Found hidden in "the love chapter" (1 Cor 13) is a little phrase of only two words: "love protects." If you're not careful it's easy to read right past it, and miss something of extreme importance. In this age of feel-good love one might in fact do well to spend a little time meditating on that little phrase. It might even give one reason to remember "buyer beware" when he hears the word "love" when protection is not part of its definition. Then, perhaps, when he sees it on the cover of a book like "Love Wins", or on a bumper sticker that says "love makes a family", he will not be so easily fooled.
With this in mind we can ask some questions that will help us hold to a Biblical view of love. This view has almost nothing in common the modern understanding of "love" because the modern view is devoid of truth. When one touts loving the poor, for example, we can ask, "does he also advocate the murder of their children through abortion?", for this is not love, it does not protect. When one speaks of loving the sinner, does he also speak of blessing their harmful behavior? If he does, he does not love, for it does not protect. When one preaches about God, does he preach that all roads lead to Him? If he does he does not love for that does not protect. When one speaks of loving the children, does he also advocate their protection from--as in the schoolhouse--the most loving thing that has ever happened in the history of man: our salvation from God's wrath through Jesus' death on the cross? If he does, he does not love for that does not protect.
In short, love is not always about feeling good, or doing things that make us feel good about ourselves. The truth is, love demands us do things that can make us feel pretty rotten. Often, on the other hand, some things that make us feel good about ourselves today will, in the long run, bring forth pain and suffering. But real love, in the long run, protects.
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