John 3: 1-36 – Significance of Judgment


If God is love and God wants everyone to be saved, what is the significance of judgment? This theme is taken up in the Gospel of John 3: 17-21. The judgment is not God’s action but the consequence of the decision made by the person. Whoever rejects the infinite love of God manifested in the death of Jesus, judges himself/herself. The acceptance of this love is salvation and the rejection of the same is condemnation. In the Johannine vision, judgment is understood both as realized eschatology and final eschatology. When a person through faith opts for the revelation of God in Jesus, the judgment has been realized since it makes one experience eternal life already. What happens in the final eschatology is the fulfilment of the same experience in its totality. Both the dimensions of Johannine concept of eschatology are evident in John 6: 43-54: “So Jesus said to them, “truly, truly, I say to you, unless you eat the flesh of the son of man and drink his blood, you have no life in you. He who eats my flesh and drinks my blood has eternal life and I will raise him up on the last day” (Cf. Jn 11: 25-26).

To present the theme of judgment the imagery of light and darkness are used. Those who reject the revelation in Jesus prefer darkness because they do not want their evil deeds to be seen. Whereas those who believe in Jesus have nothing to hide but are transparent and hence opt to be in the light so that their deeds may be seen and become witnesses.


  1. Dear Fr. Jeff,

    It is according to the love all will be judged Because every moment we are judged. Those who believe in Him will have the life. This is what St. John Stresses. And all the more we believe that God has sent His only Son to save us.

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