Note: This is an edited article that I wrote a few years ago. Despite the fact that our country, and its culture, still celebrates a great day of love - Valentine’s Day - we (as a country), it seems to me, are moving further and further from the Biblical love that we really need. Even in the religious communities, there are so many compromises made with the Truth, that God is dishonored. Given the current attitude of much of our society, now, probably, more than ever, this story needs to be told over and over again, remembered, and fully appreciated!
The Greatest Love Story Ever Told
If someone were to ask you "What is the greatest story of love you've ever heard?" how would you answer? Would you immediately think of one of the great classics by Shakespeare such as "Romeo and Juliet"? If you are an American history buff, you might suggest the legendary story of Pocahontas and John Smith. Some might even consider a more modern story from literature, such as the fictionalized Scarlett O'Hara and Rhett Butler. Also, it’s recorded that the love between the married couple of science, Marie and Pierre Curie, was truly inspirational. Truthfully, a member of the military who does some super extra-ordinary act that costs his life but saves comrades is, in reality, an act of love. While I am not an expert on love stories, factual or fictionalized, I do admit to knowing about some of these and of some acts of valor in combat. However, I say with certainty that none of these is the greatest story of love!
For us believers, the greatest love story ever told is found within God's scriptures. "Which one?" you may ask. Is it the great love that Abraham had for God that he was willing to offer up his only son as a sacrifice (Gen. 22)? No doubt, some would say the immense love that Jacob had for Rachel is truly inspiring (Gen. 29). How about the great love Ruth had for Naomi? (Ruth 1-4) Joseph must have had great love for Mary, his betrothed, to act to preclude her from being scorned by society (Matt. 1&2). None of these, however, can match the ultimate love story that can be found within the Scriptures!
I believe we can all agree that the greatest love story ever told is that of the great love that God, the Father, and God, the Son, have for mankind! The Gospels record the events of, and the reasons for, God permitting Himself to become flesh, to walk on this earth as an obedient Son - Jesus the Christ - and, then, unselfishly, sacrificing Himself, redeeming man from the consequences of sin. "For God so loved the world…” (John 3:16) tells us why God did what He did. "Greater love has no one than this…" (John 15:13) speaks to the ultimate act of love — which Jesus performed! Jesus prayed that all believers would have in them "…the love with which You loved Me…" (John 17:26). He also said, “…I have loved you, you also are to love one another.” (John 13:34) “And there is salvation in no one else…" (Acts 4:12) Irrespective of any command (Matt. 28:18-20&Mark16:15-16), let’s all resolve that we can't help but tell all with whom we come in contact that:
THE GREATEST STORY OF LOVE EVER TOLD IS THE STORY OF JESUS!