Bible Society of South Africa
Louise Gevers

Who is God? – Day 21

Love

Bible text(s)

God is Love

7Dear friends, let us love one another, because love comes from God. Whoever loves is a child of God and knows God. 8Whoever does not love does not know God, for God is love.

1 John 4:7-8GNBOpen in Bible reader

Love is truly one of the most important focuses in the world and it doesn’t matter where you come from, you will know about it. For human beings falling in love, finding your life partner and staying in love with him or her is one of the most important things in life. In essence it is something that affects our happiness and the way we live our lives. But we are told to love others too, not just our spouse and families. This is no surprise to us when we see that love and commitment come from God and love is rooted in Him. In fact, the word “love” appears 551 times in the NIV Bible, something from which we can gain much insight.

“God is love” is possibly the easiest statement to believe about Him, because we see evidence of it everywhere we look. Everything in this world has been designed and created to bring blessing, ongoing life and fulfilment to each person, with no exceptions. What this means is that this was no accident! Love is really the deepest level of relating and is sacrificial in action. It involves putting others on the same level as yourself and caring for their needs before your own. In the same caring way that a husband and wife meticulously enjoy building a home for themselves and their family, stopping at nothing in their power to make it beautiful and comfortable for one other, so God enjoyed creating a world of beauty to be enjoyed by everyone in it. He does not stop anyone seeing and enjoying what He has made, nor does He deprive anyone of their basic needs. He expects us all to enjoy the world he created and to share it and live in His ways of love.

This was recognised by Jesus in Matthew 5:43-45: “You have heard that it was said, ‘You shall love your neighbour and hate your enemy.’ But I say to you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, so that you may be sons of your Father who is in heaven. For he makes his sun rise on the evil and on the good, and sends rain on the just and on the unjust.” What gracious characteristics of a loving God, giving freely to all. He wants us to follow His example and not just love those who love us.

In John 15:13 Jesus says: “Greater love has no one than this: to lay down one’s life for one’s friends.” God sets the example for us in that His Son lay down His life for the world to show how much He loved it.

Bible Society of South Africav.4.20.14
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