I’ve met folks who insist that God doesn’t love them. And when I ask why, they go on to mention how God has blessed the other brother or sister more than them. When I try encouraging them by stating that God loves all of us His creation equally, they blatantly disagree. “If God’s love is everlasting, why am I not currently experiencing it?” they would ask.
The reason there appears to be a dilemma as to whether God loves all of us equally is because many believers fail to understand that God’s love can be categorized based on human’s perception into objective love and subjective love.
Love objective. God is love. First John four eight establishes that. God does not change. Malachi three six, among other scriptures testify to this. If these are true, then God’s love never change. What that means is that God doesn’t become more loving. His love for you doesn’t increase or decrease because of what you’ve done or failed to do.
“I have loved you with an everlasting love; I have drawn you with unfailing kindness.” (Jeremiah 31:3 NIV) That was God speaking to Israel. The love of God is everlasting. It is His essence. It continues to emanate from His person, never appreciating nor depreciating. “Love never fails…” (1 Corinthians 13:8) It can continue heading in one direction, never fading, even if it generates no response. This is objective love.
The love He has for sinners is the exact same measure He has for saints. The love God gives is never based on our performance, “For God so loved the world that He gave Jesus…” (John 3:16) And when did God do that? While we were still sinners. “But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.” (Romans 5:8 NIV). The love of God shines, on sinners and saints alike. But why does the saint seem to enjoy the love of God in a measure greater than the sinner does?
Love subjective. Even though God’s love towards all is the same, everyone does not experience the same measure of that love. Why? Because the measure of God’s love we experience is dependent on our response to it. The saint is saved and the sinner is not, because the former responded to the Love of God that hung on a tree, by believing.
These were the words of Christ, ” Whoever has my commands and keeps them is the one who loves me. The one who loves me will be loved by my Father, and I too will love them and show myself to them.” (John 14:21 NIV) Someone may read this and conclude that God’s love is conditional. Well, it depends on which you’re considering. God’s objective love is unconditional while God’s subjective love is. You loving God by obeying His words is your positive response to God’s love. And as you do this, the Spirit of God, working in your spirit, opens you up to more of God’s objective love, and your measure of love (subjective) increases, making you more like Christ. (2 Corinthians 3:18)
So, an obedient believer appears to be experiencing more of God’s love than the disobedient one. And God appears to be loving the devout Christian more and showing Himself more to the faithful one. This is love subjective.
God’s love (objective) is shining to all. His desire is that all responds to it and be saved. And that those of us saved, continue to obey His word and walk in love, that we may experience more of His love (subjective).
Christ gave us only one commandment – to love. We owe others only one thing – to love. The bible says nothing about setting aside a day to remember love, neither does it say anything against it. “Whoever regards one day as special does so to the Lord…”(Romans 14:6) We are to love everyday. But if a day has been set aside by the world to commemorate love, then we christians must set the pace by reminding ourselves of God’s love and showing it to the world. For we owe them love; we owe them God.
Happy Val’s day!