“For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son that whosoever believes in Him will not perish but have everlasting life.” John 3:16 NKJV.

“Who was the first to say, ‘I love you’?”

The question above is an interesting one that newlyweds or couples often get. It shows that the declaration of love to another person is a significant step in every relationship, including our relationship with God. But when it comes to our relationship with God, He said it first: “We love Him because He first loved us.” (1 John 4:19). There’s no question. 

God’s love for us is incomprehensible. Just as God’s judgments are unsearchable, and His ways past finding out (Romans 11:33), so does the love of God surpass knowledge (Ephesians 3:19). Thus, seeking to understand the love of God will ultimately lead you to understand God Himself, for God is love (1 John 4:16b). 

Through the gift of the Holy Spirit, God makes Himself (Love) known to us (John 16:13-15, Romans 5: 5) so that we can appreciate how deep His love for us surpasses knowledge (Ephesians 3:18-19). However, knowledge in this context isn’t a mental aptitude obtained from studying God’s word but a practical knowledge developed through personal experience. Because without personal experience, how can we fathom such love that made Christ die for us even while we were still sinners (Romans 5:8)?

One such experience of God’s love is peace. Through the sacrifice of Jesus Christ, we receive forgiveness for our sins and peace with God (Romans 5:1). Hence, we can face God on the day of judgement with confidence, not fear, because God’s perfect love expels all fear. If we are afraid, it is for fear of punishment, which shows that we have not fully experienced His perfect love (1 John 17-18). 

God’s love is trustworthy. You can bank on it. God, in His love, adopted us, not as fearful slaves but as His Children and gave us His Holy Spirit as a seal that we are His (Romans 8:15, Ephesians 1:13-14, 1 John 3:1). We have the assurance that nothing can separate us from His love (Romans 8:39), just as nothing could have separated the prodigal son from his father’s love (Luke 15:11-32). 

The true evidence that we understand God’s love for us is not only to love Him in return but also to love one another. For if we don’t love people we can see, how can we love God, whom we cannot see? (John 15:12-13, 1 John 4:20-21).

God loves you and wants you to grow in the knowledge and experience of His love. But also,  He wants you to demonstrate an understanding and appreciation for His love by loving others. 

Bible Reading Plan: Mark  2

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