What It Means To Love GodHandbook 1: Article 89 - A More Excellent Way

Scripture tells us that we are to love the Lord, our God, with all our heart, soul, and mind. But what does it mean to love God?

Love for God has usually been divided into two kinds of love -- the love of gratitude and the love of His excellence. The love of gratitude is born within us when we first recognize that He loved us so much that He sent His Son to die for us. We love Him because He first loved us. The second kind of love may be defined as admiration, respect, or awe, developing within us as we learn of the greatness and majesty of God. His Name is Wonderful, Counselor, the Mighty God, the Everlasting Father. Our greatest joy is to learn of Him and to bask in His presence.

But there is still a higher love. "In this higher type of love there is a supernatural element that cannot and does not attempt to give reasons for its existence. It says not 'I love because'; it only whispers, 'I love'. Perfect love knows no because. There is a place in the religious experience where we love God for Himself alone, with never a thought of His benefits." (A.W. Tozer) Surely this is a more excellent way!

"'For I know the plans that I have for you', declares the Lord, 'plans for welfare and not for calamity to give you a future and a hope. Then you will call upon Me and come to pray to Me, and I will listen to you and you will seek Me and find Me, when you search for Me with all your heart.'"

Jeremiah 29: 11-13

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