As a second Gospel reading yesterday in preparation for next Sunday's Feast of the Elevation of the Cross, we heard the passage JN. 3:13-17. Embedded in that passage is "JN. 3:16," a verse that we (hopefully) all know as offering a perfect summary of the Gospel. Below is a nice commentary on that marvelous verse that I recently came across and would like to share.
The key affirmation of God's love for the world is linked with a remarkable statement of excess: "God so loved the world that he gave his only Son" (v. 16b). God's love is that of the Father giving his only Son. What is most intimate and vital to God's character as Father - his Son - is given for the life of all.
By this measure, divine love for the world is a self-giving of a most unconditional kind. There is no reserve on the Father's part in making such a gift. Nor is there any restriction in the number eligible to receive it - "the world," and "everyone who believes in him." Nor is there any limitation in the goal of the giving: "eternal life." Nor is such limited by the self-destructive capacities of human freedom: it reaches out to evildoer that they "may not perish ... "
The Father is made known to the world as the God of unstinting giving."
From Experiencing God in the Gospel of John, by Anthony Keller & Francis Moloney