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Weekly Wisdoms for the week of April 13, 2020

Love is the visible attribute of an invisible God.

1 John 4:12 says, No one has ever seen God; but if we love one another, God lives in us and his love is made complete in us. In other words, even though no person has ever actually seen God the Father, we are able to see God's character as we love one another.

Remember that God is love (1 John 4:8); so, when we walk in love, we are like God.

Thus, although we can't actually see God, we can see his character in our love for each other (and in his love for us). Indeed, Romans 5:8 tells us that God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.

Furthermore, Jesus said that we, his disciples, will be known by our fruit: By their fruit you will recognize them (Matthew 7:16, 20). Galatians 5:22 tells us what that fruit is: The fruit of the Spirit is love ... . Thus, we are known by our love—love for one another and love for God.

It is so important to walk in love, because love is the visible attribute of an invisible God.

God loves you not because of what you do, but because of who He is.

God is love (1 John 4:8). God doesn't have to pretend to love you; He can't not love you, because He is love.

In fact, the very actions of God exemplify what love is. The apostle John explains that this is how we know what love is: Jesus Christ laid down his life for us (1 John 3:16). Only a few verses later, he further defines love: This is love: not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins (1 John 4:9).

Notice that God's love for you is independent of how you behave, who you are, or how you respond to that love.

Romans 5:6-8 reminds us that God loves us regardless of where we are: You see, at just the right time, when we were still powerless, Christ died for the ungodly. Very rarely will anyone die for a righteous man, though for a good man someone might possibly dare to die. But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.

Jesus represents God's love for us in what we now call the Parable of the Prodigal Son (see Luke 15:11-24). In that allegory, the father openly and lovingly receives his son even though the son had run away, squandered all of his money, and insulted the father. In the same way, God loves us unconditionally.

There is nothing you can do to get God to love you -- He already does. There is nothing you can do to deserve God's love, because, by sinning, you have turned your back on God and are fundamentally no different than the prodigal son. That parable is a clear reminder that God loves you not because of what you do, but because of who He is.

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