You Are Greatly Loved
By John Piper
We all once lived among [the sons of disobedience] in the passions of our flesh, carrying out the desires of the body and the mind, and were by nature children of wrath, like the rest of mankind. But God, being rich in mercy, because of the great love with which he loved us, even when we were dead in our trespasses, made us alive together with Christ — by grace you have been saved. (Ephesians 2:3–5)
Would you not love to hear the angel Gabriel say to you, “You are greatly loved”?
Three times this happened to Daniel.
- “At the beginning of your pleas for mercy a word went out, and I have come to tell it to you, for you are greatly loved.” (Daniel 9:23)
- “O Daniel, man greatly loved, understand the words that I speak to you, and stand upright, for now I have been sent to you.” (Daniel 10:11)
- And he said, “O man greatly loved, fear not, peace be with you; be strong and of good courage.” (Daniel 10:19)
I admit that each year when I read through the Bible and come to these verses, I want to take them and apply them to myself. I want to hear God saying to me, “You are greatly loved.”
In fact, I do hear this. And you can hear it too. If you have faith in Jesus, God himself says to you in his word — which is more sure than an angel of God speaking — “You are greatly loved.”
There it stands in Ephesians 2:3–5, 8: We “were by nature children of wrath, like the rest of mankind. But God, being rich in mercy, because of the great love with which he loved us, even when we were dead in our trespasses, made us alive together with Christ. . . . For by grace you have been saved through faith.”
This is the only place where Paul uses this wonderful phrase “great love.” And it is better than an angel’s voice. If you have seen Jesus as true and received him as your supreme treasure, that is, if you are “alive,” you are greatly loved. Greatly loved by the Creator of the universe. Just think of it! Greatly loved!