Thoughts on the Way Home

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Hung Up on the Love of God

In regards to Mason's post on John 15:9:

15:9 and also 17:23 are so good, and yet I have to admit I’ve often been left paralyzed by their wording. Really, it's sad, I know. But here is the issue. We know that saying “just as” and “even as” doesn’t necessarily mean “in the exact same way.” It can just mean, “in a similar way.” That is, in referring to two different things, there only has to be one point of correspondence or commonality to use those words. So who's to say that these verses in John don't just mean that the Father and the Son have some love for us?

Nevertheless I’ve always heard preachers use the words like “in the exact same way” when referring to similar verses, and especially this verse. It was hard for me, because I never heard anyone deal with the ambiguity that exists with the words “just as” (and yes, the same ambiguity exists in the Greek). With that being said, what is the meaning? Could God's love for us somehow be a weaker lesser love?

No, of course it is not. The preachers are right. The above meaning is totally correct. You just have to determine it from the context of the Bible. God does love us with the same love for his one and only son, because he has placed us in him and made us sons. He has adopted us. And just because we would otherwise have no loveliness in and of ourselves, his love for us is not then some mirage, or half-love. It is totally full.

To know the love of Christ, which surpasses knowledge…

Anyway, if anyone else has gotten hung up on the wording before, I hope that helps.