Well, to get one thing out of the way first, my title is another way to say for the love of God, since He is the only thing that’s truly holy. He’s the only one who has free will and yet has never done anything wrong.
Second, and far more importantly, to get the love of God, you don’t need to do a thing.
Think about that for a second. Heck, think about that for a lifetime. You still won’t be able to comprehend it fully. God, the Creator of the Universe and all that’s in it, from the largest galaxies down to the tiniest subatomic particles; the one who knows your thoughts, your heart, and your future mistakes; the righteous Judge who has the right to do whatever He wants with you, regardless of whether you agree with Him or not, loves you.
With a pure love. He doesn’t demand a tithe offering. He doesn’t require that you go through certain rituals to be saved or to keep your salvation. He didn’t even demand that we love Him. “But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.” Romans 5:8. Even in the midst of a rejection so strong that it involved Jesus being beaten, whipped, condemned unjustly, mocked, and crucified, He willingly died to save those same people who were putting Him on that cross. There was nothing we did to deserve it; in fact, there was every reason to wipe us off the face of the earth and send us all to hell because all of us, at one time or another (and, let’s face it, multiple times a day for nearly all of us), have chosen ourselves over God.
Not only is there nothing we’ve done (or can do) to deserve it, but there’s nothing we can do to keep God from loving us. Nearly 2000 years ago, a group of people had God in human form in their midst and, instead of bowing down before Him and begging for mercy, killed Him in the most painful, degrading manner they could imagine. The word excruciating actually comes from crucifixion. Jesus asked the Father to forgive them, even of that.
It’s absolutely incredible to think about. God has loved you so much that nothing you can do can either increase or decrease His love for you. Can you say that of anyone else? Are you that way with anyone else?
I love my girlfriend deeply. I have never been with her and wished she wasn’t there, nor have I ever not looked forward to seeing her. Our times together haven’t been all sunshine and Oreos, but there has always been her. We have not just the happy, infatuated feeling around each other, but a commitment to love each other, even when the other has hurt us. Yet that love is still dependent if we base it only on ourselves. If I were to cause her enough pain, eventually, our relationship would end. It might take a while, but it would happen. The reason is that our love for each other is based on the other’s love for us. I love her in part because she loves me and vice versa. We accept one another as flawed, broken people and choose to love anyway.
God’s love goes beyond that in that He doesn’t require us to love Him for Him to love us. His love is pure and eternal; ours is not.
And what’s more, it’s deep. As much as I adore my girlfriend, I’ve never counted her breaths or the hairs on her head. I’ve never recorded each step she’s made, not even for an hour. God’s been counting your heartbeats since before you were born. He knows everything about you and watches you with rapt attention. He’s always eagerly awaiting for you to return to Him when you mess up. The only things required for Him to forgive you are for you to accept His sacrifice (and Him as Lord) and for you to forgive others. That’s it. Forget Black Friday; there’s no deal in the Universe better than this one.
Why does all this matter? Aside from your salvation, there’s one other benefit that’s absolutely huge. It’s life-changing. And we’ll get to it next time. 🙂