God's Greatest Attribute Is Not Love by Pastor Art Kohl
Introduction It seems, in our ignorance, that society is convinced the only attribute God has is love. That this attribute transcends any or all of His other attributes. The extent of this is climaxed in the justification of all kinds of sins under the umbrella of God's love. Homosexuality is okay because God is a God of love. Drunkenness is okay because God is a God of love. Gambling is okay because God is a God of love. Lesbianism, adultery, lust, pride, greed, etc. are all okay because God is a God of love. It would strike some fear and trembling in all of us if we understood clearly that God's greatest attribute is NOT love.
1. God Is Love What is love? Every human being has a different definition. To some, it is a mushy feeling inside. An exhilarating emotion. Lust for sex. Some man might beat his wife, yell at her, call her names, abuse her and yet claim to love her. Get the point! There's some strange ideas floating around out there on what love is.
God's love is also a subject that varies immensely depending on who you're talking to. As forementioned, some believe you can commit any wicked action in the world, but, never fear, God loves you! Bologna! What about all the references in the Bible that demand repentance if that were true??? God is Love (I John 4:8,16), but when God defined what love is, in I Corinthians 13:4-8, God said, "Love does not rejoice in iniquity."
I'm glad that God told us what love is in the written pages of His word. Every opinion can be tossed out, and we must believe what He said. Space does not permit me to discuss I Corinthians 13. Please study it and see that love does 7 things, and does not do 9 different things. Can you find them?
2. God Has Many Attributes I have a book on my shelves entitled, "All the Divine Names and Titles in the Bible." It is 341 pages long. Obviously space again will not permit me to list all of God's attributes on this page. Suffice to say, every name God has denotes something different about His personality. For example, notice the contrast in His character in Nahum 1:2-3a, "God is jealous, and the Lord revengeth; the Lord revengeth, and is furious- the Lord will take vengeance on his adversaries, and he reserveth wrath for his enemies. The Lord is slow to anger and great in power, and will not at all acquit the wicked." There's more to God than just love, folks! God loves sinners but hates our sin!
3. God's Greatest Attribute The greatest attribute God possesses, and all others hang on this one, is holiness! God gave us the written laws to put a "difference between the Holy and the unholy," Leviticus 10:10. Then He commanded us, "... and ye shall be holy, for I am holy." Leviticus 11:44, 20:7, I Peter 1:16. God the Father is Holy; God the Son is Holy (Acts 2:27: Mark 1:23: Luke 1:35, Acts 4:27, etc..) God the Spirit is Holy (95 times in the New Testament referred to as the Holy Ghost or Holy Spirit.) Do you know what the word Holy means? Most people can't give a good definition of it. It comes from a Greek word, "hagios," which means blameless, consecrated, sacred, one who is separate from sin and set apart unto righteousness. It can represent a place or a thing, but most often Holiness refers to God Himself. God has been, is, and always will be separate from sin.
When perfect, sinless angels adore the presence of Godly in Heaven, they say, "Holy, Holy, Holy, is the Lord of Hosts," Isaiah 6:3. In Revelation 4:8, it says, "... they rest not day and night saying, Holy, Holy, Holy, Lord God Almighty, which was, and is, and is to come."
God is Holy. He will not allow sin in His presence for all of eternity. If He allowed sin to remain in His presence, He would cease to be Holy, for Holiness is separation from sin. God's love hangs underneath His Holiness! The Scriptures say, "... without holiness, no man shall see God," Hebrews 12:14.
4. How Can We Be Holy If Sinners? This is where the love of God comes in. God's love sent His son from Heaven to earth to die for all of our sins. He was crucified, buried and rose again. This is the good news, the Gospel (I Corinthians 15:1-4). When a person receives the Lord Jesus Christ as their Savior, they are born of God. (Study John 1:12-13) Jesus called this transaction of faith (not works), being born again. (See John 3:1-8).
When a person is in Christ, notice what happens to them according to II Corinthians 5:17, "Therefore if any man be in Christ, HE IS A NEW CREATURE: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new." This creature is a new man resulting from a new birth! Notice how this man is described in Ephesians 4:24, "And that ye put on the new man, which after God is created in righteousness and TRUE HOLINESS."
You cannot become holiness, you must be made holiness. You must be born again! You must receive Christ as your Savior and not try to save yourself. Holiness is imputed to our accounts by the merits of Christ, not by our good works. II Corinthians 5:21 sums it up, "For He (God) hath made Him (Christ) to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be MADE the righteousness of God IN HIM." Praise the Lord! Are you IN HIM? If not, stop right now and by prayer receive the Lord Jesus Christ as your Savior. Ask Him now to save you from your sins and believe that His death, burial, resurrection and shedding of blood was for you personally. Pray from your heart: "Heavenly Father, I do today receive Jesus Christ as my Savior from sin and its penalty. I believe He died for me and was buried and rose again and trust today in His sacrifice and shed blood for the forgiveness of my sin. Please come into my heart and give to me eternal life. In Jesus' name, Amen."
5. The Forgotten Doctrine There would be a lot less sin in this world if people would realize that we are dealing with a Holy God. A God who is separate from sin and hates sin. His holiness will usurp His love at the judgement seat of the wicked and will cast the unsaved into a lake of fire for all eternity. (Study carefully 2 Thessalonians 1:8, Revelation 20:10-15, 21:8).
Until then, His arms of love and forgiveness are extended to us, no matter what we've ever done. Come to Him today before it's too late.
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