A Love That Never Dies
Something that will never die is imperishable; not liable to corruption. As I was concluding my reading of Ephesians this week, I was struck by the last verse: “Grace to all who love our Lord Jesus Christ with an undying love.” Eph. 6:24 (emphasis mine) Undying love is pure, sincere, and incorruptible. Loving Jesus in such a manner, releases great grace into our hearts.
The Great Inlet of Love
A great outflow (undying love) requires a great inlet. God’s love flowing into my heart is what fuels my response towards Him. God initiates; we respond. It’s a solid correlation: the more I receive of God’s love, the more I am equipped to love Him in return. I once heard a pastor describe it like this: “It takes God to love God.” Growing in our Christian walk, making wise and mature choices in life, is born from the perfect choices made by God towards us. In other words, the undying love from God, when received in my heart at a deep level, inspires me to love Him in return, with an undying love.
As Strong As Death
I talk about God’s sealing love in another post. Here’s the invitation from God. “Place me like a seal over your heart, like a seal on your arm; for love is as strong as death, its jealousy unyielding as the grave. It burns like blazing fire, like a mighty flame.” Song 8:6 Praying this verse, Lord set your seal upon my heart, is a commitment to a process of walking in tandem with the Holy Spirit’s leading. “And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, with whom you were sealed for the day of redemption.” Eph. 4:30
Graced or Cursed?
If grace is imparted to those who love with an undying love, what is at the other end of the spectrum? “If anyone does not love the Lord, let that person be cursed.” 1 Cor. 16:22 What a minute! What if I have an “off day”? Will the trap door of failure open beneath me? Context will be helpful here. The Corinthian church had some ongoing issues that required a strong course correction. Sexual immorality (including incest), lack of unity, disrespect of the Lord’s supper, drunkenness, spiritual pride, doctrinal error, believers fighting in court, and more. To increase in my love for God, I must decrease in my selfish engagement with the things of the flesh. Strong warnings are appropriate when one is straying into grave danger.
“We proclaim to you what we have seen and heard, so that you also may have fellowship with us. And our fellowship is with the Father and with his Son, Jesus Christ.” 1 Jn. 1:3 What a glorious and potent story, passed down for centuries, by those who literally saw Jesus, to those of us who see by faith. “Though you have not seen him, you love him; and even though you do not see him now, you believe in him and are filled with an inexpressible and glorious joy.” 1 Pet. 1:8 It is a witness so enduring, that many have given their very lives rather than renounce their love for Christ.
Jesus sets the benchmark. His love was unto death, the single seed sown into the grave, to produce many seeds. Jn. 12:24 “After He was found in [terms of His] outward appearance as a man [for a divinely-appointed time], He humbled Himself [still further] by becoming obedient [to the Father] to the point of death, even death on a cross.” Phil. 2:8 AMP
His undying love for His Father is our cue.
Photo by Terry Tan De Hao on Unsplash