Reflections: Pentecost Monday

Today’s Reading: John 3:16-20

Daily Lectionary: Proverbs 3:5-24; John 11:38-57

For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but in order that the world might be saved through Him. (John 3:17)

In the Name of Jesus + Amen. Ours is a dog-eat-dog world. Selfishness, greed, lust, envy, and strife pervade our world and our own lives. It’s every man, woman, and child for himself. Who’s watching out for you? If you believe much of what you see tweeted, or on Instagram and Facebook, it’s difficult, if not impossible to find the answer to that question. Who’s watching out for you? Thankfully John addresses this crucial question, at first objectively and then subjectively. “For God so loved the world that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life” (John 3:16). That’s quite a BIG statement. The world is a BIG place, with BIG things happening–what about little ol’ me? 

God sent Jesus for the whole world: That’s objective justification. But who is watching out specifically for you? This is where John makes the subjective point: God didn’t send His own Son to hunt you down and punish you for your sin. Far from it. The Father sent the Son to seek you out and to bear your very sin to death. He came not to condemn, no, no, no–He came to seek you. He came and took on your flesh, became like you in every way but one. Jesus your Savior was without sin, yet He humbled Himself, lowered Himself into the Jordan River and had all your sin washed onto Him! Every bit of it! He carried the full weight of it all to Calvary’s Cross and put it to death with Him, and when He went down into that tomb on Good Friday your sin stayed dead in that tomb! But even before all that–remember the blood and water that flowed from His side? That blood and water was FOR YOU! His blood flowed into the chalices of all Christendom, and the water is one and the same water that was washed over you on the day you were baptized! Who’s watching out for you? The same Christ Jesus who knew you even before He formed you in the womb, the same Jesus who took on your very flesh, who took all your sin and suffered your death, the same Jesus who rose as the firstborn of the dead so that you, too, would rise forever with Him on the Last Day. He’s got you covered. He’s watching out for you by the blood and the water, the bread and the Word, now and forever. In the Name + of Jesus. Amen. 

Almighty and everlasting God, You have given us grace to acknowledge the glory of the eternal Trinity by the confession of a true faith and to worship the Unity in the power of the Divine Majesty. Keep us steadfast in this faith and defend us from all adversities; for You, O Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, live and reign, one God, now and forever. Amen.

-Rev. Adam Degroot is pastor of Calvary Lutheran Church in Rio Rancho, NM.

Audio Reflections speaker: Rev. Duane Bamsch

Come on an adventure with author Eric Eichinger as he unpacks the saga of Jesus’ Hero Journey. You’ll see how aspects of this journey are seen in popular stories, and how God used Jesus to create the most action-packed one with a real Savior for all. Now available from Concordia Publishing House.