ROPE 2 for the Advent, 2015

Reveal: For God so loved the world that He gave His one and only Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through Him. Whoever believes in Him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe stands condemned already because they have not believed in the name of God’s one and only Son. –John 3:16-18

Observations: The way God loves is by giving. He so loved the world that He gave. And this is what He gave: His most precious and prized one and only Son, in whom He was well-pleased. Loving us cost Him the One dearest to Him. His love for the world and the price paid by His love made the way for eternal life for us and everlasting fellowship with Him. The benefits to us are enormous, and to Him are simply making right the relationship He intended from the beginning. That He created us knowing what it would cost Him is unfathomable. Such love! And what does it cost us? Our lives, which He has given to begin with; our sins, which are an affront to the nature and image of God that is our utmost personhood; all our prideful self-protection and vanity, which keep us from who he means us to be. Condemnation only comes from disbelief—not from sin or errors or mistaken theology or neglect of discipline.

Prayer: Dear Lord, thank You for sending Your Son, Your most precious and only Son, to purchase the world for Yourself. Enable me to carry the wonder at Your love throughout my life, and enable me to convey it to others so that they might escape condemnation and know the eternal joy of being those You’ve created them to be. Let their hearts be struck by Your love and so impacted by Your touch that they are forever changed and brought into Your kingdom as Your children.

Exercise: Think on God’s great love for a sinful and unbelieving world, and what He always knew since creation that it would cost Him to redeem us.

Click here to read ROPE 1 for the Advent.