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LOVING THE ONE WHO LOVED US

God is love (1 John 4:8,16). His agape love is one of his moral attributes which always works in the best interest others and was demonstrated in the sending of his Son in our behalf (John 3:16; 1 John 4:9-10). His love was not extended because we were worthy or deserving. On the contrary, the entire human race of accountable age has inexcusably transgressed (Eccl. 7:20; Rom. 3:23; 1 John 3:4; 5:17), and deserve spiritual condemnation (Rom. 6:23; Rev. 20:14; 21:8). Since, God is a just/righteous God (Gen. 18:25; Deut. 32:4; Rom. 3:26) our transgressions must be punished (Ex. 32:33; Nah. 1:3). This alone would have made it impossible for anyone to have a right relationship with him and be saved. “But your iniquities have separated between you and your God, and your sins have hid his face from you, that he will not hear”    (Is. 59:2). However, our loving compassionate Creator made a way through Christ when there appeared to be no way for man to be redeemed. “But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us” (Rom. 5:8, vs. 6,10; 2 Cor. 5:21). “Forasmuch as ye know that ye were not redeemed with corruptible things, as silver and gold, from your vain conversation received by tradition from your fathers; But with the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot” (1 Pet. 1:18-19; Eph. 1:7).

Jesus, in possession of eternal life and death made the following affirmations: I am the Bread of Life (John 6:35). I am the Light of the World (John 8:12). I am the Door (John 10:7,9). I am the Good Shepherd (John 10:11,14). I am the Resurrection and the Life (John 11:25). I am the Way, the Truth, and the Life (John 14:6). I am the True Vine (John 15:1,5). “I am he that liveth, and was dead; and, behold, I am alive for evermore, Amen; and have the keys of hell and of death” (Rev. 1:18). Jesus is heaven’s authority who is willing and able to grant salvation to a world that is underserving of it because of his love (Matt. 28:18-20; Mark 16:15-16; Luke 24:46-47; Acts 1:8; 4:12). However, his love must be reciprocated.

One asked the Lord, “Master, what shall I do to inherit eternal life?” (Luke 10:25). His reply, “Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy strength, and with all thy mind; and thy neighbor as thyself” (10:27). If one truly loves the Lord they will yield to his will. As a matter of biblical fact, it is required. “If ye love me, keep my commandments” (John 14:15,21,23-24; 1 John 5:3). This would entail becoming a Christian the way bible teaches through belief, repentance, confession, and water baptism (Acts 2:36-38; 8:35-39). Then, one would daily affirm their love through faithful obedience (Rom. 16:19; Phil. 2:12; Heb. 5:9). “…be thou faithful unto death, and I will give thee a crown of life”  (Rev. 2:10).

Loving the One who loved us is not a difficult thing when you understand. “For the love of Christ constraineth us; because we thus judge, that if one died for all, then were all dead: And that he died for all, that they which live should not henceforth live unto themselves, but unto him which died for them, and rose again” (2 Cor. 5:14-15).

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