One of the most complete pictures that the Bible gives us of God’s love is the picture of the cross. “In this is love, not that we loved God but He loved us and sent His Son….”
Love is not a natural response. We must be taught to love. We must be reminded to love. If love was just a natural, human posture we would need neither of these. But God goes a drastic step further; He models love by showing it most perfectly at the cross.
We naturally love/like those who are like us or who love us. To love people who don’t reciprocate is not natural. It is not normal. It is, in fact, supernatural.
Our love for God did not come about because we loved Him. It came about because He loved us. We can only love truly when we love as God loves. Anything else is a pale reflection of the kind of love God demonstrated.
How we love people who do not treat us with love is the truest demonstration that God’s love is working in us. By nature, we want to ignore those who are indifferent to us and hate those who hate us. We do not need to have anyone teach us that. It is natural. It is normal. It is the human condition.
But to love when we are rejected, hated or even persecuted, then the love of God is working in us and people can see God in that kind of love. “God is love….” The Bible tells us that God loved us first… supremely… even when we were still at odds with Him.
We were indifferent to Him… we hated and rejected Him. That’s what sin is.
God loved us through that. In spite of that. “While we were yet sinners… rebels… God-rejectors… Christ died for us.” In that is love.
The purest love of all.
FOR MEDITATION: But God demonstrated His love for us in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us. Romans 5:8
FOR REFLECTION: Have you ever memorized that verse? Every Christian should.