The Reckless Love of God
By Mark Anderson
The dictionary defines “reckless” as “without thinking or caring about the consequences of an action; rash, uncaring, without caution.” Do you think God’s love is reckless?
A popular Christian song by artist Cory Asbury called “Reckless Love” includes the lines “I couldn’t earn it, and I don’t deserve it. Still, you give yourself away … There’s no shadow you won’t light up, mountain you won’t climb up, coming after me. There’s no wall you won’t kick down, lie you won’t tear down, coming after me.”
In explaining the meaning behind the song’s lyrics, Cory recently said, “When I use the phrase ‘the reckless love of God,’ I’m not saying that God Himself is reckless. I am, however, saying that the way He loves is in many regards quite so. His love isn’t selfish or self-serving.”
The familiar Bible verse John 3:16 says, “God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten Son.” He gave us His Son, Jesus, offering Him up as a sacrifice to redeem lost mankind. The Father abandoned His Son at the time Jesus was in the greatest need of His Father—while dying an agonizing death on the cross. You might attach the adjective “reckless” to this kind of love.
His love is reckless in this sense, but God the Father was thinking and caring about the consequences of His actions when He had Jesus die on the cross. He allowed his Son to suffer a horrible death for the sake of all humanity, who were condemned to eternal damnation because of sin. On the third day after his death, Jesus was gloriously raised by the Father back to life.
In I Peter 1:3, the Apostle Peter says, “Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! According to his great mercy, he has caused us to be born again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead.” God’s saving grace was poured out on us through the blood of Jesus poured out on the cross, and eternal life was given to us all by his resurrection.
For me, the term “reckless love” also calls to mind the account in the Bible when Jesus is dining at the home of Mary, Martha and Lazarus. “Mary took a pound of expensive ointment made from pure nard and anointed the feet of Jesus and wiped his feet with her hair.” (John 12: 3) Mary lavished her love on Jesus through her selfless actions.
Truly, God has a reckless love for all of us, demonstrated by the death and resurrection of Jesus. Shouldn’t we, like Mary, offer the Lord a selfless love in return that could also be called “reckless”?
Mark Anderson lives in Bluffton with his wife and one of his four children and attends LowCountry Community Church. The family recently moved from the Baltimore area, after Mark retired from a career with the federal government. He enjoys writing, walking on the beach, and spending time with new friends.