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

Apostle John


God So Loved the World

Topic: Love, Compassion, & Kindness

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

Apostle John (c. AD 6-100)
The Gospel of John

Wilson, Andrew, editor. World Scripture II. Universal Peace Federation, 2011, p. 743 [The Gospel of John 3:16].

Apostle John

The Gospel of John 3:16

Love and the World We Live In by Wendell Berry

I take literally the statement in the Gospel of John that God loves the world. I believe the world was created and approved by love, that it subsists, coheres, and endures by love, and that, insofar as it is redeemable, it can be redeemed only by love. I believe that divine love, incarnate and indwelling in the world, summons the world always toward wholeness, which ultimately is reconciliation and atonement with God.

This is also a fallen world. It involves error and disease, ignorance and partiality, sin and death. If this world is a place where we may learn of our involvement in immortal love, as I believe it is, still such learning is only possible here because that love involves us so inescapably in the limits, suffering and sorrow of mortality.

—Wendell Berry [Citizenship Papers: Essays, 2004].

Wendell Berry, Christianity and the Survival of Creation (Excerpt)

“If, because of these discrepancies, Christianity were dismissable, there would, of course, be no problem. We could simply dismiss it, along with the twenty centuries of unsatisfactory history attached to it, and start setting things to rights. The problem emerges only when we ask, Where then would we turn for instruction? We might, let us suppose, turn to another religion–a recourse that is sometimes suggested by the anti-Christian environmentalists. Buddhism, for example, is certainly a religion that could guide us toward a right respect for the natural world, our fellow humans, and our fellow creatures. I have a considerable debt myself to Buddhism and Buddhists. But there is an enormous number of people, and I am one of them, whose native religion, for better or worse, is Christianity. We were born to it; we began to learn about it before we became conscious; it is, whatever we think of it, an intimate belonging of our being; it informs our consciousness, our language, and our dreams. We can turn away from it or against it, but that will only bind us tightly to a reduced version of it. A better possibility is that this, our native religion, should survive and renew itself, so that it may become as largely and truly instructive as we need it to be. On such a survival and renewal of the Christian religion may depend the survival of that Creation which is its subject.
If we read the Bible, keeping in mind the desirability of those two survivals–of Christianity and the Creation–we are apt to discover several things that modern Christian organizations have kept remarkably quiet about, or have paid little attention to…
We will discover that God found the world, as he made it, to be good; that he made it for his pleasure; and that he continues to love it and to find it worthy, despite its reduction and corruption by us. People who quote John 3:16 as an easy formula for getting to heaven neglect to see the great difficulty implied in the statement that the advent of Christ was made possible by God’s love for the world—not God’s love for Heaven or for the world as it might be, but for the world as it was and is. Belief in Christ is thus made dependent upon prior belief in the inherent goodness—the lovability—of the world…”

—Wendell Berry [Christianity and The Survival of Creation].