God is All-Loving and His Actions Prove It
by Gini Crawford, MSW
God's love is defined by His actions
In many instances in our society, love has become just a hollow word, because we fail to put our love into action. God's love, in contrast, is filled with loving action.
...for I knew that You are a gracious and compassionate God, slow to anger and abundant in lovingkindness (hesed)... Jonah 4:2b NASB®
Let me ask you a few questions so you will clearly understand what I am meaning about actions of love. Do you have a spouse who gives you romantic gifts, but is never there for you? Have you had someone say she is doing something out of love for you, but what she is doing says she doesn't even like you? When words are said and gifts are given to show love, but they have no loving actions to back them up, we don't really feel or think we are loved, do we? Remember that old but true saying, "actions speak louder than words."
The Crucifixion. Before the Roman soldiers drove nails through Jesus' hands and feet to hang Him on a cross to execute Him like a common criminal - they stripped Him, mocked His claim to deity including placing a crown of thorns and a purple robe on Him, and they whipped and struck Him brutally. Jesus was also betrayed and denied by close friends, and then spit on, beaten and condemned by the chief religious leaders. (Matthew 26:1-4, 47-75, 27:11-54).
But He was pierced through for our transgressions, He was crushed for our iniquities; the chastening for our well-being fell upon Him, and by His scourging we are healed. / But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us. Isaiah 53:5; Romans 5:8 NASB®
As Jesus hung on the cross, the world went dark for three hours, as He was forsaken by God the Father when He became our sin-offering. What happened during the darkness? God the Son felt a separation from God the Father that He had never known, as the God of perfect holiness allowed the Son of His triune Being to take the punishment for our sins upon Himself.
...darkness fell upon all the land...Jesus cried out with a loud voice, saying,... "My God, My God, why have You forsaken Me?" Matthew 27:45-46 NASB®
What comes to my mind now is the song: Oh how He loves you and me... He gave His life what more could He give... What comes to your mind?
The Resurrection. Yes, Jesus Christ died on the cross, but He did not remain dead. He rose from the dead three days later. (Matthew 27:57-61, 28:1-10). If Jesus had not risen from the dead, His death would have been just like the many thousands of other people who were crucified on a cross. Without Jesus' resurrection there would have been no victory over sin and death. Jesus' resurrection proved that He is God, and that He has the power to pay for our sins and to give us the certainty of our resurrection. (John 10:17-18; Romans 1:4; 1 Corinthians 15:3-8, 50-57).
In Texas, twenty-six innocent people were murdered as they worshipped our God. Because of God's death and resurrection, evil had no victory that day. As those beloved people died, they went immediately to Jesus. (John 11:25-26; 2 Corinthians 5:6-9). When the distress of life hits, which is often, the hope of the resurrection gives me peace and strength. How about you?
God's Word. God wanted the people He loved to know about Him and life, and the real history of the world from beginning to the end; so God through His Spirit inspired many different authors to write His Book (2 Peter 1:20-21). The golden thread of God's love throughout the Bible is Jesus Christ, and what He did for us (Psalm 119:41).
After Jesus' resurrection, He walked the earth for 40 days, then ascended back to heaven (Acts 1:3). One of the many things He did during this time was to walk with two of His disciples as He explained to them the things pertaining to Him throughout the Bible (Luke 24:13-32). You can tell by the story it was a life-changing experience for them.
God's Creation. God spoke, and creation unfolded day by day into the beautiful world He wanted for us. His creation is His work of love for us. (Psalm 33:5, 108:4 119:64. 136:1-9). God in fact created you to love you. (John 3:16). Creation is a wonderful love story, isn't it?
You have granted me life and lovingkindness (hesed); And Your care has preserved my spirit. Job 10:12 NASB®
God's love is personal towards you and me. We can't say we love someone, until we have someone to love. You are God's someone to love! God's love is towards each one of us, as if we were God's only love. God loves you no matter what you have done or who you are. As you know, people's love has conditions. You do something wrong, and their love may stop. Yet God's love is different. He loved me before I was born, and has never stopped loving me even when I didn't know or care about Him. God's actions of love changed my life. What about your life?
...the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself up for me. / The LORD appeared to him from afar, saying, I have loved you with an everlasting love; therefore I have drawn you with lovingkindness. Galatians 2:20b, Jeremiah 31:3 NASB®
Love put in plain words
First Corinthians chapter thirteen has been called the Love Chapter of the Bible. Below is the passage in First Corinthians chapter thirteen that specifically describes God's love.
Love is patient, love is kind and is not jealous; love does not brag and is not arrogant, does not act unbecomingly; it does not seek its own, is not provoked, does not take into account a wrong suffered, does not rejoice in unrighteousness, but rejoices with the truth; bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. 1 Corinthians 13:4-7 NASB®
Keep in mind God never asks you to do what He hasn't done. So when you are asked to love others with these loving qualities, Jesus has loved you that way. Just replace the word love with Jesus: Jesus is patient, Jesus is kind, and so on. Summarize 1 Corinthians 13:4-7 in your own words.
Now ask God to give you the ability and desire to love this way.
Remember we are commanded to love God too! Read Mark 12:29-31.
One of the ways I show my love to God is by memorizing His words, especially the Psalms. Memorizing allows Who God is and what He has done for me to become a part of my thoughts and my heart. My daughter in law told me to tell you here, to memorize Psalm 1. It is a Psalm that explains the importance of memorizing God's Word. Wise idea.
Extra info: If you want more information on God's actions of love, I wrote a Bible study on God's love based on His actions of love. The name is: God Loves You and Me.
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