The Importance of Love

“Keep yourselves in the love of God.”
—Jude 21

THE LOVE OF GOD IS A different love from that which is common to the natural man, and we need to be directed into it, and to grow or develop in it, as the apostle testifies, saying, “The Lord direct your hearts into the love of God.”—II Thess. 3:5

We are directed into this love through the Divine Word which brings to our attention the peculiarity of God’s love as distinguished from that of the natural fallen man. While love in the natural man is more or less selfish, even in our very best exercise of it on behalf of friends, God commendeth his love toward us. It was a superior kind of love, because, while we were yet sinners, aliens, strangers, enemies through wicked works, God arranged that Christ should die for us.

This kind of unmerited, sacrificing love is wholly different from anything that is known to fallen humanity. As our Lord Jesus said, the greatest love among men would be that a man should lay down his life for his friends, but to lay down his life for his enemies is certainly a much higher type of love—unselfish, gracious, heavenly. “Hereby perceive we the love of God, because he [Christ] laid down his life for us.”—I John 3:16

It is after we have thus perceived the love of God that it begins to operate upon us, if we are in a favorable condition—if our hearts are good ground, prepared under Divine providence for this knowledge. We should know what to look for as evidence of our growth in grace and of our attainment of this love of God.

The Apostle John declares, “This is [proof of our possession of] the love of God, that we keep his commandments.” (I John 5:3) Whoever of the Lord’s people is in harmony with him so deeply that they delight to do his will, have as this an evidence of the love of God dwelling in them richly, and abounding.

Knowledge, when it serves its proper purpose, brings us to a realization of ‘the love of God’ and to a realization of the wisdom of copying his character. We should seek so far as possible to be like our Father which is in heaven, and copies of his dear Son. Undoubtedly love is the principal thing to be studied, appreciated, copied, and practiced in our lives. “God is love.”—I John 4:8

Let us practice and become perfected in this love.

Dawn Bible Students Association
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