Note, Quotation marks and a * at the end of sentence means bible quote or quote.
The Grace of Unconditional Love
I have added this writing to give the full essence of who God is and the fullness of His grace. I had started this chapter as a book on love, but after the first chapter of writing I could say no more as I seen this incredible God in His view toward me.
The bible “For I am persuaded beyond doubt (am sure) that neither death nor life, nor angels nor principalities, nor things impending and threatening nor things to come, nor powers, nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation will be able to separate us from the love of God which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.”*
One day as I pondered these scriptures, I was envious of the Apostle Paul's statement that he was persuaded beyond doubt that nothing would be able to separate him from the love of God in Christ Jesus.
I thought, what was it that made Paul persuaded beyond doubt of God's Love and grace?
What did he experience that made him so sure of this love?
Yes, I knew God so loved the world that he gave His Son to all humanity, but there was something I was missing!
Although I was blessed to be raised in a family full of earthly love and acceptance I was fascinated at this concept of love that seemed so foreign in a world filled with greed, hate and war.
I desired to know so I proceeded to ask God if He could reveal this truth to my heart. Now I understood we are all different in how we perceive things. So I decided to except a heart felt prayer that Paul wrote in the bible.
He prayed that our love may abound yet more and more and extend to its fullest development in knowledge and all keen insight, that our love may display itself in greater depth of acquaintance and more comprehensive discernment.
I desired the full development of this knowledge, a greater depth of acquaintance and comprehension.
But did I really know what I was asking for?
Was I really ready for what the universal God was about to show me?
Little did I know that with this prayer, would take me on a journey that would move the depths of my soul in such a way that my view of God would change forever.
I asked of the Spirit's help and with confidence I knew I could rely on the teacher and comforter to come along side me in my search for this great treasure.
A development in knowledge and a keen insight of God’s love and grace to all.
My first question was very simple, “where do I begin?”
I thought, for sure a few books from the local book store would help me in my search. I read with eagerness but ended up frazzled and under condemnation at the fact that I could not walk the love they were presenting me. You know the books that never tell you how it works, man’s philosophies of what we must do and more about what we must do to walk in love.
Each book simply pointed out how weak humans are to loving God, family, wife, children, dog, and humanity. It all sounded right and good but again all I felt was more defeated then motivated.
From my view it is hard to love others like God when you do not even comprehend what God’s love is. Yes there are many that think they know what God’s love is but in the end most on this planet have no true concept of God’s love.
I quickly realized that if I was going to get on this train I was going to have to go to a different source for this journey, that being the bible.
As I began to study the word love from the bible, I perceived something exciting in my being, something pulling me on the path to finding this great treasure.
Then an idea of light flashed into this pea sized brain. Maybe I should change my perspective to the view of a son of God. In other words, I felt I may grasp this love by knowing I have right standing as a co-equal with the God of this universe. I had to approach this subject with respect and a righteous conscious mentality.
So by this position, I was led to a scripture in the bible that said, “May Christ through your faith actually dwell, settle down, abide, and make His permanent home in your heart!”*
“May you be rooted deep in love and founded securely on love. That you may have the power and be strong to apprehend and grasp with all the saints what is the breadth and length and height and depth of it.”
“That you may really come to know practically, through experience for yourselves the love of Christ, which far surpasses mere knowledge.”
It said, “rooted deep in love and founded securely on love."* Interesting, I felt that being found securely on love maybe a key to the treasure of this love.
The bible went on to say, "That you may have the power and be strong to apprehend and grasp with all the saints what is the breadth and length and height and depth of it."*
This was a profound statement and I knew that I needed this power to be strong in grasping the breadth and length and height and depth of this love.
It then said, "That you may really come to know practically, through experience for yourselves the love of God, which far surpasses mere knowledge.
Wow, that surpasses mere knowledge!
This struck me like a hammer. I could see that this was not something to be grasped by mere human thinking. I knew that this was an enlightenment to be grasped through the spirit.
As I searched the bible, there was one word that kept coming up over and over again in my spirit, and that was the word, unconditional!
