A great verse indeed! Our nation knows this verse well and we love to proclaim it to others. "Jesus love you!" For most of us it's easy to believe that someone loves us. "Of course I'm loved," we think, "I'm a nice person with a great sense of humor." But why do we need God's love? Most of us have someone who loves us. And most of us have been hurt by those who proclaimed to love us! What's the big deal about God's love anyway? What makes God's love any different than the love we've experienced thus far? Let's explore that, shall we?
I think we should start at the very beginning. Genesis 2:15-17 God gives the man He created a command. He says of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil (another name for this tree might be the tree of disobedience) you shall not eat. Imagine a beautiful bountiful garden that is given to you at no cost. You are only given one command, don't eat from one of the many many trees that are here. Just one tree. In a previous verse Genesis 2:9 we are introduced to every tree that is pleasant to the sight and good for food including the tree of life. How much time passed between the command by God to the disobedience of man? The tree of life was available to us but before we ate from that tree and could live forever we instead chose to disobey God and eat from the forbidden tree. Well.... not a very bright decision, but there ya have it.
Are you a parent? How long does it usually take your kids to disobey a command you give them? I have the most adorable niece and nephew on the planet. They are two years old (which makes them twins) and they steal away hearts with their adorable looks and their larger than life personalities. But, I've seen them start to head for trouble and get a stern warning from mom. You can see it in their eyes, the instant the warning was received it only sparked the desire to follow through with their original plan to touch or grab the thing they were just warned not to. It's an instantaneous impulse to sin, because of the disobedience that reins in our hearts, and they are only two. How new were Adam and Eve before they first conceived sin in their hearts? Well by the third chapter in Genesis the created man had already messed up a good thing. The garden given him was taken away and the sentence of death had been given by our Godly judge.
Death for disobedience? They just ate a piece of fruit it's not like they killed anyone. Seems kind of harsh don't ya think? Well to us sin is common and natural. But to a Holy and good God who never sins, sin is inexcusable and punishable by death. Adam and Eve were given the death sentence and banished from the garden. Wow, so what do we do? The truth is there is nothing we can do! We are just the creation not the Creator. We chose to disobey and as the old saying goes, "you are what you eat." We are all sinners stemmed from our family tree of disobedience doomed to die. Or are we?
Enter in God's love! For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life. (John 3:16) But, "He who believes in the Son has everlasting life; and he who does not believe the Son shall not see life, but the wrath of God abides on him." (John 3:36)
God has to punish sin! He cannot allow any sin to slip by His righteous judgement! If God's standard was anything less than perfection what would our world look like? "Well the sun doesn't have to be exactly 150 million kilometers from the earth with its orbital rotation which allows for the different seasons which are four in all, in conjunction with the boundaries of each continents global position. Just set the earth here and give it a good spin and we'll call it good." Yikes! I'm glad I didn't have to set the world in motion.
God wasn't surprised when His creation sinned, in fact He had already planned for it and made a way for us to be reconciled to Him through faith in His Son who took on the wrath of God for us. God has given us another command and a warning. Take from this tree, that has hanging from its branches a man, who though beaten to death remained obedient and faithful. Receive the fruit of faithfulness. With that fruit you will receive the forgiveness of sin and though you will still surely die, because God has already signed your sentence with His signet ring, you will rise again and live eternally? A good and righteous judge who always follows through with His judgement, and who also provides a way for us to be reconciled. Wow, that's a Loving God.
My kids were playing the game of Life today, a board game, and of course a fight ensued because my daughter didn't land on the square she thought she deserved to land on. She wouldn't budge an inch on the clear injustice that was done her on the obvious unfair roll of the dice. I think she wanted to land on the, trade your salary card with any player, square. The game was discontinued shortly after because in her mind the plans she had for the course of the game came to a screeching halt and she refused to accept this "other" course.
Take my advise and accept God's course for your life and stop trying to do things your way. His thoughts are not our thoughts and His ways are not our ways. (Isaiah 55:8-9) Are we OK with that? Are we OK with the fact that God who formed us and gave us life, God who made the heavens and the earth has more knowledge and understanding of things than we do? If your life isn't going exactly as you had planned, so what? You are still alive and you still have your free will, but be careful with what you choose for yourself. Your decision has eternal ramification.
If You need advice on what course of action to take in your life, look to the instruction book. B.I.B.L.E. Basic Instructions Before Leaving Earth. If you need help with understanding the instruction book, look to a bible teaching bible believing church.
Hebrews 10:23-25 Let us hold fast the confession of our hope without wavering, for He who promised is faithful. And let us consider one another in order to stir up love and good works, not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as is the manner of some, but exhorting one another, and so much the more as you see the Day approaching.
The Day is approaching and we will all have to give an account to The Almighty Holy God. You will have no defense unless you take the plea bargain and admit you are a sinner and give yourself over to the Good Judge. He owns you now, because He bought you with the precious blood of His Son. But what better hands could you be in than the ones who rightly condemned you and then provided a way for you to be made righteous?