John 15:13-16 – “Greater love has no one than this, than to lay down one’s life for his friends. 14 You are My friends if you do whatever I command you. 15 No longer do I call you servants, for a servant does not know what his master is doing; but I have called you friends, for all things that I heard from My Father I have made known to you.” NKJV
There is an overriding inescapable reality we face as we study Scripture. It leaps forth in the 66 Books of the Bible and is visible on page after page and passage after passage. It is something almost impossible to explain and almost inexplicable. That of which I speak is the Incomparable Love God has for mankind. Yes, we are His creation but our history has been one of rejection and rebellion. He would have easily been justified in smashing the race like bugs and virtually did that saving only Noah and his family. He has demonstrated His incredible patience and willingness to give us second, third, fourth and fiftieth changes and yet mankind continues to seek something other than Him.
The work of Christ on the Cross is a testimony of the depth of God’s love for mankind as is revealed in John 3:16. Jesus, in our text, testifies that He considers us His friends and in laying down His life He has demonstrated the “no greater love.” Peter tells us in 2 Peter 3:9 that God “… is longsuffering toward us, not willing that any should perish but that all should come to repentance.” Paul wrote in Romans 8:37-39 regarding God’s love for mankind and declared that NOTHING could separate us from God’s love. In Ephesians 2:4-5 he reminds us of the depth of God’s love
God’s love is Unconditional whereas human love is conditional. If others reject us, spurn our demonstrations of love, disrespect, disappoint and turn their backs on us love would not be the descriptor for our feelings toward them. But with God, He loves us regardless. Make no mistake His unconditional love will not vacate His holiness or judgment. He has promised that if we ‘come to Him’ He will not reject us but if we reject Him and die in that condition He cannot overlook our sin.
Jesus wept over Jerusalem because of the continual rejection of the inhabitants and I believe God weeps over our world today. There have been at least three times in my life when, in a time of prayer and meditation, I heard God weeping. It was one of the most disturbing experiences I have ever had and as I sensed His heartbreak I was broken. The Omnipotent One could crush us like aluminum cans and with the stroke of His finger remove us from the planet and yet He chooses to LOVE US and demonstrates longsuffering beyond human ability to comprehend.
We can never merit that love but through grace He extends it. As I mediate on this today I tremble realizing the times I have taken His mercy for granted. How could anyone reject such incomparable love? How? I believe that to reject God’s love we must become so self-absorbed that our love for ourselves overpowers our reason. I believe that to reject God’s love we must believe the Lie of the devil and elevate ourselves to be equals with God in our minds. Jesus said in John 8:32 – “And you shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.” If we SEE truly SEE the finished work of Christ on the Cross and the Love of God we will respond and be made free.
I pray that if anyone is teetering on the fence undecided about God, His mercy, grace and love will cause your eyes to be opened and SEE. I pray that each of us gain spiritual sight to a greater measure and SEE God’s Great Love!
God bless you as you go through this day!