About Jesus    Steve Sweetman

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It is often said, "we live better because we are followers of Jesus". It is a spiritual law of our universe that says, when we follow in the ways of our Lord our lives will be better. When we follow our own ways our lives will be worse, mainly due to our bad decisions. There are enough difficulties in our lives that are beyond control which the Lord can help us with. We don’t need to add to these by making our own bad choices.

Jesus says that we can have "life more abundantly". What does that mean? Let us look at a few scriptures and see if we can begin to answer this question.


John 10:10

"...I have come that they may have life and have it to the full". (NIV)

"...I am come that they might have life and have it more abundantly". (KJV)

"...I am come that they may have and enjoy life, and have it in abundance – to the full, till it overflows". Amplified Version)

The Greek word that is translated "more abundantly" (KJV) and "to the full" (NIV) is the word Perrisseia. Its definition is, "in exceeding measure, above the ordinary, over and beyond, and, an overflowing". Thus the Amplified Version of the Bible says it well, "to the full, till it overflows".

With this in mind we ask the question, "what does Jesus mean when He says that we will have life more abundantly"? In general terms, and according to the above definition, He means that our lives will be "above and beyond the ordinary, a life that is overflowing with His life.

I am reminded of what John said in 1 John 5:11-12, "...God has given us eternal life, and this life is in His Son. He who has the Son has life…" The Lord Jesus Christ has come to us by way of His Holy Spirit. We have the life of Jesus, a touch of the eternal living within our earthly existence. As a result, we have life, and the potential to live life beyond the ordinary.

The word perrisseia is used in many natural, or common ways in the New Testament. One of these is found in Luke 9:17. After Jesus fed the five thousand Luke says, "all ate and were satisfied, and the disciples picked up twelve basketfuls of broken pieces that were "left over". "Left over" is the perrisseia word in this verse.

2 Corinthians 8:13-14 is another common usage of this word. The English word in the NIV for perrisseia is translated as "plenty", "...at the present time your plenty will supply what they need, so in time their plenty will supply what you need…"

These are two examples of how this Greek word is used in a natural or common way. You can see how these two scriptures show the meaning of perrisseia. Now let us see how it is used in a more spiritual way.

The following scriptures should show us what the abundant life can be like, and how Jesus can provide it for us. Some of the verses tell us what Jesus gives us to overflow in, other verses are an encouragement for us to overflow in certain areas. Obviously, if we are asked by the Lord to overflow in certain areas then it is possible for us to do so with His help.

Romans 5:15-17

"...how much more did God’s grace, and the gift that came by the grace...overflow to the many. For if, by the trespass of the one man, death reigned through that one man, how much more will those who receive God’s abundant provision of grace and of the gift of righteousness reign in life through the one man, Jesus Christ."

2 Corinthians 1:3-5

"Praise be to God...who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves have received from God. For just as the sufferings of Christ flow over into our lives, so also through Christ our comfort overflows."

Philippians 1:25-26

"…I will continue with all of you for your progress and joy in the faith so that through my being with you again your joy in Christ Jesus will overflow on account of me."

1 Corinthians 14:12

"...since you are eager to have spiritual gifts, try to excel in gifts that build up the church."

Romans 15:13

"May the God of hope fill you with great joy and peace as you trust in Him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit."

1 Corinthians 15:58

"...Let nothing move you, always give yourselves fully to the work of the Lord because you know that your labour is not in vain."

2 Corinthians 8:7

"Just as you excel in everything, in faith, in speech, in knowledge, in complete earnestness and in your love for us, see that you also excel in this grace of giving."

Colossians 2:6+7

"...just as you received Christ Jesus as Lord, continue to live in Him, ...overflowing with thankfulness."

Philippians 1:9

"And this is my prayer, that your love may abound more and more in knowledge and in depth of insight."

Therefore...let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles, ...let us fix our eyes on Jesus…"(Hebrews 12:1)


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