I read more, “For I am persuaded beyond doubt am sure that neither death nor life, nor angels nor principalities, nor things impending and threatening nor things to come, nor powers, nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation will be able to separate us from the love of God which is in our Lord.”*
“Who is there to condemn us? Will the Messiah, Who died, or rather who was raised from the dead, Who is at the right hand of God actually pleading as He intercedes for us? Who shall ever separate us from God’s love? Shall suffering and affliction and tribulation? Calamity and distress? Or persecution or hunger or destitution or peril or sword?"*
"In this is love: not that we loved God, but that He loved us and sent His Son to be the propitiation (the atoning sacrifice) for our sins.”
As I pondered these words, I began to realized that this love was not based my actions, conduct or behavior. It had nothing to do with my accomplishments, stature or position.
I realized it had nothing to do with me loving God, but that He loved me. I could see that I simply could not influence this love.
It was given to all humanity, all creation without condition.
I also came to the quick understanding that most people do not know this unconditional love and only know conditional love.
A conditional love that says we must earn the right to be loved.
No wonder religion is knee deep in a works or legalism.
We have taught a religion that God's love is conditional and in this it can be taken back at any time if He is not pleased. This horrible message approach to God has only given the world a view of religion as a joke.
Now I had no problem as a human seeing that I was not worthy of this love, but it made no difference what I felt or thought, God decided to love me anyway. And there is absolutely no way that I could get God to love me anymore or any less then he already does.
Then I thought of a familiar scripture, the one we use at weddings to remind the new bride and groom how to love each other. The one that is used by religion to hammer us into submission, yes I am speaking of the love chapter.
“Love endures long and is patient and kind; love never is envious nor boils over with jealousy, is not boastful or vainglorious, does not display itself haughtily. It is not conceited (arrogant and inflated with pride); it is not rude (unmannerly) and does not act unbecomingly. Love (God's love in us) does not insist on its own rights or its own way, for it is not self-seeking; it is not touchy or fretful or resentful; it takes no account of the evil done to it [it pays no attention to a suffered wrong].”*
It does not rejoice at injustice and unrighteousness, but rejoices when right and truth prevail. Love bears up under anything and everything that comes is ever ready to believe the best of every person, its hopes are fadeless under all circumstances, and it endures everything [without weakening]. Love never fails"
Know that if God is love then if I substitute Love for God then what does it say?
"God endures long and is patient and kind; God never is envious nor boils over with jealousy, God is not boastful or vainglorious, He does not display himself haughtily. God is not conceited (arrogant and inflated with pride); He is not rude (unmannerly) and does not act unbecomingly. God does not insist on His own rights or His own way, for He is not self-seeking; not touchy or fretful or resentful; He takes no account of the evil done to Him.
God does not rejoice at injustice and unrighteousness, but He rejoices when right and truth prevail. God bears up under anything and everything that comes, He is ever ready to believe the best of every person, His hopes are fadeless under all circumstances, and He endures everything [without weakening]. God never fails"
Wow! I could see something different, something simple yet profound. I felt love pouring out of these words. Words that did not say what I must do but what he has done and doing. The love chapter no longer looked the same.
By seeing this truth all condemnation quickly left because this is who God is love! God was never telling us how to live this love but telling us who He was as love.
God is patient and endures long with me!
God is not rude to me!
God is not touchy, fretful or resentful to me!
God takes no account of the evil I do to him that means sin.
God never is envious nor boils over with jealousy towards me.
It goes on and on, wow that knock religion out of the ball park.
How could I not get secure with this awesome God? How could I not want to be around this God?
By seeing this I could understand that there was nothing that could be added to the perfect love and grace and now I could understand the words of John, "There is no fear in love [dread does not exist], but full-grown (complete, perfect) love turns fear out of doors and expels every trace of terror! For fear brings with it the thought of punishment and so he who is afraid has not reached the full maturity of love."*
Yes that’s right, perfect love casts out fear. What perfect love, God! If Religion could teach this there churches and mosques would be full for the right reasons. They do not have to be afraid of God.
I knew that there was nothing I could add or take away from this love. It was a complete love that would not change and would be the same yesterday, today and forever.
It was an unchanging, unmovable love that would never cease, change or end.
I could see there was no way to exhaust it. A consuming love of a God to me as a son!
I was over taken with love and appreciation for God!
