Whenever God says something for the first time He sets a precedent. When God sets a precedent His ways are known forever. Scripture provides numerous examples of God setting a precedent with His people. The joy of discovering deeper revelation through the written Word is realizing that God’s promises toward us have always been “Yes and Amen.”
Love is the primary attribute by which we know God. He reveals His love for us throughout scripture, and ultimately, through the death of His Son on the cross at Calvary. We know God forever because of His never-ending sacrificial precedent of love.
Etched in Eternity.
God never changes toward us because His love is eternal. Nothing can separate us from the love of God (Rom. 8:38-39). His love for us remains whether we choose to love Him back or not. With that said, God does change the way He relates to us depending on our response. Even so, He never changes His heart toward us. His love is a precedent that has been etched in eternity.
I often explain this by using the example of my relationship with my son, Jake. I have a love for him that is unceasing. My love for Jake will never change. There is nothing he could do to make me love him less. However, the way I relate to my son does change. I don’t talk to him the same way today as I did when he was five years old. Our relationship has grown and now we understand each other on a different level.
The decisions I made concerning Jake when he was five was to strengthen our relationship as he got older. I ordered my thinking so that our relationship would get better with time. God’s love for us works the same way. He is ordered in His thinking. He is always considering what is best for our relationship with Him. He consistently interacts with us in a way that draws us closer to Him as we grow in Christ.
Appropriately, as Creator, God thinks sequentially. Scripture is the perfect example of His thinking out from Himself. God does nothing haphazardly. He is very deliberate and extremely intentional. He is always thinking about what is best for us now and in the future. There is significance in everything He says and does. This is how “all things work together for the good of those who love Him” (Rom. 8:28).
So again, any time God says something for the first time, He sets a precedent. By that standard, you know Him for all time. As God reveals Himself to us through scripture, He is essentially saying, “This is who I am for you, forever.” You can depend on God’s Word to reveal His nature and intentions for all eternity.
The Greatest Precedent.
As God speaks into your life through the Holy Spirit you can rest in what He is saying. He is establishing Himself in your life as a constant source of love. His affection toward you has no end. In this, you can be assured that He is setting a precedent.
In Christ, God revealed His love for us by becoming one of us. He then freely laid down His life to pay a price that was far too high for us to ever pay. That is how much He loves us. There is no greater precedent than the eternal precedent of God’s love.
The essence of God’s love can be identified through the creation of the world, the splendor of the cosmos, the history of humanity, the testimony of scripture, the sacrifice of Jesus, and the working of the Holy Spirit. Our response to God’s love is imperative.
Have you truly considered the precedent of love God has extended to you through His Son? Be assured, you can trust what Jesus has accomplished by way of the cross. You can know Him personally because He has chosen to reveal Himself sacrificially.
In His willingness to be known, God has spoken openly. In speaking openly He has set a precedent. Through the precedent of love, you can know Him forever. Thanks be to God!