Love. An Advent Message (51 min)

Title: Love. An Advent Message (51 min)
Message Description:

God’s love is just not so simple for me.

Jesus fully revealed God’s love. I know that, but I’m still shy of love, frankly. I’m shy to take up the grand subject topically. I feel I’d need weeks to do it any justice. God’s word is not just three English words: “I love you.” To see love I need to see the Cross. And with a being like God, love is not enough to make sense of the Cross. To see of love what I can today see took far more than a hug. I can only try to truly define love by Scripture. God by Scripture makes blind men see love like trees walking, and then further focuses their gaze in truth in their lives. For me, a fallen sinner to understand love as a member of God’s church, God had to raise me up from my cold, blind, God-hating death. He created a love in me he could love. He painted a full picture of all he wanted me to know in Scripture. We number the Bible’s chapters today at 1,189. It is God’s book. Love is only one part of it. I can now see that I needed 1,500 years of over 40 inspired writers speaking as God’s mouthpieces sometimes being vessels through which God wrought astounding miracles to see love. I apparently needed many of them to suffer. I needed the Law to see love as much as the Gospel. I wouldn’t understand the Cross without a knowledge of my utter depravity by the Law. I needed hundreds of thousands of gallons of blood spilt on altars. Firstborn sons had to die. I needed to see promises carried on and honored for millennia. I had to see God bring Israel to victory over some and then see some of those enemies later crush Israel as an axe in God’s own hand. I had to see Jesus’ enemies triumph over him before I could see how God makes them a footstool for Jesus’ feet. I needed to see Israel scattered and try to see in my mind’s eye her elders weep at the lesser nature of the second temple upon their return. A prophet had to marry a harlot to help me see God’s love to his own. I needed hundreds of years of silence until John thundered forth by the waters of baptism calling people to repent. I needed a darkened hill to hush while God, in excruciating agony, and with a red raw throat cried out at noon, “Father, why have you forsaken me?” He quotes the Psalms even then for me to be able to give an answer. I see love, but must see the truth there also. I needed Jesus to pass through death to show me there’s life after it and a judgment to come that I need rescue from. I can see that love required something of Jesus.

I say again, God’s love is just not that simple.

Love without the truth is unloving and false.

With the truth, however, oh how great the message of the love of Christmas is!

The Christian church is a singing church because of love!

The Christian church is a singing church because of the truth!

The Christian church is a singing church because of its love of the truth!

Merry Christmas!

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