“Behold, what manner of love the Father hath bestowed upon us, that we should be called the sons (and daughters) of God: therefore the world knoweth us not because it knew him not” (1 John 3:1).

It is so vital to life in Heaven forever that we stay daily in prayer, reading and studying God’s Word. Then we need to be active as an example of loving and serving Christ. Music is also another major doctrine that is crucial to a faith that is Christ-honoring. Many of the most Godly and dependable songs are many decades, and even hundreds of years, old. The Christ-honoring songs lead and prepare our hearts for greater love and understanding of Bible truth.

Perhaps a song that would encourage us today would be one that catches our hearts toward the song “O the Deep, Deep Love of Jesus,” written by S. Trevor Francis (1834-1925). Christ’s absolute and abounding love is sung in verse one:

“O the deep, deep love of Jesus —
Vast, unmeasured, boundless, free!
Rolling as a mighty ocean
In its fullness over me,
Underneath me, all around us,
Is the current of Thy love —
Leading onward, leading homeward,
To our glorious rest above.”

It is the most important truth to be sought after, to better understand that we humans will one day live forever with either God in Heaven, or else without Christ as personal Savior, in Hell without hope.

The love of Jesus Christ is so much greater and forever lasting that we cannot ever comprehend what God puts into the Christian heart to know is true. “We love him, because he first loved us” (1 John 4:19), and as a saved person we know in our hearts and Heaven-bound spirits that it is Christ that came into our hearts and lives. This giving from God’s Son is a gift that no human being earns or deserves. Being saved from our sinful hearts and lives is a wonderful blessing that we know we do not deserve.

When we yield our hearts and lives to Christ as personal Lord and Savior, we have sense enough to not complain about it. Only a lost fool would insist that, by not understanding all about God, there is a human reason to reject Christ. We need to say “No” to such sin as that and to give a more yielding heart and mind of “Yes” to Him each day and in an increasing way.

The love of Jesus Christ wants to surround us more each day and then to give the privilege of returning the love He has given us. It is the love that leads the Christian believer each day toward glory in Heaven. Christ daily extends His love in marvelous ways to add gifts and heart blessings that may never be forgotten.

Paul writes in Ephesians 3 about the prayer “That Christ may dwell in your hearts by faith; that ye, being rooted and grounded in love, may be able to comprehend with all saints what is the breadth, and length, and depth, and height” (verses 17 and 18).

He goes on in verse 19 to write that these dimensions will increase in our lives to direct us toward stronger confirmation: “And to know the love of Christ, which passeth knowledge, that ye might be filled with all the fulness of God.” Why is it that we struggle with desiring the complete and joyful fullness of Christ each day in our lives? The second verse expresses the benefits of yielding our hearts and lives to Christ:

“O the deep, deep love of Jesus —
Spread His praise from shore to shore!
How He loveth, ever loveth,
Changeth never, nevermore.
How He watches over His loved ones,
Died to call them all His own;
How for them He intercedeth,
Watcheth over them from the throne!”

The love of Jesus cannot ever be earned but was freely extended to us in His life and death. That love is commended toward whosoever receives it because that “while we were ye sinners, Christ died for us” (Romans 5:8).

Christ’s love for us never fails and never changes. He is “the same yesterday, and today, and forever” (Hebrews 13:6). The Lord Jesus was willing to die so that our death penalty would be paid and that we could be adopted into God’s family.

Jesus rejoices completely over those going to Heaven. Zephaniah 3:17 says that “he will rest in his love, he will joy over thee with singing.” He now is at the right hand of His Father “seeing he ever liveth to make intercession for them (who are saved)” (Hebrews 7:25).

Our song today concludes in verses three:

“O the deep, deep love of Jesus —
Love of every love the best!
’Tis an ocean vast of blessing,
’Tis a haven sweet of rest.
O the deep, deep love of Jesus —
’Tis a heaven of heavens to me
And it lifts me up to glory,
For it lifts me up to Thee.”

God’s love transcends our knowledge and is greater than we could ever understand. The love that is a spark in our hearts need to grow stronger and more complete as we mature.

Love we understand that we receive from Christ needs to daily grow. Romans 8:38, 39 informs us “that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come, nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.”

Amen and thank you, Lord!

R.D. “Bob” Hottle is a retired schoolteacher, farmer and pastor of the Anchor Baptist Church.