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Doctrine of Divine Love

October 4, 2012

Doctrine of Divine Love

A. DIVINE LOVE RELATED TO DIVINE ESSENCE

1. God does not possess life as we do; He is Life.  God lives eternally and infinitely.

2. Part of God’s life is Love, and since it comes from His integrity, it is perfect Love.

3. Love also belongs eternally and co-equally to each member of the God-head.

4. Therefore, divine Love is compatible with all the other divine attributes:

5. By understanding God’s revelation to us about Love, we can become masters of love, rather than slaves of love.

B. PRINCIPLES OF APPLICATION OF GOD’S LOVE

1. God is Infinite and cannot be complicated by ignorance, absurdities, silliness, or emotion in relationship to His Love.

2. Since God is perfect and eternal Virtue, His Love can only function in perfect integrity.

3. Since God is Immutable, His Love cannot vacillate or change; it cannot increase or decrease, improve or decline.

4. God’s Omniscience does not cancel or change God’s Love.  God knows every thought of every person throughout History—past, present and future.  God is not changed by the bad thoughts of mankind.  His Love does not stop or turn away because someone insults or blasphemes Him.

5. Because God foreknew human failure, He did not cancel His Love for those who fail.  God does not condone sin, but He also does not stop loving the sinner.  God does not condone legalism or human good, but He also does not stop loving the person who is full of his own self-importance.

6. Because God is Eternal, He gives His Divine Love whether there is an occasion or not.  Phenomenal!

C. CHARACTERISTICS OF DIVINE LOVE

1. Since God is Love, always has been Love, and always will be Love, He doesn’t fall in love.  Neither can His Love be corrupted, compromised, or bribed by human works.

2. This means that God’s Love does not increase or diminish, and it cannot be changed by our sin, failure, evil, legalism, self-righteous arrogance, or instability.  This means that God’s Love is never frustrated, disappointed, or distracted.

3. God’s Love is not sustained in the slightest degree by any category of human merit, works, or any system of worthiness.  God cannot be bought or influenced by any category of human behavior.

4. God is not attracted to the believer by his or her human good, morality, self-righteousness, or any other system of human works.

5. Divine Love is attracted only to Divine Righteousness, because Divine Righteousness embodies incorruptible and perfect Virtue.  Therefore, we become objects of His personal Love only when we possess His Righteousness.

6. Unbelievers are spiritually dead and therefore are the recipients only of his impersonal love.  Personal love gravitates to Divine Righteousness, so once a person believes in Christ and receives the imputation of God’s righteousness, then God loves that person personally.

D. CATEGORIES OF DIVINE LOVE

1. God’s personal Divine Love:  All members of the Trinity have the same essence, therefore God’s personal love is directed to the perfect Righteousness in the other members of the God-head. God loves His own Righteousness, called Divine self-esteem.  God never feels threatened by any creature because He has perfect Divine self-esteem.  When a person believes in the Lord Jesus Christ he receives the imputation of God’s perfect Righteousness.  Because that person is now the possessor of Divine Righteousness, God is now free to—and does—direct His personal Love toward that person.

2. God’s impersonal Divine Love:  This is His love toward His fallen creatures.  Prior to the Fall, God’s creation—including Adam and Eve—was perfect.  Since Adam and Eve embodied all the virtues of perfection, God directed His personal love toward them.  But after the Fall they were imperfect and unrighteous.  Since they—and by natural generation, we—no longer possessed perfect Righteousness, He could only direct his impersonal Love toward us.

Basically, His impersonal love is manifested in His desire to save us.  Should we value His impersonal Love toward us less than His personal Love?  Absolutely not!  For it was that very sovereign, eternal, holy, immutable, omniscient, objective,  rational, unemotional, and infinite impersonal love that sent Jesus Christ to the Cross to die on our behalf.