Refuse To Have Counterfeit Love

November 7, 2013

Friends,
True Christ-like love –the type every Christian is to have and exhibit– is confrontational. It tells the Truth even when hurting the people receiving the Truth is unavoidable, and even when pain and loss of friendship or prestige is certain for the one confronting.

Counterfeit love is that which a person has who pretends to care about others but, in order to save oneself some type of distress or loss, remains quiet when they see someone else in danger. Whether it is because they are too timid, complacent, or selfish, they refrain from warning the endangered person, and so the person at risk, not recognizing their peril, reaps harm or destruction.

God-like love, however, always goes into action. It will attempt to do so gently at first, but if the endangered person does not believe in their impending peril, the loving person will not turn from his rescue efforts until every possible attempt has been exhausted. This means that, besides intercessory prayer, he may resort to strong words, sharp rebukes, or actually, if able, to yanking the person away from the flames. Even a severing of the relationship is an attempt to get the foolish person to understand the gravity of his precarious position.

It is a lie to say that if it is bound to cause annoyance or anger, then silence concerning someone’s inevitable ruin or doom is the loving response. Such a statement upholds counterfeit love, not real love. If we love someone as Jesus loves, we will speak up. We will do so several times, maybe many times, depending upon the extent of our love for that person, and we will take sacrificial action as Christ Himself would take. We will speak and act at the cost of our own well-being. We will do so because we love others and because we love our Savior who, because of His immense love, died for everyone.

“Oh, but Jesus didn’t die for everyone,” the masses of Calvinists teach; so complacency about people’s lives and souls abound throughout “Christianity”. But Jesus did die for everyone (1 Tim. 2:5,6 // 1 John 2:2), and God does want everyone saved. (1 Tim. 2:3,4 // 2 Peter 3:9) And God’s Word does command that we exhort everyone concerning the Message of reconciliation and obedience to God. (Mt. 28:18-20 // 2 Cor. 5:18-20)

Jesus taught us to do to others as we would want them to do to us. (Luke 6:31) Being complacent or tolerant of someone’s rebellion against God is not kind or loving, for that person is headed for an eternity in Hell. Rebels are choosing to reject God and thus reject their salvation from the penalty of their sins, but we are called by God to warn them so that they might turn from their foolish pursuit. How is it loving to not warn people of such a thing? Instead, to neglect to confront error and foolishness is not loving toward them, nor toward our God who went to great extremes to redeem them.

“But God doesn’t love sinners,” Calvinists insist. “He created them only to damn them, and this, so that His glory, as well as His hatred for sin, could be more clearly displayed.” Really? So John 3:16 doesn’t actually mean what it says? –That God so loved the world that He gave His Son to die to save everyone who believes? So the Message is not true after all that whoever wishes, chooses, and takes the free Gift can do so? (John 7:17, 37 // Rev. 22:17) Calvinists say, “That’s right, there is no human choice involved. Only God’s choice.” Therefore they are saying, as they blatantly contradict Scripture, that God desires that most human beings be damned. And that because He desires this, He preordains for it to come about. An honest Calvinist will admit that this is what Calvinism indeed teaches.

Let’s remember Luke 6:31 –that Golden Rule– and then read Jesus’ words in the next verse, verse 32: “If you love those who love you, what credit is that to you? For even sinners love those who love them.” Would Jesus require us to love people who don’t love us if God Himself does not love those who do not love Him? Certainly not. Are we expected to be more noble than God?

Jesus goes on in verse 33: “And if you do good to those who are good to you, what credit is that to you? For even sinners do the same.” Is deliberately sending someone to Hell anything close to doing good to a person? It’s not. It is people themselves who send themselves to Hell as they refuse to accept the Pardon and to walk Christ’s path. Let no one blame God, for He has already paid the ransom in full. However, by rebelliously clinging to that which God’s hates –sin and evil– a person has, by their own volition, kept themselves under the sphere of God’s wrath.

God does love everyone, is kind to everyone, and is merciful to everyone. (Ps. 145:8,9,13b // 1 John 4:16) In Luke 6:35 Jesus says that “the Most High… is kind to the ungrateful and wicked” while in verse 36 He tells us to be just as merciful as is our Heavenly Father. In verse 27 He has already revealed what such behavior is –which is this: “Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you, bless those who curse you, pray for those who mistreat you.” If we are expected to do these things so as to be kind and merciful like God, then how can anyone say that God Himself does not love His enemies and does not do good to those who hate Him? For He does! (Rom. 5:8 // 1 John 4:10) And because He does, He gives the Gift of salvation to everyone, though everyone does not accept it.

So, now that we’ve established that God does love everyone, is His love confrontational? It certainly is. I do not need to defend that, I’m sure, for we need only to open His Word and flip through it to see how numerous and sharp those confrontations are. And why does He speak and act as He does? Because He truly loves everyone, even those who are determined to keep shaking their fists in His face.

We, God’s servants, are to imitate God. Only a counterfeit love insists that it behaves a different and better way.

Sincerely,
with love,
Rachel

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