"For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish but have everlasting life."

John 3:16
You see it painted on makeshift bedsheets at ball games. You see it scrawled on cardboard on street corners. You see it posted in vinyl letters on church marquees and silk-screened on T-shirts. What is so important about this one particular sentence taken from a book over 2000 years old?

The poignancy of this passage is its simplicity.
In one sentence it tells us God's fundamental motive behind making an almost unimaginable sacrifice on our behalf. In one sentence it tells us what He hopes our response will be toward that sacrifice, and in that same sentence He tells us what we can expect if we do respond.

God loved the world. God loves us. God loves you and me.
Although we do not see God and may not always "feel" loved, God states it clearly and unforgettably. God loves us.

In what way does God love us? He loves us "so", meaning in the following way...
God loves us so much that when He saw us in a situation (sin) that put us in peril (sin separates us from God) He did something about it. He knew that we could not do anything to rescue ourselves from that situation (we cannot "save" ourselves) so He took the initiative to step in our behalf.

Three things make that initiative extraordinary.

One is that He moved toward us while we were estranged from Him. While we were still sinners. Imagine the vilest, nastiest, most repulsive, odorous slime you can and imagine being smothered head to toe in it. That is what even one single sin is like. While covered in that, God still moved toward us. In fact, another passage says He "abounded" toward us.

Two is that God moved toward us without any guarantee that we would respond. Our response is totally in our control. We could embrace Him, thank Him and move toward Him giving Him the relationship He so desires. Or we could ignore Him, put His offer on the shelf, thereby rejecting Him. Our response is our individual choice.

The third amazing thing about God taking the first step toward us is the enormity of His risk. He didn't invest a little bit of time He could afford to waste or some inanimate object He could afford to lose. He invested His son, His only son. And the game was for keeps. If Jesus himself had sinned even once here on earth He would have been forever lost as we were (since you simply cannot be the person to clean off someone else's slime if you yourself are also covered with it.)

The "Gospel" or "Good News" written about in the bible over 2000 years ago is still good news today.
The Gospel is the story of Jesus the Anointed or Sent one, and His Father God the Creator. God sent Jesus into the world to save mankind by removing his sin. At great personal price, He lived on the earth as we do yet never committing sin. And at an appointed time, He willingly submitted to the plan of His Father by taking all of our sin upon Himself in order to pay the full penalty for it. He gave up his life on the cross. In death, He was spiritually and physically separated from God. After three days, when the penalty was fully satisfied, God raised Him from the dead, restoring "life" forever: a never-ending, right relationship or togetherness with Him.

Why?
So that whoever -- anyone, anywhere, at any time -- believes in Jesus and the sacrifice He made, could also have eternal "life," that restored, never-ending right relationship or togetherness with Him. So that we all could walk in freedom from the fear of sin and the death or separation from God that comes with it. Through Jesus Christ, we have an open invitation to a restored relationship with God, the Father who loves us so.

And that's worth making a sign about!

To learn how to become a Christian, by accepting Jesus' sacrifice, CLICK HERE .