The greatest challenge of a preacher is “can you make the congregation fall in love with Jesus?” Because, when they fall in love with Jesus, everything comes easy. They will love their neighbors + God + Obedience to the Law comes easy. Just like this quote: “the only reason I don’t want to commit adultery is because I love my wife and I love my Lord”.
We are merely human being and we need reasons to love, in everything and in anything. We are not capable of loving anyone or loving anything without a single reason. “Can we love unconditionally?” Sadly the answer is NO!, only God can love unconditionally. The bible confirmed this in John 5:42 but I know you. I know that you do not have the love of God in your hearts.
Think about this: we love our children also with condition, one clear reason is because they are ours, if we can love unconditionally, then we should have loved all neighbors’ children like ours. We love our spouse also for conditions and reasons, and as long as our spouse loves us. Ask this question: “would we still love our spouse if he/she does not love us anymore?” This shows how bankrupt of love we human being has been. How can we even love our neighbors then?
But God know us well, because He created us. He knows we need love before we can love others and love Him. That is why God showed His love first, His greatest goodness and grace, to us who were still sinners then when He went to the cross to die for us, even before anyone then repented. There was no Christians available when Jesus went to the cross. But still, He gave His life first without any conditions attached. He gave us His love first. 1John 4:19 We love because he first loved us.
When we believe and receive Christ Jesus, the love of God has been poured out in our heart by the Holy spirit. Rom 5:5 …, because the love of God has been poured out in our hearts by the Holy Spirit who was given to us.
The New Covenant of Grace’s definition of love is no longer our love for God, but His love for us. 1John 4:10 This is love: not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins.
So that when we know and believe and receive this greatest love of all time, and be deposited in our heart, that we may disburse out some of that love, to others and also possibly to God back. John 13:34 A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another; as I have loved you, that you also love one another. The emphasis here is “as I have loved you”.
As Jesus has loved you my friend, believe this in your heart, and now you possess the love of Christ, that you may be able to love one another too. God love you so much, that He came as a man like you and me, to save us through Him.
And rejoice! nothing and no-one in this whole universe can separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus. Rom 8:39 No power in the sky above or in the earth below—indeed, nothing in all creation will ever be able to separate us from the love of God that is revealed in Christ Jesus our Lord. (NLT)