Day 26: John 3:17

For a reminder of what I’m doing this month, read this post.

John 3:17

God sent his Son into the world not to judge the world, but to save the world through him.

Many people equate Jesus and Christianity with judgement – they avoid accepting Christ because they know they will have to change or because they feel unworthy of his love. But this verse reminds us that He came first and foremost to save us, not to judge us. Judgement will come eventually, but in this life, He simply offers us salvation and eternal life with Him.

This is important for us to remember and apply to our own lives – as Christians, we should be accepting of people regardless of their lifestyles. This does not mean that we are to condone their actions or encourage them to continue living sinful lives after they have accepted Christ, but that we should first and foremost love them and introduce them to Jesus.

God’s love is of course the key to all this – John 3:16 reminds us of that: “For God loved the world so much that he gave his one and only Son, that everyone who believes in Him will not perish but have eternal life.” (NLT)  It is because of this love that He gives us our whole lives to accept His offer of salvation and does not condemn us while we still walk this earth.  Jesus accomplished His purpose as it was laid out for Him by His father – to come and save us so that we would not spend eternity apart from Him.  If we are to emulate Jesus, we ought to lean on the Father’s love to guide us to loving others.

This verse comes from Air1.

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3 Comments

Filed under Faith

3 responses to “Day 26: John 3:17

  1. So true! I THANK GOD that someone took the time to show me the love of Christ when I was living such a sinful life. I’m so glad they didn’t judge and look down and make me feel worse than I already did about myself. That love changed my life!

  2. Tara Lokstet

    so…in the old testament, God often “punished” the Israelites. Do you think part of the new covenant is that we are free of punishment until we are judged? I often wonder about this because I know that there are consequences for our actions physically, but God doesn’t change and I am sure he is still sometimes angered at our actions. I sometimes wonder if he goes beyond consequence and makes a punishment so it really sticks;) What are your thoughts?

    • Katie

      Oh, this is a good question. I would like to say that things that even seem like punishment are only natural consequences that are not directly from God, but then He does bless us, so I’m sure He could punish as well. It’s a sticky subject, but you’re right – He doesn’t change, so He would definitely still get angry. I just read something that makes a distinction between punishment and discipline, and I think this is a good thing – when we step outside His will and are sinful, He will discipline us. The article I read gives a reference for this: Hebrews 12:7-13: “As you endure this divine discipline, remember that God is treating you as his own children. Whoever heard of a child who was never disciplined? If God doesn’t discipline you as he does all of his children, it means that you are illegitimate and are not really his children after all. Since we respect our earthly fathers who disciplined us, should we not all the more cheerfully submit to the discipline of our heavenly Father and live forever? For our earthly fathers disciplined us for a few years, doing the best they knew how. But God’s discipline is always right and good for us because it means we will share in his holiness. No discipline is enjoyable while it is happening–it is painful! But afterward there will be a quiet harvest of right living for those who are trained in this way.” So there you have it – but as for what this discipline looks like and whether we can recognize it for what it is, I don’t know. One thing is to separate the terms again – when we discipline our kids, it is as gentle as possible while still being effective. To me, this comparison and the last verse indicate that the discipline God uses is painful, but that we go on living better afterward, which obviously says to me that He’s not going to kill us or maim us because of our sin.
      Anyway, that’s not the most thorough answer and most of it is because of someone else’s work to answer this question, but it makes sense to me, and it’s Biblical, which is even more important.

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