] who was delivered over because of our transgressions, and was raised because of our justification (Ro 5:8 ASV) But God commendeth his own love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us. (Ro 5:9 NKJV) Much more then, having now been justified by His blood, we shall be saved from wrath through Him... (Ro 10:9 NAS) that if you confess with your mouth Jesus as Lord, and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved. (Ro 10:10 NKJV) For with the heart [one] believes for righteousness, and with the mouth [one confesses] for salvation''' =

Just as in Ro 3:22; 4:3-5; 5:8-9, it is stipulated that a Righteousness from God for eternal life is credited to one when one expresses a moment of faith alone in Jesus Christ alone to provide it through His blood sacrifice atonement for mankind's sins so that this righteousness results in qualifying one to be saved from God's eternal wrath for eternal life; so the phrase "For with the heart one believes for righteousness," in Ro 10:10a has salvation from God's eternal wrath for eternal life received even before one has a chance to confess Jesus as Lord.

ONLY AFTER ONE HAS EXPRESSED A MOMENT OF FAITH ALONE IN CHRIST ALONE TO RECEIVE AN ETERNAL RIGHTEOUSNESS FROM GOD UNTO ETERNAL LIFE IS ONE ENABLED TO TRULY CONFESS JESUS AS LORD BUT ONLY DURING THOSE MOMENTS WHEN THE BELIEVER IS FAITHFUL TO CHRIST'S LORDSHIP

(Ro 3:21) "But now a Righteousness from God, apart from law, has been made known, to which the Law and the Prophets testify. (Ro 3:22) This Righteousness from God comes through faith in Jesus Christ to all who believe. There is no difference, (Ro 3:23) for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, (Ro 3:24) and are justified freely by his grace through the redemption that came by Christ Jesus. (v. 25a NAS) Whom God displayed publicly as a propitiation in His blood through faith [for a display]. (v. 25b NAS) This [display] was to demonstrate His righteousness, because in the forbearance of God He passed over the sins previously committed; (v. 26 NAS) for the demonstration, I say, of His righteousness at the present time, that He might be just and the justifier of the one who has faith in Jesus.... (v. 9:30 NKJV) What shall we say then? That Gentiles, who did not pursue righteousness, have attained to righteousness, even the righteousness of faith; (v. 10:4 NKJV) For Christ is the end of ... law [rules of behavior] for righteousness to everyone who believes." =

To confess Jesus as Lord implies that an individual's being and lifestyle is compatible with the Righteousness of Jesus Christ and His Lordship. Hence, in order for an individual to truly confess Jesus as Lord, there cannot be any unrighteousness, (sin), for which that individual is held accountable at the time of confession. The dilemma is that since all men have sinned and continually fall short of the glory of God, (Ro 3:23), no individual can of his own accord truly confess Jesus as Lord at any time. On the other hand, through a moment of faith alone in Christ's atoning sacrifice for the sins of all mankind, an individual is justified, i.e., credited with an eternal Righteousness from God, (Ro 3:21-26), which forgives all of that individual's sins - past, present and future, relative to eternal life forever and cleanses that individual from the accountability of temporal sins up to that time of the moment of faith; whereupon that individual is for the moment in a position of temporal righteousness and fellowship with the Lord. They can truly confess Jesus as Lord by the grace of God. Although eternal life is secure forever no matter what on account of its eternality and our Lord's once for all atonement for sins, past, present and future for all mankind, (Ro 3:21-26 ); forgiveness for temporal blessings and fellowship with the Lord for believers occur only during those moments when the individual is not held accountable for temporal sins. At those moments the believer can truly confess in his temporal life Jesus as Lord.

It has already been established in Romans that the nature of man, believer and non-believer alike, is of one who has sinned and constantly falls short of the glory of God, (cf. Ro 3:21-23); hence God's provision through His Son's atonement also provides for forgiveness of temporal sins and purification from all unrighteousness at the moment when acknowledgment of them is made as part of ones confession of Jesus as Lord.

On the other hand, Jesus Christ will always be Lord of that individual's eternal life, especially in the sense of its preservation.

