Summary: God is a God of love, it is unconditional, our response should be to recieve it and abide in it
The God you Can Know
John 3: 16
If there is one truth that all humanity needs to grasp, it is that the God of the universe loves us.
He loves us unconditionally, without exception, and loves us each in individual distinction
When this truth is fully grasped and gratefully responded to, lives are transformed.
There is nothing that you have done or could ever do that will change that.
The whole bible is about that one fact
The love of God to men is the pinnacle of biblical revelation
But this is the one doctrine that is the most difficult to grasp
But the problem comes when we confuse the love of God with his other attributes, that are nonnegotiable His holiness, righteousness, His justice, His wrath
That presents a difficulty
When humanity talks about love and loving we talk in terms of prevention, cure, healing.
We don’t let the people we love hurt, feel pain, do without
And so we try to fit the love of God into our finite definition of love
And so the love of God in our culture has been purged of anything the culture finds uncomfortable. The love of God has been sanitized, democratized, and above all sentimentalized.
Marsha Witten writes in her book All is Forgiven;
The transcendent, majestic, awesome God of Luther and Calvin—whose image informed early Protestant visions of the relationship between human beings and the divine has undergone a softening of demeanor through the American experience of Protestantism, with only minor exceptions.…Many of the sermons depict a God whose behavior is regular, patterned, and predictable; he is portrayed in terms of the consistency of his behavior, of the conformity of his actions to the single rule of “love.”
There is a powerful tendency “to present God through characterizations of his inner states, with an emphasis on his emotions, which closely resemble those of human beings.…God is more likely to ‘feel’ than to ‘act,’ to ‘think’ than to ‘say.’ ”
In other words God is moved by emotions and not by divine principles
We would rather see God as a friend that King
We prefer a non-theistic view of God
He is friend but He must also be King
Jesus says over and over that He came to reveal the Father
The Fathers character to include the Fathers Love
the Son by his obedience to his Father, doing only what God gives him to do and saying only what God gives him to say, yet doing such things in function of his ability to do whatever the Father does, acts in such a way as to reveal God perfectly.
In other words, if the Son acted in line with the Father sometimes and did his own thing on other occasions, we would not be able to tell which of Jesus’ actions and words disclose God.
But it is precisely his unqualified obedience to and his dependence upon his Father that ensure that his revelation to us is perfect.
Far from threatening the Son’s perfections or jeopardizing his revelation of God to us, his functional subordination ensures his perfections and establishes his revelation.
This marvelous self-disclosure of the Father in the Son turns, ultimately, not on God’s love for us, but on the Father’s love for his unique Son. It is because the Father loves the Son that this pattern of divine self-disclosure pertains
For God so loved the world that He gave His Son
The revelation of the Fathers love is in the Son giving His life
Nothing changes the revelation of that fact, whether I truly understand it or not
One day a single friend asked a father of four, “Why do you love your kids?” The father thought for a minute, but the only answer he could come up with was “Because they’re mine.”
The children had no need to do anything to prove themselves to this father. He took them just as they were. So it is with God’s love for us. He loves us as we are, and it is his love that motivates us to trust and obey him in return.
Because of His omnipotence (power) it remains true
Because of His immutability (He does not change) it remains true
My behavior does not change the facts
I can ignore it
I can refuse to accept it
It remains true
But if I am to be saved I must accept it
Alexander Mclaren says God’s love rejected returns to me as His wrath
If I accept it there are consequences
If I reject it there are consequences
So I must accept and receive the love of God
We must appropriate the love of God
Joh 15:9 As the Father has loved me, so have I loved you. Abide in my love.
Joh 15:10 If you keep my commandments, you will abide in my love, just as I have kept my Father’s commandments and abide in his love.