Why Don’t Christians Love?
The Imperials sang “You’re the only Jesus some will ever see” so no wonder so many people think Jesus is a jerk.
The other day, I made a comment online gently suggesting that, as Christians, we should love LGBTQ+ people rather than fight against them. It wasn’t long before several people replied to tell me that I was wrong for accepting sin.
Okay, so first: I am perfectly capable of loving someone without “accepting” everything they do. I have two brothers who are atheists, and one who spouts a lot of MRA shit. I disagree with them (especially the MRA-parroting one), but I still love them.
Second, the Bible tells us flat out that we are not meant to fight against people:
For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places. Ephesians 6:12
If you think some kind of “gay agenda” is a principality, power, or spiritual host of wickedness, you need to get to know some LGBTQ+ people. Yes, they are people. They are flesh and blood. And we are commanded to love them.
A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another; as I have loved you, that you also love one another. John 13:34
There’s not a lot of wiggle room there. And that “as I have loved you” rules out any kind of conditional love. God loves us so much He died for us. And He did that “while we were still sinners” (Romans 5:8).
Beloved, let us love one another, for love is of God; and everyone who loves is born of God and knows God. He who does not love does not know God, for God is love. 1 John 4:7–8
And we have known and believed the love that God has for us. God is love, and he who abides in love abides in God, and God in him. 1 John 4:16
Love is so much a part of God’s identity that John tells us that God is love. As followers of Christ, those who call ourselves Christians, we should be love too. There should be so much love inside each of us that it spills out all over everyone around us. There should be no room for hatred and bigotry because every cell of our bodies, every bit of our souls, is full of love.
John also says that everyone who loves is born of God, and that if you don’t love, you don’t even know God. When did Christians forget this fundamental truth?
Instead of loving the “least of these,” we close our borders to them, afraid that they might be terrorists. We grab for power and whine that we’re persecuted if we lose any privileges. We spurn those who don’t agree with us, looking down our self-righteous noses at them. “And all our righteousnesses are like filthy rags” (Isaiah 64:6).
Lately, too many Christians have recoiled from the very word or idea of “love,” probably because they have seen the slogan “Love is Love” and want to distance themselves from it. But that is a mistake.
When I was a child, the world saw Christians as misguided and often hypocritical. Now they see us as hateful and bigoted and always hypocritical.
We say that God hates homosexuality and that it is an abomination. But we have become the abomination that God actually hates, the “hands that shed innocent blood” and the “feet that are swift in running to evil” when we drive young LGBTQ+ people to hate themselves so much they turn to suicide, and the “false witness who speaks lies” when we tell people they must change who they are before God will love them (Proverbs 6:16–19).
For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life. John 3:16
God loved the whole world so much He died to save us all. I’m pretty sure “the world” includes LGBTQ+ people, immigrants, and even *gasp* liberals. We should not be at war. We should welcome all with open arms and unconditional love.