I could now understand the writings in the book of Hebrew that said, "Let us then fearlessly and confidently and boldly draw near to the throne of grace (the throne of God's unmerited favor to us sinners), that we may receive mercy [for our failures] and find grace to help in good time for every need [appropriate help and well-timed help, coming just when we need it]."*
I mean, the only way anyone could come fearlessly and confidently and boldly draw near to the throne of grace is only by being secured in God's love.
God has always desired intimacy with humanity. He longs for people to trust Him, to talk to him. But because of a slanted view of God through religion He is a God who is fretful or resentful, boils over with jealousy, wrathful and full of vengeance.
We have, without realizing, shunned God for fear that he will not accept us. Yet He longs to help us, guide us and to be a God who wants to smother His unconditional love upon all of us.
Many in the world ignore Him. Don't spend any time with him. Don't try to find out who He is and what he is like. Why? Because many have given a false image of who He really is. Yet He is the God who has done everything possible in this universe, through His son, to show humanity His intense love.
“But God--so rich is He in His mercy, because of and in order to satisfy the great and wonderful and intense love with which He loved us,”*
"But God shows and clearly proves His [own] love for us by the fact that while we were still sinners, Christ (the Messiah, the Anointed One) died for us."*
"For God did not give us a spirit of timidity (of cowardice, of craven and cringing and fawning fear), but [He has given us a spirit] of power and of love and of calm and well-balanced mind and discipline and self-control."*
I now understood John when he said; "We love Him, because He first loved us."*
I was now understanding Paul when he said; "For I am persuaded beyond doubt (am sure) that neither death nor life, nor angels nor principalities, nor things impending and threatening nor things to come, nor powers, nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation will be able to separate us from the love of God."*
God's love is personal. It reaches across all our traditions, it sees no color or borders. It has no interest in philosophies. He is in the business of saving humanity no matter their condition. This is love, this is God. Here is love from the bible.
He made him who knew no sin to be sin on our behalf that we might become the righteousness of God in Him.
There is one God, and one mediator also between God and men, the man Christ Jesus, who gave Himself as a ransom for all, to be testified in due time.
All things are from God, who reconciled us to himself through Christ, and gave us the ministry of reconciliation, namely, that God was in Christ, reconciling the world to Himself, not counting their trespasses against them.
God did not send the Son into the world to judge the world, but that the world should be saved through Him.
The Father has sent the Son to be the Savior of the world.
While we were still helpless, at the right time Christ died for the ungodly.
God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.
While we were enemies, we were reconciled to God through the death of His Son and much more, having been reconciled, we shall be saved by his life.
It does not depend on the man who wills or the man who runs, but on God who has mercy.
By His doing you are in Christ Jesus.
God, being rich in mercy, because of His great love with which He loved us, even when we were dead in our transgressions, made us alive together with Christ, by grace you have been saved.
By grace you have been saved through faith; and that not of yourselves, it is a gift of God; not as a result of works, that no one should boast.
He delivered us from the domain of darkness, and transferred us to the kingdom of the Son of His love.
His love is there and always will be there now and into eternity. He waiting patiently for humanity to look to Him and so he can lavish on more of His awesome love through the work of the cross.
We simply do not know why God has so loved us, or why He desires to save us. We do know we are created in his image and in His likeness but why does he still love us when we are sinners, when we disobey Him, shun Him and fail Him.
Yet this fact remains, He is love, and we will never be able to stop Him from loving us, no matter how hard we try.
My friend it surpasses understanding or comprehension. The human mind is at a stop to reason the magnitude of this incredible loving person.
He does not have favorites He simple loves all the same but what He desires is an intimate father and child relationship, one where a human being can actually draw from all that He is and has as part of His household.
In the end I do not know if this is an easy doctrine to bring to the church or to grasp as an individual. To think that no mater how good or how bad I am. No mater what anyone thinks of me I am comforted to know this truth of unconditional love?
God Said, “I will not in any way fail you nor give you up, nor leave you without support. I will not, I will not, I will not in any degree leave you helpless nor forsake nor let you down relax my hold on you, assuredly not!"*
And I give them eternal life, and they shall never lose it or perish throughout the ages. [To all eternity they shall never by any means be destroyed.] And no one is able to snatch them out of my hand."*
Believe me; I can now say beyond doubt that nothing in all creation will separate me from the love of God.
Copyright Roxy Nolin 2003