For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life

He gave: This is the Greek word didomi, which means to give, grant, deliver. Love gives what is needed to the one who needs it. Love gives attention to those who long for it. Love gives that which is wanted.

God is not required to give this gift. We have no claim to demand that God do anything for us. We are so far below the Almighty, yet He moves to meet our need by an incredible sacrifice. The human incarnation of His only begotten Son and then the sacrifice of that incarnation Son. All this so that we would have the possibility of fellowship with God. It is an amazing amount and level of love to do all this for us. Remember that even after the resurrection, God the Father did not remove the human incarnation of God the Son.

How tragic that many would despise this incredible gift and angrily demand more from God to prove His love. If you really love me God, you would do this or do that. I would be rich. I would never be sick. I would never die. I would get whatever I wanted. Everyone would love me and want to do what I say. Many have their own narrow childish vision of what the blessed life looks like and even if it violates all kinds of natural laws, they still want it to happen if God loves them.

His only begotten Son: This is an incredibly deep theological phrase that explains some of the inner workings of the Triune God. Every word in this phrase is important. His means that God the Father is possessive and connected to God the Son. There is a deep and abiding connection. Only means that Jesus the Christ – God the Son – is one of a kind. There are not multiple deities within God offering to be the Savior for multiple worlds. God the Father has only one of these, and He was willing to sacrifice the one and only begotten Son that He had for our need because there was no other way to redeem mankind.

Begotten means that God is describing in human terms some kind of distinction that was made within God which He hopes to have us understand by using the human process of birth. When something is created or made, it is of a different substance than the creator. When someone is begotten through the birth process, they are of the same essence and substance as the original parent. In this phrase God is describing a process of making a distinction within the one God whereby there is another separate person within the one God. This process was accomplished only once and resulted in God the Son. It was this unique God the Son who willingly sacrificed Himself by becoming human and then submitting to torture and death to meet our need.

Son means that the second person of the Triune God is of the same essence as God the Father. He is precious as a Son is to His Father. This precious chosen and distinct one is the one who was given to bring reconciliation to sinful humanity.

*  This material is copyrighted © by Gil Stieglitz who retains all rights to the material.   The verses quoted are taken from the NASB Bible 1995 edition.


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