Monday, May 1, 2006

Winning the Heart of God

“For the Father himself loveth you, because ye have loved me, and have believed that I came out from God.” (John 16:27)

How are we to reconcile the conditional love referred to in this verse with verses such as John 3:16 that tell us God loved the whole world? Perhaps the same way we reconcile the way you and I claim to love all God’s creation yet are unmistakably drawn to certain areas and aspects of it, for personal reasons. Or the fact that my love for children carries with it a special affinity for those four that I gave birth to. Why should I question the motivations of God when my own are exclusive? Having lain to rest a seeming contradiction, we are now free to look at this verse as it stands and glean a precious truth.

Tell me if I’m wrong, but does this verse not say that God loves me in a special way because I love His Son and have chosen to regard Him as just that—the Son of God? Frankly, I find this is as understandable as the motivations I mentioned earlier. I, too, am partial to people who think highly of my children and who recognize them as being “chips off the old block!” When you compliment them, you have complimented me (and their father, of course).

It goes without saying, this has nothing to do with whether or not a man or woman is going to Heaven or hell. That determination and choice is a free gift God offers to the world He loves. I’m talking (and so is our Lord, I think) about the kind of relationship two people share who love the same thing. In this case, God and I love His Son, and that is enough to warm the hearts of both Him and me. And the way I look at it, what’s not to love?

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