Life, Light, and Love Overflowing from God

In the Gospel of John, the book of Revelation, and 1 John, we often find these words applied to God: light and life and love. “God is light and in Him is no darkness at all” ( 1 John 1 :5, emphasis added). “I am the way, the truth, and the life” (John 14:6, emphasis added). “God is love” (1 John 4:8, emphasis added). At the heart of His personality, God is overflowing with these three qualities. But they arc not just shared among the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit; they overflow to us

This is the way that love shown between parents filters down to their children, giving them a sense of being loved. But what God offers us is far greater. Revelation 22 ;1 talks of a” pure river of water of life, clear as crystal, proceeding from the throne of God and of the Lamb” (emphasis added). From this wonderful, glorious, beautiful triune God, there is always flowing a river of living water, a river of light, a river of love.

At last, here is the answer to the question: what is God like? This is what the triune God is like: life, light, and love. That is the secret to this universe and the key to understanding everything that exists. “Our Father in heaven” may be one of the first phrases we chanted as toddlers, but those few words are the doorway to knowing the nature of the infinite, personal, Triune God.

By taking a close look at just these few words, we have discovered where we can go for light, to enable us to understand and then find the way out of personal or moral dilemmas; for life, when all around us seems to be disintegrating; and for love, when our relationships are unsatisfactory.

Such texts of Scripture as Ephesians, chapters 1,2, and 5 and John, chapters 3 and 17, give us a clue as to why God made this material world and put people in it, why God even let each one of us be born. The Father so loved the Son, with this kind of generous, outgoing love, that He wanted to make a world and fill it with a race of people who would be like His Son. His goal was that there should be others who could share in the light, life, and love of the Son.

In other words, there is a sense in which Christians are elevated to take part in the blessed trinitarian life! Of course, people remain creatures throughout eternity and never become divine, but nonetheless they are lifted up into a love relationship with the life of God that is absolutely real. To have a relationship with Christ means to be drawn into the kind of relationship of love that He has with the Father. God did not need people, not at all! It is simply that His is the kind of love that wants to be shared. So He made a world: He created people in His image. Or to put it another way, what would be the finest gift the Father could give His Son? Would it not be a wonderful, beautiful bride? So it is as though God made the world as a stage and put humanity on it, out of which He could prepare a bride to be with His Son.

Almost two thousand years ago, when the early Christians were struggling to make a place for themselves in a hostile, pagan society, one of their writings, The Shepherd of Hermas encouraged them with this realization, that the world really exists for the church. In fact, the world and humanity in general, as well as the vast sweep of history, are all here to be a stage or a nursery for the development of the bride of Christ. That puts a different perspective on life!


Douglas Kelly, If God Already Knows, Why Pray? P. 26-27


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