Let my prayer be set before you as incense, the lifting up of my hands as the evening sacrifice.
God Our Husband
The first commandment is there is only One God and that we are to worship only Him. The second tells us that we are not to make any idols or worship them, and it continues to tell us that He is a jealous God. Now how can God be a jealous God, since God is love. In 1 Corinthians 13, we are told that love is not jealous. So the question how can God be jealous, since He is love? These scriptures seem to be contradicting each other. How can both be true?
Think about marriage. As a husband or wife would you not become jealous if your spouse were look for love or pleasure in another? I believe we all become jealous when the object of our love seeks love and attention from outside of your relationship. This jealousy does not mean that you do not love your spouse, but that because you are hurt and betrayed. There has become a separation in your relationship even if your husband or wife has not acted upon their desires, the mere thought is an act of adultery. Jesus taught us that if we even look at another with lust in our eyes we have committed the sin of adultery. Now God is called our husband and our maker, how do you think He feels when we turn to the world and seek after our selfish desires. We have betrayed Him and committed an act of adultery, by going after what we want without concern of the pain and damage we have caused.
Look at the life of Hosea. God has him marry a prostitute, knowing that she will not be faithful. Hosea could have refused God, but he chose to obey even though his marriage would cause him pain and shame. Yet just like God loved us so much that He gave His only Son to pay the price for our sins. When Hosea’s wife needed to be redeemed, Hosea paid the price and took her back home, forgiving her and loving her in spite of her actions. This is the love of God our husband.
How man of us are that committed that we would not only forgive the other but pay the pirce for their betrayal. Love and forgiveness are the gift God gives to us. Just as a husband and wife become one, when we enter into a relationship with Jesus we become one with Him. Since Jesus is one with the Father, and is also called our Groom. We are one with Jesus, and one with God, and His Spirit then comes to live in us. We become new. We are no longer who we were before receiving Him as our Lord and Savior. He takes away our stony hearts, and gives us a new heart of flesh.
Becoming one with Him, no longer being double minded, and tossed about by the ways of the world. We become firmly rooted in His Love, His Truth and His way. One with Christ, One with God, and One with His Holy Spirit. We continue to learn who He is as we grow closer to Him. In learning who He is we learn how lto love, because we learn who love is. For with the new heart comes His love that now pulses through our body, and not only our body but His body as we learn to live in His love.
Scriptures to read
The question here should be, ‘Who is love?’ For God is love, and we cannot know love without knowing who love is. So who is God? He is known by many names, Yahweh, Jehovah, El Shaddai, Lord, God, and the Great I Am, are just a few of the names that we call Him.
He is also known as our Heavenly Father, our Husband and our Maker. The focus of the message today will be on God the Father. Many of you are parents. As a parent you can relate to how He loves us as a Father. As a mother or father you love your children unconditionally. Some of you who are parents have adopted children and you love them as much as if you gave birth to them. You provide shelter, food, clothing, and love. You may not always understand your children, and they do not always behave, but you still love them. This how God loves us. He provides for us and loves us, and even though we may not have been born to Him, He has adopted us, and made us His children.
We have all sinned and this has not stopped Him from loving us. It His love that redeemed us and cleansed us from our sins. There are those who had parents who had abused, neglected and rejected them. Our heavenly Father will never hurt you, leave, you or reject you. He faithful and true. His love is eternal and will never die. He is the Father who sacrificed everything for all of us. Sending His Son to pay the price for our sins.
He is patient and long suffering, loving us as we are. Not demanding that we love Him but inviting us into His family. Waiting for us to turn to Him and love Him in return. You do not have to believe me but believe in His Word. Read these scriptures and see how He loves you.
God is love; 1 John 4:7-8 and 16, Deuteronomy 7:9
Unconditional love of God; Romans 5:6-8,Titus 3:4-5, Matthew 5:43-48, 1 john 4:9-10
Made children of God; 1 John 3:1, Matthew 5:19, John 1:12, Galatians 3:26, Romans 8:15-16, 2 Corinthians 6:18
He is faithful; 2 Thessalonians 3:3, Hebrews 10:23, 2 Timothy 2:13, 1 John 1:9, Psalms 119:90
His love redeemed us Ephesians 1:7, Job 33:28, Psalm 103:4 1 Peter 1:18, Galatians 3:13 Luke 1:68
For God so loved the world, that He gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life.
Read these words and see the love of God. It tells us clearly of His sacrifice and His love. It does not speak of of hatred or punishment. It speaks of love and everlasting life to those who believe.
