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Summary: Young love, romantic love, brotherly love, Christian love, so many types of love, so often disappointing; but, what about the love of God? What kind of love is this?

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Dakota Community Church

July 22, 2007

What Kind of Love Is This?

In the summer of 1982 I was fresh out of high school and on my way to life as a BMOC (Big Man on Campus) at St. Mary’s University in Halifax N.S. That same summer a rock band from Saskatchewan – (Some of you may remember Streetheart) - was enjoying some “Canadian style” fame with a hit song that was climbing the charts.

“What Kind of Love is this?” - was the title, and the question poised in this little ditty, answering itself with: “Kind that keeps me standing in line”? It still gets significant air time on the local “80’s 90’s and whatever” radio station.

I guess there have been thousands of hit songs through the years that ask this question or tackle this issue in one form or another. From “What’s love got to do with it?” and “Love stinks”, to “All you need is love” and “Love will keep us together” the sentiments are as wide and ranging as the full spectrum of human emotion. We can all identify on some level at any given point in time.

Love is a big deal!

And then in the middle of all this searching and confusion – “Jesus loves me, this I know, for the bible tells me so.”

We find God. We make our way into a church service, or get so bored that we watch a late night televangelist, or some religious friend shares something they call “their testimony” and all of a sudden – God loves us! The preacher and his wife on the TV love us! Church folk we have only just met say “love ya brother” and it all seems great for a while; but then, after a bit – holes begin to appear in the love of our fellow Christians, conditions and rules, and when we don’t meet the conditions it starts to feel a lot like the love in the song – “Kind that keeps me waiting in line.”

What about God’s love though? What kind of love is this?

1. Redemptive love.

Redeem:

1. to buy or pay off; clear by payment: to redeem a mortgage.

2. To buy back, as after a tax sale or a mortgage foreclosure.

3. To recover (something pledged or mortgaged) by payment or other satisfaction: to redeem a pawned watch.

4. To make up for; make amends for; offset (some fault, shortcoming, etc.): His bravery redeemed his youthful idleness.

5. To obtain the release or restoration of, as from captivity, by paying a ransom.

This love of God bought us back! It paid our debt, repurchased our freedom, it paid our ransom!

We are not born free we are born into slavery, but we often do not recognize it.

John 8:31-36

Jesus said, "If you hold to my teaching, you are really my disciples. Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free."

They answered him, "We are Abraham’s descendants and have never been slaves of anyone. How can you say that we shall be set free?"

Jesus replied, "I tell you the truth, everyone who sins is a slave to sin. Now a slave has no permanent place in the family, but a son belongs to it forever. So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed.

Have you ever been so angry or hurt over what someone has said or done against you that you said, “That’s it; I am through with him/her.”

That is the kind of separation that we caused when we betrayed God.

Genesis 6:5-6

The LORD saw how great man’s wickedness on the earth had become, and that every inclination of the thoughts of his heart was only evil all the time. The LORD was grieved that he had made man on the earth, and his heart was filled with pain.

What kind of love is this? This is the kind of love that suffers this kind of pain and chooses redemption. How were we loved? What does our redemption cost?

1 Peter 1:18-19

For you know that it was not with perishable things such as silver or gold that you were redeemed from the empty way of life handed down to you from your forefathers, but with the precious blood of Christ, a lamb without blemish or defect.

Probably the most widely known scripture verse in the English speaking world:

John 3:16-17

For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him.

God so loved – He gave, which brings us to the second point: What kind of love is this?

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