God so loved the world that he gave his only Son that whoever believes in him may not be lost, but may have eternal life. God did not send the Son into the world to condemn the world; instead, through him the world is to be saved. Whoever believes in him will not be condemned. He who does not believe is already condemned, because he has not believed in the name of the only Son of God.
This is how Judgment is made: Light has come into the world, and people loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil. For whoever does wrong hates the light, and doesn’t come to the light, for fear that his deeds will be seen as evil. But whoever lives according to the truth comes into the light, so that it can be clearly seen that his works have been done in God.
Fray Luis Ponce de León translated the Song of Songs into Spanish and criticized the Vulgate. In doing so, he was apprehended, shackled and tortured in prison. After four years of tortures, now a physically deformed professor went back to his classroom. He continued his lecture where he left off and said to his class, “Como decíamos ayer” (“as we were saying yesterday”). Suffering and imprisonment did not break down his undaunted spirit.
Someone who abides in love will surely encounter animosity. Yet after going through adversities, nobody is left alone to heal the wounded soul. A comforting angel will be there always as he was with Jesus in the desert and Gethsemane.
“Only after we have let the desert do its full work in us will angels finally come and minister to us.” (T. Herriot) “Bitterness imprisons life; love releases it. Bitterness paralyzes life; love empowers it. Bitterness sours life; love sweetens it. Bitterness sickens life; love heals it. Bitterness blinds life; love anoints its eyes.” (H. E. Fosdick) Even the worst prison life can never imprison love. Paradoxically, the religious authorities were “imprisoned” by hatred, the apostles, though in jail, remained free because of love.
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