What’s the “biggest” word in the Bible? I’d suggest to you that few are “bigger” than IF. We frequently couple this common two-letter word with another word—THEN—to communicate our personal goals and expectations of others.
- “If you clean your room, then I’ll take you to Dairy Queen.”
- “If you take a nap, then you can stay up later tonight.”
- “If we save this amount of money, then we’ll be able to go on vacation this summer.”
- “If I can leave work on time, then I’ll meet you for dinner.”
What’s the “biggest” word in each of those sentences? IF.
The same point could be illustrated from all over God’s written communication to mankind. He has clearly expressed his expectations for us, many times using the simple word IF. Few examples are more succinct and powerful than the New Testament letter of 1 John. Did you know that John uses the simple “if… then” line of reasoning more than twenty times in the span of just five chapters? Check the majority of the examples out for yourself here.
We love to focus on the promises of God that so frequently follow the word THEN. Let’s just make sure we pay careful attention to the IF that forms the logical foundation of those promises. If we do not, then we have little reason for hope.
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