Creflo Dollar - How to Experience The Love of God - Part 3
If you have your Bibles, go with me to the Book of Galatians chapter 5 and verse 6. We're going to continue to talk about how to experience the presence of God, and our major focus is on experiencing the love of God and really bringing about a corrective statement on making sure that we're doing it according to the New Testament. Galatians chapter 5 and 6. I'll read this out of the King James and the New Living Translation. He says, "For in Jesus Christ neither circumcision availeth anything, nor uncircumcision; but faith which worketh by love," faith which worketh by love.
Now, over the years we thought this meant that our faith is going to work based on how much we love God. And you have to understand that the New Testament is not about how much you love God, the New Testament is all about how much God loves you. And so if we're going to remain in the right context, then he says faith works by believing the love that God has for you. Look at this in the New Living Translation. Galatians chapter 5 and 6 in the New Living Translation says, "For when we place our faith in Christ Jesus, there is no benefit in being circumcised or being uncircumcised. What is important is faith expressing itself in love".
Now, my charge today is to really convince you that God has a specific approach of how he's going to continue to transform all of us who are born again, and how he's going to transform the wicked, and how he's going to transform the people who are not born again. I think somehow we kind of think that, you know, God's got to have everybody doing something in order for him to do something; and he's getting ready to prove that to you real, real soon, that God's going to do some things that are going to be so amazing the only explanation people are going to have is that, "This is the Lord's doing and it's marvelous in our eyes".
Have you ever had something that God did in your life and you can't quite explain why it happened to you; you who didn't deserve it, you who didn't earn it, you who probably hadn't spoken to God in 3 months and yet he showed up and did something you know you didn't deserve? Amen? There's something about believing God's love for you. And, you know, we've got to dispel this myth of, you know, you loving God. Now, I want to put it in proper place. Please don't misunderstand me. It's not, you know, don't love God, but I'm going to show you what motivates your love for God. That's a fruit of believing the love that God has for you. As a result of you believing the love that God has for you, you're going to have a stronger love for God. If you understand that, say, "Amen".
Now, go to Romans chapter 8, verse 32. Let's start in the NLT and then in the King James. This is amazing today. Romans chapter 8:32 in the NLT, and then we'll go to the King James. All right, now watch this. He says, "Since he did not spare even his own Son but gave him up for us all". The Bible makes it clear that he came and he died for all. He shed his blood for all. In other words, salvation has been made ready for anybody who'll sign for the package. There are all of these reasons I hear people saying that you can go to hell and all of them involve what you do. You don't go to hell for what you do, you go to hell for rejecting Jesus as your payment.
Oh, that's freaking y'all a lot because you've condemned a lot of people to hell because of what they done, and the only way you go to hell, you know, Jesus has been given as the sin offering. He's been given as the ransom. He's been given as the peace offering. Glory to God. The ransom has been paid, and all the New Testament all over says this one thing: "Believe in Jesus and you shall be saved. And if your house believes in Jesus, they shall be saved". But the way you get to heaven is by believing in Jesus. Now, when you believe in Jesus, the transformation starts. But if anybody goes to hell for what they do, glory to God, and if everybody goes to heaven for what they do, this whole thing's a sham. You don't go to hell for what you do.
So you're assuming, I can hear somebody say, "Oh, no, I can't receive that, pastor. I can't receive that". Yeah, 'cause you don't know Jesus. But the day you get to know him, you're going to get to see that his love is so deep you're wondering, "How could anybody end up in hell"? There is one way. Not receiving him. Rejecting Jesus is how you go to hell because there's no wickedness in your life that will ever outdo God's love. It ain't nothing you can do that will ever be greater than his love. There is nothing you can do to make God love you more, and there is nothing you can do to make God love you less. God's love doesn't fluctuate. It is constant. Are you listening to me?
Now, the only thing that got a problem with what I'm saying right now is religious people who have been raised up in that religion of performance-based Christianity; thinking you got to do this in order for God to do that, and you got to do that in order to get to heaven, and you're going to show up at the gates with your long list of all the things you do and they're going to say, "Go on. Go ahead and go straight to hell because you're not getting in this gate unless you believe in Jesus". Jesus can change your behavior, but your works can't. There are people that do good works and they're still hell-raising, no-good-for-nothing sinners that don't believe in Jesus. Ooh, that's radical, isn't it? Just letting you know if you can't handle it, you better go find another church 'cause that's where we at.
