Read just how amazing the love of God is compared to the love of humans.
John 3:16 “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.”
God was not even willing to spare His own Son’s life to save us, so we ought to lay down our lives for others. God was willing to place the punishment of our sins on the One Who was sinless in order that we who repent and believe might be saved and receive eternal life.
John 10:18 “No one takes it from me, but I lay it down of my own accord. I have authority to lay it down, and I have authority to take it up again. This charge I have received from my Father.”
We may not realize it but no one really took Jesus’ life because He could have commanded a legion of angels at any given moment at the scourging and the cross, but He willing laid down His life for us. He had the authority to both lay it down and to take it up again, which was done on Resurrection Sunday. What love this was to die willingly for undeserving sinners.
Romans 5:8 “But God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.”
God shows that love is a verb; it is what you do, not what you feel or think or say. Yes, love can include those things, but the proof of that love is manifest by actions, like Jesus dying for the ungodly, wicked sinners who were once enemies of God (Rom 5:6-10). Now that’s love in action!
John 15:13 “Greater love has no one than this, that someone lay down his life for his friends.”
What greater human love is there than to die for a friend? We can know that God’s love is infinitely greater, but we can lay down our lives for the brothers and sisters in Christ by serving them, loving them, and praying for them. We may not have to die for them but we can die to ourselves for them! In some parts of the world, the persecution is so severe that some have actually died for others so that they might live. That’s the God-type of agape love.
John 10:11 “I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd lays down his life for the sheep.”
Only the Good Shepherd laid down His life for His sheep or those who chose to follow Him, but Jesus looked down the corridors of time and knew that there would be other sheep coming into this sheepfold (the church) and so He said, “I have other sheep that are not of this fold. I must bring them also, and they will listen to my voice. So there will be one flock, one shepherd” (John 10:16).
Did you notice that four of the five Bible verses came from the Gospel of John? That’s because the Gospel of John has more than double (39) the number of the uses of the word love than do all the other gospels combined (27), so you will find a heavy dose of the love of God in John’s gospel. The Gospel of John will help you remember that God’s love is so amazing, must like His grace is.
May God richly bless you,
Pastor Jack Wellman
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