“The love of God is greater far than tongue or pen can ever tell; it goes beyond the highest star, and reaches to the lowest hell.” The hymn, “Love of God”, was written by Frederick Lehman in 1917 in response to a sermon he heard about God’s love. He had lost everything through business reversals and the words came to him as he packaged oranges and lemons in a packing house.
In a book I am currently working on, one of the main characters has just miscarried a baby she and her husband wanted very badly. She questions God’s love for her and ends up searching the New Testament to find concrete examples of Jesus demonstrating love while here on earth. There are many, many, many instances but here a few that she found:
1. When Jesus received word His cousin, John the Baptist had been beheaded, He went away to a lonely place so He could be by Himself. But the crowds found Him. Instead of getting angry and telling them to leave Him alone, He healed them.
2. Twice He supernaturally fed the multitudes who had been listening to His teaching for a long time so they wouldn’t faint on their way home. He showed concern for their bodies as well as their souls.
3. In Matthew 8, a leper knelt down before Jesus and said that if Jesus was willing, He could heal him of his leprosy. Jesus reached out His hand and touched the leper, told him he was willing and commanded him to “Be clean!” The passage goes on to say that “immediately he was cleansed of his leprosy” (Matthew 8: 3 NIV).
4. The woman taken in the act of adultery. Jesus treated her with love and compassion, when the Pharisees wanted to stone her. He told her He didn’t condemn her and to go and sin no more.
5. Mary and her sister Martha showed Jesus where His friend Lazarus was buried. Jesus wept when He saw the place. The Jews present commented on how much Jesus loved Lazarus. Jesus proved His power and His love by raising Lazarus from the dead.
6. On the cross, Jesus told John to take care of His mother. He was in spiritual and physical agony, but He wanted to make sure she was provided for.
7. Instead of maligning those who put Him on the cross, He asked His Father to forgive them
8. He forgave Peter who cussed and swore and said he never knew Jesus, after travelling with Him for more than three years.
9. In the Garden of Gethsemane He submitted to those who came to arrest Him, and later He yielded to His executioners as they nailed Him on the cross. In the Garden He asked them, “Do you think I cannot call on my Father, and he will at once put at my disposal more than twelve legions of angels?” (Matthew 26:53 NIV). A legion was a military term from the Roman army which denoted a group of at least 6,000 soldiers. Should He have chosen to, Jesus could have summoned 72,000 dazzling, mighty, glorious angels to deliver Him. But He didn’t, because of His love for you and me.
10. In his Gospel, Luke wrote that in the Garden of Gethsemane, Jesus was in such agony of spirit that His sweat was like great drops of blood falling on the ground.
11. In Luke 22:42 (NIV) Jesus prayed, “Father, if you are willing, take this cup from me; yet not my will, but yours be done.” In love, He put aside His will for the Father’s.
You may say, “Why enumerate these? We already know them.”
I ‘ve written them down because when the answer to our prayers is delayed, when nothing in our circumstances seems to change, when God doesn’t answer as we thought He would, one of Satan’s tactics is to tell us God doesn’t love us and that He’s not a good God.
We need to remind ourselves from the Scriptures of the many times when God in human flesh demonstrated His love for us while here on earth. The whole life of Jesus was a message of love. Love Himself sent His Son to purchase our redemption.
Dear God, whatever problem we’re facing today, may we not be like Peter who grabbed a sword and started swinging in the might of his flesh to deal with trouble , but may we remember the God we serve has the power and the resources to fix any problem which comes our way. When we doubt You, bring to our minds examples of Your unfathomable love. In the precious Name of Jesus, Amen.