17‘Indeed, God did not send the Son into the world to condemn the world, but in order that the world might be saved through him.

To be “saved” is much more than dying and going to heaven. To be “saved” is

Bellini Blood of the Redeemer 1460-1465 Venice, Italy

to live today a life that is whole and fully and deeply human. The only path to wholeness is through the love, light, goodness, truth, and beauty that Jesus embodied. The world is “saved” when I live according to the qualities that characterized Jesus’ life.

As a Christian, I see this way of “wholeness” fully manifest in the historical person of Jesus. Others may not call this “way” by the name of Jesus. The name I choose to signify a life that is living towards wholeness is not the most important thing; it is the reality of the heart that is important. It is the direction in which I am manifesting that matters.

When I live a life that is contrary to the way of love, I suffer and the world around me suffers. To use Jesus’ word, the world is “condemned”. This is not an image of God sitting in judgement on high handing out punishment. It is a description of a reality I experience every day in my own life. To live apart from love is to live a “condemned” life.

When I live in tune with the spirit of Jesus, I am made more whole and, in some tiny way, the world around me is healed.

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What evidence do I see that my choices in life are moving more towards wholeness and away from “condemnation”?