And when there is temporal sin which is unaccounted for, confession of Jesus as Lord is not valid until that temporal sin is forgiven relative to the relieving of the consequences of temporal destruction even premature physical death in the temporal life. So the first step for being in a position to confess Jesus as Lord is to be justified for eternal life through a moment of faith alone in Christ alone.

THE WORD OF FAITH WHICH PAUL AND OTHERS WERE PREACHING TEACHES THAT AN INDIVIDUAL WHO TRULY CONFESSES WITH HIS MOUTH JESUS AS LORD AND BELIEVES IN HIS HEART (MIND) THAT GOD RAISED JESUS FROM THE DEAD, I.E., A BELIEVER WHO IS FAITHFUL TO THE LORDSHIP OF JESUS CHRIST, WILL BE SAVED FROM TEMPORAL DESTRUCTION AND PREMATURE PHYSICAL DEATH

(Ro 4:23 NAS) '''Now not for his [Abraham's] sake only was it written that it was reckoned to him, (Ro 4:24 NAS) but for our sake also, to whom it will be reckoned, as those who believe in Him Who raised Jesus our Lord from the dead, (Ro 4:25 NAS) [He] who was delivered over because of our transgressions, and was raised because of our justification... (Ro 10:4 NKJV) For Christ is the end of ... law [rules of behavior] for righteousness [for eternal life] to everyone who believes... (Ro 10:6 NAS) But the righteousness based on faith speaks as follows: "Do not say in your heart, 'Who will ascend into heaven?' (that is, to bring Christ down), (Ro 10:7 NAS) or 'Who will descend into the abyss?' (that is, to bring Christ up from the dead). (Ro 10:8 NAS) But what does it say? 'The word is near you, in your mouth and in your heart' (that is, the word of faith which we are preaching, (Ro 10:9 NAS) that if you confess with your mouth Jesus as Lord, and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved. (Ro 10:10 NKJV) For with the heart [one] believes for righteousness, and with the mouth [one confesses] for salvation" ''' =

Notice that the conjunction "that" which joins Ro 10:8 with Ro 10:9,

(v. 8) " 'The word is near you, in your mouth and in your heart' (that is, the word of faith which we are preaching, (v. 9 NAS) that if you confess with your mouth Jesus as Lord, and believe in your heart (mind) that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved,"

continues the context of Ro 10:1-8 into verse 9. Verse 9 specifically stipulates a specific point from the preaching of the "word of faith" by Paul and others mentioned in verse eight: salvation from temporal destruction and from premature physical death of individuals who confess with their mouths Jesus as Lord and believe in their hearts (minds) that God raised Him from the dead. Hence believers being faithful to the Lordship of Jesus Christ are in view.

The Greek word "homologEsEs" in the phrase:

"ean homologEsEs en ....tO stomati sou ..kurion Iesoun"

"If ...you confess ....with the mouth .your Lord ...Jesus"

rendered "If you confess with your mouth Jesus as Lord" in the NAS in Ro 10:9 comes from the root words 'homos' meaning 'same' (from which we get the English word homogeneous), and the Greek word 'logo' meaning 'to speak'. The word literally means to say the same thing, i.e., to acknowledge what is already understood and thus on the heart = the mind, that Jesus is Lord of ones life. Hence one who truly confesses Jesus as Lord will have it in ones mind that Jesus is Lord at those moments when one is acknowledging his inevitable shortcomings before the Lord hence enabling the Lord's direction in ones life. Since a true confession with ones mouth must reflect the reality that for the moment of confession one is faithful to the Lordship of Jesus Christ, then a believer must be in view in this passage.

Since unbelievers have sinned and continually fall short of the glory of God as all men do, (cf. Ro 3:23), and since they do not have the righteousness from God credited to their account because they never believed on Christ to receive it, then unbelievers cannot confess Jesus as Lord at any time. Unbelievers must become believers via a moment of faith alone in Christ alone to be credited with an eternal righteousness from God for eternal life (cf. Ro 3:21-24); and then they will be in a position to trust in the Lord relative to being Lord of their temporal lives hence qualifying them to confess Jesus as Lord.

