From the very beginning, God sought a relationship with man. That was why God created man in the first place. But then man sinned and turned his back on God. What would God do? He had every right to, in anger, shove man aside and caste him into hell right then and there. Didn’t man deserve it? Would not God be justified? But instead of throwing man away, God came after him. You see, the whole story of the Bible is a Love Story. God made man, man left God, but God came after man. Because God is a Righteous Judge, He now must judge man. Therefore, man must go to the place called hell. But God didn’t want to send him there. But He had to. God wanted man in heaven with Him, but He couldn’t have sin in heaven (you could almost say that God was in a dilemma). So God promised a Deliverer. Someone who would come and pay the price for man’s sins. Someone who would be a substitute. God was going to do everything He could, to rescue the one He was in love with. But there was a problem. The substitute had to be sinless. If this substitute had sin, he must die for his own, so he wouldn’t be able to die for the sin of another. And where would God find a sinless man? Adam was not sinless, and every one of his children would have sin.
It was hopeless.
And then, all of heaven must have breathed a collective gasp, when Jesus Christ, the eternal Creator and Son of God, sitting on the throne where all of heaven worshipped Him, stands to His feet and says, “I WILL GO.” While the Bible does not quote this statement, Jesus may have said something like the following. “I WILL BECOME THE SINLESS MAN, THE SACRIFICE FOR MY CREATION, MY TRUE LOVE.”
THE GREAT LOVE OF GOD
How the angels must have wondered at the great love of God. The very heart of God, the very reason that God sent His Only Son (the most precious person or thing in the entire world to Him), the very reason for which Jesus willingly came, is reflected in the following words:
For the Son of man is come to seek and to save that which was lost. (Luke 19:10)
Say unto them, As I live, saith the Lord GOD, I have no pleasure in the death of the wicked; but that the wicked turn from his way and live: turn ye, turn ye from your evil ways; for why will ye die, O house of Israel? (Ezekiel 33:11)
The Lord…is longsuffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance. (2 Peter 3:9)
Let the wicked forsake his way, and the unrighteous man his thoughts: and let him return unto the LORD, and he will have mercy upon him; and to our God, for he will abundantly pardon. (Isaiah 55:7)
Cast away from you all your transgressions, whereby ye have transgressed; and make you a new heart and a new spirit: for why will ye die, O house of Israel? (Ezekiel 18:31)
One individual means more to God than the entire universe. And that means YOU. He knows you by name. You are very special to Him (not because of what you are, but in spite of what you are). Though God hates your sin, He loves you immeasurably, and was willing to do the unthinkable so that you could be in heaven with Him.
For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. (John 3:16)
You can tell how much something means to someone by how much they are willing to give in exchange. According to the verse you just read, God gave all that He had – the most important thing to Him. He gave a person, His own Son. Do you get the picture? God truly thinks a lot of you.
But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us. (Romans 5:8)
Do you know that God loves you more than you can ever imagine? He says the following to the people of Israel, but it can be extended to all people.
The LORD hath appeared of old unto me, saying, Yea, I have loved thee with an everlasting love: therefore with lovingkindness have I drawn thee. (Jeremiah 31:3)
Do you know that the number of thoughts of love toward you, (fill in your name _____________) are so many, that only an all knowing and all-powerful God could count them?
Many, O LORD my God, are thy wonderful works which thou hast done, and thy thoughts which are to us-ward: they cannot be reckoned up in order unto thee: if I would declare and speak of them, they are more than can be numbered. (Psalms 40:5)
How precious also are thy thoughts unto me [this means you], O God! how great is the sum of them! If I should count them, they are more in number than the sand… (Psalms 139:17-18)
He created you. You are a very special part of God’s plan. He wants to give you a purpose. Do you know that God even has a book in heaven that contains the dimensions of your limbs, the length of your eyelashes, the color of your eyes? Do you know that God knows your name?
I will praise thee; for I am fearfully and wonderfully made: marvellous are thy works; and that my soul knoweth right well. My substance was not hid from thee, when I was made in secret, and curiously wrought in the lowest parts of the earth. Thine eyes did see my substance, yet being unperfect; and in thy book all my members were written, which in continuance were fashioned, when as yet there was none of them.
Only God really knows you. He sees into your heart, into the very depths of your soul. He KNOWS why you do what you do. He knows everything you have ever done. He knows your desires, your hurts, your fears.
Psalms 139:1-4 … O LORD, thou hast searched me, and known me. Thou knowest my downsitting and mine uprising, thou understandest my thought afar off. Thou compassest my path and my lying down, and art acquainted with all my ways. For there is not a word in my tongue, but, lo, O LORD, thou knowest it altogether.
How sad it is, when people will reject all that love from their Creator, a home in heaven, the perfect Father, all for silly selfish reasons. Many people reject God’s love and mercy for something else that means more to them, such as drugs, drinking, pornography, adultery, or sex outside of marriage.
…Be not deceived: neither fornicators, nor idolators, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor abusers of themselves with mankind, nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners, shall inherit the kingdom of God. (1 Corinthians 6:9-10)
Another reason for which people reject God is self-righteousness. Often, people feel that they aren’t “that bad” and that they are doing God a favor by living a good life. By believing this, they are simply saying they do not need God. Others reject God out of fear of what their friends, family, or a spouse will say if they suddenly “get religion.” For some, their reason is the love of money or pleasure. While yet others do not want to let go of bitterness or anger. Others have pride in their religion or denomination and will not let go of their tradition or their “heritage.” Some people are afraid it will upset Mom and Dad. Others are just plain afraid of what others would think: afraid to be different.
What is the thing you would allow to come between you and God? What would you put before a relationship with the God Who loves you – the God Who created you?
Is it worth it?
For what shall it profit a man, if he shall gain the whole world, and lose his own soul? Or what shall a man give in exchange for his soul? (Mark 8:36-37)