The Love of God
Recently the Holy Spirit began to whisper a single sentence in my ear. He kept saying, “The Love of God”. I wondered why He was saying this so I decided to search the scriptures to find what He wanted me to understand. I’m glad He did. What I am about to share with you will hopefully make you jump up and down in gladness…
In our culture we often use the love word often for things that have no real value. “I love my burger!” We love all the things that bring us happiness, but most of the time they are so short lived. Worse, we often look for the things that bring us happiness only to find them broken down later.
You might find it interesting to know that the term “Love of God” is not found in the Old Testament. It is reserved for the New Testament alone. Throughout the Old, there are many verses that use both the words Love and God, but not the whole “Love of God” string. The first mention of it is found in the book of John.
John 5:42 (NKJV)
42 But I know you, that you do not have the love of God in you.
Woah! That was Jesus speaking and He was directing His comment to the Jews of the day. You might wonder why Jesus would tell His chosen people that they didn’t have the Love of God in them. Jesus surely knew what He was talking about but His statement stung them to their core. They had done all they knew to do before God with the law over their heads. Sacrifices, honoring certains days each year, journeys to the temple and more. Now they have this Jew and Rabbi standing in their midst and He is making a heart wrenching statement. “You do not have the Love of God in you!”
This is how Jesus saw the people and He told them so…
John 5:39 (NKJV)
39 You search the Scriptures, for in them you think you have eternal life; and these are they which testify of Me.
The Jews relied on the Scriptures for their salvation, but they didn’t have the Love of God. In the end, just like the Jews, we can be caught up in a system of religion instead of having Gods love in us.
What is the Love of God?
Luke 11:42 (NKJV)
42 But woe to you Pharisees! For you tithe mint and rue and all manner of herbs, and pass by justice and the love of God. These you ought to have done, without leaving the others undone.
Jesus pointed out to the Pharisees of their great hold to the traditions of men and religion, but they would walk right past Justice and the Love of God. I am about to reveal to you what Holy Spirit taught me through the scriptures. Jesus was saying to them, you are walking right past “Me! I am the Love of God. Without Me, there is no way for you to Love God. I am the Revealer of who My Father is”.
When we begin to see this in the scriptures, they jump alive with the Truth of it. Jesus is the Love of God. Think about it! Jesus was sent to us because God so loved us. God looks at Jesus as the Love of God. The Jews didn’t understand what Jesus was talking about because they didn’t acknowledge Him as the Son of God and they don’t today. They still see their religion as their salvation even today.
How do we receive the Love of God?
Romans 5:5 (NKJV)
5 Now hope does not disappoint, because the love of God has been poured out in our hearts by the Holy Spirit who was given to us.
Did you see it? We receive the “Love of God” when the Holy Spirit pours Him into us. For each of us to be saved, we not only have to receive Jesus, and that is done by the hand of the Holy Spirit. Just as Holy Spirit raised Jesus from the dead, we are made alive by the Holy Spirit. So awesome!
Once we have received Christ Jesus in our hearts, we then have the Love of God in us. What’s interesting to me is that it took years as a believer in Christ for me to begin to love God the way I do today. I wondered why it took so long for me to really fall in love with God. I fell in love with Jesus but I was always afraid of God. I didn’t know if someday He would just blot me out because of my sin. I remembered how my father treated me and didn’t really recognize that God the Father was any different.
When we are saved through Jesus coming into us, there is a process that begins in our lives. It is a process called sanctification. We are made more holy day by day. We can resist it and miss out on it all together, but if we yield to the Lord, we will be made holy as a people.
Nothing can separate us from the Love of God
Romans 8:38-39 (NKJV)
38 For I am persuaded that neither death nor life, nor angels nor principalities nor powers, nor things present nor things to come,
39 nor height nor depth, nor any other created thing, shall be able to separate us from the love of God which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.
Do you realize how impossible it would be to Love the True and Living God without Jesus being in us? It can’t happen. That love is spiritual not physical, and it has to come from Jesus alone. We need to be introduced to the Father through the Son.
Can we force the Love of God to grow in us? No. We can however allow that love to grow and mature by yielding to the move of Jesus in us. As we learn to worship Jesus, we will be taught how to worship God. It’s a process.
2 Thessalonians 3:5 (NKJV)
5 Now may the Lord direct your hearts into the love of God and into the patience of Christ.
Jesus directs our hearts into the Love of God. Isn’t that awesome! By the way, you can ask Jesus to teach you how to Love God. He will do it and gladly so.
Can we lose the love of God? No, but we can surely cover up the flame. We need to do all we can to hang onto this incredible gift of God.
Titus 3:4-7 (NKJV)
4 But when the kindness and the love of God our Savior toward man appeared,
5 not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to His mercy He saved us, through the washing of regeneration and renewing of the Holy Spirit,
6 whom He poured out on us abundantly through Jesus Christ our Savior,
7 that having been justified by His grace we should become heirs according to the hope of eternal life.
The next time you say, “I love God!”, remember that you had nothing to do with having that love. It is all Jesus.
Once the Love of God appears in you, it is up to you to perfect it
1 John 2:5-6 (NKJV)
5 But whoever keeps His word, truly the love of God is perfected in him. By this we know that we are in Him.
6 He who says he abides in Him ought himself also to walk just as He walked.
The only way to perfect the Love of God in you is to keep His Word. There is no way to keep the Word of God unless you are in the Word of God. You have to take it in like a good meal. Read it, listen to it, take it in.
What is the evidence we are walking in the Love of God?
1 John 5:3 (NKJV)
3 For this is the love of God, that we keep His commandments. And His commandments are not burdensome.
The fulfillment of the Love of God is in keeping Gods commandments. Do you even know what they are? Have you thought about His commandments today?
Go back to Exodus 20:3-17 and read them. Over and over again until you are living them.
In closing, I want to share one more verse with you.
Jude 1:20-21 (NKJV)
20 But you, beloved, building yourselves up on your most holy faith, praying in the Holy Spirit,
21 keep yourselves in the love of God, looking for the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ unto eternal life.
Keep yourself in the Love of God. Keep yourself. Walk rightly and seek the Lover of your soul.
With deep love for who you are,
Pastor Jeff Mauer