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There is no filial love inspired by an angry God, whose love is contingent upon man lowering his fist first. That’s why God loved first. That’s why God always loves first —and commands that we love each other the same way no matter the cost. Do you doubt that God loved first? The Bible says “…the goodness of God leads you to repentance,” (Romans 2:4).
Repentance is when you put your fist down because God loved first – and you believed it. “For while we were still helpless, at the right time, Christ died for the ungodly. For rarely will someone die for a just person — though for a good person perhaps someone might even dare to die. But God proves his own love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us. How much more then since we have now been declared righteous by his blood, will we be saved through him from wrath. For if, while we were enemies, we were reconciled to God through the death of his Son, then how much more, having been reconciled, will we be saved by his life,” (Romans 5:6-10 CSB).
That’s a lot of words to rattle around, but basically, the Bible is telling us ‘God loved first’— without pre-conditions.
That’s why I don’t want to get uppity about giving people the benefit of the doubt, or refuse to give of myself because I don’t think people deserve it, or require them to fix themselves to my satisfaction before I decide to hand them a get out of jail free card. I’m not implying people don’t have a responsibility to make things right when necessary. I’m saying God needs to move first – and he may want to use me to do that. I want the goodness of God to lead people to repentance by letting the goodness of God work first unconditionally through me.
Basically, I want to love people the way Jesus loves them, or I don’t want to pretend I love Jesus at all.
Minnesota, USA - grace-lines.net
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