Deion Sanders, who undoubtedly was a very talented football and baseball player, made a comment at the end of the talk after describing all the times he was booed by what used to be his home crowd. He said honestly and almost somberly, "I can't love anything that doesn't love me back."
Immediately it got me thinking, well I know someone who can love someone who doesn't love Him back, God can.
When Jesus gave us the Sermon on the Mount, He said to love your enemies. Even the Pagans can love only the people who love them back, but as God's people we can demonstrate to others the kind of love that God has for us. (Matthew 5: 43-48).
Jesus did not give us any instruction that He was not willing to live out himself. As He went to the cross, He forgave us while people sneered and soldiers mocked. He also interceded on our behalf before He died and said to the Father, "Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they are doing." Then, out of love, He gave His life for us, even those who hated Him. (Luke 23:34-36).
There is the well-known and highly quoted scripture of John 3:16, "For God so loved..." Loved! After generations, thousands of years, of a chosen people that repeatedly failed to love God back, He sent His son, Jesus, to preach the gospel of His kingdom, then ultimately die for our sins so that we may gain access to Him once again. This kind of access had been lost to us since the fall of man.
Galatians 5:14 sums it up perfectly, "The entire law is summed up in a single command: 'Love your neighbor as yourself.'"