Before I get into God’s romance, I need to set up a foundation for what makes all this possible, and that’s the scandal of the gospel.
The Scandal of the Gospel
The gospel is the biggest scandal in recorded history. One man died a horrific death so that ALL people on earth can live in freedom from sin and live in the light of Christ throughout eternity. “Jesus, our Lord, was handed over to death because of our failures and was brought back to life so that we could receive God’s approval (Romans 4:25 God’s Word Translation).”
We are approved by God because of Jesus’ work on the cross. Approved means approved, accepted, good, great, amazing!
The scandal is that we are were all included because of Jesus’ work on the cross!
“I have been crucified with Christ. It is no longer I who live, but Christ who lives in me. And the life I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me (Galatians 2:20 ESV).”
Because of the cross and the work Jesus did there, we have been co-crucified and co-resurrected with Christ! It’s a scandal because we didn’t deserve it and there’s nothing we can ever do to earn His love, approval, or salvation. He loves us JUST BECAUSE. Whatever you did, whatever you thought, whoever you did stuff to does not matter because of Jesus. He included you and thought of you when He was on the cross.
If this is hard for you to digest, consider this: Are you a good father or mother? Do you have a good father or mother? Do you know of a good father or mother? A parent loves their child unconditionally. That means that no matter what they do you still love and approve of them. Even if they are in jail on death row you still see them as your little baby, innocent and pure. They may have done horrific things, but you are blinded by love for them. They may be serving time as a consequence for their sin, but they are approved by you because of love. God is your perfect Papa! He loves you unconditionally. There is NOTHING that separates us from His love. His word in Romans proves it:
“For I have every confidence that nothing—not death, life, heavenly messengers,dark spirits, the present, the future, spiritual powers, 39 height, depth, nor any created thing—can come between us and the love of God revealed in the Anointed, Jesus our Lord (Romans 8:38-39 The Voice).”
You get His scandalous love and don’t have to work at all to earn it. He did all the work for you when He died and rose again. He took you along with him killing off your sin so that you can have new life and forever life with Him.
It truly is a Divine Romance
The romance of God may seem like a bizarre concept for some, especially if your perception of God is that He’s a pious, pissed off, sin policeman in the sky. I hope my argument about the scandalous gospel took care of that. The truth is that God is madly in love with you, and He’s happy with you. Some of you are already squirming in your seats, unable to imagine God being anything less than disappointed with you.
Allow me to show you an illustration to prove my point:
Think back to when you were dating your spouse or maybe you’re dating someone now or have dated someone. There is nothing they can do to get on your nerves; they are perfect in every way. You can’t believe that you ended up with someone that great. Even their flaws are hidden from your view because you are blinded by love. This is called being lovesick.
GOD IS LOVESICK and you are the object of His affection. Like the splendor of first love, God will never be disappointed in you.
Let me be clear: I’m not suggesting that God is blind to your faults and your shame. God is not blind. God is in love.
I’m not offering you a license to do whatever you want and get away with it. I’m not suggesting that you can sin all you want and God won’t care. I’m saying that God is in love with you, and He’s so in love that He’s willing to look past your flaws and remain in love. He has the privilege of doing this because of Jesus and that scandalous gospel–the finished work of the cross.
More about this romance
The Passion Translation in Psalm 27:14 says, “Don’t give up, don’t be impatient; Be entwined with the Lord.”
God longs for us to entwine ourselves with Him. If the word entwine seems uncomfortable because it is indicative of being VERY CLOSE, you’re right. God desires for us to be intimately close, right up in His space, with Him. The Lord is calling His people to a place with Him so intimate, so close, so deep, that we are able to lose ourselves in Him.
Being lost in love with Majestic Daddy is the most beautiful place to be in this Christian walk. I’m not talking about some nice sing-song, feeling goosebumps kind of love. Song of Songs 1:7 in The Passion Translation says, “I wish to be wrapped all around You…It is you I long for with no veil between us.”
That sounds close, intimate even.
**Let me be clear that intimacy with the Lord is different than intimacy with our spouses. It’s the same love but manifested differently. We show love to our spouses much differently than we show love to our Heavenly Lover. For more clarity on this, you can see what John Crowder has to say about it here.
Lost in love can also be said as being lost in the Lover. There is an entire world that we have access to. That place is on the inside. Heaven dwells within you (Luke 17:21 Jubilee Bible 2000). There is an entire City of Life inside you! There are 24 elders casting crowns in your belly! Heaven dwells on the inside. It is meant for you to tap into that glory and become intoxicated on the Love of God.
Too often, like the Shulamite in SoS, we see ourselves as lowly unworthy sinners; but God does not see you as a lowly sinner unworthy of His grace. He’s not sitting on the throne in Heaven thinking about how he could have just let us suffer in our sin and thinking how great He is because he took the initiative to save us. That’s the kind of thinking prideful men have. God is ALWAYS thinking about how wonderful we are, how amazing we are, how beautiful we are. He even thinks that of those who deny Him! Sure, God desires that those who live like hell will turn and look into His splendid face, but He’s not thinking any thoughts other than kind, loving thoughts about people!
How God thinks about us according to Song of Songs
SoS 1:5 shows how many in the church think about themselves:
In this twilight darkness,
I know I am so unworthy–so in need (Passion Translation).”
This is how the church thinks of themselves! “I’m so unworthy, God! Stay away from me!”
But the beautiful thing about God is that God says, “Yet you are so lovely! (SoS 1:5 Passion Translation).
Then we try again by saying, “No I’m not! Don’t say that! You’re talking heresy, God!”
The Shulamite said it this way:
“I feel as dark and dry as the desert tents
Of the wandering nomads (SoS 1:5 Passion Translation).”
God reminds us again just what He sees when He looks at us:
“Yet you are so lovely–
Like the fine linen tapestry
Hanging in the Holy Place (SoS 1:5 Passion Translation).”
God only sees us as HOLY ARTWORK!
This may be a tough lesson for some. But rest assured that you will get it. Allow Holy Spirit to speak to you and confirm God’s Word in your soul. God is giddy for you. He laughs over you and delights in your life and your love for Him. God himself dances over you with love. His banner over you is love (SoS 2:4).
I pray that this week God will begin to release His love over you in a new, fresh way. I release dreams and confirmations that will seal it within your heart that God can and does love you in the most extravagant way. He doesn’t love you because of how much you serve, how many people you tell about Jesus, or how much or how often you tithe to your local church. God could care less about all the missions trips you’ve gone on. He’s thrilled that you do those things. He’s thrilled that you desire Him. He’s thrilled that you thirst for righteousness; however, He wants you to get it that YOU ARE RIGHTEOUS because HE MADE YOU RIGHTEOUS because YOU WERE CO-CRUCIFIED AND CO-RESURRECTED WITH JESUS!!!!!!!!!!!!!! YAY, GOD!!
GOD IS THRILLED WITH YOU! (SOS 1:9 Passion Translation)