“For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life” (John 3:16).
The God who gave his only Son will not forsake us halfway to heaven. On this we have Jesus’ own promise: “This is the will of him who sent me, that of all that he has given me, I lose nothing, but raise it up on the last day” (John 6:39). Because God is faithful, we can be confident. Indeed, God’s faithfulness is the only basis we ever have to be confident of our salvation. Jesus’ own resurrection shines as an eternal beacon through the darkness of human weakness and doubt.
As the overwhelming flood of divine love breaks over us, it washes away every pebble of human ability, sufficiency, or merit. Jesus does not save the deserving, but sinners. He gave himself for the helpless, not the adequate. He died for his enemies, not his associates (Romans 5:6-10). By his doing and by his dying, Jesus removed our sin, made our propitiation, and accomplished our redemption. Because Jesus fully completed the saving work, nothing we ever perform, experience, or accomplish is any part of the work which sets us right with God. We cannot boast even of our faith. John 3:16 begins with the words “for God.” It never says “because we.”
Jesus did not come to condemn but to save (John 3:17). The person who knowingly and persistently rejects God’s boundless love in Jesus Christ despises and repels the only source of life itself. The truth is that we have no life inherent in ourselves (John 6:53). God has given us eternal life, and “this life is in his Son. To reject the Son of God is to reject life itself, and the only alternative is finally to perish (1 John 5:11-12; John 3:16).