Wednesday, August 13, 2008

The Love of God

There's a wideness in God's mercy
I cannot find in my own
And He keeps His fire burning
To melt this heart of stone
Keeps me aching with a yearning
Keeps me glad to have been caught
In the reckless raging fury
That they call the love of God

“The Love of God” –Rich Mullins

The most defining attribute of God is hard to pinpoint. There are so many to choose from. Many would say it is His righteousness, His faithfulness, or His unchanging nature. A lot of people would assume that God’s Holiness is His most defining characteristic, but it is not.

Defining God in light of His Holiness is like defining apples as being apple-like. The fact that God is holy means that God is set apart, different from anything else. This does not help humanity to understand what he is like. It simply shows that He is different.

To understand God from the Human vantage point is to see Him through another attribute. His love. God is love. This is the most defining attribute of God. It describes His relation to His creation.

God’s love explains how a righteous God can forgive sinners. It shows how an all-sufficient God can desire worship and relationship. It reveals how an immutable God can suffer and long after the lost.

Jesus Christ in His life on Earth showed the world God’s most defining attribute. He showed His love in His ministry to the disadvantaged. It was His love that led Him to the cross to die for the sins of the world.

It was God’s love that Jesus commanded Christians to have for each other as their defining characteristic. God’s love is the attribute that, communicated among Christians makes them different from the world. It sets them apart.

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