Love is Giving of Yourself for the Good of Those Who Don’t Love You

imagesWe ask the third question—Who do you show love? “In this is love, not that we have loved God but that he loved us and sent his Son to be the propitiation for our sins” (1 John 4:10). Notice that love is not that we have loved God. Our love for God does not define this love. Rather, God’s love for us defines this love. The definition of this love is that God loved us. The evidence of this love is that God sent his Son as a sacrifice.

But God loved us though we do not love God. John wrote in 1 John 4:19, “We love because he first loved us.” Listen! God first loved us, not us who first loved God. We love because God first loved us. Conversely, we did not love God before God first loved us. The amazing thing about God’s love is that God loved sinners who don’t love Him. God sent his Son to sinners who are not interested in him. God sent his Son to sinners who reject him.

We go back to our third question. Who then do we show love? We show love to people who don’t love us. Love is a giving of yourself for the good of people who don’t love you.

Remember how Adam and Eve? Like Adam and Eve, we turned their backs on God. Like Adam and Eve, we disobeyed God. We chose to live our own lives, rejecting the rule of God.

Like Adam and Eve, we did not go searching for God. Rather, God came searching for us. When God found us, he sent his Son. While we were yet sinning, Christ died for us (Rom. 5:8).

Thus, we now understand the third definition of love. Love is giving yourself for the good of people who don’t love you.

God did not get to choose who he loves. John said God so loved the world. God did not get to choose those who love him. John said God loved us, before we loved God. God did not get to choose those who are like him. We are not like God. God is holy and we are sinners. God did not get to choose those who are like him.[1]

But that is the point of God’s love for us; and our love for others. God has not called us to choose those who love us. God has called us to love those who hate us. We are not called to love only those who are like us. We are called to love those who are unlike us. We are not called to love only those who agree with us. We are called to love those who disagree with us. We are not called to love only those who are for us. We are called to love even those who are against us.

[1] Wilkerson, “Deep Love.” Online: http://www.preachingtoday.com.

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