We believe in Jesus; and we believe in Jesus to change our attitude, we believe in Jesus to change our behavior, we believe in Jesus to change what we do. But if you don't believe in Jesus, none of those things are going to change. They're certainly not going to change because of your works 'cause you've been trying to get rid of certain stuff about yourself for years and you still the same and in some cases you're worse. I need Jesus. I need a Savior. I need a Savior. See, if that was the case, the apostle Paul should be in hell. He's a murderer. He messed with the church. Look at all the stuff he did. In that case, Moses should have been in hell, and he should've not appeared on the Mountain of Transfiguration 'cause he should be in hell. Moses murdered somebody. David wouldn't be, I mean, how he going to be the, a man after God's own heart after what he did? Peeping tom, and had that woman's husband killed, and all that.
So don't bring me all that stuff about your good works because your good works or your bad works will not compete with the blood of Jesus, the body of Jesus. It's Jesus that you believe, and what the Bible say? He will change you and give you the desire to do his will and the power to carry it all out. The desire to do what's right. Amen? So where we at? Forgive me for walking away from that for a moment. But if you can tell, I'm not rushing through no series. If we get stuck right here, then we just stuck right here. God trying to tell us something.
Look at this in the King James. This is so powerful. I used to hesitate about saying what I just said, but please don't try to show up at the gate with your list of your good works 'cause good works are not going to qualify for you entering to heaven. You receiving Jesus and believing Jesus is what's going to get you there. All right? "He that spared not his own Son, but delivered him up for us all". He gave the most expensive thing heaven had, his son. "How shall he not with him also freely give us all things"?
Now go back to the New Living Translation. I forgot to read the end part of that. He gave us Jesus. Why should he not give us all things? The NLT says, "Won't he also give us everything else"? He didn't spare Jesus. "Won't he also give us everything else"? Here's what I heard. I looked at this thing, I guess, around 7 o'clock last night and I heard this. He said God gave his son so he can get to give you everything else. He wants to give you everything else, and he didn't spare his son because he had you and me on his mind. "I now get to do everything for you. I gave my son so I can get to do everything for you".
You know the only thing that stops that? You don't believe that he wants to give everything to you. You don't believe it, and that's what we're going to deal with today. You don't believe that God wants to do and he wants to do everything for you. Now he gave you his son. Won't he also give you everything else? See, you trying to figure out how to get everything else and you're ignoring the fact that he gave you his son. There's nothing else that's more expensive than his son. He values nothing else, listen, than his son. He gave you what heaven valued the most. Watch this. 'Cause he values you, he values me, and he said he'll give you everything else. But we live our lives trying to get everything else. We live our lives trying to be successful. We live our lives trying to be prosperous. We live our lives trying to be whatever and we don't even consider and calculate that he gave us Jesus; and because he gave us Jesus and I believe it, everything else he'll do.
What is that saying? "I believe that God loved me so much that he gave his son. I have no problem believing that he'll give me healing. I have no problem believing he'll give me a job. I have no problem believing that he'll do anything else". Why? The fruit is born out of my belief in the love that God has for me. Everything you're looking for, everything you're needing is born out of you believing. So how does that work? That means when all kinds of stuff is happening in your life, what you do is you say, "I believe God loves me. That's why this is going to be fine". The next 2 months, whatever intensifies you say, "You know what? I know God loves me, and I believe the love that God has for me. All is well".
That's what we've got to know. We have to have an explosion of this profession and this proclamation that, "I believe the love that God has for me," and that belief puts you in a place where you will experience that love. You might be in a jail cell, but what you're saying in that jail cell, "I believe God loves me. All will be well". You're sitting there looking at your bills trying to figure out, "How are we going to pay these bills? I have like $1 in my bank account". Rather than you worrying about that, you say, "You know what? I really believe that God loves me. Therefore I believe that he will provide this need for me". And you walk away in peace. I want to show you this morning how to abandon yourself in the love of God, how to turn yourself over and every situation over to the love of God.
Listen to me carefully. God's love for us is unconditional. You know what that means, right? It's not based on the condition. It is unconditional. It's not based on what you do. It's not based on what you don't do. Now, here's the thing you got to know. It's based on you believing that he loves you. His love is unconditional. No matter what challenges, no matter what failures, no matter what misdeeds that you might be dealing with, the love of Jesus remains a constant. It does not fluctuate. It does not fluctuate. And I don't know what you've ever been involved in where you walked away and you declared, "You know, I'm such a mess that God don't even love me like he used to". No, no, no, no, no. Whatever your mess was can never cause his love to fluctuate.
