Therefore There IS NO Condemnation

God sent his Son into the world not to judge the world, but to save the world through him. John 3:17 (NLT)

How often do we Christians quote John 3:16? God loved us so much that He sent His Son to save us. How affirming and loving!

What about the next verse? I wonder if in the original scripts there was even a period or did Jesus passionately say it as one thought?

“God loves you so much that He sent His Son that whoever believes in Him won’t die but live eternally; sent His Son not to condemn but to save!”

Jesus came as Savior not as judge. Scripture tells us that Jesus will come back as Judge. Judgment isn’t yet.

Who did Jesus condemn? Well, the un-fruitful fig tree didn’t do so well! (Let us take that one as a lesson!) Jesus rebuked the Pharisees and Saducees quite strongly but it does not read that He condemned or wrote them off. Maybe He saw that young boy, Paul, sitting in synagogue school and also knew it was not time for judgment. If Jesus does not condemn then neither will I (John 8:11).

Condemnation is a church-y word for judging and criticizing. One of the “God Moments” in my life was the first time I went to the local Unitarian Universalist church with my husband. He has been given great favor as (what they see) an evangelical Christian to be invited by them to come and speak. He doesn’t judge or criticize them. He share his experience with God. When asked, many members (most, in fact) are former Christians who can no longer accept the God who teaches others to reject those who do not live up to their standards. They found themselves rejected by Christians who condemned them for their failed marriages or alternative life styles or because they drank alcohol or smoked cigarettes. In the ‘bible’ of these Christians, they are condemned. So they have sought a fellowship that welcomes and tolerates them.

Oh, my fellow Christians, we are going to have to answer to our Jesus for our condemning, un-loving ways!

But the Pharisees and their teachers of religious law complained bitterly to Jesus’ disciples, “Why do you eat and drink with such scum?”

Jesus answered them, “Healthy people don’t need a doctor—sick people do. Luke 5:30-31 (NLT)

Another “God Moment” has occurred many times in my nursing career but one stands out when I was 18-years-old and a first year nursing student. I was assigned a patient with a fulminating breast turmor. She had denied the existence of a lump in her breast so long that it was the size of a large grapefruit and had broken through the skin. It was infect and smelled. Needless to say as was the protocol, she was in an isolation room. I was advised to put a mint oil on my face mask so the smell would not nauseate me. The gospel lessons of the lepers became real to me. So many whispered, and not so whispered, comments were spoken about this woman. She was condemned because of her “ignorance” and the “ewwww” factor that described her un-cleaness.

Fast forward to my more recent years and experience in several churches who are willing to have special events to pass out book bags to poor school children and feed the homeless on holidays or once a week but how often are we willing to invite them to services and run a van/bus to pick them up? And do we really want to sit next to them in the pew? Body order? Alcohol and/or cigarettes?

Oh, my fellow Christians, we are going to have to answer to our Jesus for our condemning, un-loving ways!

Gown up, Christians! It is time to wash some feet and treat some long-untreated, stinky wounds!

(This post is part of the One Word at a Time Blog Carnival on Condemnation)

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1 Response to Therefore There IS NO Condemnation

  1. Bridget says:

    Gown up, Christians! It is time to wash some feet and treat some long-untreated, stinky wounds!

    Amen. It's so easy to look at ourselves as superior to others. In reality God created us all equal.. such an easy fact to forget! Thanks for the reminder.

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