The life of His Son to pay the price for our sins. Loving us before we knew Him or believed in Him. In today’s terms you could say we were prepaid for. A gift waiting for us to recieve. scripture goes on to tell us that ‘God is not slow as we count slowness, but patient not wanting any to perish but that all would come to repentance.'(2Peter 3:9)
Showing His love to be long suffering(1Corinthians 13). He is still waiting for us to turn to Him. He could so easily have started over, especially after that time and again man has chosen to rebel against Him and choose the way of the world. He has given to us more time and mercy than we deserve, and it is His love that covers a multitude of sins.(1Peter 4:8)
The lyrics ‘You don’t know what it’s like, to love somebody, the way I love you’, keep running through my head. It is like God is singing to me, telling me that He loves me and at the same time letting me know I do not understand the depth of His love.
I have always enjoyed how God has spoken to me over the years the closer I have come to knowing God. The closer I become to Him, the more I hear and see Him.(My sheep hear my voice and I know them and they follow Me. John 10:27)
As I have been focusing my studies on the scriptures about His love, the clearer His voice has become to me. It is not a new to me that no one can put God in a box. He is bigger and greater than we can imagine. Religion and traditions try to put Him into a box, but He is not found only in a building on Sunday morning, or by keeping religious traditions. All this has done is build walls that have separated us from knowing His love and who He truly is. I often think about the conversation between God and Moses, when God told Moses to go back to Egypt and lead God’s people to freedom.(Exodus chpt. 3)Moses asks God who he should say sent him, and God tells Moses to say ‘I Am That I Am has sent me to you’. Simple and straight to the point, ‘I Am’ is the One sending Moses to lead His people to freedom. The problem Moses faced was not with God but with the fact that the people including Pharaoh did not know God.
Unfortunately this is still a problem today. Even I do not know God the way I should. People may know His name, go to church and even serve without truly knowing Him. He speaks through His prophets, ministers, teachers, disciples, and Himself through His Son, Jesus Christ our Lord and Savior. Yet many do not listen. They have heard His Word spoken and read the scriptures, but like seeds on rocky ground the seeds of His Word did not get the chance to take root in their hearts, or like seeds that did get planted and did begin to grow were choked out by the weeds of this world. So either the seed does not get a chance to grow or it dies because the world and all of its’ problems smother it and it dies. Either way the seed does not grow and produce fruit.(Matt.13:20-22)
God has never stopped loving us. He still speaks to us today, and is waiting for us to listen to Him. His arms reaching out to us, wanting to embrace us. He longs for us to choose Him over the world, and to become one with Him. He wants you to know Him and to know His love, He is an open book waiting for you, inviting you to come in. Once you begin to know Him you will know His voice and hear Him speaking to you. It is time now for us to want to know Him on a personal life changing level. To want Him more than anything else in our lives. To let His love grow and flow through us. Then when people see us they see Him. Then His love can reach others through us.
Psalm 119:165 (ESV) Great peace have those who love your law; nothing can make them stumble.
Jesus told us that if we love Him we will keep His commands. This verse tells us that doing this gives us peace and keeps us safe.
With so much scripture on love, and all the notes I have taken and my own personal thoughts, I thought it was time for me to take my first swing at the message. I hope you will share your thoughts, insights, and any corrections you see that need to be made.
Message on Love
How can I share with you what love is, without sharing Who Love is? Should I try romance? Entice you with physical pleasures. Talk to you in a way that pleases you. Doing this might make you feel like you are loved, but as a song by Tina Turner says, ‘What’s love got to do with it?’ The song continues with that it is a second hand emotion. So we have this romantic, sensual, and physical love, which is nothing more than a feeling. It is like a candle that will eventually burn itself out, and leave you feeling like a boat tossed about by the waves of the ocean.
So, what is love?
We all have a mother and father. We may not all have been raised by both parents and some grew up without even one of them. There are those who were raised in loving homes. Who know what it is like to be cared for, and were loved unconditionally. Even when times were difficult, you felt safe and knew that they would take care of you. Unfortunately there are many who grew up abused, neglected, and rejected. Feeling worthless and unloved. Only knowing fear and hatred. If this is you, then you may have a difficult time understanding love or that God is a loving Father. God is our Heavenly Father.
Today I want to help you to see Him, for who He is. I do not know what your childhood was like, and I am not going to get into my own. What I do know is that we all have a Heavenly Father that loves each and everyone of us. It is His love that I need to share with you, because He is love.
Most people have heard John 3:16. Even at a sporting event you have probably seen someone with a cardboard sign with 3:16 written on it.
