"The LORD hath appeared of old unto me, [saying], Yea, I have loved thee with an everlasting love: therefore with lovingkindness have I drawn thee." (Jeremiah 31:3) When you think of Christ, do you see the love that He has for us? When I read the above scripture a warm feeling travels through my body. Christ loves me, a sinner! Wow! There is nothing in me that can justify His love. It is an EVERLASTING love, He says.
There is ASSURANCE in His love.
It is CONSTANT.
Nothing can SEPARATE me from that love.
I was drawn with LOVINGKINDNESS!
We may assume that lovingkindness means a combination of love and kindness. It has a deeper meaning...
Lovingkindness means kindness in this sense. Lovingkindness, judgement or justice and righteousness are part of God's character. Kindness has been used synonymously with gentleness. God loves the people He created. This makes Him enforce judgement and righteousness. Since God is enforcing these things, He needs to do it with kindness. People would be angry and hate God if He didn't have kindness in His character. God teaching us without kindness could be compared to a dad who yells at his children and beats them to make them obey. That child would over time resent him and his instruction; whether he was correct or not. If God did not exercise kindness with His love, we would come to resent Him.
The True Motive for Following Christ
One of my favorite Christian writers said: "It is not the fear of punishment, or the hope of everlasting reward, that leads the disciples of Christ to follow Him. They behold the Saviour's matchless love, revealed throughout His pilgrimage on earth, from the manger of Bethlehem to Calvary's cross, and the sight of Him attracts, it softens and subdues the soul. Love awakens in the heart of the beholders. They hear His voice, and they follow Him. " (Desire of Ages, pg. 480.3)
Yes, I hear His voice and I follow Him.