24 “Most assuredly, I say to you, he who hears My word and believes in Him who sent Me has everlasting life, and shall not come into judgment, but has passed from death into life.
Verses 24 to 26 show the relation of Jesus to men in the present. We see the unity of the Father and the Son in the way people receive eternal life.
24 “Most assuredly,
Both this verse and the next introduce the saying of Jesus with “most assuredly.” Again, we have another amen, amen or truly, truly translated “most assuredly.” This draws attention to an important statement made by Jesus.
I say to you,
These words indicate a solemn and personal statement by Jesus.
he who hears My word
Hearing in this context refers to positive volition toward what Christ had to say. Jesus’ “word” is His message. Hearing Jesus’ words is identical to hearing God’s words. Jesus is the mediator of the Father’s words.
and believes in Him who sent Me
Hearing and believing is one unit (both governed by the definite article “the”). Faith placed in the Son is placed in the Father. The person who believes the Father’s word concerning His Son has eternal life. It is not possible to believe on the Father without believing on the Son. The Father and Son are one. They stand in unity.
has everlasting life,
Those who believe in Jesus begin eternal life at the point of belief (Jn 3:36). Eternal life begins upon the time of believing. The crossing over from death to life occurs at the point of salvation. Those who believe in the Father’s message possess complete title to eternal life now (Jn 10:28). The vindication of salvation is immediate upon belief in Jesus (Co 1:13).
and shall not come into judgment,
The person who believes Jesus’ word will never come to judgment (Jn 3:18; Ro 8:1). There will be no condemnation now or in eternity. This is because Christ already paid the price for sins, the penalty for our sins on the cross. God does not demand that payment be made twice; Jesus paid it all, all to Him we owe.
but has passed from [out of] death into life.
When a person believes in Jesus he immediately passes from eternal death to eternal life. This is a passing over from spiritual death to eternal life. This concept is used only one other time in the New Testament (1 Jn 3:14).
“Has passed” is in a tense that indicates that the passing from eternal death to eternal life occurred in the past with the result going on to the present (perfect tense). Thus, this crossing over from spiritual death to eternal life was permanent. To have eternal life now is to possess it for eternity.
Those who believe pass from spiritual death to eternal life at the moment of belief.
We are not to confuse regeneration or spiritual birth with morality. Regeneration is a radical spiritual transformation.
There is a difference between judgment for the unbeliever and for the believer. The judgment for the believer is for reward (Ro 14:10; 2 Co 5:10); the determination about salvation has already been made. Christ will not bring up the issue of sins at the Judgment Seat of Christ. That question was settled when they believed in the death of Christ to forgive their sins.
Each person is responsible to believe in order to receive eternal life. This is open to anyone who wants to hear. The Father’s interposition through His Son made this possible.