“Does God love me because I spend time with AIDS victims and alcoholics, or because I spend an hour in prayer every day? Or, because I’m rigorously faithful to my wife, Roslyn? If I believe that, I am a Pharisee who feels entitled to be comfortably close to Christ because of my good works.

“The gospel of grace says I am loved for one reason only and that is because God loves me . . . period. Every page of Christian Scripture declares that He loves us in a way that defies human comprehension and escapes human limitation. That is why I can say with theological certainty: God loves you unconditionally as you are and not as you should be, because you are never going to be as you should be. God loves you in the morning sun and the evening rain, without caution or regret. If God ceased to be love, God would cease to be God.”