Do you know who you are in Christ? Do you know the promises that are laid out for you in God’s Word? A good place to start is a study on the word “whosoever” used mostly in the King James Version of the Bible. (Psst. KJV is not my friend, because – although I can diagram sentences – I’d prefer not to do so for every verse I read, just to make sure my understanding matches the grammar!) I’ll reference the KJV and then likely switch to the New American Standard version; it’s generally touted by scholars as the closest to the original language, and it’s much easier to understand I think.
Can I just start by saying that in this particular study we will be staying OUT of the Old Testament? I say that because I’m not one who completely discounts the OT most of the time; I believe it teaches important history, and more than that I believe that it points to Jesus Christ and our need for a Savior. But for this study, the OT doesn’t help us. “Whosoever” in the OT was generally not a good thing.
Matthew 5:19 is the first mention of the new promise that Christ brings to everyone who accepts Him. To you, to me… whosoever calls on Him.
…but whosoever shall do and teach them [these commandments], the same shall be called great in the kingdom of heaven.
It’s a quote from the OT and Jesus is… not refuting it, but stating that this was part of the old law and that the law is not possible to be fulfilled by keeping it. It’s just not possible. The passage continues into the story we know well, where Jesus tells them that even if a man lusts in his heart that is as bad a sin as if he’d committed the adultery physically. He’s putting before us a standard, and helping us realize that there’s no way to live up to it. We need a Savior!
Matthew 10:14 says to us to shake the dust from our feet, of a city that will not accept us as His messengers. He promises revenge in those places for us. The rest of the chapter and into the next, there are many references to the way that others accept us and how the Lord will treat them according to how they treat “whosoever.” That’s you!
Did you consider that God will bring judgment on those who judge you and do not accept you, because you are His beloved – His called, His chosen? It’s true!
More places in Matthew speak of how “whosoever” acts and how it will go for them in the Kingdom. “Whosoever” shall humble themselves… “whosoever” shall give up their life… “whosoever” shall do the will of God. These are promises to us based on how we act, as opposed to those based on how we are treated by others in the previous mentions. These are “if/then” statements:
If you will humble yourself, then I will exalt you.
Try reading them that way. Matthew is full of them, as is Mark.
One of my favorites, and one you’ve probably heard, is Mark 11:23 about the mountain. It does say “whosoever” speaks to the mountain and believes it in his heart, he shall have whatever he says. I know there are many takes, many teachings on that; but, that’s what the Word says, plain and simple. You’re a “whosoever!” So, do you believe it?
How about this one?
Whosoever believeth in Him shall not perish but have everlasting life.
You believe that, don’t you? It’s the same “whosoever” as the other verse. Really, it is! John 5:4 is an interesting one about healing. It’s interesting that the angel went down “in a certain season.” I wonder what that means?
John 12:46 says that “Whosoever believeth in me should not abide in darkness.” That passage goes on to say that he who hears Jesus but doesn’t listen, that Jesus isn’t His judge but He was sent by the judge. It’s about coming to a greater understanding, and walking a life in light instead of darkness and ignorance. (By ignorance, I mean a lack of understanding – not stupidity.) Looking up the Greek for “should not” tells us that the original meaning is closer to shall not or just plain won’t, than it is to an instruction. He who believes WILL NOT abide in darkness; it’s not an instruction, telling you what you “should” or “should not” be doing. It’s a truth, for “whosoever” believes.
Acts has an interesting set of “whosoever” usages. Chapter 2 speaks toward the end of what many people think is the rapture; read carefully – it’s not the rapture, as it specifically says before the “great and terrible day of the Lord.” And it shall come to pass, that whosoever shall call on the name of the Lord shall be saved. Shall come to pass, as in, future tense. Interesting.
Acts 10:43 says that “whosoever” shall call on the name of the Lord shall receive the remission of sins. An interesting point when it comes to penitence and what is needed to cover or get rid of sin. For your thoughts. 1 John 3 (and the rest of the book, too) is a great read if you are wondering about all of this. “Whosoever” is left and right, here!
Romans 13:2 I think I shall leave for another day!
In this study, I hope that you can see that God has ordained great things for you, and wants everything good for you! YOU are a “whosoever,” too! Be blessed!