BCL Grow: God So Loved— John 3:16
John 3:16 (Redemption)
“For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.” — John 3:16
“Is it God the Lord that saves us, or is it we ourselves? And does God the Lord save us, or does he merely open the way to salvation, and leave it according to our choce, to walk in it or not? The parting of the ways is the old parting of the ways between Christianity and autosoterism. Certainly only he can claim to be evangelical who with full consciousness rests entirely and directly on God and on God alone for his salvation.” — Benjamin B. Warfield, The Plan of Salvation, pp. 85-86.
Steps to Take
1. Reflect: What does John 3:16 tell us about God? What does it reveal about his nature?
2. Remember: Scripture reveals that God is love (1 John 4:8). It also reveals to us, and is confirmed by experience, that this world is fallen, corrupt, sinful, and perishing. We are not to love it (1 John 2:15). Yet God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son to save his people; he loved sinful and disobedient people who were even hostile to him—his enemies (Rom. 5:10; 8:7). John 3:16 tells us more about the nature of God’s love than about the world.
3. Respond: The objects of God’s love are those who believe in Christ Jesus. Those who do not believe are condemned already (John 3:18). Yet, God in all his goodness and love saves those who place a hearty trust in Christ Jesus. Trust in him alone for your salvation, for he is a merciful, compassionate, and loving God.
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