1 John 3:16, “This is how we know what love is: Jesus laid down his life for us.”
We say things like, “I love ice cream,” “I’m in love with that coat,” and “I love you.” But God says, “I AM love.” There are multiple meanings for the word love in the English language, and we throw the word around so casually that it often loses its impact. In Greek, the original language this verse was written in, there’s no confusion in John’s choice of the word agape — meaning unconditional, sacrificial love. This is not to be mistaken for the Greek word eros, meaning “physical attraction,” or phileo, meaning “friendship.” John is deliberate in ensuring the reader that there’s no greater love than that of Christ.
How many times have you heard the phrase “I love you” from someone whose actions didn’t back up their claim? Not so with Jesus! His death on the cross speaks volumes to the extent of His passion for us. He laid down His life to pay a debt we couldn’t pay for ourselves. As sinners, we deserve the full extent of God’s judgment. Our debt is covered by the blood of Christ and paid in full. He exhibits the ultimate love, thereby allowing us to love Him back and love others to the fullest extent of the word!
Take time to truly thank God for loving you sacrificially and unconditionally. Show that same love to the people you encounter today!
Heavenly Father, Thank You for showing me what true love is through Christ’s death on the cross and victory over the grave. Give me opportunities today to be a reflection of Your love. In Jesus’ name, Amen.