What Brings Condemnation?
In John 3 we have the famous meeting with Jesus and a man named Nicodemus. In this chapter is one of the most well known verses of the Bible, John 3:16. But I think that John 3:18 is probably an equally important verse that doesn’t get as much discussion. If you’ve ever spent much time talking to people about what happens to them when they die, you know that most people think they will go to heaven. When you ask why they think that, most people say that they are a pretty good person. Most people don’t see themselves as having “done anything” that would be worthy of condemnation by God; at least not enough to warrant an eternity in hell. But is that opinion a valid one? Look at John 3:16-18: 16 For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life. 17 For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world through Him might be saved. 18 “He who believes in Him is not condemned; but he who does not believe is condemned already, because he has not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God.
Do you see what verse 18 says? It says that the one who believes in Jesus is not condemned but the one who does not believe is condemned. Why? Please note it has nothing to do with a person’s actions or works. The condemnation rests on the one who has not believed in the name of Jesus. You and I don’t earn the condemnation…it rests upon us automatically because of our sin. And the consistent message is that the only way to have God remove that condemnation is through believing in Jesus Christ. These words in John 3 remove any link to condemnation and specific sins. There is no argument to be made for a certain amount of sin which brings condemnation and an attempt to try to sin less than the amount which leads to condemnation. Of course, there is also no mention anywhere in the Bible about where the “do not cross” line would be. The point of John 3 and the other verses that speak to how to escape condemnation is that belief in Jesus is the key. What brings condemnation? Your sin brings condemnation…but you start out with it… you don’t bring it upon yourself. That’s the bad news. The good news is that Jesus can remove that condemnation through your repentance and faith. Receive Jesus today and remove the condemnation which rests upon you.