So many little ones are born to parents who do not love them.  Some are born to those who did not want them in the first place.  It may seem inconceivable that someone could give birth to a child and then not love that child, but that is a frequent reality.  Assuming that child is allowed to grow up in an atmosphere where his very presence is resented, what kind of adult do you suppose he will become?  We are constantly reminded of the varied abuse which many children suffer, and we are told that much of that abuse comes at the hands of those who were abused themselves.  The abusers learned their habits from those who abused them.


    We also learn love from those who love us.  You and I would not know how to love if it were not for the love of God toward us.  The apostle John wrote, “We love because he first loved us” (1 John 4:19).  How much did he love us?  He “so” loved us...he loved us enough to send Jesus to die for us (John 3:16).  He “loved us with love,” for such is the meaning of the language in Ephesians2:4-5.  
    This love was demonstrated toward people who had not merited such affection.  Notice Romans 5:6-8, “For when we were yet without strength, in due time Christ died for the ungodly.  For scarcely for a righteous man will one die: yet peradventure for a good man some would even dare to die. But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.”
    His love accounts for the privileged position we enjoy as “sons of God,” and is celebrated in 1 John 3:1, “Behold what matter of love the Father hath bestowed upon us, that we should be called the sons of God...”
    The characteristics of love are beautifully set forth in 1 Corinthians 13.   While space does not permit discussion of these characteristics, each and every one is deserving of our close study and attention.


    Some seem to be under the impression that love is blind and cannot detect flaws and imperfections.  While it is true that we should be able to overlook some things in our various relationships, it is also true that love will sound the warning when one’s practice is out of harmony with the will of God.  God instructed the prophet that he had a responsibility to be a watchman.  If he should not warn the wicked of his way, then he had failed in the responsibility that the Lord had placed upon him (Ezekiel 3:17-22; Ezekiel 33:6-9).  


    There are those today who not only do not warn the wicked of their way, but actually promote the setting aside of God’s law in order to accommodate the ungodly practices of those whom they claim to love.  Such irresponsibility reflects a lack of love, not a demonstration of it.  Such do not truly love God or his word.  What they think of as love for their constituency is actually indulgence.  There is no way that such will result in the conversion of the sinner.  It will only sabotage the sinner’s possibilities, for it encourages him to continue in his sin, or to involve himself in something he may have been restrained from otherwise.  This is what is happening in some teaching regarding divorce and remarriage.  Some teachers are just attempting to “re-write” the scriptures - something gospel preachers have rebuked the sectarians about for years.  Why not simply admit that they are not going to be bound by what the Bible says, rather than making a claim that they respect it.

    Sometimes, those who are trying to hold fast to the pattern of sound words (2 Timothy 1:13) are reproached for their “lack of love.”  Certainly, anyone who teaches must “speak the truth in love” (Ephesians 4:15)  Let us be sure, however, that it is the truth that is being spoken, not something designed to give endorsement to immorality.  While some would probably deny it, they likely would castigate the Lord Jesus or the Apostle Paul for their outspoken denunciation of sin.  These are calling evil good and good evil (see Isaiah 5:20).  In every age there have been those who have catered to the likes and dislikes of the people.  They do not serve the cause of righteousness, no matter how pious their demeanor.