From opening scenes in Scripture to the brutality of a crucifixion and the years following, the core theme of this God-inspired narrative is love.
The love of a Father towards His very own creation, humanity.
A love saturated with mercy and grace. A love that will never end. A love not bound by conditions. A love that endures all things.
A love we can never escape.
A love worth the blood of His own Son, who now sits in heaven crying out “mercy, mercy” on our behalf.
A love which completes us.
A love which empowers us to be transformed.
The Kingdom, defined by this very love, makes everyone equal. Love enables all parts of the body to minster to each other. To esteem others more than ourselves. To remain humble.
A love which isn’t bound by age, time, or experience. A love everyone is capable of freely extending to their neighbor. A love that doesn’t require a title or special anointing.
A love which will never fail.
I’ve been told repeatedly I can’t keep harping on the same thing. That I need to have “balance” and talk about the “full counsel” of God. You know what I find in the Bible that I read and study? Love is the full counsel.
Every word and action that comes from the Father is born of love. There is absolutely no way around it. It’s not just something He does or an attribute of His being.
IT’S WHO HE IS.
Some believe it’s impossible to share the Gospel without talking about Hell, judgement, punishment, justice, and how scary God is. I have to disagree.
We can love people and share the Gospel without mentioning any of those things.
What leads men to repentance?
God’s anger? Nope.
God’s justice? Nope.
God’s correction? Nope.
God’s punishment? Nope.
It’s the goodness of God that leads men to repentance. And if we are to be imitators of God, then why do we think it’s cool to attack people with everything else besides His goodness?
We get pumped up over John 3:16, as we most certainly should. But, we can’t forget or ignore verse 17.
“For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world through Him might be saved.”
The ministry of condemnation already proved a failure. That’s why Jesus had to come and show us a better way. A living way. A way that wrecks people with the unconditional love and grace of Abba.
No matter how many different ways I think about Father God, it always comes back to His love and goodness.
There are many who want you to believe a myriad of different things about His nature and character. His ways. His motives. But not all are true.
I’ve realized those who speak incessantly about His love have tasted and seen that He is good. They have been completely overwhelmed by His unconditional love and grace.
They have seen themselves through the eyes of Papa and now see others in the very same way. If we can’t love ourselves in the way of understanding our created value and worth, we can’t love others. We can’t see them for what they were created to be. (Love others as yourself)
There isn’t one person on this planet who Jesus didn’t die for.
I used to have a head knowledge of mercy, grace, and redemption, but that knowledge couldn’t change my life. Doctrine, however pertinent and necessary, was powerless to change my life. Christianese catch phrases and buzz words proved incapable as well. Trying to do things inside my own will certainly didn’t change my life.
When I was at the very bottom, buried under shame and condemnation. Hopeless and about to lose everything precious in my life. Addicted and lost. He reached out His hand and spoke to me.
“Come on, Son. That’s not who you were created to be. You are so much more valuable than that. Let’s go. Take my hand and let’s do this together. I love you.”
No one will ever be able to talk me out of this. It’s way too late. His love has captured my heart, renewed my mind, and transformed my life in ways I never imagined possible. I will not argue with the skeptics. I will not debate with the critics. I will not spend my time defending what’s already been established.
I will speak of His love with every fiber of my being until the last breath escapes my lips and I put off this tent.
He’s asking us today, “Who do you think I am?”
My only answer is…love.
So, what’s love got to do with it?