Jesus Loves You

All that ever [Christ] did or does, all that ever he underwent or suffered as mediator, was for their sakes.

John Owen, Communion with the Triune God1

When we think of God’s love, we can go wrong in two ways.

First, we can emphasize God’s love to the point where God’s glory becomes subservient to our personal worth. We become the center of the universe, pushing God to the periphery. We can wrongly believe that God’s greatest goals are to promote our happiness and well-being.

Second, we can emphasize God’s glory to the point where we think his love doesn’t even qualify as real. After all, the reasoning goes, if God does everything for his own glory, how could he have any other motives for what he does? We may find ourselves not taking what God says about his love at face value.

For the sake of this post, I’m going to take it for granted that God’s ultimate end in creating everything is his own glory.2 This article will therefore attempt to address the second problem: devaluing God’s love. Specifically, I’ll show that the Jesus—God the Son—really loves us, and that his love is amazing.

What does the Scripture say?

  • And for their sake I [Jesus] consecrate myself, that they also may be sanctified in truth. (John 17:19)3
  • and he died for all, that those who live might no longer live for themselves but for him who for their sake died and was raised. (2 Corinthians 5:15)
  • For you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that though he was rich, yet for your sake he became poor, so that you by his poverty might become rich. (2 Corinthians 8:9)
  • As the Father has loved me, so have I loved you. Abide in my love. (John 15:9)
  • Greater love has no one than this, that someone lay down his life for his friends. (John 15:13)

That is just a sampling. You can also look at John 13:34; 2 Corinthians 5:21; Romans 8:35, 37; 1 Peter 1:20–21.

Jesus’s love is real. It is self-sacrificial. It is abundant. The fact that Jesus’s ultimate aim is God’s glory does not diminish the reality or the strength of his love for us.

After referencing Hebrews 2:14–15, John Owen speaks of how Jesus loves people who trust in him: “He valued them above his life.”4 Jesus would rather have died than that we should have died in our sins! Owen goes on to say of believers, “they are the apple of his eye, his jewel, his diadem, his crown.”5

Does your view of Jesus’s love align with Owen’s? Does it align with the Bible’s? I’ll confess that I do not normally think of Jesus’s love this way. It is to my detriment that I don’t think more of his love, and that I do not think of his love more. Owen recognizes that reflecting much on Jesus’s love would benefit us: “Were our hearts filled much with thoughts hereof, it would tend much to our consolation.”6

1 Owen, John. Communion with the Triune God, ed. Kelly M. Kapic and Justin Taylor (Wheaton, Illinois: Crossway, 2007), 247. This is an edited version of Of Communion with God the Father, Son, and Holy Ghost by John Owen. The latter book was republished by CCEL, and you can find the original source for this quote at, albeit with older language.

2 You can find a compelling defense of this in Jonathan Edwards’s A Dissertation Concerning The End For Which God Created The World. You can find a footnoted edition in the second half of John Piper’s God’s Passion for His Glory.

3 Scripture quotations are from the ESV® Bible (The Holy Bible, English Standard Version®), copyright © 2001 by Crossway, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

4 Owen, John. Communion with the Triune God, 249.

5 Ibid., 250.

6 Ibid, 251.