For God So Loves!
Text: John 3;1-17
Trinity Sunday, B
16“For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life. 17For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but in order that the world might be saved through him.”
So Jesus gives us the beloved words every Christian loves. For there is a depth and a truth to these words that go to the very heart of our understanding of God. An understanding which changes our outlook on every part of this world and life. It doesn’t get said enough. So on this Trinity Sunday we are going to do just that. God the Father loves you.
God the Father loves not just you, dear sinner, but this whole broken mess of a world. He loves it despite the pain and heartache it has caused Him from the beginning of humanity’s fall into sin. He loves this world in a dogged, untiring, almost irrational way. He loves the unlovable. He loves those who don’t understand Him. He loves those who won’t listen to Him. The bored, indifferent, confused, apathetic – He loves them all. He loves those who want nothing more than for Him to be dead and gone.
He loves you and this world so much that He has a plan for you. A plan for your eternal salvation, so that you can be with Him forever. A plan put in place before you ever were. A plan that will cost Him dearly. A plan not to give you what you deserve, but what His Son earned for you.
13No one has ascended into heaven except he who descended from heaven, the Son of Man. 14And as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, so must the Son of Man be lifted up, 15that whoever believes in him may have eternal life.”
It doesn’t get said enough. So on this Trinity Sunday we are going to do just that. God the Son loves you. God the Son loves not just you, dear sinner, but this whole broken mess of a world. He loves you enough to have come down from heaven to live in the brokenness of this life, to suffer and struggle and feel first hand the pain and the frustrations of this life. To feel what you feel, and to struggle alongside you. But even more, He came to do what we could not do for ourselves. To love God with His whole heart and soul and mind and strength and to love every single human being more than He loved Himself.
And He showed that love when He went willingly to the cross, lifted up to die in humility and shame for sins He never committed. Paying the price of our disobedience and lack of love, both to God and toward one another, by giving up His precious and innocent life. He loved us enough to pray for this world even as we were killing Him. He loved you enough to be wrapped in your shroud and buried in your tomb, giving you in their place His robe of righteousness and eternal life.
It was that great love for this fallen world that raised Him up on the third day to proclaim victory over sin, death and the grave. To show that God’s love truly conquers ALL. And it is out of His great love for this world and every single soul within it that Jesus sits on the throne of heaven to rule over all things so that His love might abound and multiply and spread throughout creation through the Gospel and the Sacraments He entrusted to His beloved Bride, the Church.
3“Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born again he cannot see the kingdom of God.” 5“Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born of water and the Spirit, he cannot enter the kingdom of God. 6That which is born of the flesh is flesh, and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit. 7Do not marvel that I said to you, ‘You must be born again.’ 8The wind blows where it wishes, and you hear its sound, but you do not know where it comes from or where it goes. So it is with everyone who is born of the Spirit.”
It doesn’t get said enough. So today we are going to do just that. God the Holy Spirit loves you. God the Holy Spirit loves not just you, dear sinner, but this whole broken mess of a world. He loves you enough to be with you through every minute of every day of your life. In the good and the bad, holding you in faith to your Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ.
He is the one who in love came to you through the Gospel and gave you faith, and that new life in Christ only He can bring. He loved you so much that He called you out of this world and into God’s own family. In Holy Baptism He showed His love for you by gathering you into the Communion of the saints, and giving you a life-long safe haven in the troubles of this life.
His love for you is the breath of fresh air that stirs the soul and lifts up our beaten spirit. Not that He blows indiscriminately. Just as we know what causes wind, even if we do not know where it will end up going, so to do we know where God the Holy Spirit blesses us with His love, even if we do not always see the why of it just yet. He continues to show you the love that makes this life worth living and working for, in the gifts of the means of grace and the work of the Church.
So on this Holy Trinity Sunday, in this year of anger, frustration and despair, let it be said for the whole broken world, but most especially for you dear saints … God loves you more than you deserve, more than you will ever understand and more than this short life can hold. Everything He has, is or ever will say, or do, Father Son and Holy Spirit is because God so loved you!