He is a God of Love

Scripture references: 2 Corinthians 5:19, Romans 5:8 God is not blind to man’s plight. He does not stand on a mountaintop, helplessly viewing the crash of mankind. Since man caused his own crash by his rebellion against the Creator, God could have allowed him to plunge on in darkness and destruction. This would have been in keeping with God’s holiness and righteousness. However, this other great attribute of God, His love, would not allow Him to do it. From the very beginning of that crash, God had a plan for man’s deliverance, redemption and reconciliation. In fact the plan is so fantastic that it ultimately lifts man far beyond and above even the angels. God’s all-consuming love for mankind was decisively demonstrated at the cross, where His compassion was embodied in His Son Jesus Christ. The word compassion comes from two Latin words meaning “to suffer with.” God was willing to suffer with man. In the thirty-three years preceding His death, Jesus suffered with man; and ultimately He suffered for man on the cross. “God was reconciling the world to himself in Christ” (2 Cor. 5:19). Again, “God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us” (Rom. 5:8). It was the love of God that sent Jesus Christ to the cross. It was because He was in control and controlled by love that He provided that divine substitute for our sin. God’s love did not begin at the cross. It began before the world was established, before the time clock of civilization began to move. The concept stretches our understanding to the utmost limits of our minds. Turn back in your imaginations to the countless eons before God created this present earth, when it was “without form and void” and the deep, silent darkness of outer space formed a vast gulf between the brilliance of God’s throne and the dark vacuum where our present solar system now exists. Imagine the brilliance of God’s glory as the cherubim and seraphim, the very angels themselves, cover their faces with their wings in awe and reverence toward Him who is the high and holy One who inhabits eternity! Even at this time He foreknew all that would happen, and yet, in His mysterious love, He allowed it. The Bible tells us about the “Lamb that was slain from the creation of the world” (Rev. 13:8). God foresaw what His Son was to suffer. As it has been said, there was a cross in the heart of God long before the cross was erected at Calvary. Only as we think in these terms will we begin to grasp the wonder and greatness of His love for us. Respond How does the knowledge that God is compassionate towards our suffering change your perspective on your circumstances? How does Scripture provide evidence for the depth of God’s love for us? Read Romans 8:38-39. How can you apply this message of hope to a suffering world?

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