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Have you ever loved someone? If you have, then you are aware of the crazy decisions the one in love can and will make. Love can cause the most stable-minded person you know to become, well, predictably unstable! I imagine many of us, as we look back over our lives and loves, can say to ourselves, "I cannot believe I actually did that." Yet even as bizarre as some of the decisions love has caused us to make, none can compare to the decisions God has made because of His love for us.

God's Love is irrational. It defies common sense. It causes Him to do things we would never do. Think about it: When God made His covenant with the Israelites, He said, "If I am going to be your God, I have to be your only God. This is an exclusive deal." (Exodus 20:3). But even then, God knew the Israelites wouldn't keep their end of the bargain. Cannot the same be said of us?

Imagine it is your wedding day, and you are standing in front of a room full of people staring into the eyes of your beloved, all the while knowing that the vows you're exchanging mean more to you than to the person you love. If you knew that your spouse would be unfaithful, would you still say "I do?" This is what God has done for us: He said "I do" even though He knew that we would be unfaithful and bring Him unspeakable pain. He even knew that deliverance would ultimately be up to Him, and would involve Him taking on human flesh, entering into our world and being rejected by it. And in spite of knowing this, He did it anyway.

God's love seems crazy when you look at it from that perspective. However, He knows a thing or two about love that we do not. Primarily, He understands that love and acceptance can accomplish what judgment and condemnation never can. God could have divorced Himself from His people. They had, after all, adulterated their covenant promises. By violating the relationship, the people of God had earned nothing short of death. Yet in God's nature, His love for us, He still made a way for us to come back to His love. God's prevailing love refuses to give up on people until their last breath.

Back in the Garden of Eden, when Adam and Eve sinned for the very first time, God's justice and love began a long, slow march toward one another. Eventually, the two characteristics of God would meet in a terrible collision on a hill just outside of Jerusalem. There, for both you and me, His love would cause Him to do the most irrational thing of all.

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Rev. Robert Templeton lives in Orangeburg.

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