“Dear friends, let us love one another, for love comes from God. Everyone who loves has been born of God and knows God. Whoever does not love does not know God, because God is love.” [I John 4:7-8, italics mine]
For many years I used to read this statement as “God=Love”. After all that’s what they told us in school, wasn’t it? The word “is” is like an equal sign. God equals love. Straight-line thinking… it falls so short of reality.
At Alpha Course tonight the discussion was around the question “How can I be sure of my faith?” What we all came down to eventually (though maybe not quite in these words) was: because the Spirit makes God’s love for us known to us.
“I love you because I love you” is what God says to us. Not because we deserve it (we don’t) or because we have earned it (we can’t) or because there is any quality in us that makes us worthy of God’s love (there isn’t)… but because God is love. God could no more stop loving than He could stop being God. And if He ever did stop loving, He would cease to be God. Love is the stuff He is made of.
When you get to know God you’re getting to know the love that set the universe in motion (and keeps it in motion), the love that knows exactly how many hairs there are on your head, the love that can’t be defeated — not even by death. The love perfectly expressed in the life and death of Jesus.
I pray each person reading these words will feel a fresh breeze of God’s love through their hearts.