The second and third phrases of Ro 10:9, ("that if you confess with your mouth Jesus as Lord,) and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved," corroborate that believers only are in view. For to believe that Jesus was raised by God from the dead implies that the individual believes that an eternal righteousness from God for eternal life will come through a moment of faith alone in Christ alone, i.e., the sacrifice of His life for sins wherein God then raised Him from the dead as proof of that sacrifice, (cf. Ro 4:23-25). This is corroborated by Ro 10:4 and 10:10 where ones faith in Christ provides a righteousness from God for eternal life, (cf. Ro 3:21-24).

IN ROMANS 10:10, TWO KINDS OF SALVATION ARE IN VIEW: (1) SALVATION FROM ETERNAL DESTRUCTION, (ETERNAL DEATH), VIA A MOMENT OF FAITH ALONE IN CHRIST ALONE TO RECEIVE A RIGHTEOUSNESS FROM GOD UNTO ETERNAL LIFE; (2) SALVATION FROM TEMPORAL DESTRUCTION AND FROM PREMATURE PHYSICAL DEATH VIA CONFESSION WITH ONES MOUTH JESUS AS LORD WHICH EXPRESSION REFLECTS BEING FAITHFUL TO THE LORDSHIP OF JESUS CHRIST

(Ro 4:23 NAS) "Now not for his [Abraham's] sake only was it written that it was reckoned to him, (Ro 4:24 NAS) but for our sake also, to whom it will be reckoned, as those who believe in Him Who raised Jesus our Lord from the dead, (v. 4:25 NAS) [He] who was delivered over because of our transgressions, and was raised because of our justification... (Ro 10:4 NKJV) For Christ is the end of ... law [rules of behavior] for righteousness to everyone who believes... (Ro 10:6 NAS) But the righteousness based on faith speaks as follows: "Do not say in your heart, 'Who will ascend into heaven?' (that is, to bring Christ down), (Ro 10:7 NAS) or 'Who will descend into the abyss?' (that is, to bring Christ up from the dead). (Ro 10:8 NAS) But what does it say? 'The word is near you, in your mouth and in your heart' (that is, the word of faith which we are preaching, (Ro 9 NAS) that if you confess with your mouth Jesus as Lord, and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved. (Ro 10:10 NKJV) For with the heart [one] believes for righteousness, and with the mouth [one confesses] for salvation" ''' =

(Ro 10:10 Greek) "Kardia .......gar pisteuetai

..............................."With heart for .[one] believes (3sing pres)

eis ...........dikaiosunEn ...stomati ................de ....

to [for] .righteousness .with [the] mouth and

homologeitai .........................eis ...........sOtErian"

[one] confesses .(3sing pres) to [for] .salvation"

Verse 10 explains verse 9 more specifically and in the proper sequential order: first, one believes to receive the righteousness from God for eternal life corroborating that believing that God raised Christ from the dead in verse 9 implies one has expressed faith that Christ paid the penalty for ones sins to receive an eternal righteousness from God for eternal life, (cf. Ro 4:23-25 ); then one confesses with the mouth Jesus as Lord to demonstrate faithfulness to the Lordship of Jesus Christ for a salvation from temporal destruction and premature physical death.

Notice that two kinds of salvation are in view: (1) Salvation from eternal destruction, (death), via a moment of faith alone in Christ alone to receive an eternal righteousness from God for eternal life; and (2) salvation from temporal destruction and premature physical death via confession with ones mouth that Jesus is Lord which confession must reflect faithfulness to His Lordship.

**** END OF EXCERPT FROM ROMANS CHAPTER 10 ****

[Wilken, cont.]

"Four other passages, none of which is dealing with saving faith, indicate indirectly that belief takes place in the heart (Mark 11:23; 16:14; Luke 8:12; 24:25). However, in each of those verses the point is just that belief takes place internally. And, as we have already seen, in the last of those passages believing in the heart is equated with believing with the mind.

