God is Love
Sunday - September 6th
Scripture to Read Today: 1 John 4:7-12
Love - "unconditional, others-oriented, sacrificial giving of self”
Day 6 of 30 Days of the Names and Attributes of God
Whoever does not love does not know God, because God is love.
1 John 4:8
Few of God's names or attributes get as directly linked to God's very being as the attribute of love. 1 John 4:8 simply and succinctly says, "God is Love." Nothing defines love outside the essence of God Himself. Much of what our world calls love is nothing more than selfish impulses between individuals. The love that begins and ends with God is a love that is entirely others-oriented and completely sacrificial.
Romans 5:8 says that God demonstrated His wondrous love to us in that Jesus died for our sins when we were still sinners. That is love. Often in our human relationships, we show people love if they indicate that they want it or will receive it when it is shown. God demonstrated His love to us through the sacrifice of Jesus, whether we would embrace that gift of love or not.
The best love we can show others is the love God has shown us, extended through us to them. 1 John 4:7-12 helps us understand that the true followers of Jesus act as conduits of God's love to others.
The Apostle Paul gave an excellent description of a God-like love to describe the depth and breadth of care brothers and sisters in Christ should have for each other. The application of that kind of love goes beyond our relationships with the family of God. It applies to all of our human relationships. In third grade, I was required to memorize Paul's beautiful exposition of love found in 1 Corinthians 13. Even as an eight or 9-year-old boy, the various adjectives and descriptors in that passage jumped off the page at me.
You can find the heart of 1 Corinthians 13 in verses 4-8:
Love is patient,
love is kind.
It does not envy,
it does not boast,
it is not proud.
It does not dishonor others,
it is not self-seeking,
it is not easily angered,
it keeps no record of wrongs.
Love does not delight in evil,
but rejoices with the truth.
It always protects,
Love never fails.
The folks at iBelieve.com created an incredible video that is less than five minutes that reads 1 John 4:7-12 and prays through 1 Corinthians 13:4-8. CLICK HERE to enjoy that video.
God is love. He loves you. He wants you to extend His love to others around you every day!