A first revelation

I received my first ‘living’ word in 1999 – a verse I read which truly stood out and spoke to my heart.  I cherish this verse, and find it wonderful that God chose to reveal His character first and foremost.  I did not hear a message of condemnation or judgement, nor one of works or service.  It was a message of reconciliation – spoken so kindly that my heart melted.

“The Lord appeared from of old to me saying, Yes, I have loved you with an everlasting love; therefore with loving-kindness have I drawn you and continued My faithfulness to you.” Jer 31:3

In this verse He showed me His never-ending love – it is infinite and boundless.  There is nothing I can do to stop this love, I cannot mess it up or cause Him to change His mind.  This love is not dependent on holy living or works achieved – it moves through all boundaries and overcomes everything.

“For I am persuaded beyond doubt (am sure) that neither death nor life, nor angels nor principalities, nor things impending and threatening nor things to come, nor powers, Nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation will be able to separate us from the love of God which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.” Rom 8:38 – 39

It is this love that will lead the world to repentance – the revelation of God’s character (Rom 2:4).

Judgement or kindness?

The image of God as an angry judge is incorrect.  His heart towards mankind has always been salvation and reconciliation – a plan to bring us back to Him.

“For God did not send the Son into the world in order to judge (to reject, to condemn, to pass sentence on) the world, but that the world might find salvation and be made safe and sound through Him.” John 3:17

It is not His damnation, but His goodness, that will draw people to Him.  The world won’t turn to an angry God, but their hearts will be touched by His love.  That is the real moving power of the Gospel – the love God has for us and the salvation He gave to us.

“Or are you [so blind as to] trifle with and presume upon and despise and underestimate the wealth of His kindness and forebearance and long-suffering patience? Are you unmindful or actually ignorant [of the fact] that God’s kindness is intended to lead you to repent (to change you mind and inner man to accept God’s will)? Rom 2:4

In other words – trying to scare non-believers by threatening them with God’s wrath will only do damage.  Testifying about God’s goodness and love for the world will lead to salvation.