God is Love
Most of you who are believers will know that the title of this post comes from 1 John 4:8. It is a truth that is quoted ad-nauseum among Christians, often to promote a view of God that is not biblical at all. You might hear someone say that God is love in order to convince the church to accept homosexuality. (By no means do I think homosexuals ought to be treated any differently than any other sinner, but homosexuality is, indeed, a sin.) This mistake is made because we have wrongly defined love.
When we learn that God is love, we make a dangerous mistake: Immediately, we apply our own definition and experience of love to God. “God is love, and I think love means this; therefore, God must be like this.” That such an absurd way of thinking could become so widespread among the Church is disheartening. In contrast to such foolishness, we ought to think “God is love, and this is what the Bible says about God; therefore, this is what love is really like.” The reason no one does this is because it is will give you a definition of love that all men will hate because all men are evil.
If you take this approach, you will find your idea of God to be far less appealing. It will begin to appear to you that His thoughts are not your thoughts, nor are His ways your ways. One doctrine that is contrary to our modern, humanistic idea of love, is the fact that God will place most of humanity in a lake of fire where the flame is never quenched and the flesh-eating worms never die to suffer for all of eternity. “That doesn’t seem like love. If God is loving, He must not really send anyone to hell.” Heresy. Heresy. Heresy. If God does something you don’t like, or agree with, or think is good or just, you are not suddenly allowed to redefine God. Instead, redefine what you think is good and just and holy and kind. When you do, people will really start to hate you, just like Jesus said they would. The gospel is not attractive to men. The gospel is true.