This week I was having a time of growing weary and discouraged in the events of the world. I was involved in conducting interviews at work and had a number of candidates discussing their work history and seeing the impact of some of the poor decisions they had made in their lives and the impact those decisions have made. And, let’s face it, who can read or watch the news these days, especially politics or the economy, and not grow increasingly weary and discourage by the world.
So, when I read our memory verses for this next week, it hit me hard. John 3:16-17 – “For God so loved the world…” How can God possibly love this world. At every turn we choose sin over holiness. We choose darkness instead of light. We choose paths that lead to pain and suffering instead of goodness and glory. We choose ourselves over others and especially over God.
But the Word of God does not lie. God does love us, all of us. He loves us enough that He sent His son, Jesus, into the world to die for us. He loves us enough to do all the work of redemption of our sins, all sins, for all mankind, for all time. He also loves us enough to give us free-will and choice, even when He knows we will choose to reject Him. He even loves us enough to be just, even when justice means condemnation, wrath and everlasting destruction.
But no one is sentenced to being shut out. No one has done something which is irredeemable. No one has gone so far that He cannot bring them back. No one lacks the means to be redeemed because redemption is not paid by our blood but by Jesus’ work on the cross.
I was convicted by these words to not grow disheartened, but to see God’s love. I can still hate the sin of the world. It can still anger me and bring me to tears, but, God’s creation is His creation and, as He said “in the beginning”, in His eyes, it is good. And, while we breath, their is still hope for all people of the world, because God’s love is great enough. We need only repent, and turn to Him and accept the gift of that love.
J316: shall perish and not have eternal life
J317: not saved, condemned – love darkness, stay in evil
J336: will not see life, God’s wrath remains on them
2T18: punished with everlasting destruction & shut out from the presence of the Lord & His glory
not condemned, has eternal life, no wrath remains on them
Light has come to the world. Jesus is evident and available to each and every one (God loves “the world”, not just believers). But many love darkness because their actions (and their hearts) are evil and do not wish for their wickedness to be exposed in the light but to continue to live in the lie of sin