GOD WANTS US TO BE WITH HIM [JOHN 3:31-36]
The Gospel of John is filled with statements of the difference between “above” and “below” (John 3:31; 8:23), between “darkness” and “light” (John 3:19; 8:12;12:35,46), between “flesh” and “spirit” (John 3:6;6:63). Just as loving parents warn their children of the real dangers of life – and the consequences of bad decisions – so too God, our heavenly Father, warns us of the reality of heaven and hell. There is a discernable difference between these two “ways,” and God is ever calling us to follow His way.
How do we know whether we are following the way of life or the way of death? What assurances can we have that we are on the right course? Before anything else, we need to come to grips with the love of God our Father. He gives His Spirit without measure, whenever we ask (John 3:34; Luke 11:13). God wants us to be with Him; He wants to fill us with His love and protection. Through scripture, He has given us His commands to keep us on the path of life; He will never abandon those who rely on His guidance.
We have been ransomed by Jesus’ blood, and our sin and guilt have been washed away in the waters of baptism. We have received the promised Holy Spirit, poured out without measure. We are children of God, and our Father wants to teach us and protect us. As we continue to accept Jesus’ testimony, we will be able to say “God is true” (John 3:33). We will be filled with confidence in God, and be willing to follow Jesus wherever He leads us. Even when it is difficult to obey, we will know that God is trustworthy, and we will seek the Holy Spirit’s strength to remain faithful.
In this time of Easter joy, let us ask the Holy Spirit to open our hearts even more to the testimony of Jesus. Let us come into the light of God’s love and ask for the humility and strength we need to follow the way of life. We serve a merciful, generous God. He will not fail those who trust in Him.
Jakarta, 1 May 2014
A Christian Pilgrim