Love of God #1

It is indeed sad when a person does not feel loved.  A child that doesn’t feel loved will probably not develop normally and may become suicidal or rebellious.  A spouse that doesn’t feel loved may become cold and indifferent and may seek a divorce.  Any individual who feels loved is happier and life has more meaning.  My question to you is do you really believe that God loves you?

The greatest scripture that tells us of God’s love is John 3:16-17 “For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.  For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world through Him might be saved.”  The creator of the world only had one Son.  He loved that Son very much.  But He so loved you that He allowed that Son to be tortured and killed to take the penalty for your sins so that you should not perish but instead have eternal life.  Romans 5:5-8 “Now hope does not disappoint, because the love of God has been poured out in our hearts by the Holy Spirit who was given to us.  For when we were still without strength, in due time Christ died for the ungodly. For scarcely for a righteous man will one die; yet perhaps for a good man someone would even dare to die. But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.”  The extent of God’s love is demonstrated by when He showed His love to us – when we were sinful and separated from Him.

But God went a step further.  Since we have become Christians, the relationship between Himself and us is described as the relationship between a loving father and his children.  1 John 3:1-3 “Behold what manner of love the Father has bestowed on us, that we should be called children of God! Therefore the world does not know us, because it did not know Him. Beloved, now we are children of God; and it has not yet been revealed what we shall be, but we know that when He is revealed, we shall be like Him, for we shall see Him as He is. And everyone who has this hope in Him purifies himself, just as He is pure.”   If we truly believe that God loves us like a loving father and that in the end we will be like Him, wouldn’t we purify ourselves even as He is pure?

Since we are His children, we should expect to be disciplined as any loving father would discipline his children for their good.  Hebrews 12:5-11 “And you have forgotten the exhortation which speaks to you as to sons:  ‘My son, do not despise the chastening of the Lord, nor be discouraged when you are rebuked by Him; for whom the Lord loves He chastens, and scourges every son whom He receives.’  If you endure chastening, God deals with you as with sons; for what son is there whom a father does not chasten?  But if you are without chastening, of which all have become partakers, then you are illegitimate and not sons.  Furthermore, we have had human fathers who corrected us, and we paid them respect. Shall we not much more readily be in subjection to the Father of spirits and live?  For they indeed for a few days chastened us as seemed best to them, but He for our profit, that we may be partakers of His holiness.  Now no chastening seems to be joyful for the present, but painful; nevertheless, afterward it yields the peaceable fruit of righteousness to those who have been trained by it.”  When we experience chastening from God, let us take it cheerfully as another sign that God loves us and is training us to be righteous as He is righteous.

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