Greetings friends the world over! It’s autumn here in Texas and its welcome respite from the summer heat. The picture below speaks for the subject of this post.
A Question Often Asked, Seldom Understood (Wiki Commons)
You may have noticed in my posts I have capitalized the word “Love” where it relates to God, as opposed to a non-capitalized “love” as it relates to humans. Whenever you see that, it is to differentiate between human “love” and God’s divine “Love.” The Bible tells us that “God is Love” (1John 4:8). He is Love because He is first and foremost our Father. (John 17:24) Whenever you see “Love” capitalized it is describing God the Father in His activity in creation, and wholly in man. God is a noun, Love is a verb. God is His Name, Love is His game. They can’t be separated for His nature is to Love. He is not made of Love, He IS Love.
On the other hand, we exhibit human love and think it is God’s Love, and it is far cry from it like darkness is from light. The tree of knowledge in Eden which alienated Adam and Eve from God bore the ‘fruit of good and evil.’ (Gen.2:9) Human love springs from the “good” of this tree. God’s Love springs from the “tree of life” which Adam rejected. We sing about love; we write and speak about it; we express it in our families, friendships, romances, and marriages. Even so, our friendships don’t last; our marriages break up at an unprecedented rate, destroying the family unit as the basis of a stable and decent society. There are labor and management conflicts. There are racial discrimination, and crimes against humanity. There are violent crimes, and the obvious disregard for the sanctity of life. It seems everywhere we look there’s increasing fragmentation of relations. We question the sincerity of our love for people and wonder if it is worth our effort trying to love. Why, because it is still human love that is actually undergirded by fear. Humanity lives under the shade of the tree which produce the “fruit of good and evil.”
God impeaches man’s fallen state of being, saying,“My people have committed two sins: They have forsaken me, the spring of living water (in Eden), and have dug their own cisterns, broken cisterns that cannot hold water” (Jer.2:13, emphasis added). “Living waters” is a metaphor for the Spirit whose Love ever flows in believers. Man, in his fallen state, cannot hold God’s Love – he is a broken cistern. (John 7:38-39; Rom. 5:5) He has to be reborn, have a new life, be a new unbroken cistern, which will hold the “living waters” of Love in the Spirit. (John 3:5-6)
God’s Love comes from the Holy Spirit, or metaphorically, the ‘Tree of Life’ from which Adam ate freely until he disobeyed and partook of the forbidden fruit. (Rom.5:5) God makes this scathing revelation about human goodness and love, “All of us have become like one who is unclean, and all our righteous acts are like filthy rags; we all shrivel up like a leaf, and like the wind our sins sweep us away. No one calls on Your Name or strives to lay hold of You (Love); for You have hidden Your face from us and have given us over to our sins” (Isa.64:6-7, emphasis added). We read further, “The (human) heart is deceitful above all things and beyond cure. Who can understand it?” (Jer.17:9, emphasis added). We must understand that because of man’s alienation from God through Adam’s disobedience, man’s existence have since relied upon eating of the ‘tree of good and evil’ under the sway of the unseen devil. We have existed in our fallen, depraved, and corrupt state of being from Adam.
God’s Love & Sovereignty
Yet, at the same time we must remember this ‘tree of good and evil,’ existed in Eden in God’s presence. What does that tell us – it means that all of human actions and life, whether good or evil, still exist under His sovereignty, and mankind will give account for all he does. Nothing and no one exists outside of God’s sovereignty. (Ps.139) God tells us, “I the Lord search the heart and examine the mind, to reward each person according to their conduct, according to what their deeds deserve” (Jer. 17:10). Yet, for all who man is in his fallen, depraved, and fearful state of being, God’s Love never leaves him, “Yet you, Lord, are our Father. We are the clay, You are the potter; we are all the work of Your hand” (Isa. 64:8). God’s inexpressible Love cannot and will not leave man. Where it says “we are all the work of Your hands,” He takes back to the beginning in Eden where He uttered these words upon man’s creation, “Let us make man in our image, after our likeness and let them have dominion” (Gen.1:26). God cannot and will not deny Himself. He has given man something of His Person – His image and dominion. He has decided not to live without man. How do we respond to this unfailing Love of God our eternal Father?
Only God Could Express His Love To Man
God’s Love can’t be understood except in His Trinitarian Self. So God revealed Himself to man in and through His Son, the Logos. Jesus told the disciples, “If you know Me, you will also know My Father. From now on you do know Him and have seen Him” (John 14:7, Holman Christian Standard Bible). That’s a statement of Jesus’ Trinitarian Being with the Father and the Spirit existing as ONE GOD from eternity.
