Biblical love vs. Secular love- Responding to the push from the LGBTQ movement 🌈

“God is love.” We have all heard this right? My husband remembers sitting in a huge pastor’s convention and hearing a sermon preached on this topic and it was said by the speaker “God’s most defining and important attribute is love.” I’m sure John 3:16 was at the forefront of this idea.

God is love. But there is no verse that tells us that is His dominate attribute. We are told what is being said of Him in Revelation over and over again- And the four living creatures, each one of them having six wings, are full of eyes around and within; and day and night they do not cease to say, “HOLY, HOLY, HOLY IS THE LORD GOD, THE ALMIGHTY, who was and who is and who is to come.”

They aren’t saying “love, love, love.” But “holy, holy, holy.”

Not to downplay God’s love for the elect because without this we would not be saved.

“But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.” Romans 5:8

So we know that the attribute of love does belong to God because we see that in Scripture over and over again. But what about the secular idea of love? How is this different than the Biblical view of love? Why do so many secular people get to use the term love when they clearly have no idea of the real meaning of God’s attribute of love? Let’s examine these views.

The secular idea of love is the most shallow of views. It has many facets and all of them have to do with carnality and the flesh. Here is the definition according to the dictionary- : a feeling of strong or constant affection for a person. : attraction that includes sexual desire : the strong affection felt by people who have a romantic relationship. : a person you love in a romantic way.

My purpose in writing this blog is to clarify the two views and demonstrate how the secular view has now infiltrated the church. This idea that real love is to embrace all and not call attention to any sin is quickly becoming the prominent view. This is why the anti biblical views of CRT (critical race theory), women pastors, and homosexuality are being so welcomed into your local church. This version of love teaches inclusion above truth. If you refuse to embrace these ideas, you are not loving.

Welcome to the false love, the secular love. Let me make this clear, this is NOT the love the Scripture teaches.

Look at this church in my area proudly displaying their version of “secular love.”

This is an outright perversion of the word “love” to justify homosexuality. They have taken this word to twist and pervert it for their own selfish purposes and agenda. It’s devastating to see this distortion from such a glorious attribute of God. Those who are in an openly homosexual lifestyle should be given the gospel and called to repent of their sin. This is not love.

Because we are seeing so many of these different versions of “love” it’s necessary that we examine from a biblical perspective what the love of God really is and how it displays itself through Him and His children.

As far as the biblical definition of love, “the ancient languages differentiate among sexual , brotherly and familial love. Also, the kind of love that God has for His children and that we may have for Him. The Hebrew words “chesed” and “agape” are used to express the kind of love God demonstrates towards His elect. Chesed is often translated as “steadfast love” or “lovingkindness.” A good example of chesed is found in Numbers 14:18, “The Lord is slow to anger and abounding in steadfast love, forgiving iniquity and transgression” (Numbers 14:18, ESV). God’s chesed love is why He never gives up on those He has adopted as His children. Agape love is the goodwill and benevolence of God shown in self-sacrifice and an unconditional commitment to loved one. Agape is similar to chesed in that it is steadfast, regardless of circumstances.” (Find more on this here- https://www.gotquestions.org/definition-of-love.html

Now that we have looked at how God loves us, let’s examine how that love is supposed to be manifested through His children to others.

Where secular love has a carnal, fleshly motive and desire to please and gratify the flesh, biblical love is the opposite. Biblical love has clear objectives and displays itself in distinct ways not desiring to benefit the flesh. In fact, dying to self is an undeniable element of this type of love.

1) Biblical love warns.

One of the elements of the gospel is our desperate need for a Savior since we are hopeless and dead in sin. (Ephesians 2:1, Romans 3:11) We know that eternity will be spent in one of two places and recognize the dire situation of those who are not born again. We are to be warning those around us of the doom to come if they will not repent. Luke 13:3 was a clear warning from Christ-
“No, I tell you; but unless you repent, you will all likewise perish.”

How about Matthew 3:10? Jesus has a pretty clear warning about those Jews who thought they could enter heaven on the basis of their Jewish lineage- “And the axe is already laid at the root of the trees; therefore, every tree that does not bear good fruit is being cut down and thrown into the fire.”

