Fierce Love: God’s Very Essence is Love
God’s love is unlike anything the world has to offer us. It is beyond our wildest imagination, beyond anything we could ever earn or deserve. But God’s love is not a behavior he chooses to put on whenever he’s in a good mood. Love is actually his very essence!
But anyone who does not love does not know God, for God is love. 1 John 4:8
When the world is asked, what is God like?, most people will respond with a variety of answers: God is absent, God is fickle, God is judging, or even God’s mood will depend entirely upon you… and on and on the speculation about what God is like and who he is continues throughout history. But the Bible teaches us that God’s ultimate essence is love and his love is perfect. He is the embodiment of love, his ultimate nature is love, and he encompasses all that love really stands for.
Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no account of wrongs. Love takes no pleasure in evil, but rejoices in the truth. It bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. (1 Corinthians 13:4-7)
God’s love is the only reason we can even recognize love because he first loved us (1 John 3:16-18). All human love is a mere shadow, a small manifestation, of his great love for mankind. His self-sacrificing love for us is the most distinguishing and significant quality that makes Christianity differ from all other religions. When we were still sinners, he came for us. When we were uninterested, his love chased us down. When we were still enemies of God, he bled and forgave and prayed for us (Luke 23:24). His love is constant and unwavering, a banner of over us, a song (Song of Solomon 2:4; Zephaniah 3:17). And God didn’t just say it, he proved it (1 John 3:16).
But you, Lord, are a compassionate and gracious God, slow to anger, abounding in love and faithfulness. (Psalm. 86:15)
God’s love is not solely an attribute he chooses whenever he’s in a good mood. Love is the core of who he is, it is the identifying marker of his very nature. It is not fickle and contractual, it is devoted and everlasting. It is not lifeless and dry, it is refreshing and passionate. His love is fierce and strong and he loves us because he is love and we are uniquely chosen by him to be the recipient of his affection and adoration. In Christ, we cannot be removed from his love because any sin that could separate us from him was nailed to the cross and paid for by his blood (Romans 8:38-39). His love can break down any wall and put any fear to death. It can heal the deepest hurt and break the strongest chains of bondage. His love champions you and always has your best interest at heart. God’s love is not contractual, it is committed. It is not fickle, but fierce. Never absent, but ever pursuing. His love reaches into the darkest of pits and redeems the worst of sinners. His love can conquer any obstacle, any fear, any sin, because his love gave us the ultimate gift, his son. God is love, and he freely pours his love out for us, he pours himself out for us (Luke 22:20). He proved it at the cross and he is offering it graciously to us every minute of every day, not because we deserve it, but because that’s who he is. Love.
Take a moment to look up, reflect, and meditate upon the scriptures below.
1 John 3:16
1 John 4:9-11
1 John 3:1
Questions for Reflection…
What specific verses are speaking to me right now about the love of God?
How is God’s love different from worldly versions of love?
How is God showing me he loves me in this current season of my life?
Reckless Love - Cory Asbury
Jesus, Your Love - Kristene DiMarco
This Love - Housefires
Join us as we explore the fierce love of God together at the Northlands Women’s Conference, Refresh. We are almost sold out—register today!
Lord, you made all the stars in a hundred billion galaxies and yet you think of me. You gave away your most precious gift you could ever give, your son Jesus Christ, so I could come into a right relationship with you. You made me in your image, you designed me and crafted me uniquely for your glory, you chased me down so I could know you intimately. You lived the perfect life I could never live so I could live in your love forever. Your love is wild and fierce, your love is eternal and steadfast, your love is for me and I am made to live in your love. You your very self are love. I pray that I would learn to recognize your great love for me. I pray I would rest confidently in your love all of my days and I would seek to know your heart for me more and more. Amen.