Where’s The Love of God?

“Does anyone know where the love of God goes, When the waves turn the minutes to hours?”

Those words are from the haunting ballad, “The Wreck of the Edmund Fitzgerald” by Canadian Gordon Lightfoot.

I was 25 years old when the SS Edmund Fitzgerald sank in the icy waters of Lake Superior on November 10, 1975.

It seems to mean more to us folks from Michigan, because Michigan is the “mitten” smack in the middle of the Great Lakes, and has a long Lake Superior coastline on our Upper Peninsula.

In “honor” of that tragic event, I was listening in my car yesterday to the video below. Already saddened some by the recounting of the horror of that stormy windy watery death song, I was even more saddened when I heard the lines I had kinda forgotten were in the song:

“Does anyone know where the love of God goes, When the waves turn the minutes to hours?”

What’s so sad about that? Because it is an indictment against God (who IS love), and the author didn’t know the answer to the question. Sad.

The question has a clear and wonderful answer. But although it’s simple, it’s complicated. Do you know what I mean?

Do you know of anything that is simple, yet complicated? A car is an example. A car is complicated, requiring huge numbers of engineers, craftsmen, artists, and mechanics to build and run. Yet it’s simple. Get in, turn the key, drive off.

The love of God is similar. You probably know John 3:16 — “For God so LOVED the world that He gave his only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish, but have eternal life.”

Simple. Because God loves us, He gave Jesus, the Son of God, to died on the cross for our sins. Then He was buried and rose from the dead on the third day. And whoever believes in Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior, is saved, has his sins forgiven, and will live with Him forever in heaven when he dies.

That’s the “Gospel”, the Good News.

But it’s complicated. Because behind that simple good news is the bad news that Adam sinned in the Garden, and we have all inherited his sin nature from birth (you don’t have to teach a baby to sin — it comes naturally).

And it’s because of that sin the Earth is no longer a paradise. It’s beautiful in many ways, but it has the horrible defect of sin which has marred it, and brought death, destruction, and yes, the wreck of the Edmund Fitzgerald.

The bad news is that every one of the 29 crew on that ship who rejected the love of God given in Jesus Christ, will suffer eternal punishment for their sins, and their rejection of the loving (but righteous and holy and just) God who made them.

That may rub you the wrong way. But if it does, it’s because you don’t know Him. If you knew Him, you would know that the love of God is always there. It’s permanent because it is the very nature of Him.

And you can only know Him through Jesus Christ. Jesus himself said, “I am the Way, and the Truth, and the Life. No one comes to the Father except through me.” (John 14:6)

“All have sinned and fall short of the glory of God”. “The wages of sin is [spiritual] death, but the free gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.” “Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ and you shall be saved.”

The good news is that every one of the 29 crew on that ship who believed in Jesus, though they died physically, will have everlasting life with their Savior, Jesus Christ.

Sin and it’s consequences are ugly. But the Lord is full of beauty — and full of love, even when the consequences of sin rage around us.

The love of God didn’t “go” anywhere. It’s always available through Jesus Christ.

This life is short even if you’re not sunk in a ship. Eternity is so much more important. Come to Jesus. He said, “Whoever will, may come to Me.”

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