Event: Call to Prayer 2021
God is love
Anyone who does not love does not know God, because God is love. In this the love of God was made manifest among us, that God sent his only Son into the world, so that we might live through him. In this is love, not that we have loved God but that he loved us and sent his Son to be the propitiation for our sins. 1 John 4:8-10
If I were to survey the most common topics for songs ever written, I’m sure that love would come out on top. They say love makes the world go round, it is what so many long for and therefore it is no surprise that it features so often in songs. Whether it is a baby who has just appeared into this world, or a young couple who have started courting, or an old person in a care home – we all long for love. It the strongest force and greatest need in the world.
Our verses today explain that God is love and is the source of love. What could we say that would ever make justice to the love of God? The simple words of the children’s chorus ‘Jesus, love is very wonderful’ say it all in one sense: ‘So High, You Can’t Get Over It, So Low, You Can’t Get Under It, So Wide, You Can’t Get Around It, Oh, Wonderful Love!’ We could never make justice or even begin to describe it in a short devotion like this. His love is immense, complete and inexhaustible, but let us draw out a few things that will help our praying.
Firstly, let us notice that God is love. Yes, His love is amazing, and He certainly loves others, but we must firstly note that He is love. A fact that makes sense when we recognise that God is three persons, and from eternity the Father, Son and Spirit have been in a wonderful relationship of love. The Church Fathers described this relationship as a dance, and it is a helpful illustration as we see the flow of love between the three persons in the trinity. It is a beautiful dance that draws us to our knees in worship and adoration. This is the source and basis of all love.
Love is not static, and the love of God has been made manifest amongst us as John explains in these verses. God did not sit back in heaven looking at the mess of our world and our rebellion and leave us to it – God is love and He therefore sent his Son into the world, reaching out to us through Jesus’ death on the cross. This was a costly and selfless love, as Jesus became the propitiation for our sins. Do you recognise this today as a child of God, through faith in Christ? You are loved beyond all understanding and in every possible way. Paul makes this clear in Romans 8, ‘He who did not spare his own Son but gave him up for us all, how will he not also with him graciously give us all things?’ What a comfort and privilege as we recognise that we are held in the loving arms of our Heavenly Father, but there is more!
There is an invitation and a reality in these verses as John tells us that God sent his Son into the world so that we might live through him. Taking the previous illustration, every Christian has a ticket to the eternal love dance of God. We are invited and are to take part in the love of God. It is a wondrous truth of the gospel that through Christ, as the Spirit indwells us, we enjoy this loving relationship with God. We experience His love, are filled by it, will show it towards others, and are going to bask in it for eternity. He loves us!
We can hope in God because He is love.
- Make a list of all the ways that God has shown His love towards you.
- How does God’s love give you hope?
- Romans 8,
- 1 Corinthians 13
- Meditate on the love of God in worship and praise.
- Pray that God would increase your love towards others.
- Pray that the Church in our country would be known as people who love all.
- Pray that non-Christians would be convicted by the love of God.