He First Loved Us!

He First Loved Us!

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It was just recently that I had asked God for something new to learn. A whole new concept of grace had emerged when God showed me another example of the true extent of His love. To see it, let’s scroll down to Isaiah 43.

“Since you are precious and honoured in my sight, and because I love you,
I will give people in exchange for you, nations in exchange for your life.” – Isaiah 43:4.

The one thing that was a stumbling block to Israel’s inheritance was unbelief; it was their greatest hindrance. By adding fuel to fire, their total disregard for the laws and commandments burned God’s anger even more against them. As his great love was beyond measure, God did not decimate them as he had a promise to fulfill through Abraham that his descendants would inherit the promised land i.e. the land of Canaan. As during the course of time Israel was split from head to toe to various parts of the world, the conditional promise upon obedience of God’s commands that “you will be the head, not the tail“(Deut. 28:13) was now gone. They were now desperate to gain freedom once more. Israel was subdued roughly for more than half a millennium, repeatedly pleading God to deliver them from the hands of their enemies. God in his great love, settled them the promised land years later.

Israel was quick to repent of their sins, which is probably why God in his great mercy had compassion over their misery. By comparing both past and present, we see that history wasn’t quite different to what it is now. Inventions and discoveries have improved the quality of life. We are much more civilized than the previous generations. But if we look at the bottom level from a moral perspective, a trickle down effect has happened. The same sins have been running around in a loop. Generation after generation has been smitten with this disease called sin. And the only cure is the blood of Jesus that died for us on the cross.

There are two words that God called his people – Precious and Honoured, words that they were never worthy of being called. Irrespective of what their past spoke about them, he blessed them many times beyond what they could have imagined. And that is the exact opposite of what anybody would expect God to even think of doing. There is a love that is even greater than compassion in those words God spoke through Isaiah. Even as betrayal was later inevitable, his sacrifice on the cross shows us that God is the epitome of love. He knew the future. But he still loved them all the more; sacrificing himself like a lamb.

“What then shall we say? Is God unjust? Absolutely not! For He says to Moses: “I will have mercy on whom I have mercy, and I will have compassion on whom I have compassion.” – Romans 9:14.

If God had to respond to all of our mischiefs, the response would be harsher. The Bible says that “God patiently waits for everyone to turn to him.” – 2 Peter 3:9. Also, it says in Isaiah 57:16 “For I will not accuse you forever, nor will I always be angry; for then the spirit of man would grow weak before Me, with the breath of those I have made.” This proves God is not only compassionate but that he is also a forgiving God.

It is fascinating that three million gods on the planet have ever been able to utter a word on our behalf to plead with God for our sins. But we have Jesus with us, a high priest who is both holy and blameless, to mediate for us to the Father – Hebrews 8. Nobody could have achieved this feat by sacrificing themselves on the cross. That was true love.

Precious Forever

Every sinner is precious in God’s eyes. The Bible says that “For he knows how we are formed, he remembers that we are dust.” – Psalms 103:14. Was it too much for God to say that we are precious in his eyes? Not at all! But why? Even when our sins are alarming in his eyes, what is so special in us that God shows us his mercy even when we sin? It is as the Bible says “As a father has compassion on his children, so the LORD has compassion on those who fear Him.” – Psalms 103:13.

In Matthew 18, we read of the parable of the lost sheep. It goes like this:

“Suppose one of you has a hundred sheep and loses one of them. Doesn’t he leave the ninety-nine in the open country and go after the lost sheep until he finds it? And when he finds it, he joyfully puts it on his shoulders and goes home. Then he calls his friends and neighbors together and says, ‘Rejoice with me; I have found my lost sheep.’ I tell you that in the same way there will be more rejoicing in heaven over one sinner who repents than over ninety-nine righteous persons who do not need to repent.

One sheep in the parable missed it’s path. Noticing that it was missing, the shepherd went in search of the sheep and brought it back to it’s rightful place. Jesus emphasized on how valuable even one soul is in His kingdom. If our sins were bigger to him, God wouldn’t have kept in mind the salvation of his people without hate.

We were sinners before our birth. We were so precious to be lost that God couldn’t simply throw us away. Instead, He would rather have us fine tuned and refined like gold in his image. And He has done the same repeatedly over the years with many calling on His name. God backs up even the most sinner when he or she repents. The moment a person is with Christ, he or she is a new creation – 2 Corinthians 5:17. There is so much of good in man more than the bad in him which is why God could not wipe out the entire world as soon as he created it. Only God sees the good in us which is why He would wait until the time is right to receive everyone as his own, no matter how long it took.

Honoured Without Doubt

We are honoured in God’s eyes. There lies another point to be noticed. Jesus gave us the place to stand before God that the enemy stole from us. Even though the tendency to go back to the previous sin still lies dormant, God still loves his people more than enough to destroy them.

With a love that goes beyond boundaries, God brought his people back with his own blood. In the sight of the Father, it was a family broken apart. This kingdom got divided against itself and could not stand longer. For that reason, the Son was sent to reconcile all differences. He brought them with his blood, for his kingdom and made them available to God’s throne.

The love Jesus displayed on the cross is inexplicable. It is beyond what words can explain. And yes, it is above human standards. Jesus certainly thought of the pain but he also thought how much he loved the world to let it pass simply. He did rather do something than nothing. It is as the Bible says “His ways are higher than our ways, his thoughts are higher than our thoughts.” – Isaiah 55:8.

Let’s connect with a God this 2020. The earlier we start, the earlier we begin to see his plan work out in our life. Amen.

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