The Love Of God

W. Terry Varner
February 16, 2014

No study on love would be complete if it did not include a study on God as the God of love. Perhaps, no subject within the pages of the Bible is covered as fully as the subject of the love of God. Do you realize that the Bible is the only book that sets forth God as love. Heathen gods were often angry, cruel, hateful, and in need of constant appeasement.

Love is so much a part of God’s character that twice it is stated, “God is love” (1 John 4:8, 16). Love is probably the quality that is closest and dearest to man. In one of our great songs, the poet states:

Could I with ink the ocean fill,
Were the earth of parchment made,
And every blade of grass a quill,
And every man a scribe by trade,
To write the love of God above
Would drain the ocean dry,
And the scroll could not contain the whole,
Though it stretch from sky to sky.

Why God loves man. The Bible speaks of various objects of God’s love. God loved Jesus, “You loved Me before the foundation of the world” (John 17:24). God loves the redeemed,“He loved us and sent His Son to be the propitiation for our sins” (1 John 4:9). God loves the lost, “But God demonstrates His love toward us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us” (Rom. 5:8).

God loves us. God wants to save us (2 Peter 3:9). We can reject the love of God and still be lost. He loves us because He made us.

How God loves man. We may never fully understand God’s love for man, but we can understand, from the Bible some of howGod loves man.

His love is seen in the beauty of the world.“For since the creation of the world His invisible attributes are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even His eternal power and Godhead, so that they are without excuse” (Rom. 1:20). Of the world, He “who formed the earth made it (He established it; He did not create it empty, He formed it to be inhabited!): I am the LORD, and there is no other” (Isa. 45:18).

His love is seen in the blessings of life.What would life be like without its many blessings— food, shelter, family, friends, et al. “Behold what manner of love the Father has bestowed on us” (1 John 3:1). When we consider the blessings of life that we enjoy, we can exclaim with James, the brother of Jesus, “Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and comes down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or shadow of turning” (James 1:17).

His love is seen in sending Jesus as our Savior.“For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life” (John 3:16). “In this is love, not that we loved God, but that He loved us and sent His Son to be the propitiation for our sins” (1 John 4:9). The dimensions of God’s love are set forth in Ephesians 3:17-19: “Breath”—“Jesus ... By the grace of God, might taste death for everyone” (Heb. 2:9). “Length”—“Greater love has no one than this, that he lay down his life for his friends” (John 15:13). “Depth”—“O the depth of the riches both of the wisdom and knowledge of God” (Rom. 11:33). “Height”—after dying for man on Calvary’s cross, “God also has highly exalted Him and given Him the name which is above every name, that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow” (Philip. 2:8-9).