God’s Love – Like a River of Living Waters Which Never Runs Dry (John 7:38-39) (Wiki Commons)
Man must receive the Savior and Mediator, whom the Father has has provided in His Son as the gift for man’s redemption to bring mankind back to Him. And as man’s Mediator, this is how Jesus introduces God’s Love to us. Jesus said, “A brand-new command I give you: Love one another.” Why did Jesus say this command to Love is brand new? Because God’s Love as symbolized by the “Tree of Life” has been missing in man’s life since Adam. Recall. Adam was cut-off from partaking of its fruit after he disobeyed. (Gen.3:24) The command is new because He wants us to differentiate it from human love. If God’s Love is brand-new, what’s new about it? What’s different about it? He answers, “As I have Loved you, Love one another.” How did He Love us? “As the Father has Loved Me, so have I Loved you. Now remain in My Love” (John 15:9). Jesus is saying in effect, God’s Love cannot be experienced truly except in His Trinitarian Being. This is the reason this blog has always emphasized the “Triune Life” because only from living such a life God’s Love flows into the believer. Jesus, in effect, said, “I came so you can taste the Love the Father has for Me, and I for the Father in our Trinitarian Life, so you also can join Us and Love one another with the same Love in the Spirit.” Jesus’ Love for us is made possible only because He is unified and One with the Father and the Spirit in their Triune Life. So, Jesus was making known the new command of the Triune Love of God. It’s the Love which connects all man’s activity with the Triune God, and not in isolation in his “solitary” self.
How Is The Divine Love Different?
I define the differentiation of human love as existing in man’s “solitary” mode of thinking. God lives in His “Triune” mode of life. His Love is “Triune” because that’s the way God has existed from eternity – the Father, Son, and Spirit existing and enduring as ONE in their Triune Love. The disciples saw this Love in action in humanity through the life of Jesus for three and half years. It’s a Love that springs from the very Triune Being of God who is bound in One in three Persons, indivisible and inseparable. The act of One is always the act of all Three. So it’s a unifying Love. It’s collaborative, interdependent, unified, interconnected, and ONE. We are called to live that kind of life in Christ in the power of the Spirit.
Human love, undergirded by fear, is selfish, independent, uncooperative, disconnected, divided, and will end in death. (Gen.2:17) It’s the difference between a person who lives the “solitary life” who says, “I’ll do what seems right in my own eyes” (Pro.21:12), and the person who lives the “Triune Life” with Christ who says, “Truly I tell you, the Son can do nothing by Himself; He can do only what He sees his Father doing, because whatever the Father does the Son also does. For the Father Loves the Son and shows Him all He does.” (John 5:19-20)
Like a River of “Living Waters” God’s Love Course Through Our Lives to Water Others (Wiki Commons)
Never Before Tasted in Human History
The Triune Love and Life between the Father, Son, and Spirit was something never before seen or articulated in humanity until Jesus came and took upon Himself His creaturely human body. As God and man, He was the Immanuel foretold to come. (Isa.7:14; Matt.1;23) Jesus came and made possible our “union” with the Triune God by living, dying, resurrecting, and ascending to the throne of the Father, and thereby glorifying in His humanity the nature of man in the very Being of the Triune God. Jesus opened the way to the “Tree of Life” (Love) that was shut out to man since Adam. In so doing, He made His new Love a reality in human life. Never before in the history of man was this Triune Love seen or tasted in human experience until now. It comes to us from the very Being of God through Christ and in the power of the Spirit. (Rom.5:5; 8:9; 1Cor.3:16; 6:19; 1John 2:27) It was seen in Jesus’ life, where He went about doing nothing but good and healing all who came to Him (Acts 10:38).
When Jesus took our humanity into Himself, this very Love from the Triune Being of God became ours by inheritance. It is because of this Triune union that the Spirit spontaneously joins Himself to the believer through faith in Jesus. All it requires is Jesus’ living faith, and the Holy Spirit makes the divine Love flow in our lives as spiritual “living waters” of the Bula man-river.*
Freedom, Honor, & Your Dream-Life
Human love is different from God’s Love like day is from night. Human love is “solitary,” while God’s Love is unifying and “Triune.” Human love is self-serving, God’s Love is entirely outgoing. Human love is enslaving, while God’s Love is freeing. The pseudo freedom we seek in our “solitary life,” is the very energy which dislodges us from the true freedom we seek. Yet, the very energy we disregard and neglect in living the “Triune Life,” is the energy that will take us to our freedom. In true freedom we find our purpose and calling. And that’s what life is about: to live our God-given purpose and dream-life. You can read more about the Love of God and his purpose for each of us in my Book, “Bula man-river – The Miracle of Triune Living.” Ordering details can be seen on the top banner, “Buy the Book.”
Cover of My Book, “Bulamanriver – The Miracle of Triune Living”
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Until we meet again in my next post, may the blessing of the God who ceaselessly expresses Himself in His dependable Triune Love, be with you today and give you strength for authentic Triune Living as a Bula man-river.*
* The “Bulamanriver” is the metaphor describing the union of man with the Love of the Triune God flowing in humans, making possible the “Triune Life” – the source of the miraculous life in man. To read the many facets of life of the Bula man-river, go to my website www.bulamanriver.com where you can order a copy of my Book. Thank you for your support.
All scriptures are taken from the NIV Version 2011, unless stated otherwise