God’s Love Matters

13By this we know that we abide in him and he in us, because he has given us of his Spirit.14And we have seen and testify that the Father has sent his Son to be the Savior of the world. 15Whoever confesses that Jesus is the Son of God, God abides in him, and he in God.16So we have come to know and to believe the love that God has for us. God is love, and whoever abides in love abides in God, and God abides in him. —1 John 4:13-16

God’s love matters. If you’re thinking to yourself, “Well, here we go, James is going to turn Christmas into a big love-fest this year. And that’s probably okay but it’s not really very deep, and where is this God’s love emphasis really going exactly?”

Good question! My answer comes directly from God’s Word. First John 4:16 tells us, “So we have come to know and to believe the love that God has for us.” What a fantastic goal that is—reaching that place where “we have come to know and to believe the love that God has for us.”

Wouldn’t it be fantastic if by the 25th of December we could all be sitting around together, saying from our hearts, “Hey! The most fantastic thing happened! This year we came to know and to believe in a new way the love that God has for us!” How great is that? Not a waste of time hardly, right?

Now just begin to think with me about some of the things that are hidden; there are little treasures in those words. First, notice the word come as in “come to know.” John is describing a process. “There was a time in my life when I knew about the Lord, maybe even I knew Him, but I didn’t really comprehend the depth of His love for me. But then it happened. And now I know like I didn’t know!”

I’ve found this is true for many. They know a lot of things about God’s love. They are consciously aware that God is love. But here’s the thing: Do you know? The word means more than just information. More than just 2 + 2 = 4; more than just some facts like the recipe for a Denver omelet. This knowing is savoring the omelet! Do you see the difference? When John says know, the word in the original points to a level of relationship and intimacy that is deep and satisfying. Not only knowing it theoretically, but also knowing it in your heart. God allows us to come to know Him and His love—and the result of that is deep heart knowledge.—James MacDonald

Journal:

  • What things about my relationship with God do I know in this experiential, intimate way?
  • What difference does it make to know this way?

Prayer - Heavenly Father, I thank You for the privilege and challenge to come to know You intimately in fresh ways that never come to an end because I can never know all of You. Thank You for the assurance that I can come to know and believe the love You have for me, expressed so finely and ultimately in Your Son. Thank You for Jesus who died for me, walks each day with me, and is waiting for me in eternity. I bring You my gratitude under the authority of His matchless name, Jesus. Amen.

Always True: 5 Great and Precious Promises of God
Always True: 5 Great and Precious Promises of God 

5 CD Series Set - $35.00

What if you believed—truly believed with all confidence that God is with you? How would today go for you if you knew without a doubt that God is in control? What would be different in your life if you were sure God is watching and good? What would you risk if you were certain God is victorious? 

Just how would believing God’s promises change your life?  

Ask the greatest Christian you’ll ever meet if they hold on to God’s promises and they’ll all say yes. Believing that God will do what He promises leads to a great life. The greatest Christian you’ll every meet knows, treasures, and is resting in the promises of God. They cling to these assurances that God gives His people so they can walk by faith while they wait for Him to work.

So what exactly does God promise?  In this topical study of what will always be true, Pastor James MacDonald will explore five great and precious promises that God keeps. Enter into this study with anticipation and faith that the God who makes these promises is faithful and true... always true.