Friday, November 30, 2012

The Wonder of Wondering

For God so loved the world that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.

That sentence has been called "the gospel in a nutshell."  If someone only knew one truth from the Bible this is the sum of the whole Bible:  God so loved the world that he gave his one and ONLY Son.  His ONLY Son to save the world.  To prevent us from perishing.  

 Loved - agapao - to love, esteem, cherish, favor, honor, respect, accept, prize, relish; to be devoted to.  Agapao is a love rooted in the mind and will of the subject and means to value, esteem, prize, treat as precious. 
Believes - pisteuo - to believe in, have faith in, trust
                English - to accept something as true, genuine (actually having the reputed or apparent qualities or character, free from hypocrisy or pretense) or real; to have a firm conviction as to the goodness, efficacy, or ability of something. 

Perish - apollymi - to utterly destroy, decimate, ravage, demolish, obliterate.
            English - to become destroyed or ruined

Eternal - Aionios - eternal, perpetual, the life which is God's and hence not affected by the limitations of time.
              English - having infinite duration; everlasting, existing at all times, timeless.

Life - zoe - to live. Life, the element or principle of life in the spirit and soul.  Zoe is a somewhat metaphysical term which denotes the very life-force itself, the vital principle which animates living beings.  This life is the very life of God of which believers are made partakers.

Here's my favorite part though.  The sentence that follows:

For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him.  

Condemn - krino - to discriminate between good and evil, select, choose out the good.  In the New Testament it means to judge, form or give an opinion after separating and considering the particulars of a case.
              English - to declare to be reprehensible, wrong, or evil usually after weighing evidence and without reservation; to pronounce guilty

Save - sozo - safe, delivered.  To save, deliver, make whole, preserve from danger, loss, or destruction.  
            English - to deliver from sin, to rescue or deliver from danger or harm, to preserve or guard from injury, destruction, or loss

God so loved the world.  God agapao you.  He cherishes you.  He favors you.  He honors you.  He respects you.  He accepts you.  He is devoted to you.  His love for you is deeply rooted.  It's not just a feeling he has for you, like you say you "love" chocolate or you "love" to sleep in on a Saturday.  His love for you is out of pure devotion and He sees you as precious and worth saving.

He gave His only Son for the world.  He sent Jesus, who was true, genuine, free from hypocrisy or pretense.  He never had to or has to now, pretend that he loves you.  He is never hypocritical.  He is always true to Himself and who He is.  God sent that Son, that Jesus, to save you, to make you whole, to preserve you from danger and destruction.  That Jesus was sent to save you from being lost.  

God sent His Only Son, he didn't have a spare, he didn't have a line of boys after Jesus, He gave His only Son to save you from condemnation.  Jesus did not come to condemn the world.  He did not come to judge the world.  He did not come to judge you.  He came to save you.

It's only fair
         those of you who don't believe there is a God, 

                   those of you who are mad at God, 

                              those of you who think God is a puppet master and only pulling strings, 

                                             those of you who believe that if there was a God he would stop evil, 
                                             stop killing, stop wars, stop devastation, stop pain. 

It's only fair that you look at this Jesus, the One who came not to condemn but to save.  

It's only fair that you look at Him, really look AT him.  Don't base your assumptions of him by what others say about him, what others do or not do in his name.  

It's not about the others. 

It's about you.

Jesus didn't come to condemn you.  Jesus didn't come to cause you harm.  Jesus didn't come to make life harder for you.  Jesus didn't come to leave you standing alone, facing your tragedies and pain by yourself.  Jesus didn't come to mock you, embarrass you, or reject you.  

Jesus came to SAVE YOU!  

Jesus came to give you life.  
Not just your day-to-day physical 24 hour scheduled life, but LIFE


The life that breathes into us his joy, his peace, his mercy, his goodness, his kindness, his guts, his patience, his faithfulness.  The life that is eternal, that will endure forever.

That Jesus.  

The Jesus who came in the only way He could to save us.  He came as a human being.  He came to walk the path we walk.  He felt the pain of rejection, disappointment, misery.  

He knows what you are suffering.

God so Loved you that He gave His ONLY Son for you so that believing in Him will bring you eternal life, not a life that perishes.  

God did not send His Son to condemn you but to SAVE you.

He didn't come so that you would  not experience pain or suffering or rejection or disappointment.  He came so that you would live in spite of  those things.  

You would live and experience life with Him, not without Him.  

Save your why questions for later.  Don't wait for all your questions to be answered.  You know the ones - why does God allow____________?  Why does God_____________?  Why, why, why, why! 

Just believe.  Just trust

 You say you have trust issues with people.  Well, those are only people.  God is not other people.  Jesus wasn't other people.

Just stick that big toe of yours in the water and believe.  He's not asking you to take a high dive and dive in head first.  Just take the first step and believe, leaving your unanswered questions to be answered later.   


Christmas didn't start out as it is now - fist fights over TV's, 24 hours shopping sprees, cooking and baking galore.

Christmas - the real celebration, the real Christmas -  started when a baby was born, sent by His Father. 
To a world that would one day kill him. 

 He knew when He left His throne what he would be facing.

He came anyway.

For you.

Because you're worth it.

For God so greatly loved and dearly prized the world that He even gave up His only begotten (unique) Son, so that whoever believes in (trusts in, clings to, relies on) Him shall not perish (come to destruction, be lost) but have eternal (everlasting) life. For God did not send the Son into the world in order to judge (to reject, to condemn, to pass sentence on) the world, but that the world might find salvation and be made safe and sound through Him.  
John 3:16-17 
Amplified Bible


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