07 August 2007

Chief display of God's love for the world

by Dan Phillips

A chief way in which God loves the world is that He sent His Son into it:
“The true light, which enlightens everyone, was coming into the world. 10 He was in the world, and the world was made through him, yet the world did not know him” (John 1:9-10)
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donsands said...


"He gave His life, what more could He give."

FX Turk said...

Stinker. That's so obvious.


DJP said...

Yes, well, we can't all be Sultans of Subtlety and Masters of Mystery.

Tony Byrne said...

Hi Dan,

Why do you think "world" has three different senses in this passage? I put my cursor over the earth image in your post and saw your note.

In each instance, could it not mean apostate humanity?

He was in the world = among apostate humans

The world was made by him = he created them

The world did not know him = yet humanity did not even know him. They were hostile, i.e. not as he created them to be.

At the very least, the second and third kosmos must be referencing humanity, because he speaks of their knowledge.

The sense is = The world was made by him, yet this world that I just spoke of did not know him.

In each instance, kosmos at least references depraved humanity, even though it is true that he created all things, as we gather from other passages. What do you think?

DJP said...

From memory, I'm taking John Owen's view of the verse, which I find more persuasive. The uses are, respectively:

1. The world of mankind in general
2. The physical world
3. The world of the reprobate

philness said...

Fascinating captain.

David Ponter said...

I just did a post on Owen and Gill's equivocation on "world" in 3:16-17.

Robert, John, and John, and the Two Johns on John 3:16

Tell me what you think?


g said...

I would just like to see you guys preach a 50 word sermon. This seems popular to do so in the churches of our day. At least... maybe only 50 words of their sermon actually has depth. Which is usually when they are quoting Scripture.


philness said...

david ponter,

Could you please clarify this last sentence of the post you linked?

"But to elect partake of a special love by way of the effectual call".

David Ponter said...

Hey Philness,

Ah, you got me. A dreaded typo. Old habbits are hard to sanctfy.

I have corrected the line: But the elect partake of a special love by way of the effectual call.

And I should have posted the correct link: Robert, John, and John, and the Two Johns on John 3:16

Thats better,
now off to the other reply,

DJP said...

I think this was about John 1:9-10.

David Ponter said...

Hey Dan,

You are right. I didnt mean to throw off the line of thought.


Tony Byrne said...

I should have said this earlier. Let the judges be aware that Dan tried to sneak in these words by a secret, gnostic-like (one might even say 'Owenic') code:

"Note 'world' used in three senses in v. 10"

Let them be added to his word count, and see if he is disqualified from the 50 word challenge :-) lol

DJP said...

Hey! Read the rules! Nothing about captions and secret decoder-ring messages!

Stefan Ewing said...

Sorry to throw a wet blanket on this wonderful excursus, but the word count is supposed to include the title/subject line...it looks like if the title is left off, the post comes in at just about 50 words, but the long title brings it up to almost 60!

Ingenious idea of throwing stuff into the image caption, though....

DJP said...

This is why I hate board games that take longer than 30 seconds to explain.

Right, if you mean "Title" by subject line, then I'm out.

No more posts from me!


Tony Byrne said...

Here's an idea, Dan. Make one post without any words at all. Just put the image of the cross, or something related to God's love for the world, and put your words in the image caption. You could win the grand prize for brevity :-)

DJP said...

My first one's close.

Maybe if the post word-count is averaged?

Stefan Ewing said...

Well, I had to stick my neck out and reproach Phil (of all people) for going two words over the limit yesterday (because he'd already "Franked" poor Cent on the basis of WordPerfect's imperfect word count). I can't very well turn a blind eye to this violation!

Strong Tower said...

That Christ is the Light of the world goes without saying but we encounter the Scripture saying what we know as revealed in nature, redundant though it may be. The Sun rises and the world's darkness is breached, yet the world does not know the Sun, nor can it approach it without being consumed by it. Christ is the fountain head of all life and knowledge, so he is the source of light to the whole world. John 3:19-21 complete this analysis of the condition of the world. None know him, but those who come to the light are made to do so, and to know him by that light. But without the protection of the blood of his covenant as applied to them by him, his righteousness as a covering given to them, they would be consumed. Everyone, without exception, does the deeds "in God," for he is the sovereign over his creation. The haters of light retreat into the darkness of their understanding of the sovereignty of God. The righteous are those who come to the light of that knowledge as he so wills, John 1.13. This breaching of the womb into the light is by the discrete and discriminatory working of God. The world is in darkness and it turns not at its own discretion but in accordance with the devine plan. The knowing is much like that which is spoken of in Romans 8:29. It means love, but a peculiar intimacy, begotten by the Father from all eternity. And as he loves his elect first so that they follow, so they love him. They come to the light because he, by his descrete and discriminating love, draws them, John 6.44.

There is no need to make more of the word world than is necessary. It goes without saying that God loves his creation. It also goes without saying that he lovingly hates because of his love of holiness and his love of justice, sin in his creation. His love of the world does not necessitate that he loves the world equally in all parts at all times in every way. He loves the Son of man in a way which he does not love the elect. And likewise he loves the elect in a way that he never does love the reprobate.

As Calvin so clearly states, "I should like to know how the wicked can eat the flesh of Christ which was not crucified for them, and how they can drink the blood which was not shed to expiate their sin?" Calvin expicitly exculded the "whole world," view of the atonement. "Then under the word all or whole, he does not include the reprobate, but designates those who should believe as well as those who were then scattered through various parts of the world."

Like the commandments and their universal imperative nature, the fact that Jesus came into the whole world is simply because of who he is. It does not require that ability to receive him be given through that coming to the whole world. As John 3.16 and 17 makes the coming the means of salvation of some of the world, verses 18 and 19 make his coming the judgement of some of the world, also John 5.22, 27, 30; John 8:16; John 12:27-36.

As his blood sanctifies his disciples, it at the same time puts to death the works of Satan and his religious zealots, who with out true knowledge (love), like Judas, deny the very Lord that bought them. As the rain falls on the wicked as well as the righteous, so too the light coming into the world shines on all men, both elect and reprobate. Though the knowledge of God has been freely given to all men by the Gospel, the fire reveals the value of the materials it is applied to, whether they assay any redemption or not. The two edged sword that delivers the life of the righteous, takes it from the wicked.

Alban Fenle said...

And the world will never know Him. Only YOU can know Him. Once you know Him, you know YOURSELF and disappear from here, because this is not who you are.

Funny, that it says, the world was made through Him.

Finally, everyone has to take total responsibility for what he sees, since the world is not out there. It is but the projection of his mind. His thoughts make up the world. It has no more reality than his thoughts. You are not a body, you are free. You are still as God created you.

Doug said...

Thanks, Alban. You really cleared everything up! Could someone please delete his post!!!

philness said...

alban, teacher of God,

Thanks for showing us that piece of the puzzle that is NOT.

DJP said...

...but you almost can't buy bloviated silliness like that anymore!

It's so retro!