7521 - Ultimate Love

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Audio transcript

Friends, it’s great to see you today.

We are now in 1 John, chapter 4 considering the subject of love. In this passage we repeatedly find reference to the Greek word, “Agape” love. It seems that the meaning of this word has been enhanced and elevated from its previous use in Greek writings. In fact, this word was infrequent in Greek usage, but when God poured out His love upon mankind through His Son Jesus, the word became the very description of the love of God.

Innately all people desire acceptance and love, and they seek it out. Many people go to great efforts to earn love.

To me it seems God placed verse 10 of 1 John 4 in this place, at this point in His discussion of this phenomenon called love, so as to raise our vision toward Him. Listen to 1 John 4:10:

“This is love: not that we loved God, but that He loved us and sent His Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins.”

In the lines just before this verse we have found the declarations “God is love” and “love comes from God.”

God seems to direct people to a new definition of love, and this would be to an unselfish, sacrificial love. God’s love is a love that may see no value in the object loved, but nevertheless pours out His love anyway.

That’s exactly what the Bible tells us was the case between God and his creation called man.

We were slaves to sin; we were outright sinners. Romans 5:10 tells us that when we were God’s enemies, we were reconciled –– re-established in friendship –– with Holy God through the death of His Son.

Now friend, that means that God took the initiative. There was no way that we could escape from our dilemma. His love would not allow Him to continue to witness His beloved creatures –– men and women, boys and girls –– buried in the cesspool of sin, drowning in the very condition caused by their rebellious independence.

So the ultimate love, the steadfast love of God, at just the right time sent His eternal, Holy, pure Son to inhabit the body of a man. May we comprehend that when Jesus left heaven He knew His destiny was to be the atoning sacrifice for the sins of the people of the earth. He knew that the atoning sacrifice had to be pure and without any blemish of sin. He also knew that He was to share fully in the humanity of mankind. This is the only kind of sacrifice, which would satisfy the justice of God regarding man’s sin.

The devil tried to defeat the plan of God. He tempted Jesus in every way that men and women are tempted (Heb. 4:15); yet Jesus perfectly relied upon the Father and Holy Spirit to protect and direct Him through the rapids of temptations, and they did (Acts 10:38; John 5:19, 30a; 14:10b)!

On one occasion (Luke 4:6-7) the devil reminded Jesus that authority over the sphere of the world had been delegated to him by God. He told Jesus to forget the cross and just bow down and worship him and that he, the devil, would give that authority to Jesus. Jesus rejected the offer by reminding the devil that all beings were to worship the Lord God and serve Him only.

So Jesus fulfilled the mission on which Father God had sent Him. He endured the humiliation of life in the flesh; was unjustly put to death in our place; and then was gloriously raised from death to prove that He was the Son of God.

Jesus today offers life to those who believe and trust. If you need love, cry out to the one who rewrote the definition of love, Jesus Christ. His love is eternal.