“In love, he predestined us for adoption to sonship through Jesus Christ, in accordance with his pleasure and will…”
So far, Paul has introduced the faithful saints to the grace, peace, and blessings of God toward them. This is our introduction, also. Like the Ephesians, we are faithful saints and thus receive all these wonderful gifts.
We might wonder what brought this about. Why is God showering us with all these blessings when he and we both know that we don’t deserve even one of them? It’s not a mystery, actually. There is a simple if unbelievable reason. It is the love of God. The love of God put into action based on his kind intention. Love promotes kind intentions.
God did a lot more than say, “I love you,” and then go on his way. All these blessings we receive as faithful saints are measured out of purpose, of will. God wanted to bless us. He wants to bless us even now. It is his good pleasure and his kind intention.
We can have a problem with this if we try to measure God’s love against our own. Our love is often based on factors that within themselves create loving feelings. We tend to love others because they love us. The scriptures tell us that is how we came to love God. He loved us first. We grew up loving our mother and father because they loved us. The same is true with other family members.
In order for us to love others, we generally need some positive reinforcement. It’s hard to love someone who ignores us. It gets even harder if they are rude to us. We find it difficult to have any kind intentions towards people who are negative to us.
Yet, all the things that make it difficult to love someone are the very things that we were doing to God when his kind intention towards us ended in miraculous love. Mankind was not being nice to God when they rejected his laws. Mankind was certainly negative towards him when they chose false idols. Mankind pretended God didn’t exist and distrusted his promises. In spite of a lack of positive reinforcement from man, God’s good pleasure was to love man anyway.
How can we love like that? The same way God did. He made the choice to love us in spite of who we were or how we acted. Nothing excellent about us persuaded God, it was his own will that determined his love. His love was indifferent to our wrongs.
We have a choice to love people who are different than us. People who are strangers and strange. People who misuse us or abuse us. We have a choice to love those who hate. We have a choice about our enemies. It’s a matter of pleasure and will. It’s a matter of choice. Does God love our sin? No. Does he love the sinner? Yes. We get the point I’m sure.