Believing in Christ is the sole condition of eternal life. There is no such thing as special types of faith called heart faith and head faith. Saving faith doesn't include commitment, obedience, or turning from sins. It is merely the conviction that Jesus is speaking the truth when He says, 'He who believes in Me has everlasting life.' (John 6:47)."

II) SAVING FAITH DEFINED IN 1 JN 5:9-13 AS ACCEPTING THE TESTIMONY OF GOD

A) [1 Jn 5:9]:

(v. 9) "We accept man's testimony, but God's testimony is greater because it is the testimony of God, which He has given about His Son."

1) THE TESTIMONY OF GOD IS GREATER THAN MAN'S AND IT IS ABOUT HIS SON

This verse states that the testimony of God is superior to any man's because God is Who He is:

He is Sovereign and Almighty. And the particular testimony that author John points to here is the testimony of God which He has given about His son relative to trusting in Him unto salvation unto eternal life to which the next 3 verses attest]:

B) [1 Jn 5:10]:

(v. 10) "Anyone who believes in the Son of God has this testimony in his heart. Anyone who does not believe God has made Him out to be a liar, because he has not believed the testimony God has given about His Son."

1) BELIEVING IN THE SON OF GOD IN THIS CONTEXT = BELIEVING IN HIM AS CHRIST, AS ONE'S MESSIAH TO SAVE YOU UNTO ETERNAL LIFE

The context of this has already been established in the first verse of chapter 5:

a) [Compare 1 Jn 5:1a]:

"Everyone who believes that Jesus is the Christ is born of God...."

[Kenneth S. Wuest states, ('Ephesians and Colossians in the Greek New Testament', Wm B. Eerdmans Publishing Co. Grand Rapids, Mich, 1963, p15):

" 'Christ' is the transliteration of christos which means 'anointed'....

...In the Church Epistles, the word does not refer to our Lord in His official capacity of the Messiah of the Jewish nation, but as The Anointed of God, the Person chosen from the Godhead to be the anointed Prophet, Priest, and King to accomplish the purposes of God in the plan of salvation."

So to believe that Jesus is the Christ is to believe that His purpose as the Christ = to be your Savior unto eternal life, is true resulting in the reception of becoming born of God, i.e., saved unto eternal life:

b) [Compare Jn 1:12-13]:

(v. 12) "Yet to all who received Him [Christ, (v. 1)], to those who believed in His name, He gave the right to become children of God -

(v. 13) children born not of natural descent, nor of human decision or a husband's will, but born of God."

2) BELIEVING IN THE SON OF GOD AS CHRIST = MESSIAH TO SAVE YOU PRODUCES THE RESULT OF HAVING THE TESTIMONY OF GOD IN ONE'S HEART, I.E., ONE'S MIND

"Anyone who believes in the Son of God has this testimony [of God] in his heart." =

Believing in the Son of God [to save you, (vv. 1, 11)] produces the result of having this testimony of God in one's 'heart', (i.e., in one's mind, ref. Heb 4:12). This means that one accepts the truth in what God has said, i.e., His "testimony" about His Son relative to eternal life. And Scripture teaches that God will then deliver on His promise of eternal life to that individual who believes, (Jn 3:16; 36; 5:24; 6:47; etc.). Notice that there is no stipulation made that the acceptance of the testimony of God about His Son, i.e., belief in Christ as Savior had to occur in the heart as opposed to the head or mind.

3) ANYONE WHO BELIEVES IN THE SON [TO PROVIDE ETERNAL LIFE FOR HIM] HAS THIS TESTIMONY OF GOD'S IN HIS HEART = MIND = MENTAL UNDERSTANDING

"has this testimony in his heart" = in his mind, (Jn 12:40; Eph 4:18; Mt 9:4; Heb 4:12, etc.). Scripture equates the expression 'in his heart' with 'in his mind'.

Anyone who believes that the Son will provide eternal life for him has this testimony in his 'heart' such that it is a part of his mental understanding that he is now saved unto eternal life.

