Sunday, February 22, 2009

A god Less Loving?

I was recently discussing with friends some error-ridden sermons we had heard preached by some who would come down on the more theologically-liberal end of the spectrum. One in our group suggested something to the effect that the god who was being preached was "too loving."

But I think any conception of the One True God, the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, as being less loving than some heretic's conception of God is seriously mistaken. The most conservative believer, if he is orthodox, should be able with no problem to affirm what the Holy Spirit tells us in 1st John 4:8 and 4:16, where twice it is repeated "God is love."

The problem, in my view, is not the quantity of God's love. The quantity of real love from the true God is greater than anything that could be conceived of and it is certainly greater than the quantity of love from any heretic's god. The difference, I think, is in the quality or nature of God's love compared to the gods which people make in their own images. The quantity of the true God's love is not lacking in any way but it is an utterly holy and jealous love. It is an intra-Trinitarian love where His glorification is the chief end. But it is also a love that has a greater benefit to those who are being saved than anything we could imagine because it is a love which necessarily entails our beholding, loving and worshipping God for all eternity. It is a love which allows us to do what we were made for, namely to glorify God and enjoy him forever.

So I think that any conservative who can't whole-heartedly embrace John's words, "God is love," is missing the point on the nature of God's love. But liberals are already heretics because they try to interpret away much of what God has revealed about himself and the reality he has created, namely his wrath that was quenched in the death of His Son upon the cross and the eternal hell, which we all deserve, that awaits those who are not in Christ.

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