Saturday Sermon: See God's love
Jan. 6, 2012 at midnight
Updated Jan. 5, 2012 at 7:06 p.m.
By Shan JacksonThe Bible is the greatest love story ever told. No, it's not just a romance story, though it certainly has romance in it. No, it's not just love poems, though there is love poetry in it. No, it's not just about a parent's love for his children, though we find that in the Bible as well. No, it's not just about giving our lives for our friends, though we do find that mentioned. The Bible is about God's love.
The Bible is about God's love for us, and how he has expressed his love all along. His love is what prompted him to guide us, instruct us and protect us from the beginning, and ultimately, to allow his Son to die for us on the cross. Can't you see God's love?
One way in which we can see God's love is in the institution of marriage. Like a husband and wife choose each other, so God chose us, and we chose him (Ephesians 5:25-32). In God's love, we are sanctified (set apart), just as a husband sets apart the woman in his heart. As in a marriage, the bride is presented to the husband to verify his life and complete him. He also cherishes his bride. Can't you see God's love?
The love of a parent also can show us God's supreme love. Just as parents naturally love their children - God naturally loves his (John 3.16). He praises us in our faith and encourages us through his word. And if discipline is needed, he disciplines us because of his love. Only a parent can understand this. Can't you see God's love?
God loves us and will never disown his family. The door was always open for us to return. Like the story of the Prodigal Son (Luke 15), God is overjoyed when his wayward children come home. However, God's love is fiercely devoted, enduringly loyal and beautifully pure. His love is not cold or unemotional. His love is what kindles his compassion toward us. Can't you see God's love?
The apostle John is referenced as the "apostle of love." This description is evident for several reasons. Appropriately, it is John who instructs us that "God is love" (1 John 4:7). God is the description and embodiment of love, as the pure love of a marriage and the unconditional love parents have for their children. Can't you see God's love?
One last thought along these lines: In Matthew 22, we find Jesus being asked about God's commandments. He responds thusly, "The greatest of all the commandments is love. Love God with all your heart, soul and mind, and love others like you love yourself. On this love rests the body of God's teaching."
As the poet once wrote: What the world needs now is love, sweet love. That's the only thing that there's just too little of ..." And at the top of the ladder of love, we find - God.
Shan Jackson is the pastor of Port Lavaca Church of Christ.