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How Hast Thou Loved Us?

February 13, 2019

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How Hast Thou Loved Us?

The people of Israel were very despondent  as they faced various disciplines  from the LORD  for their sins  and unfaithfulness.     The LORD told them  of His great love for them,  but, they refused to believe it  as they faced their discipline.     In Malachi 1:2  we read,

“I have loved you,”  says the LORD.     But you say,  “How hast Thou loved us?”

Oh, how they challenged God’s declaration  of love!     They thought love meant  they could do everything their way  and get everything they wanted  from the Lord Almighty.     After all,  God is fully capable of giving them  whatever they might desire.     To them,  love was a one-way street.     They felt God should shower them  with all sorts of goodies,  while they went on their merry way  of sinning.

Throughout the book of Malachi,  God shows them their sins  and His faithful love  in trying to draw their hearts back  to a life that would honestly love  and respect  their Maker and Redeemer.     And,  God assured them  of a coming Savior,  who would free them  from all their sins  and give them the great joy  of full forgiveness.     That is the real love God faithfully gave  in Jesus Christ.

In spite of Israel’s constant waywardness,  God faithfully loved them  and sought to draw them  to Him  in the repentance  and faith  that would give them eternal life.     After all,  our goal should be eternal life.     Isn’t that what will give us  an overflowing  joy  forever and ever?     If God did not love us,  He would not be trying so hard  to draw us  into the repentance and faith needed  to grant us everlasting life.     We can’t let our feelings  about being disciplined  fool us.

All the discipline,  trials,  and tribulations we face  in this life  are God’s tools  to make us grow  in faith,  hope,  and a godly love.     It is all like Paul explains  in Ephesians 2:4-8,  after he described our deadness  in our sins,

But God,  being rich in mercy,  because of His great love  with which He loved us,  even when  we were dead  in our transgressions,  made us alive  together with Christ  (by grace  you have been saved),  and raised us up  with Him,  and seated us with Him  in the heavenly places,  in Christ Jesus,  in order that  in the ages to come  He might show the surpassing riches  of His grace  in kindness toward us  in Christ Jesus.

For by grace  you have been saved  through faith;  and that not of yourselves,  it is the gift  of God.

Grace is the undeserved love  of God.     In our sinful lives —  and in considering Jesus’ suffering and death  on our behalf — we can never rightly say  we are unloved.

How has God loved us?     In the very torturous death  of Jesus Christ — and in faithfully pursuing us  day after day,  in an effort  to get us  to turn to Him.     Many don’t appreciate  God’s love and pursuit,  so they reject the Lord even more stubbornly.     But,  everyone who realizes  and loves  how greatly God loves them  will begin to live  for the Lord now — and through all eternity.

And so,  love begets love.     The real meaning of love  is found  in Jesus’  love.     Then,  in wonder we say,  “Hallelujah!     Lord,  thank You  for loving me  in so many different ways every day  and by pursuing me  even when I have sinned.”

Love,
Margaret

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A Christian devotional to glorify the LORD of lords and God of gods

 

Pray for our country.

 

This is the day which the LORD has made;
Let us rejoice and be glad in it.
Psalm 118:24

 

The word of the LORD is tried;
He is a shield  to all  who take refuge  in Him.
Psalm 18:30

 

Sing for joy in the LORD,  O you righteous ones;
Praise is becoming  to the upright.
Psalm 33:1

 

How blessed are those  who dwell in Thy house!
They are ever praising Thee.
Psalm 84:4

 

Just as a father has compassion  on his children,
So the LORD has compassion on those who fear Him.
Psalm 103:13

 

Oh give thanks to the LORD,  for He is good;
For His lovingkindness is everlasting.
Psalm 107:1

 

Glory in His holy name;
Let the heart of those who seek the LORD be glad.
Psalm 105:3

 

Not that I have already obtained it, or have already become perfect, but I press on in order that
I may lay hold of that for which also I was laid hold of by Christ Jesus.
Philippians 3:12

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