You have heard the old story that if you saw a person about to drive on to a bridge that had caved in and didn’t know it surely you would warn them of the danger to come! Here is what the atheist, Penn Gillette, said about Christians who don’t proselytize, warn or share the gospel- “I’ve always said that I don’t respect people who don’t proselytize. I don’t respect that at all. If you believe that there’s a heaven and a hell, and people could be going to hell or not getting eternal life, and you think that it’s not really worth telling them this because it would make it socially awkward—and atheists who think people shouldn’t proselytize and who say just leave me along and keep your religion to yourself—how much do you have to hate somebody to not proselytize? How much do you have to hate somebody to believe everlasting life is possible and not tell them that?” (Video seen here- https://youtu.be/owZc3Xq8obk)

You have a non- negotiable responsibility to share the gospel and warn those around you who are perishing.

2) Biblical love rebukes.

Now we transition from sharing the gospel and warning the unbelievers around us to loving those who are our brethren. I want to list passages that detail this topic since the Scripture is our guide in this matter.

Better is open rebuke than hidden love.” Proverbs 27:5

But those who persist in sin should be rebuked in front of everyone, so that the others will stand in fear of sin.” 1 Timothy 5:20

Brothers, if anyone is caught in any transgression, you who are spiritual should restore him in a spirit of gentleness…” Galatians 6:1

Declare these things; exhort and rebuke with all authority. Let no one disregard you.” Titus 2:15

preach the word; be ready in season and out of season; reprove, rebuke, and exhort, with complete patience and teaching.” 2 Timothy 4:2

Pay attention to yourselves! (A)If your brother sins, (B)rebuke him, and if he repents, (C)forgive him,4 and if he sins against you (D)seven times in the day, and turns to you seven times, saying, ‘I repent,’ you must forgive him.” Luke 17:3-4

Do not rebuke mockers or they will hate you; rebuke the wise and they will love you. Instruct the wise and they will be wiser still; teach the righteous and they will add to their learning.” Proverbs 9:8-9

It is better for a man to hear the rebuke of the wise than to hear the song of fools.” Ecclesiastes 7:5

One who rebukes a person will afterward find more favor Than one who flatters with the tongue.” Proverbs 28:23

We see verses talking about rebuking other Christians who are in sin all throughout the Word of God. This is a very important aspect of being a Christian.

If you have children, think about the example of how you interact with them. You love your child and if you see them in sin and openly going against the Word of God, you will confront them with it. If my children are acting prideful, I tell them. If one of my children is being selfish, I rebuke them. If they are dishonoring God in any way, because I love them, I use the Scripture and point them back to truth. And they should demonstrate repentance towards God and whomever they have sinned against. We rebuke those whom we love because we desire to see them confess, repent, and be restored to a right fellowship with with Christ. This is not from a self righteous motive, but to see them walking in truth and obedience. We lovingly and gently correct with the Scripture. Contrary to what the world says, to be silent is to not care. And it’s hard because rebuke never feels good and is not usually accepted well at first. But truth must be taught, brethren rebuked, and the Lord can use you and His Word to open their eyes and restore them.

If you have someone in your life who you are close enough with to know they are a believer and have professed Christ, a family member who is a brother or sister in Christ (or claims to be) or even one of your church members, and you see them in open sin, you must be willing to rebuke and correct. Pray about it. Ask the Lord for courage to do it. And ask Him to help you be gracious when you do it. Be faithful to do it and also expect the same in return when you are in sin. You must be able to receive reproof. Also, make sure you have removed the log from your own eye before going to your brother.

This teaching that we must be silent to maintain the unity is antithetical to what the Scripture says. The whole “who am I to judge?” has become the norm in society. The secular version of love wants us to be tolerant of all sin. Embrace all untruths as truth. Tell those who are in the lifestyle of sodomy that God loves them just the way they are. They want you to believe if you don’t embrace their sin and “preferred gender and pronouns” then you don’t truly love them. We must pretend they are in right standing with God and that they are not under His wrath? May it never be! The reality is, those whom are perishing, if we love and care about their souls, we warn them. We don’t want to see them headed for hell. We weep and we pray and beg for God to save them. We give them the gospel. And those who are are between must be rebuked so that they can repent and be restored to right fellowship with Christ. This is Christlike love. Love that cares about a person’s spiritual destination and well being more than their temporary fleshy desires and gratification. Scripture tells us this Carneal; homosexual love is not love, but sin that if not repented of, will prevent you from entering heaven.