For God so loved the world He gave His only Son, that whoever believes in Him will not perish but have everlasting life.
This is love, and who God is. He gave us everything, and He didn’t hold anything back. If you are a parent, would you sacrifice your child to save another? We would sacrifice ourselves for our children and even to save the life of someone else we love. I know none of us would sacrifice our child for anyone if we knew them or not, and definitely not for an enemy.
Thankfully our ways are not God’s ways. He did sacrifice His own Son to save not only those who said they believed in Him but for those who rejected Him, who hated Him. His enemies.
His way is love because He is Love. Jesus told us to love our enemies. This is not our way. God showed us this love when He sent His son, Jesus to die for our sins. He did not die for the righteous who were without sin. Is there anyone of us who are righteous and without sin? No. If any one of us had been there when the woman caught in adultery was brought to Him, would one of us been able to throw a stone? No we would not have because there is none who has not sinned. Jesus said that there was no greater love than for a man to lay down their life for another. Many would do this for our children, loved ones, and even a friend. Would any of us die for someone who hated us, or persecuted us. Would you die to save the life of someone who wanted to take your life? Would you die to save the life of an enemy? I do not think one of us would. That is what Jesus did, when He chose to die on that cross. We were all His enemies.
Love gives when there is nothing left to give and expects nothing in return. It shares in our suffering and cries with us. It brings us comfort when nothing else can. It does not kick us when we are down. It stretches out its’ arm and lifts us up and places us in a safe place. Love is mercy and grace. Love is God.
There is so much more about love and God to share, but for today I hope that this message has helped to introduce you to Love and the One who is Love, who is God. For others I hope this has helped to reacquaint you with The One True Love, who Is God.
2 Timothy 4:3
Please take time to read these scriptures and listen to God speak to you.
Continuing to work on the message of love and still welcoming any insights and even corrections. God bless you all.
The subject of love has so many parts, that it can be seen as a body. You read in the Bible how the church is called a body with many parts.
1 Corinthians 12:12-27 NLV (One Body with Many Parts) 12 The human body has many parts, but the many parts make up one whole body. So it is with the body of Christ. 13 Some of us are Jews, some are Gentiles, some are slaves, and some are free. But we have all been baptized into one body by one Spirit, and we all share the same Spirit.] 14 Yes, the body has many different parts, not just one part. 15 If the foot says, “I am not a part of the body because I am not a hand,” that does not make it any less a part of the body. 16 And if the ear says, “I am not part of the body because I am not an eye,” would that make it any less a part of the body? 17 If the whole body were an eye, how would you hear? Or if your whole body were an ear, how would you smell anything? 18 But our bodies have many parts, and God has put each part just where he wants it. 19 How strange a body would be if it had only one part! 20 Yes, there are many parts, but only one body. 21 The eye can never say to the hand, “I don’t need you.” The head can’t say to the feet, “I don’t need you.” 22 In fact, some parts of the body that seem weakest and least important are actually the most necessary. 23 And the parts we regard as less honorable are those we clothe with the greatest care. So we carefully protect those parts that should not be seen, 24 while the more honorable parts do not require this special care. So God has put the body together such that extra honor and care are given to those parts that have less dignity. 25 This makes for harmony among the members, so that all the members care for each other. 26 If one part suffers, all the parts suffer with it, and if one part is honored, all the parts are glad. 27 All of you together are Christ’s body, and each of you is a part of it.
God being Love. can be seen as having three parts.
- 1 John 4:8 – But anyone who does not love does not know God, for God is love.
- 1 John 4:16 – We know how much God loves us, and we have put our trust in his love. God is love, and all who live in love live in God, and God lives in them.
- God, the Heavenly Father, Creator of heaven earth and man. The great I Am.
- Jesus, Son of God. The Word made flesh. Our Savior and Redeemer.
1 John 1:1-5 In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. 2 He was in the beginning with God. 3 All things were made through him, and without him was not any thing made that was made. 4 In him was life, and the life was the light of men. 5 The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it.
- Holy Spirit, The Spirit of God. Our Helper and Comforter. Genesis 2:7 Then the LORD God formed the man from the dust of the ground. He breathed the breath of life into the man’s nostrils, and the man became a living person.
Three that are one. Read 1 Corinthians 12 again and see how we are to be one body. One body has many different parts. Dissect a body and you can see how many parts there are and how they are connected. In a healthy body all the parts are performing their purpose and working together with the other parts. If one part of the body becomes weak, sick or quits, it effects the whole body. The body becomes sick and if left untreated it could die. Each part relies on another part to function and work together. Unified as one.
