John 3:1-21

John – For God So Loved The World

John 3:1-21
John 3:16
"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."
I hope you’re enjoying this series through John as much as I am. There is so much depth to this Gospel. So much good news. And I don’t know about you, but I’m in need of good news.

The passage we’re exploring this week through our service, Life Group Guide and devotions is John 3:1-21. It’s the first time we meet to Nicodemus in John’s Gospel. He’ll turn up a couple more times before the end, but this is his most famous moment.

While there is so much that could be said about this passage, I want to focus us on to the most well known verse in this section, John 3:16.

Let’s savour it together, a bite-sized chunk at a time.

For God – This verse starts with God. With his initiative, his decision, his action. He is the one that makes the first move.

so loved – And when he moves, it’s motivated primarily by his love. God is love. He actions towards us come from this starting point, and overflow in to our world. This verse also points us back to v14-15, and so point us ahead to the work the Son, Jesus Christ.
 
the world – This world, with all of its mess. Recent headlines have underlined our need of God. Our world is broken and lost, and is in need of healing and rescue. We’re still recovering from a pandemic, with many nations still struggling. War and the threat of violence and destruction is, once again, dominating our news programs and imaginations. But, God has not abandoned us in this darkness.
 
that he gave his one and only Son – What a gift! God has seen our need, and given that which is most precious to him.

that whoever believes in him – Let the gravity of these words sink in… whoever! It doesn’t matter who you are, where you’ve come from, what you’ve done. The only thing you need to do is trust in the work of another on your behalf. We’re called to believe. To rest in the finished work of Jesus.
 
shall not perish – It’s a sobering thought that this is your fate if you don’t believe. But that’s not God’s desire for you. He wants you to live. Indeed, to have…
 
but have eternal life – This is life that lasts through death in to eternity. It’s a quality of life now, but also a guarantee of life to come after death.

What wonderful truth that’s contained in this verse. No wonder it’s the most memorised, quoted and preached.

Wherever you are reading this, take a moment now. Read through this verse again. Listen for the anything that the Spirit might want to highlight to you.

Apply

  1. To mix metaphors… where is the darkness of this world weighing most heavily for you?

  2. Do you recognise God’s initiative and action to save this world through his Son Jesus?

  3. How can you express your belief in God today?

Prayer

Father,

Thank you for spending your Son Jesus, that whoever believes in his shall not perish. Thank you for the gift of eternal life you give to all who believe. I put my trust in you today.


In Jesus’ name


Amen.
This Everyday Devotions was written by Andy Tuck, who works for our Wimbledon Venue.

Andy unpacks these themes in more detail in his sermon message this week on our website, YouTube Channel and at our Online Church Services.

This Everyday Devotions has also inspired a devotional video that you can watch on our YouTube Channel.

Follow our Everyday Devotions Playlist for some songs to help you worship God in Spirit and truth this week.