Debt of Love

Much of Paul’s letter to the Romans is a love story between a righteous God and sinful man. Even though our sinful state sentenced us to an eternal death (Romans 6:23), God looked upon us with love: “But God demonstrates His own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us” (Romans 5:8).

God loved us long before we knew Him – He loved us when there was nothing in us that deserved His love – and He gave us Jesus as a sacrifice for our sin so that, through faith, we might experience His deep and wonderful love for all eternity. This is a love I don’t think we fully appreciate or even understand. And yet, we are called to hold this love as the standard for how we love others; “As I have loved you, so you must love one another” (John 13:34).

The entire life of Jesus was an act of love made possible through the love of the Father and the power of the Holy Spirit. John wrote that “Through Him {Jesus} all things were made” (John 1:3). But we also know that the Creator of the Universe “made Himself nothing…being made in human likeness” (Philippians 2:7). Jesus Christ came to earth in human form; He “humbled Himself and became obedient to death – even death on a cross!” (Philippians 2:8). And this is the same love He commands us to have for one another; the love which Paul says we must continually repay.

Romans 13:8
“Let no debt remain outstanding, except the continuing debt to love one another.”

Paul knew the fullness of Jesus’ love and he knew we were commanded to love one another in a like manner. He also knew we could never truly fulfill Jesus’ command of love – His love was simply too great. And though the love involved in our Salvation is beyond comprehension, His love continues even more with the gift of His Spirit for daily guidance and strength. We definitely have a large love-debt!

But notice that our debt of love to Jesus has become a debt of love to others – a “continuing debt” which will be with us for the rest of our life. Though we can never fully repay, we can honor Jesus’ command by welcoming our debt and joyfully loving those who are placed in our path; “We love {others} because He first loved us” (1 John 4:19).

Honoring the command of Jesus doesn’t mean we love just the loveable or those who love us in return – it means we love…and then we love some more! Let’s accept our debt and love one another as we make regular (daily) payments toward our continuing debt of love.

Have a Great Day!
Steve Troxel God’s Daily Word Ministries