Real Love Begins at Calvary
God is love and created us to love and be loved. By choice Adam and Eve—and all men and women since—rejected true love by rejecting God. But God set in motion in the Garden and carried out on Calvary the one redeeming act of true love that could bring us back into loving union with Himself and with one another. “We love because He first loved us” (1 John 4:19). “For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son…” (John 3:16); “…for love is of God; and everyone who loves is born of God and knows God” (1 John 4:7).
If everyone who loves is born of God, those who do not know God do not know real love. They may experience emotional, reactive forms of love associated with romance, parental and familial ties, and friendship—these are an echo of God’s love available since creation. But the volitional, unconditional form of love that puts another first regardless of circumstances and behaviors, the form of love that enables one to lay down one’s life solely for the good of another, is God’s agape love. It is real love; it is available only through the cross.
Because Jesus’ act of true love on the cross is the only means by which “everyone who loves is born of God and knows God,” real love begins at Calvary. It is the foundation for true, selfless, eternal love in marriage, in the family, in the Church, and in every relationship. So-called love built on any other foundation ultimately will perish.
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If you are not married yet, this study can help you understand God’s perfect plan. If you are in a good marriage, this study will help you keep playing the score as God wrote it. If you are in a bad marriage, you have a decision to make. Marriages are not generally healed overnight, but you can decide to work together to change the direction of your marriage. When we come together and learn how God wrote the music of marriage, we can have homes that sing of God’s love to the world.