The Berean Expositor
Volume 32 - Page 126 of 246
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It is of the very nature of love to give. This we have already seen in the argument of
the passages cited above from the first Epistle of John. There are others that come
readily to mind, as,
"The Son of God Who loved me and gave Himself for me" (Gal. 2: 20).
"Christ loved the church, and gave Himself for it" (Eph. 5: 25).
Here, in John 3: 16, it is the "world" that was the object of the love of God. As we
have already learned, this word kosmos, "world", is one of the great key words of John's
Gospel. Aristotle defined the kosmos as:
"A system composed of the heaven and the earth, and of beings contained in them;
otherwise, the order and beautiful arrangement of the universe."
Diakosmesis is the word used by Aristotle for "beautiful arrangement". Pliny, the
Latin writer, says:--
"What the Greeks called kosmos, we from its perfect and complete elegance,
denominate mundus."
In the N.T. "the world" is a term more often used to denote that part of the
universe that we call "the earth", as when it speaks of Christ coming into the world.
Dr. Bullinger's note in his Lexicon reads:--
"Thus, kosmos denotes the order of the world, the ordered universe, the ordered
entirety of God's creation, but considered separate from God.  Then, the abode of
humanity, or that order of things in which humanity moves, or of which man is the
centre; then, mankind as it manifests itself in and through such an order; then, the order
of things, which in consequence of and since the Fall, is alienated from God, as
manifested in and through the human race."
It is evident that "the world" of John 3: 16 is the last of these, for its denizens are
saved from "perishing" and from "condemnation" only by this interposition of Christ on
their behalf.
There is much more to consider before we have traversed the doctrine of John 3: 16,
but this we must leave for the moment, hoping to pursue the study in the next article of
the series.