Whoever confesses that Jesus is the Son of God, God abides in him, and he in God. And we have known and believed the love that God has for us. God is love, and he who abides in love abides in God, and God in him. (1 John 4:15-16)
God Is Love
The greatest hope that man can find in a dark and unyielding world is the knowledge that beyond the clouds of doubt, fear, hatred, and hopelessness resides a God that is fully capable of love beyond the bounds of understanding. Nothing is redeeming about the nature of man. From the beginning, the sway of rebellion has been in the heart of men. The greater portion of humanity has rejected the overtones of a loving God to live for the moment and die for their pleasures. Noah only saw seven other souls that were righteous in a world destroyed by the flood. Moses witnessed the death of his people for forty years because they rebelled against the power of the Almighty. The nation of Israel rose to be the greatest nation on earth before falling headlong into destruction with only a remnant to be saved. Jesus Christ, the Son of God, came to earth and was murdered on a Roman cross by His own people, the Jews. As He died, Jesus prayed to the Father to forgive humanity. God is love.
How can man explain the longsuffering of God? Where can the human mind find compassion, forgiveness, and mercy in a wholly evil creation? God is not love because He is a loving being. He is the fullest expression of love because He is love. The abiding love of God is the manifestation of eternal mercy to allow a sinful world to find grace in the death of God’s Son. God’s love begins with believing that Jesus is the Son of God. Without a conviction that Jesus is God, there is no hope and no love. It either starts with Jesus or ends with Jesus. God is love because Jesus is the Son of God. The totality of the life of Jesus is the embodiment and expression of how much God loves man. God spoke the world into existence, and He will destroy it by the same word. Instead of destroying the world by His word, God sent His Son, the Word, into the world so that all men could find abundant life. Why? God is love.
When a man comes to understand that Jesus is the only begotten Son of God, the love of God abides in him. He sees clearly the grace of God saving worthless men, the mercy of God delivering rebellious hearts, and the act of love in sending His Son to die for the sins of all humanity. As Jesus suffered incredible pain on the cross at the hands of His tormentors, He prayed to Father to forgive them. What man is there that does not bear the shame and reproach of why Jesus was nailed to the cross? Jesus died two thousand years ago, and He was delivered up by the Jews to be executed by Roman law, but every time I sin on earth, I am the one who drove those nails and mocked Him and denied Him. There is no man worthy of the death of Jesus. He lived a sinless and perfect life and died perfected by His Father as the unblemished sacrifice of the lamb. Jesus died for my sin – every one of them. Why? God is love.
The children of God manifest love toward others because the Father showed His love to humanity by sacrificing His Son. Love is not defined by words but actions. To know the love of God, the offerings of the Father express the eternal nature of His love. As children of the Father of love, the Christian is to be filled with forgiveness, compassion, mercy, and the love of God. Love must be an abiding characteristic that resides in the soul every day. It is not a prosthetic that is put on when needed. The world must see in the life of the Christian the spirit of God’s love living within them by the example of their lives. Abiding in God is where true love is found because the conclusion of the matter is: God is love.