The world is a mighty big place, and it is easy to get lost in it. You might feel anonymous among the masses and unnoticed amidst the noise. But God cuts through it all, reaching out to each one of us individually. You see, to God, the world is not a huge mass of humanity, but a glorious collection of unique and treasured individuals—and that includes you!
“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.”
John 3:16 (NIV)
John 3:16 is probably the most familiar passage in the entire Bible. Familiarity can cause us to take something for granted. But since this passage expresses the fundamental truth about God’s plan for salvation, we certainly don’t want to take it for granted! So let’s explore the concepts of love and life and how they relate to God’s Son. Let’s renew the power of this oft-quoted passage.
The Bible tells us that God is love (1 John 4:8). He is the wellspring from which love flows. Love never ends (1 Corinthians 13: 7,8). Like God, it is eternal. So God’s love of the world isn’t reduced to a kind act performed a long time ago. No, He continually pours Himself out for us.
The Bible also tells us to accept God’s love and to love Him in return (1 John 4:19). In other words, since God loves you, love Him back! It works much like an electric circuit. When the circuit is broken, electricity will not flow. It’s the same with love. When we love God in return, the circuit is complete, and there is an endless flow of love between God and us (John 14:21). The Bible says we return God’s love in two ways—directly, by loving God with all our heart, mind, soul, and strength, and indirectly, by loving others (Matthew 22:36-40). When we return God’s love, we become the embodiment and expression of His very nature. It sounds like an amazing place to be, doesn’t it? It is!
It’s called life. God invites us to have it!
But, alas, our circuit is broken. Sin causes the break in our circuit. And sin and death go hand in hand (Romans 6:23a). That’s the bad news. But there’s good news! God has made a way to complete the circuit! If we believe in God’s Son, Jesus, we can complete the circuit (Romans 6:23b). Believing in Jesus is more than just acknowledging that He exists. Believing in Him looks like this:
- We admit that we sin.
- We ask God to forgive our sins.
- We turn away from our sins and seek to stop sinning.
- We completely trust that Jesus came to earth to restore love and life to us—to repair the break in the circuit.
- We completely trust and openly proclaim Jesus as the Lord of our life.
- Repeat steps 1-5 over and over again, every day!
That’s the truth. And that’s good news! But there’s more! Inside every truth is the YouTruth. God personally invites you to repair the break in the circuit and become part of His true love, His true life, in Jesus.
For God pours out His endless loving nature upon you by giving His one and only Son for you, that if you believe in Him, you shall no longer be dead, but you shall be truly alive, an active part of the embodiment and expression of God’s loving nature now and for all eternity.
That’s the YouTruth—for God so loves you.