Love’s Endurance

The Source of Love’s Endurance – God’s eternal nature

If we were honest, this is distressing because of what we see naturally in our hearts. Sticky love? More like stinky love. Fickle love. Heartbreak Hotel Love. Lost that loving feeling love. An enduring, never-ending love? The average person would give anything to receive that kind of love, much less be able to give it.

“Beloved, let us love one another, for love is from God, and whoever loves has been born of God and knows God. 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. Beloved, if God so loved us, we also ought to love one another. No one has ever seen God; if we love one another, God abides in us and his love is perfected in us.” 1 John 4:7-12

Agape Love is not a man-made reality. Love is from God (v. 7). We don’t have sticky love naturally. We get it from God. We studied God’s love recently. Remember? Love is a word to describe the energy of self-giving commitment to one another found in the Triune Godhead. God the Father loves eternally God the Son and Spirit. The Son and the Spirit the same towards the Father. This energy is like a furnace of self-giving for the good and joy of another eternally burning within the Trinity. God is love.

This divine love was revealed to us in Christ (v. 9). In this the love of God was made manifest among us, that God sent his only Son into the world, What did Christ do on the Cross? He loved us like He has loved the Father for eternity. He self-gave his life for the eternal good and joy of sinners.

When we believe in Jesus for our salvation, God’s love takes residence within us (abides in us) by the Holy Spirit. As we love others like Christ loved us, God’s eternal love is perfected in us. Like a cake fully cooked in the oven, God’s love is perfectly matured in us.

In other words, our natural loves are Achy-Breaky. They are fickle and self-oriented and don’t last. But God’s love, now that’s a different love entirely. Agape is grounded in the eternal, unchanging nature of God. It is enduring because God’s love never ceases. It doesn’t fall down because God doesn’t fall down. His love is enduring and our expressions of love toward one another can be and ought to be very, very sticky. The Father loved us in Christmas. The Son loved us on the cross. The Spirit loves us in regeneration. We love when we self-give to others.

 

Scripture quotations are taken from The Holy Bible, English Standard Version, copyright © 2001 by Crossway Bibles, a division of Good News Publishers. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

© 2010 Steve DeWitt. You are permitted and encouraged to reproduce and distribute this material in any format provided that: (1) you credit the author, (2) any modifications are clearly marked, (3) you do not charge a fee beyond the cost of reproduction, (4) you include Bethel’s web site address (http://www.bethelweb.org/) on the copied resource.

To hear the message of this excerpt in its entirety, click here

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