Love from a pure heart and a good conscience and a sincere faith.
1 Timothy 1:5
We banter around the command to love others as if loving others is the most natural and easy thing to do. Depending on how you define love, loving can be easy.
We are quite adept at tailoring and trimming any definition of love to fit our comfort zone. Give me a few minutes and I can define love with eloquent words which become slippery when applied to my life.
God did not define love with words. He defined love with action.
God so loved the world, he sent His only son to die for the forgiveness of sins. God sent Jesus, not to condemn the world, but that all might be saved through Him. John 3:16-17
The defining word in John 3:16-17 is the word all. God extended His love not only to the lovely and those who loved Him, but to all.
It’s the all of God’s love which we so easily edit out of our definition of love. Most of us, put a but in our definition of who deserves to be loved.
Martin Luther wrote:
Choosing to love people who are pleasing to you … is a soiled love that doesn’t come from a pure heart. (1)
Jesus did not come to preach love. He came living it. This is why you can believe Jesus when he speaks of sacrificial love. For Him, this love was more than words.
God shows goodness to those who continually dishonor him and misuse what he has provided through their disobedience, blasphemy, sin, and shameful behavior. He pours his love over everyone, leaving no one out, whether good or bad, worthy or unworthy. (1)
God’s heart is full with pure love.
Soiled love stinks!
Luther, Martin; Galvin, James C. Faith Alone: A Daily Devotional (p. 46). Zondervan. Kindle Edition.