If there’s one concept that doesn’t make a lot of sense to me without God, it’s love. Perhaps it gives us some sort of competitive advantage, but it seems to me it would be really hard to explain how the essence of love – selflessness – works and thrives in a survival of the fittest dominated world.
If you took a bible and took out everything about God related to love, you wouldn’t be left with much. “God is love,” John writes. John describes himself as “the one Jesus loved” – not, I think, because he felt more special than anyone else, but because in the eyes of Jesus, that is exactly how he felt – loved. He not only describes God as love, but defines love in terms of God – “we know what real love is because Jesus gave up his life for us.”
But aside from all of those references, the cornerstone of God’s relationship with humanity is summed up in what might be the most famous and important verse in the entire bible: “God loved the world *so much* that he sent his one and only Son, so that whoever believes in him will not perish but have eternal life.”
In my time as an engineer, I’ve had the opportunity to make many things, and often I’m proud of them. I like how they work, and when I see them do what they were intended to do, it makes me happy. When they break and don’t work right, it causes me grief, frustration, and pain. I think about the small amount of love I have for the creations of my hands, and imagine the incredible love and pride God must have for his creation. “He loved the world *so much*” – it isn’t an apathetic kind of love that doesn’t care what happens in the end – it is a love where God goes to any length possible in order to fix and save what he made from certain destruction.
I believe in a God of love. I believe that his love extends beyond me, to all people, and beyond all people to all things. How much? Paul writes that God showed his great love for us in this: that while we didn’t deserve it, Christ died for us. I believe in a God who loves his creation so much he was willing to sacrifice a part of himself to save it, even when his creation didn’t deserve it.
next: I believe in a God who dwells among us