What Does John Mean by Love?

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What Does John Mean by Love?

“In fact, this is love for God: to keep his commands. And his commands are not burdensome, for everyone born of God overcomes the world. This is the victory that has overcome the world, even our faith” 1 John 5:3-4

The Apostle John is often described by scholars as the “Apostle of Love” because he continually emphasized the love of God toward all humanity. He even reminds us that the world will know we are His disciples by our love.

But what does John mean by love?

A romantic emotion? A sentimental longing? An erotic desire? Our culture (and now the Supreme Court) has adopted a very different definition of love that film director Woody Allen once expressed this way, “The heart wants what the heart wants.”

The Apostle of Love believes love finds its highest expression in keeping God’s commandments.

That’s because everything that God has commanded is for our good and is motivated by His caring, wise, just, merciful and holy intentions toward us. Whenever we violate those commandments we move farther away from God; whenever we honor them we are drawn closer to Him.

Sadly, a secular court announced by a vote of 5 to 4 that the biblical understanding of marriage – and thus the heart of God – is wrong. While entitled to their opinion they will never amend the character of God or change the timeless truth of Scripture. To quote Jesus, “… At the beginning the Creator ‘made them male and female, and said, ‘For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and the two will become one flesh” (Matthew 18:4-5).

While we respect the court as an authority God has instituted, we must respect His commandments even more.

Why? Because that’s the loving thing to do.

Remember, the same God who said marriage is exclusively created to be between a man and woman showed us the true extent of His love, “For God so loved the world that He gave His one and only Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have everlasting life” (John 3:16).

Bob Moeller

Bob Moeller is host of the weekly For Better For Worse For Keeps Radio Show. It’s a call-in show with a question and answer format on AM1160 WYLL. For those not living in Chicagoland, please listen to online streaming during the show every Sunday evening at 6:00 p.m. Bob also hosts the nationally broadcasted weekly television call-in show, “Marriage—For Better, For Worse” on the Total Living Network (www.TLN.com) Bob is author of six books on marriage, two of which were nominated for the Gold Medallion Award. He has written articles for over 150 publications including Focus on the Family and Marriage Partnership. Bob holds a D.Min, degree from Trinity Evangelical Divinity School, Deerfield, IL.

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