Or (K)do you not know that the unrighteous will not (L)inherit the kingdom of God? (M)Do not be deceived; (N)neither the sexually immoral, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor [g]homosexuals, 10 nor thieves, nor the greedy, nor those habitually drunk, nor verbal abusers, nor swindlers, will (O)inherit the kingdom of God. 1 Corinthians 6:9-10

3) True love is selfless.

Let’s look at a list of passages that lay out the view of love being selfless.

Do nothing from (A)selfish ambition or (B)conceit, but in (C)humility count others more significant than yourselves. 4 Let each of you (D)look not only to his own interests, but also to the interests of others.” Philippians 2:3-4

26 (A)It shall not be so among you. But whoever would be great among you must be your servant,[a]27 and whoever would be first among you must be your slave,[b] Matthew 20:26-27

(A)”Let no one seek his own good, but the good of his neighbor.” 1 Corinthians 10:24

Have this mind among yourselves, which is yours in Christ Jesus,[a]6 (K)who, though he was in (L)the form of God, did not count equality with God (M)a thing to be grasped,[b]7 but (N)emptied himself, by taking the form of a (O)servant,[c](P)being born in the likeness of men. 8 And being found in human form, he humbled himself by (Q)becoming obedient to the point of death, (R)even death on a cross.” Philippians 2:5-8

It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no account of wrongs.” 1 Corinthians 13:5

One aspect of love that gets overlooked is how this selfless love is manifested in our lives. Did you know that pride often presents itself in a self preservation type mentality, or fear of being rejected and wanting to promote one self’s good standing and name among others? Are you aware that it is pride and selfishness that often prevent us from confronting another? While peacemakers are praised in Scripture, the type mentioned and celebrated are the not the types of peacemakers who sacrifice truth for unity. These are not the ones who allow God’s Word to be distorted just so they don’t “rock the boat.” It is NOT charitable to be silent when ones soul is at stake or the Word of God is being compromised.

Are you too worried about your reputation to confront others in sin? Too concerned about being pleasing to the majority? Worried people won’t like you or be your friend? This is the opposite of selfless love. You are stuck in this prideful self preservation mode and it takes the Holy Spirit to break you free from this and give you the boldness to speak the truth in love.

“People sometimes say to me, “Do you worry about what people think when the truth is offensive?” I can tell you in 50 years, I have never had that thought. I am not at all concerned what people think. My responsibility is to be faithful to God, not to navigate people’s desires.” -John MacArthur

For am I now seeking the approval of man, or of God? Or am I trying to please man? If I were still trying to please man, I would not be a servant of Christ.” Galatians 1:10

A selfless love will give others truth no matter what the cost. They may hate us, spit on us, trash our reputations, slander us on social media or in public, but we persevere. Truth is our objective. The glorification of Christ is our goal. We love our enemies by continuing to speak truth. We give them the gospel. Praying for their souls, ministering to them when possible, meeting their needs even though they are God hating individuals who hate us as well. I’ve encountered a lot of God haters in my 14 year ministry as a pastor’s wife. I can vividly remember being lied to, lied about, slandered, and almost forced out of a church- all for standing on the Word of God. All of these have hoped to silence me over the years but I know the Spirit within me gives me the ability to keep loving, speaking, and persevering. I continued to be patient, serve them, not gossip or seek revenge, and give them the gospel. Paul was willing to die to self, become all things to all men that he might see some saved.

To the weak I became weak, that I might win the weak. I have become all things to all people, that by all means I might save some.” 1 Corinthians 9:22

Our ultimate goal is to see the lost ones around us saved and our brethren walking in truth and obedience to Christ. Dying to self is hard but the Holy Spirit gives us this ability to have this selfless love for those around us. Ask the Lord to help you love your enemies and speak truth wherever you are. Ask Him to help you to represent Christ in an honorable way without compromise and live a life of selfless love.

So the saying “God is love” is actually true.

“but (A)God shows his love for us in that (B)while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.“ Romans 5:8

But as this blog has shown you, God’s love is much different than the secular view of love that is being promoted. Romans 5:8 demonstrates the great love of God to us. He loves His children, sent His son as our substitute and propitiation, and He has satisfied the wrath of God, giving us forgiveness of sin and eternal life. Oh glorious day! So in the end, Love does win! The Love of God conquers all.

Author: lauranlou

Teaching women to study Scripture, love theology and to glorify Christ!

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