Truth be told, sometimes it’s so much easier to notice the love people have for you than the love God has for you. Why? Because you can physically see them and the way they express love. But when it comes to God, it can be challenging to understand the extent to which He loves you. After all, none of us can physically see Him on this side of Heaven. That’s why God gave us His Word… to help us understand who He is and how much He really does love us.
See, throughout the Bible, God is described as an all-powerful and eternally just God, but also as deeply loving to those He created. In the entire biblical story, God is presented as a character who strongly cares for us… so much so that He even allowed His Son, Jesus Christ, to enter this world to bring about a restored relationship with humanity. In fact, Jesus is the physical embodiment of God’s eternal love, showing us that His love is a real, tangible being we can cling to and put our hope in rather than just an abstract concept we can’t begin to understand. Now, before we dive further into how Jesus loves us, first let’s clarify the meaning of biblical love.
“Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.”
There are many different kinds of love. There is parental love, brotherly love, and romantic love. When anyone says the word love, we often first associate it with anything from dating to sex. But, the word is so much more broad than we often think. According to the above passage, biblical love is simply putting the needs of others before your own. All of us fall short of the expectation set by this passage at some point, because selflessness does not come naturally to us (Romans 3:23). But, the good news of the Gospel is that God perfectly embodies these four verses. He is the one that created love in the first place! In turn, this means that God is LOVE itself (1 John 4:8). And because He is love, He displays this quality not only through His words, but through His actions as well.
GOD'S DEVOTED LOVE
“As a father has compassion on his children, so the Lord has compassion on those who fear him.” - Psalm 103:13
As any good father would, God feels sentiment and shows affection toward His children. This picture of God as the perfect Father is a deeply intimate one because it illustrates how far He would go to keep us safe and secure. Another illustration of God’s love is seen in Hosea 2:14-23. Rather than a father this time, this Bible story describes a faithful husband that comforts and treasures his wife - which is also meant to be a metaphor for God’s devoted love to Israel. Despite Israel’s unfaithfulness, God expressed His infinite love for His people all the more through love poetry, painting a beautiful image of God’s extreme devotion and affection towards His Bride, the Church.
LOVE AS AN ACTION
“But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.” - Romans 5:8
But, love is not merely a feeling. Love is also an action… that God shows from the very beginning of the Bible. Out of His love, God established a rescue plan for humanity in the wake of Adam and Eve’s sin (Genesis 3:15). Out of His great love, God freed Israel from slavery in Egypt - not because they earned it, but because they were His people (Exodus 12-14). Out of His love, God became fully human, yet fully God through the person of Jesus Christ - living a perfect life and dying a death we deserved so that we could be restored to a right relationship with Him (John 3:16-17). In each scenario, all of God’s actions toward His people are motivated by pure love. He doesn’t just say He loves us, but He actually does something about it.
THE LOVE OF JESUS
“‘Greater love has no one than this: to lay down one’s life for one’s friends.’” - John 15:13
By coming into the world and sacrificing his own life for us, Jesus demonstrated the ultimate love of God. He died for us because He considered us friends worth dying for (John 15:15). This is the radical love that Jesus showed during his time on Earth… and still shows us today even if we don’t see it the same way we see the love of our friends and family. So, when asking the question “Does Jesus love me?” the simple answer is “yes.” Jesus really does love you not because of anything you’ve done, but because of who He is!
If you’ve enjoyed this blog series and want to continue learning more about the person of Jesus, we encourage you to check out the rest of our articles, which can be found below!