reciprocal and imitative love .:2:.

    .: Here’s more about how the Old Testament actually teaches us that God is a loving God- and how we need to respond :. 

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        Even a cursory glance at Deuteronomy reveals the emphasis of a three-fold movement of love.  In Deuteronomy, God is depicted as a God who loves, who wants his love to be reciprocated, and who wants his love to be imitated.  First and foremost, it is noted that the dominating motivation of the book is the unswerving and personal love that God exhibits for Israel.  We learn, almost scandalously, that God chose Israel, treasures them and continuously cares for them even though he is the Holy, Almighty God and they are no greater than any other nation on earth (Deut 4:37; 5:10; 7:6-8, 13; 10:15; 14:2; 18:5; 23:5; 26:18; 33:12).  Secondly, it is observed that because he personally loves Israel, God wants the objects of his affection to respond in love for him.  God desires a relationship with those whom he chooses. In other words, God wants Israel to reciprocate his love for them.  So it is in that theme that Deuteronomy frequently encourages Israel to wholeheartedly and actively love their God” (Deut 6:5; 10:12; 11:1, 13, 22; 13:3; 19:9; 30:6, 16, 20).  Thirdly, it is also witnessed in Deuteronomy that because God practices love towards Israel, God longs for Israel to show love for others in a similar manner.  This revolutionary exercise of choosing, treasuring and caring was extended specifically in Deuteronomy to resident aliens, widows and orphans.  God desires that his loving character and action be reflected in the lifestyle of those whom he loves (Deut 1:16; 10:18-19; 16:11, 14; 23:7; 24:14, 17, 19-21; 26:11-13).  In other words, God wants Israel to imitate his merciful love for their neighbors… especially those in need.  A brief overview of Deuteronomy could be summed up simply with this triune formula:
        1.    God loves Israel
        2.    So Israel should reciprocate God’s love
        3.    So Israel should imitate God’s love for others

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