16
Aug
16

Do Not Condemn

John 3:16-18 (NIV)

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. 17 For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him. 18 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.

Perhaps the most famous words of Scripture are found in John 3:16. Words that are slightly less well known are found in verses 17-18. Jesus was talking with Nicodemus and He tells him that those who put their faith and trust in Jesus will have the gift of eternal life. That’s why Jesus came. He came to seek and to save the lost. He did not come to condemn anyone to Hell. He came to give eternal life. Yet, there is a statement of condemnation in verse 18. Those who do not believe in Jesus are condemned.
I find it interesting that some in Christ’s church are quick to condemn people to Hell. They’re taking it upon themselves to do something that not even Jesus would do. If Jesus wouldn’t condemn people, then why do some Christians believe that it is their job? Jesus came to save the world. That’s the good news of the Gospel! Yet some of His representatives only focus on the bad news of condemnation. Yes, we must warn people about verse 18, but I do not believe that our job is to tell people that they’re going to Hell. Our job is to tell people how to get to Heaven – you must be born again.
So when you are tempted to condemn someone to Hell, please remember that not even the Son of God took that job upon Himself. He laid down His life to keep people out of Hell and to get them into Heaven. Let’s tell people the good news of Jesus and His love and grace and do everything we can to keep them out of Hell.
PRAYER: Heavenly Father, thank You for rescuing me from an eternity separated from You in Hell. Thank You for sending Jesus, not to condemn the world in judgment, but to save the world through His death and resurrection. Help me to be an ambassador for You today so that someone may hear the good news and begin a journey of faith that leads them to their heavenly home. Amen.
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