We Would See Jesus: The Lover of His People
By Christian Hayden
Jesus is our King, our Lord, our God. He is the perfector of our faith and the redeemer of our souls. He is the most Holy, and He is blameless of sin. He is the lover of His people and His creation. What is man that the God most high is even mindful of him? Our God loved us so much, that while we were still sinners, He died for us as a propitiation to satisfy the wrath of God that we deserved. Not only has He satisfied the Father’s wrath, but He also defeated the sting of death through His resurrection so that we may no longer feel the sting of death and have eternal life with Him. Our God created a plan of redemption for His people before Creation to save those who call upon His name. The theme of God’s love is throughout all of Scripture and it would be difficult to discuss all the passages regarding His love here in this brief article. So I would like to focus on some specific passages and themes we can find in the Scriptures. In Genesis, after the rebellion in chapter 3, Adam and Eve should have paid for their sin in death immediately after the rebellion. However, God displayed His grace and love through this ordained instance. Adam and Eve felt shame over their nakedness and God crafted them coverings out of the sacrificial lamb. God knowing that man now had the knowledge of good and evil, set out to push Adam and Eve out of the Garden away from the presence of the Tree of Eternal Life, knowing that if they would eat of the fruit of it, that they would be stuck in a sinful state for all of eternity with no hope of salvation. So we can see from the most devastating human act that has ever occurred, that God loved us so much that he drove them out of the Garden so we can be saved. How graceful and merciful is He? Let’s fast forward to the time in the book of Exodus when God’s people are bound in slavery to the Egyptians. The Jews were bound in this horrendous slavery for four hundred years, but God never forgot them. God brought up a prophet named Moses, who was favored by the pharaoh’s daughter. She found the baby Moses and adopted him. Moses was brought up in the pharaoh’s household and witnessed the suffering of his people. God intervened in a burning bush and spoke to Moses as to the will God had for Moses’ life. God raised Moses up as the leader of the Jews to lead them out of slavery. This is not unlike how Christ came to free us from the chains and bounds of our slavery to sin. As God led the Jews to freedom, despite their mumbling and groaning as they were in the wilderness, God gave His people opportunities to repent as He does for all of us. Throughout Scripture, our relationship with God is compared to a relationship between a father and his children. ( Jn 1:12, Gal 3:26, Rom. 8:14, 2 Cor. 6:18) We are referred to as children of God and heirs of God. God’s love is so great that he does not let sin reside in us without conviction or consequence. That doesn’t mean we always see an immediate consequence of our sin or feel guilty all the time, but what it does mean is that God will lovingly discipline us like a father who disciplines his children. If a father never disciplines his children what would the children ever learn? They would continue going down a path that leads to greater destruction to themselves and others. If we are truly God’s children, then he will discipline us. A father is also the head of the household and leads his family. A father is wise in counsel. A father is the lover of his wife. This brings us to the strong theme of marriage in Scripture. Marriage is between a man and a woman, to display the glory of God. (Gen. 2:24) There are many reasons for marriage in the Bible, but I want to discuss that marriage is the example used throughout Scripture that describes the relationship between Christ and His Church. (Eph. 5:27, 2 Cor. 11:2, Rev. 19:7) Christ loves His Church to the point of death. Despite the Church being flawed, sinful, and dirty. As man is the head of the wife so is Christ the Head of the Church. As wives submit to their husbands the Church submits to Christ. As there is an intimate bond between husband and wife, there should be an intimate bond between us and Christ. A loving husband is understanding, caring, kind, and patient, as Christ is. In the Old Testament, we see Israel being compared to a prostitute because they lusted for other gods. God knows this and takes care to discipline Israel, however, He still adorns Israel with His wisdom and love like a husband adorning his wife in precious jewelry. Jumping ahead to the New Testament we see the greatest act of love in all of history which is the sacrifice of the Son. (Jn. 3:16, Rom. 3:25, 1Jn. 2:2) God loves us so much that he kept His covenant of bringing about a way of salvation for His people through His suffering servant. Jesus came to die a gruesome death on the cross to appease the wrath of the Father on our behalf. After the resurrection, Jesus gave us his Spirit. (Acts 2:1-4) The Godhead agreed on the plan of salvation in eternity past and has been and will continue to play out throughout the rest of eternity as a display of the glory of our God. In this grand plan of glory, God chose to save those whom he predestined and elected. ( Eph. 1:3-14) How graceful and loving He is! As we all deserved the wrath of God in an eternity of Hell, He chose some to come out of the path of damnation for the sake of His glory and praise. How loving of a Savior we have that He would pay mind to use to save us, and not only save us, but teach us His wisdom with grace. Once our earthly bodies perish, we will be with Christ in a glorified state such as how Christ’s body was glorified after His resurrection. May it be so that we persevere in our faith and continue to pursue the love of God that He has always had for us. In my personal experience and walk of faith, God’s love has never failed me. I have been through many seasons of struggle, and seasons of blessing. God has always brought me through these seasons. It has taught me to praise Him, and to know that His ways are higher. God knows better than I do about anything and everything. Knowing I have a Heavenly Father who loves me and my wife gives me peace and an urge to pursue Him spiritually. God has opened doors for my wife and me that we never saw, which has led us into His will for us. Praise the Lord for His wisdom and love. We will leave off with this passage in Romans 8: “Who will separate us from the love of Christ? Will tribulation, or trouble, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or danger, or sword? But in all these things we overwhelmingly conquer through Him who loved us. For I am convinced that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor things present, nor things to come, nor powers, nor height, nor depth, nor any other created thing will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.” (Romans 8:35, 37-39).