The Victory of God’s Perfect Love (it’s not about the ‘power’) – Bev Mitchell
It’s not God’s power that we need to focus on, it’s our misuses of the power we are given. Just like God’s power, our power needs to come under the supervision of love. We are not good at doing this. We are so bad at it, in fact, that we expect even God to put his power above his love. As usual with sin, things get turned upside down, spun 180 degrees.
We are quick to insist that power is the center of being for an all powerful God. But could what we see as the effects of God’s power not be, in reality, the effects of God’s perfect love? Perhaps our attempts to describe the source of what God’s accomplishes should seek to portray what can happen, has happened and ultimately will fully happen as the violence and the power of evil come up against perfect love? The warrant for this view comes from the victory of perfect innocence and love at Calvary and on Easter. The resurrection does not celebrate the victory of violent power but its defeat. By celebrating the resurrection, through Spirit-given faith, we proclaim evidence of the victory of perfect love. Just like a great rocky costal promontory stands unconquered against the most violent storm, God’s perfect love stands unconquered against any violence evil can hurl against it. God stands against evil and evil destroys itself against God’s love. In Job we read:
“Who closed the sea behind doors
When it gushed forth out of the womb,
When I clothed it in clouds, Swaddled it in dense clouds,
When I made my breakers my limit for it,
And set up its bars and doors,
And said, ‘You may come so far and no further’;
Here your surging waves will stop.”
From the Tenakh JPS 1985
Or as St. John says about the reality of creation “The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it.” Or even better in the NIV Spanish “… y las tinieablas no han podido extinguirlo.”
We can speak of all this in terms of might against might, which is almost universally done in world religions, but, in light of the Cross, we should instead accept the clear revelation that violence is wholly on the side of evil. Complete impenetrability to the forces of violence and evil is what a holy God offers, and this is also our eschatological hope. Our best evidence of the indestructibility of God’s perfect love is the resurrection.