The other day, I was thinking about the classic question, “With all I’ve done, how could God love me?” Or to word it another way, “I’m such a sinner, how could God possibly love me?” Or “There’s no way God could love me, I’m unlovable.”
If you’ve ever had a thought like this, you’re not alone.
While reflecting on this, a somewhat different answer came to mind. How could God not love me? Let me explain. 1 John 4:8 makes it clear that “God is love.” And 2 Timothy 2:13 says, “He cannot deny who He is.” God loves because God is love, and He can’t not be who He is. I love the way Romans 8:38–39 puts it, “And I am convinced that nothing can ever separate us from God’s love. Neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither our fears for today nor our worries about tomorrow—not even the powers of hell can separate us from God’s love. 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.”
Oh. My. Goodness. That love. God’s love. Nothing can ever separate us from God’s love.
One of my favorite Bible verses is 1 John 3:16, “We know what real love is because Jesus gave up His life for us. So we also ought to give up our lives for our brothers and sisters.” This is a simple and profound explanation of what real love is. Jesus gave up His life. Not just in death, but while He was alive, He gave up His entire life for us because He loves us. That astounds me.
God proved His great love for us by sending Jesus to die. Romans 5:8 makes this clear, “But God showed His great love for us by sending Christ to die for us while we were still sinners.” To top that off, God’s great love is so great, that it’s too great to understand fully (Ephesians 3:19).
Jesus loves us so much that He died to take the punishment for our sins. And what was that punishment? The full force of God’s wrath, the guilt and shame of sin, and complete separation from God the Father. God turned His back on Jesus and forsake Him because Jesus bore our sins (Matthew 27:46).
The prophet Isaiah gives us a glimpse into the torture that Jesus went through. In chapter 53 verse 5 he says, “He was pierced for our rebellion, crushed for our sins. He was beaten so we could be whole. He was whipped so we could be healed.” If that’s not a clear view of what real love is, I don’t know what is.
So how could God love you?
Because His great love is far greater than we could ever understand. Because He sent His Son, Jesus, to take the full extent of sin’s consequences, the consequences we rightfully deserve because of our rebellion. Because the core of His very nature is love. Because He defines what real love is. Because He is love.