Now, our love fluctuates. We can love people more today and then next month, "Oh, no, I ain't got nothing to do with you. You ain't call me back". Our love fluctuates. But you cannot take your love and compare to his love. He is love. He poured his love in your spirit. You have love; he is love. Glory be to God. It does not fluctuate. Get it now.
So here's the plan of the devil. "I've got to convince you that his love fluctuates. So I am going to come in with guilt and shame and condemnation, and I am going to be the accuser of the brethren. I'm going to accuse you of your sins day and night. I don't want you to receive his love and I don't want you to receive his grace, and so I'm going to be on you trying to make you feel bad about everything. And when you even dare try to walk like you believing that he loves you, I'm going to hop on you a little bit more. You have to be ashamed of yourself coming to church and standing up in his presence. How you going to be in his presence when I was in your presence last night"?
Anybody hearing what I'm talking about? This is the battle. This is the warfare, believing it enough that nothing you do bad or nothing you do good causes you to think that his love fluctuates. It's constant. Do you get what I'm saying? This is what the Bible was talking about in Ephesians. He says, "I know you're not going to be able to understand it all fully, but his love is high and wide; and it's deep, deeper than what you can ever understand". And it's real deep how God can forgive Nineveh. You ever heard of that? Jonah. You remember when God spoke to Jonah? He said, "Jonah, go to Nineveh and announce to them in 40 days I'm going to destroy them because of their wickedness". And you know what Jonah did? Ran from God. "I ain't doing that".
God changed his mind. He drowned and died, and he went to hell. And God raised him up, commanded the fish to swallow him, he was in the belly of fish three days, three nights. Commanded the fish to release him on dry ground, and he said, "Jonah, I need you to go to Nineveh". He said, "Yes, sir". See, the trouble matured him. There are some things you said no to God to at one time, but sometimes stuff you go through will mature you and it'll change your answer the next time God show up. Y'all understand what I'm saying? But see, God was ready to show Jonah mercy. You don't think that was mercy? He'd already drowned in the sea. He'd already been in hell. He pulled him up out of there, then caused a fish to swallow him, and then he was in the belly of a fish, and then told the fish to put him on dry ground.
You see all that mercy? All that mercy Jonah had. And he showed up in Nineveh, which was a great city. I think the Bible says it took 3 days to see the whole city. And when they heard it, they said they believed him and so they called to fast. They said, "Y'all, we better get it together don't God getting ready to destroy us". And then God, he said, "I'm changing my mind". What was he saying? "I'm getting ready to show them mercy. I'm going to change my mind". You know what Jonah did? Got mad. He said, "I knew you were a God full of mercy and full of goodness. I might as well just go on and die. You know these people are wicked. You know how wicked they are". You know, we do that with folks, too. "How are you going to forgive them, God, after they hurt me like they hurt me, and after they said, and they stole from me, and they did that. How are you going to forgive them and bless them and call them"?
See, we want people to stay where we last saw them. We don't want God to bless them and bring them up. Every time they bringing their name up, you can see them just right where they are. But God's not leaving people where they are, God is taking people from where they are and he's bringing them to a greater place. You got to be careful about judging people where you last saw them. Yeah, I feel something up in here. But God had mercy on them. I don't think I will know how deep this love is, but one thing I do know is those of you who are born again, I don't know how you going to go to hell with all his mercy. The Bible says he's plenteous in mercy. Mercy is the bad you deserve you don't get, but the devil is going to try to convince you, "You deserve the bad, and I'm going to do everything I can to make sure you feel like you're getting the bad".
I don't see how. I just don't see with all that mercy and all that love and you've made Jesus the Lord of your life, you have got to do something like a serious 180-degree turn of rejecting everything Jesus stands for. And in order for it to even be received, you got to be spiritually mature enough to know exactly what you're doing. Some of y'all are going to be really disappointed when you see your enemy in heaven with you. You're going to say, "How did they get here"? God say, "Oh, yeah, that was the depth of my love you couldn't understand while you were in your body. See, you don't understand. You don't understand that I was ready to go deeper than them. And if I allow their wickedness to change my love, then their wickedness is stronger than my love".
"You're just giving people license to sin". They don't need no license to sin. They've been sinning without it. See, what God is saying, he says, "If I can get them to taste my deep love, they're going to have a deep love for me and they're going to change. They're not going to be the same". Anybody that's ever tasted and experienced the love of God can't come out the same. You're not going around trying to look and see how much foolishness you can do. "Well, you know, God's love is deep so I might as well go and knock off, go and do this, go and do that, go and do that". That ain't how that work. You've not really experienced the love of God. When you experience the deep love of God, you experience God doing something for you that you didn't think could be done.