1 John 4:7-8 says, “Those who are loved by God, let his love continually pour from you to one another, because God is love. Everyone who loves is fathered by God and experiences an intimate knowledge of him. The one who doesn’t love has yet to know God, for God is love”.
God is love. This revelation of how God is love came about as the writer was encouraging us to love one another. When Jesus was asked what the greatest commandment was, He answered saying it was 1. Love God and 2. Love each other. I summarize but you can read the full version in Matthew 22:36-40.
Our verse today helps us to understand two things. That we are to love others and God is love. God does not ask us to do something that is impossible to do. He asked us to love each other because He is love. If we know Him, then we can love others because if we know Him, we know that He has made His home in our hearts and He lives in us and because He of this, we can pull from His love and pour it out to those around us.
So, what does it mean that God is love? It is part of who He is. God not only loves but He is love. Now I think that sort of helps our human minds get around the everlasting love aspect of His love. He can’t stop loving us, that would be against His nature. I find that comforting. People can love us one day and hate us the next but God loves us every single day.
When we are going through tragedy and loss, God loves us. When we are dealing with pain and heartache, God loves us. When we are having the best day yet, God loves us. Whether we are laughing or crying, God loves us. It is hard to understand sometimes because we assume that His love makes us exempt from experiencing life but it doesn’t. We may not always understand the situation or be able to reason it out in our minds but we can trust that God loves us at 100% capacity 100% of the time. He is love and He loves us unconditionally.
This is an excerpt from a book I was reading and it says, “I used to question God when I met someone who was in as much pain as the mom who had recently buried her son. How could God allow these things to happen? I struggled because I used my human understanding to try to understand the divine plans and ways of God. I’ll never know enough about Him this side of eternity to make everything crystal clear. So I don’t question anymore. Instead, I pray for them, often with tears running down my face, and I worship God in that sacred place of not understanding. That could come across like a cultlike obedience that’s out of touch with reality. Far from it. For me, there is no greater reality than the love and faithfulness of God. I don’t always see God’s hand in a heartbreaking situation but as a great preacher Charles Spurgeon wrote, “And when we cannot trace His hand, we must trust His heart.” (1)
God’s love is everlasting. It lasts through all seasons of life and all situations. He draws us to Himself with lovingkindness, He never condemns us. He is always faithful to us even when we can’t see it. He passionately loves us and He thinks we were worth dying for. He is love and He loves us unconditionally.
Love and blessings,
1. Walsh, Sheila. (2018) It’s okay not to be okay: Moving forward one day at a time. Grand Rapids, Michigan: Baker Books (at pages 267-268).