The characteristics of God are so many. We could look at some of them, truthful, just, righteous, patient, long-suffering, undeniable, unselfish, unconditional and much more. As with any word, people can perceive a different meaning. There are different meanings for the word "love" as well. There is romantic love, the kind between a man and woman. There is brotherly love we have for each other. We also have parental love and love for our pets. There is a whole host of uses for love when it comes to appreciating things, food, sports. "I love my job", "I love my car", etc. So, when it comes to talking about God, what kind of love are we talking about? God's kind of love is unselfish, which results in doing the best for another, even at the highest personal cost, without requiring or expecting a payback. That is called agape love. Love is the most precious gift any of us can ever have. It is the greatest gift we can receive or give to one another.It is the most intimate feeling we can share. It is the only thing in this world, besides the presence of God in our soul, that is eternal. Why is love such an awesome thing? Because it is rooted in the very nature of God. So far in His teachings, Jesus has taught his disciples to love their enemies; he told them to love the Lord their God with all their heart, soul, mind and strength, and to love their neighbors as themselves. Jesus gave us this command. Love one another, but Hedid not stop there, He added, "As I have loved you" This is what Jesus is telling us. He is saying to us, "I have showed you howto love, now you love others the way that I do". And when you look at Jesus' love there are three adjectives that you can use to describe it.
People could debate about whether Jesus worked miracles by thepower of God. They could debate whether or not He was John the Baptist, Elijah, or one of the prophets. But one thing that was undeniable was his love for people. Jesus provided day after day, through his teachings, his miracles, his healing, his compassion and acts of service, that he loved. To love like Jesus, we must love in such a way that it cannot be denied. By his bold teaching and actions, Jesus left no room for doubting his love, and neither can we.
Jesus love was completely unselfish. He taught us to give, expecting nothing in return. He taught us to give without blowing a horn or even letting our right hand know what the left hand is doing and Jesus practiced such love and giving. Acts 20:35 says "It is more blessed to give than to receive" Too often we love for selfish reasons. If I be nice to this person or that person, then I might get something in return. Too often we are self-centeredlooking out for ourselves.
All too often we put conditions on our love. We say I will love you if you do this and that. Even husbands and wives who have pledged to love "'for better for worse, for richer for poorer, in sickness and in health, till death do us part,” start putting conditions on their love soon after the honeymoon. But when you look at Jesus, you see a picture of unconditional love. While we were still sinners, Christ died for the ungodly. John 15:3 says "Greater love has no one than this that He laid down his life for his friends” That, my friend. is unconditional love.