First love

“We love him, because he first loved us.”

1 John 4:19

This verse makes it very clear where love comes from. Our natural, human hearts have no love for God. We do not want Him, seek Him or even believe in Him. Many refuse to believe that God even exists at all. The Scripture says they are “fools.”

Our love, such as it is, is based on what we want and can get. It is circumstantial and depends of something else to make it work out. It works for a time and then eventually fails, because we are only human. We make romance stories that elevate our love into something more, but they often fail too.

God is love. His whole nature and being is love. The relationships in the holy trinity are bound together by the love of God. It is eternal and unconditional, and God’s love never fails. This should be the greatest comfort to us, as this is exactly the kind of love we need as sinful creatures.

God loves His people. Not one of them will eventually be lost, because His love holds them fast. He demonstrated His love to us in a way that we could understand and in the way His holy law required. He made the ultimate sacrifice by giving up His beloved Son to die for sin. He suffered so much, for our sake and showed us what the love of God is like. It is frightening in its laying down of all privilege and taking on the form of a servant and allowing the Lord Jesus to suffer in such a cruel way for His people. Yet He did so willingly and with His eyes on the future when He would have us with Him for eternity. No one else would or could do this for us.

Our only appropriate response is to love Him back. We should love Him with every part of our character and mind and heart. We willingly give up our life to Him and give ourselves to Him, since He has given all He had for us. We love Him because He loved us first.

He loved us from eternity, and will bring us safely into eternity, if we trust in Him and turn from the wickedness, which keeps us away for Him.

His love reigns supreme. All other loves pale into fog. The love of God in Christ shines out to us from that cross and is the beacon that will guide us safely into heaven.

Why would we not love Him? We remain unmoved at that love and decide we want our own way rather than His way, so we reject it. When we reject Him, we turn our back on love and we will ever know love, especially in eternity. Why reject love forever? It really is foolish.

“…..this is love for God: to keep his commands.”

1 John 5:2

Love for God is not a one off experience of conversion, but is a life long walk with God. It is not woolly or non-specific, but shows itself by keeping the holy law of God. The law does not save us, and we cannot keep it anyway, but when God is in our lives, we have a new ability to keep it and love from God gives us the desire to do so. We express our love for Him, by obeying what He tells us to do.

Jesus fulfilled the law of God when He died for sin, and showed the love of God, because He is love. He loved us first, when we were still sinners, and so now we can love Him.

“We love him, because he first loved us.”

1 John 4:19