The Love of God

Herein 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 4:10

True love is characterized by self-sacrifice. No where is this more evident than with the love of God. (John 3:16) It is a love which is "uncaused" in the sense that there was nothing in the objects loved that "caused" God to love them. He loved them because He is love and chose to love them.

God’s love is "unconditional." It is not based on the love of the individual towards Him. It is not a reciprocating love. Our love usually is in response to the love of another for us. In the case of God’s love He loved despite the absence of our love for Him. His love is not conditioned upon our loving Him.

God’s love is "unmerited." Since God’s love is unconditional, there is nothing man can do to earn it. Many would be led to believe if they would straighten out their lives then God would love them. This is erroneous teaching.

To have some appreciation of God’s love we must have some understanding of our own sinfulness. Sadly, many, even saints, have little grasp of how sinful unregenerate man is. They focus on the obvious sins of others while failing to see the sinfulness of their own heart. Some too often fail to understand that their flesh is no better today than the day they were saved.

It is those who know their own sinfulness who come to know and appreciate the love of God. (Luke 15:21; Rom. 5:8) Those who sense their unworthiness of God’s love, come to know it and now appreciate it. (1 John 4:16) "Keep yourselves in the (enjoyment of) the love of God" Jude 21