For this is how God loved the world: He gave his one and only Son, so that everyone who believes in him will not perish but have eternal life. God sent his Son into the world not to judge the world, but to save the world through him. John 3:16-17 NLT
When I was in my 20’s John 3:17 was pointed out to me. Everyone knew John 3:16 – it was the verse that was taught over and over.
Even I, who can never remember chapter and verse, knew exactly what John 3:16 said. I could quote it easily. I’d read the Bible – cover to cover – and yet somehow I’d missed this verse. I knew Jesus had died for me, so that I could receive everlasting life by believing in him.
But somehow I’d missed the fact that the scripture clearly says that Jesus didn’t come to judge and condemn the world, but to save it.
This is important because sometimes Christianity and Christians are presumed to be full of judgement. We are not meant to be. Jesus himself wasn’t focused on judgment or condemnation, he was focused on salvation. That was his goal, his purpose, his reason for stepping out of paradise, into such a world as this.
This is good news of great joy. This is what we celebrate throughout this season.
So this Advent, may you be saved, not condemned or judged. And may it bring you everlasting joy.