The seeds of doubt were planted in the Garden of Eden. The serpent began his temptation of Eve with four devastating words: Has God indeed said …? He spoke the words with one purpose in mind: to separate us from God’s love. The words triggered feelings of uncertainty and confusion in Eve.
They continue to wreak havoc on her descendants.
If you struggle with doubts or questions about God’s love, you owe it to yourself to investigate the following passages of Scripture. Find out for yourself what God has indeed said.
There’s a reason this verse is one of the best-known passages in the entire Bible. Drawn from a conversation between Jesus and Nicodemus, a Jewish religious leader, the verse summarizes the relationship between God and His human creation in a single sentence.
“For God so loved the world that He gave His one and only Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish but have eternal life.”
The only hope for humanity is Jesus. In order for us to live forever, Jesus had to die. God sacrificed what was most precious to Him so that we could experience eternal life.
The apostle Paul plumbs the depths of God’s love by reminding us why God sent His Son to die for us.
“But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.”
God had a perfect plan in place for the human race. Yet He created us with a will of our own and the freedom to accept or reject Him. We rejected Him. The consequences were death and eternal separation from Him. Our only hope was for the One we rejected to provide a means of salvation for us—at an unimaginable cost to Himself.
God’s love isn’t an emotion or feeling. It doesn’t ebb and flow. It isn’t subject to whims, moods or fickle changes of heart like human love is.
God’s love might better be described as an invisible, powerful force—the spiritual equivalent of gravity or a magnetic field. The apostle Paul testifies to its power by offering a list of things that are powerless to separate us from it. Death can’t separate us from God’s love—and neither can life. Angels, principalities and powers are no match for it. Neither is anything in the present or anything in the future. Height, depth and any other created thing round out Paul’s brief list. But it’s really just a beginning.
The passage practically invites readers to add our own weaknesses, stumbling blocks and struggles to the list:
Every one of those things can wreak havoc on our lives. Not one of them can separate us from God’s love. You name it, it can’t diminish God’s love for us.
God’s love is the gift that keeps on giving. The way it works is this. We receive it from Him. Sometimes it comes crashing unmistakably into our lives when we expect it least, but need it most. Sometimes other people intervene to help us recognize it. Whatever the circumstances, we experience God’s grace, mercy, compassion and care for ourselves. And it transforms us, in big ways and small. Among other things, it expands our capacity for loving others. The same sense of gratitude and joy that caused others to intervene in our lives compels us to pass it on to others. The love of God makes it possible for us to love others; we love because God first loved us.