"For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life." [John 3:16]
I thought it appropriate, on this day that is specially designated to celebrate our love for each other, to talk about the greatest love that has ever been displayed. I mentioned in a previous post that God made all of creation for our benefit. He made us to seek Him and love Him and worship Him. But God cannot tolerate sin; it is simply against His nature. So when we sinned in the garden, God was forced to turn His back on us.
However, because He loved us, He didn't want us to be eternally lost and so set a plan in motion (a plan that He had established even before we were created) to bring about a means of eternal salvation. The initial phase of that plan was to establish a people from whom this great Redeemer would come, and thus the nation of Israel, chosen from the seed of Abraham, was established. To this nation were given laws and customs by which they could temporarily remove their sins, but it was not a permanent solution.
Finally, in the fullness of time, God demonstrated the fullness of His love by sending His only son to this earth to ultimately deliver us from sin. The necessary consequence of sin is death, so when we sin, someone has to die as a result. When Christ gave His life in our place, he was pure and without sin, and being the son of God was able to overcome death and conquer it so that we no longer had to be slaves to it. This was God's plan from the beginning, and THIS is the love of God, and the precious blood of Christ continues to cleanse us of our sins to this day. Praise be to God for His great love and mercy and for being our salvation!