Perish – suffer death, typically in a violent, sudden, or untimely way. The Strong’s Greek definition says to destroy fully. It is the word apollumi. The prefix “apo” means away from. The base word is olethros and it means a prolonged form of ruin, death, punishment and destruction.
It sounds dreadful doesn’t it. Don’t you wonder why Jesus would choose such a graphic word to insert here? Jesus was leaving no doubt in the listeners ear, “Those who do not believe will die and be sent away from God forever.” This is the worst of it. The damnation to be forever separated from the One who Created us. The violence of it all is the eternity spent with your enemy.
But that is not the conclusion to His words. His Words always are finalized with hope.
By believing we receive life. Life comes from and is sustained by God’s self-existent life. It is the state of one who is possessed of vitality and is animated by God. Life is active. The life that Jesus offers is a vigorated life promising adventures and unknown journeys.
Eternal – age long, unending, it is not brief or fleeting. We cannot even perceive its longevity, but we do not focus on the future per se. We focus on the quality of the age it relates to. We live the eternal life right now. It is our present possession. We have eternal life right now.
Those who believe in this life transforming life altering verse will last forever. It begins now but it will be consummated at the Resurection. Jesus will give us perfect bodies. There will be no spin classes or Sky Pio. We won’t need them. We will be made like Jesus.
I for one say Amen to all of this.