I was wondering what John 12:25 means when it says that he who enjoys life will lose it (literally interpreted, I may be in some serious trouble :bigyikes:). I am sure that it is not meant to be literal, but I want to hear some thoughts as to what it means. Does is somehow involve materialism?
What translation are you reading?
The word here is φιλῶν – from philos (‘love’) – not ‘enjoy.’
The gist here is the archaic use of love/hate, as in the passage in which Jesus admonishes His followers to love Him, but hate family. The way that it was used was to indicate intensity of feeling; it’s not that you should literally ‘hate’, but that you should prioritize one above the other. Love your family – but love Jesus more. Love your life here on earth – but love eternal life more.
Its for those who love the world and its objects more than God.
Eg someone whos god is money
St John’s Gospel is one of contrasts and parallels. The main theme of John is Jesus as light and life.
Loving life without Jesus is no life at all since he alone is ‘the way, the truth, and the life’. (Note how it says ‘their life’ - the emphasis is on the inward and selfish view of man). Another example is found with the story of the blind man. He is psychically blind but spiritually can see (as he recognises Jesus as the light of the world), whilst those who condemn Him following the ‘I AM’ statement are able to see physically but remain blind to the truth.