Anthem Church // December 22, 2014
Scripture:

Beloved, let us love one another, for love is from God; and everyone who loves is born of God and knows God. The one who does not love does not know God, for God is love. By this the love of God was manifested in us, that God has sent His only begotten Son into the world so that we might live through Him. In this is love, not that we loved God, but that He loved us and sent His Son to be the propitiation for our sins. Beloved, if God so loved us, we also ought to love one another. No one has seen God at any time; if we love one another, God abides in us, and His love is perfected in us.

– 1 John 4:7-12


Devotion:

When our children were born, as parents, we were curious to see who they resembled. We held our babies and felt such a deep love, that we had not known existed. When I see baby Jesus in stores at Christmas time, it’s difficult to sense heavenly love, painted on figurines. Yet, God gave up His dearly loved Son, to put His love for mankind on exhibit for the entire world for generations to come. We look at Jesus, and see the reflection of His Father’s image….Love, for God is Love. The baby in the nativity came to earth to say to the world, “I love you.”

The Christian life is not about being a good person or living a moral, ethical life. Rather Jesus came to give us life and to live His life through us, a life motivated by love. Because of this perfect, complete love, Jesus sacrificed Himself for the benefit of the ones He loves. He became our propitiation for sin or the satisfying sacrifice for our sin problem once and for all. God is totally satisfied with the payment for sin that His Son paid. And the damage that was done to our relationship with God has been completely cleared away. This perfect love, coming from God through Jesus, means we are clean before God. There are no barriers, no condemnation because Jesus paid the price for us.  So because He loved us first, we are now empowered to love others.

 

“He left His Father’s throne above so free, so infinite His Grace- Emptied Himself of all but love, and bled for Adams’s helpless race: Tis mercy all, immense and free for O my God, it found out me! Amazing love! How can it be, that thou, my God should die for me?”

– Charles Wesley

 

//  Candy Taranto

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