He didn’t love in order to get something from us but to give everything of himself to us.—Ephesians 5:2, The Message(Part 2 of 3)
Okay, before we finish up on the different types of Grace, let’s pick up where we left off last week and look at those ten lepers first.
To refresh your memory, we were looking at the order of verbs in John 3:16.
Love Give Believe
Remember that, with the verbs in this order, a person’s giving is based solely on his or her love. However, one’s belief—or, rather, one’s response—is a completely different subject. Although it does play an important role, it is not a factor in whether or not a person loves you and gives to you.
Let’s look at a quick story.
“While He was on the way to Jerusalem, He was passing between Samaria and Galilee. As He entered a village, ten leprous men who stood at a distance met Him; and they raised their voices, saying, ‘Jesus, Master, have mercy on us!’ When He saw them, He said to them, ‘Go and show yourselves to the priests.’ And as they were going, they were cleansed. Now one of them, when he saw that he had been healed, turned back, glorifying God with a loud voice, and he fell on his face at His feet, giving thanks to Him. And he was a Samaritan. Then Jesus answered and said, ‘Were there not ten cleansed? But the nine—where are they? Was no one found who returned to give glory to God, except this foreigner?’ And He said to him, ‘Stand up and go; your faith has made you well.’”
Only one man came back and said “thank you”; only one responded. But please note: did Jesus take back His healing of the other nine who didn’t believe? No, He had given to them because He loved them, regardless of whether they loved Him back.
We glimpse a similar kind of love in the story of the woman at the well, which we looked at a few weeks ago. Jesus was seeking to give this woman the “living” water of His love. Although some people have unjustly used this story to prove that we have a right to point out others’ sins, I’d like you to consider it more honestly. Why did Jesus bring up the fact that this woman had been repeatedly married and divorced? Look at it carefully. What was Jesus really revealing? I believe with all my heart that He was saying to her, “Listen, I know everything there is to know about you, and my offer is still on the table.”
He gives simply because He loves!
He loves you, dear reader. Do you believe this? He knows everything there is to know about you. His love is not blind. On the contrary; it is well informed. Even with knowing all there is to know about you, He is saying to you today, “Yes, I know about that, but my offer is still on the table. Take my hand, and let me give you all of Me.”
“He didn’t love in order to get something from us but to give everything of himself to us.”—Ephesians 5:2, The Message
“As our Mediator, Christ works incessantly. Whether men receive or reject Him, He works earnestly for them. He grants them life and light, striving by His Spirit to win them from Satan’s service.”—The Review and Herald, March 12, 1901
Something to think about.
I wish you God’s best this next week.