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This morning I want us to attempt a monumentally difficult challenge.
And let me say at the beginning of our attempt that I fully expect, in fact I fully know, that we will fail in our challenge.
The challenge that I want for us to attempt this morning is to embrace and comprehend the deep deep love of God.
I know we will fail to fully achieve this goal, because I the preacher, preaching this message do not myself fully comprehend the love of God, so how can I expect you the listeners to succeed where I have failed?
While I fully acknowledge that we will ultimately fail in our task, my hope is that we will come away from this message this morning understanding in at least some small way, the love of God in a deeper fuller manner.
Our task this morning is something like the waves of the sea crashing up against the cliffs of a mountain.
Those waves try as they might, will for years upon years crash against the cliff face, and they might make a small difference in the shape of the rock, but there is an entire mountain that remains rooted behind those cliffs.
That is how I feel when I throw my mind up against the cliff face of trying to understand God.
Try as hard as I might, I will inevitably be dashed to pieces.
Meanwhile, God like an enormous mountain remains.
But that doesn’t mean that it makes no difference.
With year after year of delighting my thinking in God I will be able to, at least is some small way, begin to deep my understanding of Him.
This morning I invite you to crash the wave of your mind against the deep deep love of the Father.
And we are going to attempt to do that by looking at a series of propositions this morning.
Beloved, you who are truly saved ones, let us love one another, for/because love agape is of or from God.
Real love, Biblical agape love comes from God. God is the source of love.
There would be no love is not for God.
Therefore, everyone that loves (everyone that loves the way God loves) there are two things true about that one- 1).
That one is born of God (that is he is born again, he is spiritually alive), and 2).
That one knows God (that is he has a personal, relational knowledge of God).
The flip side of verse seven is true.
The one that does not love, that does not agape, does not know God (there is no spiritual live, he is not born again, and there is no personal, relational knowledge of God) How do you know that?
For / Because God is love.
God is agape.
Proposition #1- God is love
What does it mean that God is love?
It means that one of the primary attributes that tells us who God is, is love.
Now to understand what that means we need to think a little bit deeper about what God is like.
The Bible teaches that God is eternal.
He always has been, He always will be.
There is no beginning nor ending to God.
That means, in relation to our conversation, that since God is love and He is also eternal, that from eternity past to eternity future God was and is and is to come, love.
There has never been a time nor will there ever be a time where God is not love.
Proposition #2- From eternity past to eternity future God is love
Now what does it take in order for there to be love?
At the very least you need a giver of love and a receiver of love.
You need someone from who the love will proceed and you need someone who is the recipient of that love.
How do we know that God is a god of love.
You say, well that is easy- I know God loves me because he displayed his love to me in the Son and I have received that love from the Father.
But what about the time before the world began, what about eternity past where there were no human beings in existence who were able to receive the love that God would give?
In the beginning- before creation, before anything at all, all there was, was God Himself.
How could God be love if He was all alone?
How could God be love if there was no one to be the recipient of His love?
The answer is found in the trinity.
We serve a marvelously unique God.
He is one God, but yet He is three in one.
There is God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit.
Now how that all works, I have no idea, but Scripture teaches it so I believe it and I attempt to do my best to understand it.
But inevitably I become as the wave dashing itself against the cliff face.
Proposition #3- God is three in one
There are two ways of looking at God.
We can look at God in the unity of His being, and in the unity of His being; Father, Son, Spirit, They are all equal, they are all equally eternal, they are all of the same essence.
That is the Father is fully God, and the Son is fully God, and the Spirit is fully God.
Everything that makes the Father God the Son is and so is the Spirit.
They are equal in terms of their essence.
Jesus claimed exactly this while He was on earth.
The second way we can look at God, is in terms of the three persons.
The Father, Son, and Holy Spirit are equal in terms of their essence, but they are distinct in terms of their persons.
There is an order within the trinity.
That is what is means to be the Father, or the Son, or the Holy Spirit.
It means that there is an order there in the relationship.
And this order, this personhood has always existed.
There has never been a time when the Father was not the Father, and there has never been a time when the Son was not the Son, and there has never been a time when the Spirit was not the Spirit.
From eternity past to eternity future the personhood of the trinity will always exist.
Proposition #4- The personhood of the trinity is eternal
This is so important.
Because in this eternal relationship between the Godhead, the most fundamental relationship is love.
The Father loves the Son
The Son loves the Father
Proposition #5- The most fundamental relationship within the Godhead is love
From eternity past to eternity future the Father loves the Son and the Son loves the Father.
The Father is the initiator of that love, He is the one from Whom the love is sent forth.
The Son is the recipient of that love and the one who responds to that love.
You say Pastor Jon how do you know that?
If you were to study the words of Jesus out of the gospel of John, Jesus talks many times about the love of the Father for the Son.
But there is only one time where Jesus talks about His love for the Father.
Why is that?
It is because the Father is the primary initiator of the love and the Son is the primary recipient and responder to that love.
And from eternity past there has been a beautiful relationship of love where the Father has a deep deep love for the Son and the Son matches that with a deep deep love for the Father.
This is a love relationship that is hard for us to fathom.
There is a beautiful transparency that exists in the love of Father for the Son and the love of the Son for the Father.
Inside of the love relationship of the Father and the Son there is complete transparency.
The Father shows the Son all things that He does.
The Son can do nothing of himself, but what He sees the Father do.
Whatever the Father does, these things also the Son does.
There is no other relationship in existence in all of eternity that is as intimate as this one.
The one person on the face of this planet that I am the closest with is my wife.
I know her more intimately more personally more closely that anyone else.
Often times I am aware even of what she is thinking about.
One time we both started to sing the same song at the same time in the same key (it was weird).
But our relationship is not even in the same hemisphere as the closeness of the love that the Father has for the Son and the Son has for the Father.
No one knows what someone else is thinking, feeling, and doing at all times in every detail.
Proposition #6- In His love the Father always fully discloses Himself to the Son
That means within the trinity you have a complete and total knowing transparency between the Father and the Son.
This complete transparency defines their relationship with each other.
Even though the Father and the Son are separate persons within the Godhead, each are fully present in and to the other.
There is never a time when the Son has to wonder what the Father wants.
Jesus said- the Father loves the Son and shows Him all things that He does.
The Father loves the Son so much that He shares His innermost being with the Son.
This is an intimacy that we can’t even begin to imagine.
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