B cont.) [1 Jn 5:10 cont.]:

(v. 10 cont.) "Anyone who believes in the Son of God has this testimony in his heart. Anyone who does not believe God has made Him out to be a liar, because he has not believed the testimony God has given about His Son."

4) ON THE OTHER HAND ANYONE WHO DOES NOT BELIEVE GOD'S TESTIMONY ABOUT HIS SON MAKES GOD OUT TO BE A LIAR

"Anyone who does not believe has made Him out to be a liar, because he has not believed the testimony God has given about His Son." =

Disbelieving the testimony of God that eternal life is secured solely through believing in the Son of God is tantamount to calling God a liar. So to be saved one must believe in the testimony of God about His Son relative to eternal life. Anything less and anything more than a one time moment of accepting the testimony of God about His Son relative to eternal life, i.e., believing in it would make this verse untrue. And the next verse tells us what that testimony is which individuals must believe in order to have eternal life]:

C) [1 Jn 5:11]:

(v. 11) And this is the testimony: God has given us eternal life, and this life is in His Son.

1) THE TESTIMONY OF GOD ABOUT HIS SON IS THAT GOD HAS GIVEN THE GIFT OF ETERNAL LIFE TO MANKIND THROUGH HIS SON

Notice that eternal life is described as something that is given, i.e., a gift, (cp Eph 2:8), to mankind and that gift it is established is in the possession of the individual, i.e., given to him, when he believes the testimony of God about eternal life being through His Son. So believing the testimony of God about His Son incorporates such testimony within the mind of the individual, (v. 10), resulting in that individual having the Son, i.e., having eternal life]:

D) [1 Jn 5:12]:

(v. 12) He who has the Son has life; he who does not have the Son of God does not have life."

1) HAVING THE SON = BELIEVING IN THE TESTIMONY OF GOD ABOUT HIS SON = HAVING ETERNAL LIFE

"He who has the Son has life" = He who believes in God's testimony about His Son - that the Son will provide eternal life for him if he merely believes in the Son doing this, has eternal life, (Ref. v. 10)

2) HE WHO DOES NOT HAVE THE SON = HAS NOT BELIEVED IN GOD'S TESTIMONY ABOUT HIS SON = DOES NOT HAVE ETERNAL LIFE

"He who does not have the Son of God does not have life." = To have the Son means to believe that He will provide eternal life for you. To not have the Son is to not take God at His Word, (i.e., believe), that the Son alone will provide eternal life for you. And he who has not believed in Christ as Savior "Does not have [eternal] life."

a) [Compare Jn 3:18]:

"He who believes in Him is not judged; he who does not believe has been judged already [unto condemnation], because he has not believed in the name of the One and only Son of God."

"believed in the name of" = believed in the capacity and willingness of God to grant eternal life as a gift - just for trusting alone in Him alone, (Jn 3:1-18; Ro 3:21-24).

3) IF YOU BELIEVE WHAT GOD HAS TESTIFIED TO ABOUT HIS SON THEN YOU WILL HAVE ETERNAL LIFE BECAUSE GOD SAYS SO

If you believe what God has testified to about His Son, then you will have eternal life because God says so. God being Who He is as it is clearly indicated in verse 9: a sovereign God Whose testimony is greater than man's, He will deliver. And John writes these verses about eternal life for the following reason]:

E) [1 Jn 5:13]:

(v. 13) I write these things to you who believe in the name of the Son of God so that you many know that you have eternal life."

1) JOHN'S MESSAGE OF ETERNAL LIFE WAS WRITTEN SO THAT ALL WHO BELIEVE IN THE NAME OF, I.E., THE CAPACITY OF, THE SON TO PROVIDE ETERNAL LIFE FOR THEM MAY KNOW THAT THEY HAVE ETERNAL LIFE

So, taking God at His Word about eternal life through His Son provides assurance that you do NOW possess the gift of life everlasting in heaven never to lose it, (cp. Eph 1:13-14).

Consider if one could know now at the point of faith alone in Christ alone that one is absolutely saved, then it obviously would not depend upon any future thoughts, words, or deeds of the believer only on the faithfulness of God to keep His promise.

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