The Question is not Does God Love You

Text: Luke 15:7
Just so, I tell you, there will be more joy in heaven over one sinner who repents than over ninety-nine righteous people who need no repentance. (NRSV)

God’s love is unconditional and everlasting.  In Romans, Paul talks about nothing being able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus.  The question is never how much God loves us; it is always about how much we love God.

This verse is the end of the parable of the lost sheep.  In it, Jesus suggests that anyone who has 100 sheep, and one wanders away, will leave the 99 and search for the one.  The conclusion drawn is that the one which has wandered away is worthy of the care of the shepherd and the work involved in bringing the one back into the flock.

But notice that in Jesus’ conclusion, the joy is because the sinner has repented.  The sinner has recognized the error of wandering away from God’s love and has turned his life around and now has rejoined God in relationship.  God never stopped loving the sinner but, the sinner is only reunited in a relationship with God because the sinner repented and returned to God.

Never worry about the love of God.  God loves unconditionally and will always be reaching out to you when you have gone astray.  What you should worry about is if you continue to love God.

Pray with me:

God of love and God who searches for those who have wandered from your love, forgive me when I live my life as if you do not love me by me not loving you in return.  Remind me that loving you means keeping the command of loving others as I love myself.  AMEN.

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