T H E S I S # 18
Jesus: For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life. For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world through Him might be saved. (Jn.3:16,17)
We are not what we were.
We were citizens of “the world”, on the “broad…. way that leads to destruction.” Our god was not God, but rather “the god of this age”, a despot who hated us then and perhaps more now, now that we escaped his kingdom of darkness and insanity, now that we war against him. (Not that he knows your name or address – there are too many of us – but his awful hatred blankets his creepy kingdom through his creepy underlings.)
Though we were “condemned already”, at “enmity with God”, we were loved. (“God so loved the world.”) We didn’t know the love story. And when informed, we found it difficult to believe and accept. Even now we sometimes (often?, usually?) refuse to explore the depth of that love, and allow ourselves to be submerged in that love.
The gift of Christ is the Father’s gift to all who receive Christ and all who don’t. Had we died before we (finally!) received Christ and deposited ourselves into His care, we would now be a permanent resident of that place the Bible translates as “hell”. There is no redeemer on the other side of death.
We escaped death and entered life. For all eternity we will give praises unto the Father who “gave His only begotten Son”, and unto the “only begotten Son” who dutifully fulfilled His commission.
1 Corinthians 15:54, 55 (NLT): Then, when our dying bodies have been transformed into bodies that will never die, this Scripture will be fulfilled: “Death is swallowed up in victory. O death, where is your victory? O death, where is your sting?”
1 Corinthians 15:57 (NLT): But thank God! He gives us victory over sin and death through our Lord Jesus Christ.