Does Jesus Love Me ?

       The children's song goes like this:
  Jesus loves me, this I know...

       The person who wrote that line certainly seemed sure about it.  He didn't ask.  He didn't wonder out loud.  He stated unequivocally that he knew that Jesus loved him.

Yes, Jesus loves me.
  Yes, Jesus loves me. 

       How could that person know so certainly that Jesus loved Him?  Part of the answer lies in the final lines of the song:

Yes, Jesus loves me.
The Bible tells me so.

       What evidence was found in the Bible, that made the author so sure of this divine love?  Let's explore and see if we can find such evidence.  Shall we begin?

       In John 15:13, it says, "Greater love has no one than this, that he lay down his life for his friends."  Jesus spoke these words in the dreadful week when He had entered Jerusalem triumphantly on a donkey's back as the crowds cheered His arrival.  In only a few, short days He would be hung on a cross on a lonely hill, the crowds having come now to see Him die.  He did lay down His life for us, His friends.  This showed great love.

       In John 3:16 it is stated that "God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life."  Imagine!  God loved us so much that He sent His one and only Son, knowing that His life would be required of Him.  Picture yourself standing over the crib of your infant child.  What love exudes from a parent's heart for a child of their own creation!  The mother and father will do anything to protect that child from harm, and to see that its comfort is secured.  Can you imagine the Heavenly Father, with control over all the earth, choosing to send His own precious Son to die?  For us??  How great must His love be for us!

       He didn't wait until we were perfect to die for us.  He didn't wait until we had accumulated a certain number of good acts.  "God demonstrates His own love for us in this:  While we were still sinners, Christ died for us."  (Romans 5:8)  Oh, no, we were not perfect.  We did not in any way deserve this great sacrifice.  Isaiah 64:6 states that "all our righteous acts" -- all our efforts to please God and earn His acceptance and love, all of those things we do to try to be good -- "are like filthy rags."  But God sent His Son to die for us, miserable though we were,  because He loved us.  He loved us so much that losing His only Son was worthwhile.  It's hard to imagine such love.

       The love of the Lord does not come and go.  It is with us always.  Psalm 117:2 says "For great is his love toward us, and the faithfulness of the Lord endures forever."  In Psalm 118, the theme of his enduring love is repeated in a hymn of thanksgiving:
Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good;
His love endures forever.
Let Israel say:  His love endures forever.
Let the house of Aaron say:  His love endures forever.
Let those who fear the Lord say:  His love endures forever.

       His love for us is not going to disappear!  When John wrote 1John 4:9, he wanted the world to understand this great gift of love that came from God.  He wrote,  "This is how God showed his love among us:  He sent his one and only Son into the world that we might live through Him."  This great gift of love had purpose.  It brought a way for us to be forgiven, and find a new way to live.  Romans 3:23 states that all people "have sinned and fall short of the glory of God."  All people, not just the undesirables or the outcasts or the unchurched -- all people.  Romans 6:23 goes on to state that not only have all people sinned, but the payment for that sin is death.  Death means separation from God, forever.  But God offered His love gift to us so that we do not have to experience the death that separates us from Him.  "The wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord." 

       Payment had to be made for our sin.  Jesus was the payment sent by God because of His great love for us.  We were separated from Him by sin, with a huge gap between us.  He built us a bridge out of His own great love for us.  That bridge is the cross of Jesus.  When we accept Jesus as the sacrifice for our sins, we are able to walk across that bridge into a new life of fellowship with Him.  We haven't earned it.  He has provided it as a gift.  But we must accept His gift.

       The bridge is there.  Have you crossed it?  Have you chosen to receive God's gift of love to you?  If not, He's there waiting on the other side of that bridge.  Romans 10:9 says that "if you confess with your mouth, 'Jesus is Lord,' and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved."  Romans 10:13 affirms that "everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved."

       Trust Him today.  He loves you.  He's calling you.  He wants to be your closest companion, to lead and guide you through the turmoil of life on this earth and provide an eternal home for you in heaven, but He leaves the choice up to you.  Will you take that step of faith?

       "Lord, I know I have sinned against you.  I realize that you sent Jesus Christ, your Son, to die on the cross and shed His blood for me to pay for my sin.  Thank you for loving me enough to send Jesus.  I invite Christ into my heart and life right now and accept Him and what He did for me.  Come in, Lord Jesus, and cleanse me.  Thank you for giving me a new life as your child.  In Jesus' name, Amen."

        If you prayed that prayer, believing, you have stepped across the bridge that spans the gap between our sinful world and God's glorious throne.  God welcomes you with open, loving arms.   The angels are rejoicing that you have found your way home.

Praise God!


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