How did Jesus Christ prove His love toward us? He gave His life on our behalf as a payment for sin. How did God prove His love toward us? The proof of His love (as recorded in John 3:16) was found in His willingness to give His only begotten Son so that we might live. These things have already been done and are accomplished realities.
There is no question that God loved us enough to give His Son. There is no question that Jesus loved us enough to give His sinless life as a sacrifice for sin. The only questions that remains are ones of understanding how God continues to display His love toward us and how He will manifest that love in the ages to come. The answers to these questions are provided in Ephesians 2:4-7. Within these few short verses is found the treasure chest of spiritual understanding regarding just how deep and wonderful the Father's love for us really is.
4but God, being rich in mercy, for his great love wherewith he loved us,
5even when we were dead through our trespasses, made us alive together with Christ (by grace have ye been saved),
6and raised us up with him, and made us to sit with him in the heavenly places, in Christ Jesus:
7that in the ages to come he might show the exceeding riches of his grace in kindness toward us in Christ Jesus:
Ephesians 2:4-7 American Standard Version
The richness of God's mercy manifested in His great love for us encompasses the past, present and future. The greatness of God's kindness, manifested in the exceeding riches of His grace, gives us strength in the present hour and hope of an eternity with God. God's grace, mercy, love and kindness are all in Christ Jesus. Christ Jesus dwells in us and when we live in Christ Jesus we will manifest in our words and lives the depth of God's love and kindness.
The greatness of all God has done for us is not complicated but it is far greater than our finite minds can grasp. In a world whose collective heart has been hardened by hate, hardships and horror; the depth of God's love and compassion at times is too much for people to handle. Doubts and anger prevent people from simply accepting what they crave deep within their hearts but refuse to believe is really available.
When God is strictly presented as a mean ogre whose only desire is punishing sin, the overwhelming greatness of His goodness, grace, mercy, kindness and love cannot be seen or experienced. When we begin to comprehend how much God loves us and how deep His kindness is to us, that is when we fall to our knees in humble adoration that a God so loving would love us even when we were sinners.
I suppose people can be scared into getting saved, but it is far better for people to be loved into loving God instead. We need to understand that Jesus is the way to God and eternal life and not some kind of fire escape from hell. All the fullness of the Father's love to us as manifested in His grace, mercy and kindness is in Christ Jesus. Christ Jesus is indeed the perfect reflection of the exceeding riches of God's grace and kindness.
[quote]I suppose people can be scared into getting saved, but it is far better for people to be loved into loving God instead. We need to understand that Jesus is the way to God and eternal life and not some kind of fire escape from hell.[/quote]
When I was a young, I saw the results of fear tactics. I am not saying this is true for every situation but I observed that a lot of people who head to the altar motivated by fear, go POOF! once fear is gone. I can only surmise that there was no repentance, only guilt and there is a difference.
Looking back on my own experience, I would have to say that repentance was definitely intertwined with the realization that God loved me. Yes, the Holy Spirit revealed to me that I was a sinner but well... I don't think that's what made me cry. It was because I suddenly realized that God REALLY loved me and my actions brought Him grief. Just thinking about it right now makes me cry. Why? Because I responded to His love with my own love. Yes, it is a poor, imperfect love that can in no way be compared to His love but that love is growing richer and fuller the more I get to know Him.
It is all "in Jesus Christ". Gods love for us is all revealed in Jesus Christ.
So much i could write, but won't. Here is one who surrendered because he not only believed the promises, but also heeded the warnings. My faith has not gone 'poof' yet.
The secular ones focus a lot on love. Peace. Unity. But they don't like the warnings either. Kinda like the universalist. Its all good.
Yes. My tears for GOD not because of fear but because of mixture of seeing GOD's love, gratitude to GOD's love, contrition of my vile act to hurt my GOD's heart with varous sin. Very very true. GOD is love, the greatest love.