Sunday, May 6, 2012
A meditation on the Steadfast Love of God
“The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases, His mercies never come to an end; they are new every morning; great is your faithfulness. ‘The Lord is my portion’ says my soul, ‘therefore I will hope in Him.” -Lamentations 3:22-24 The Lord has highlighted this part of His nature over these last few weeks. He has given me a grander view of His marvelous love. The word steadfast means to remain in a state or a place; to abide for a time indefinitely; not to cease from or to terminate. firmly fixed or established; constant; firm; resolute; not fickle or wavering. This means that the Love of God is unending, constant, unwavering, established, unhindered…There is nothing in us that can attract the love of such a Holy God as He which means that there in nothing that can hinder His love towards us. It is completely uncaused and undeserved by mankind. Jeremiah 31:3b- “I have loved you with an everlasting love; therefore I have continued my faithfulness to you.” Psalm 42:8- “By day the Lord commands His steadfast love, and at night His song is with me, a prayer to the God of my life.” Psalm 100:5- “For the Lord is good; His steadfast love endures forever, and His faithfulness to all generations.” Psalm 103:1-5; 11; 17- “Bless the Lord, O my soul, and all that is within me, bless His holy name! Bless the Lord, O my soul, and forget not all His benefits, who forgives all your inequity, who heals all your diseases, who redeems your life from the pit, who crowns you with steadfast love and mercy, who satisfies you with good so that your youth is renewed like the eagles….For as high as the Heavens are above the earth, so great is His steadfast love toward those who fear Him… But the steadfast love of the Lord is from everlasting to everlasting on those who fear Him, and His righteousness to children’s children.” A.W. Tozer beautifully articulates this profound truth in “The Knowledge of the Holy” “From God’s other known attributes we may learn much about His love. We can know, for instance, that because God is self-existent, His love had no beginning; because He is eternal, His love can have no end; because He is infinite, it has no limit; because He is immense, His love is an incomprehensibly vast, bottomless shoreless sea before which we kneel in joyful silence and from which the loftiest eloquence retreats confused and abashed.” Hosea 2:19-20- “And I will betroth you to me forever. I will betroth you to me in righteousness and in justice, in steadfast love and in mercy. I will betroth you to me in faithfulness. And you shall know the Lord.” Isaiah 62:5- “And as the bridegroom rejoices over the bride, so shall your God rejoice over you.” Isaiah 54:5- “For your Maker is your husband, the Lord of hosts is His name, and the Holy One of Israel is your Redeemer.” It is too much for my heart to fully attain the grandness with which He loves us. He has not only brought us near to Himself by the blood of Christ making us his sons and daughters but He has entered covenant with us. We are His bride. Why would such a gloriously holy God love us- ones who in and of ourselves are wicked, vile, defiled and who have disgraced His name? Though we literally cursed His Name and hated Him and spat upon His face, His love never changed. It was fixed and steadfast upon us. God has allowed His heart to be emotionally identified with such sinful men as us. Though we were once like the adulterous wife of Hosea- our Jesus has cleansed and purified us to make us His spotless bride. He loves us… but with such passion to call us His bride. He has entered an eternal covenant with such wretched people and promised His everlasting, love and faithfulness to us. It is astounding to dwell on this fact and reality. He loves us which such great intensity- far above all that we can comprehend. God is not dependent upon us, but He is free- but He has allowed His heart to be “bound to us forever.” (As A.W. Tozer also said.) What is our response to the steadfast love of God? Psalm 107:31; 43- “Let them thank the Lord for His steadfast love, for His wondrous works to the children of man! Whoever is wise, let Him attend to these things; let them consider the steadfast love of the Lord.” Psalm 63:3-4 “Because thy lovingkindness is better than life, my lips shall praise thee. Thus will I bless thee while I live: I will lift up my hands in thy name.” Deuteronomy 6:5- “Thou shalt love the Lord, thy God with all thine heart, with all thy soul, and with all thy mind.” Because we are loved so immensely by our God it should compel us to love God with a steadfastness of heart, firmly fixed upon our precious Jesus. May every fiber of our being be so taken and in love with Him. Would we love God with everything in us because He is worthy to receive every part of us. Would we hold nothing back from Him. Would every desire, longing and affection be for Him and Him alone.