I’ve heard it 100 times, when people are involved in sin, doing things that they know the Bible speaks against, but they say, “Jesus loves EVERYBODY. He doesn’t judge anybody. He loves me the way I am.” You know what? This verse says that, but it’s not the whole picture. Jesus taught very clearly that he is a judge, and he will judge (Mt. 25.31ff; Jn. 5.27; Jn. 9.39), but that’s not why he was here the first time. He was here to show his love, and to save the world.
Imagine two armies that have assembled for war against each other. But before the fighting begins, each sends an ambassador to a central location to talk to each other, and to negotiate. They don’t break out in a fight at the negotiation table, because they have come to talk. That doesn’t mean that the next day there isn’t going to be a battle, but it does mean that their purpose at the table is to talk.
Jesus is certainly going to judge, and he does judge. He judges sin continually, and will judge sin ultimately. But when he came to earth the first time he had a purpose, and that purpose was to seek and to save the lost, and to give his life as a ransom. At the “table” he’s not here to condemn the world, but that doesn’t mean there is not condemnation coming. He’s here for a reason, and he will abide by that plan.
You see, he continues to explain, “I’m not here to condemn you, because you’re already condemned. You were born condemned, and your sin condemns you, but I’m here to do everything in my power to change that. You just need to turn to me.”
Anybody with eyes can see it. Jesus came into the world and shined as a brilliant light, but people chose against Him. The darkness isn’t forced on anyone; they choose it. In that sense God doesn’t have to condemn them—they condemn themselves. They are hostile to the light. They ridicule Christ, churches, preachers, and the Bible. Our magazines, newspapers, and television episodes are full of it.
No one is forced to choose the dark. Whoever wants to can come to Christ and live in the light and by the truth. It’s the choice of each individual. God still loves you while you walk in the darkness, but he doesn’t want you to stay that way. Come to Jesus. Come to the light, and to truth.