A problem with love in the world today is that each part is operating separately. Neglecting the needs of the other parts the individual part is only concerned about its’ own needs and desires. That part is selfish and does not care if their actions hurt anyone else. If you read 1 Corinthians 13 you will see that being selfish or demanding is not love. God’s desires for us to become one united in Love. Working together. Understanding each part is equal to the other and no part is greater. One body with one heart, and He is the head.Each part of the body working together, supporting each other in life and love.
1 Corinthians 13 :4-5 Love is patient and kind. Love is not jealous or boastful or proud 5 or rude. It does not demand its own way. It is not irritable, and it keeps no record of being wronged. 6 It does not rejoice about injustice but rejoices whenever the truth wins out. 7 Love never gives up, never loses faith, is always hopeful, and endures through every circumstance.
I have had this thought for the last couple of days. Not only can you find verses on lve through out the Bible. Think about the number of songs about love.
Here are a few songs that have popped into my mind since I have started working on ‘The Message of Love’.
1 Haddaway – What Is Love
2 Foreigner – I Want To Know What Love Is
3 Tina Turner -What’s Love Got to Do with It
4 Rick Astley – Never Gonna Give You Up
5 Bonnie Raitt – I Can’t Make You Love Me
There are literally more songs and scriptures on the subject of love than I can count. I would normally focus on scripture but I believe these songs have been popping into my head for a reason. The first listed makes me think about the question what is love? Number 2 is the desire to want to know what love is, the 3rd what does love have to do with the physical and worldly things. The 4th song even though the singer is singing from a romantic feeling, I hear more than the singer and the song. I hear God telling us that He is never going to give up on us. The 5th song listed here I hear God speaking again even in a secular song, telling us that He cannot force us to love Him and the difference between love in the world and His love. None of these songs are about faith or God, but somehow God can use anything to speak to us. I see God all around me, even in the darkness of this world. His love can reach us and shine His light upon us. God has given to each of us free will. He doesn’t want robots or puppets for His amusement. He wants a living, and loving relationship with us. A relationship that grows and produces life. A love we do not yet know or understand. To know true love we need to do more than learn the definition of lave, but get to know the Author of Love.
Back to the songs listed here. The lyrics show us how many see love and I see both the contrast to God’s love and how the world has limited it to a physical and sexual nature. Then in some of the words I can hear how God is longing for us to love Him more than the things and people of this world. think about the first two commandments. One God, no other. Then no idols, things of this world coming between Him and us. An all consuming love with our undivided attention being given to Him. Not because we have to, or that we are ordered to do so. To love Him out of our own desire. To chose to love Him above all else.
Today being Christmas is the day we celebrate the birth of Jesus. Yet Jesus existed long before His birth into this world. He was in the beginning and He will always be. God has loved us from the beginning and His love is eternal, because He is eternal.
This thought has added to the list of love songs but for now I want to not focus on the songs but On God Himself, the True Living and Loving God.
Here is a song to end this post
Whitney Houston: Jesus Loves Me
I have been making notes on preparation for a message on love and how God’s love transforms our heart. Tonight I am not focused on the message but on the holidays. Thanksgiving was just a month ago and in two days we celebrate the birth of our Savior Jesus Christ on a day we call Christmas. Memories of the holidays of my youth I can remember that they were much different than how they spent in the recent years. Stores closed early and families spent time together celebrating and enjoying family. The food, the smiles, and even playing football together. We took time to do the little things and there was love. Now I see selfish greed. There is so much hatred in the world today, the concept of peace seems unattainable. Shouts of ‘No justice, no peace’. Violence on top of an epidemic. The world is falling apart and is on a self destructive path and no one seems to realize they are a part of it. All we do is demand our own rights while stampeding over others. No life seems to be safe. Love and peace feel like a distant dream. So why even bother with Christmas. With everything going on in the world today it is not the presents and shopping that should matter. We should be thinking about the best gift we were all given, and that is the Son of God, our Savior, Jesus came to this fallen world to save each and every one of us. Loving us and forgiving us, by showing great mercy. Teaching us what love truly is, for He is love. It is not the trees, the decorations and lights, or the presents we buy, but the love none of us could buy or work for. A love given freely. A gift we just need to receive and give thanks. It is a time to remember this.
I pray that you all are blessed as you celebrate this Christmas, and that your hearts overflow with love, peace and joy. May the year to come give you hope and peace. God protect and prosper you in the fruits of His Spirit. Amen.