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Wednesday, August 28, 2013

JustLove: Christian Faith In Its Essence

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I don’t claim to be a theologian, but if I could invent a term that would express the heart of what life and faith should be all about it would a coined, compound word, ‘JustLove'.

The word “just” here is intended to carry a dual meaning, first reflecting the fact that we are told in scripture that God isn’t only about demonstrating love, or teaching us to practice love, but that God is love, and that this love of God's is not only merciful but just. The entire Law and the Prophets, we are told, can be summed up in the well known first and greatest command to “Love the Lord your God with our whole heart, soul, mind and strength.” And then to “Love your every neighbor as yourself.”

It's as simple--and as difficult--as that.

It is the apostle John who asserts that God is love, that the concept of love and God are inseparable and interchangeable. But it’s clear that this kind of love is far more than a sentimental warm feeling, but is about a tough and tender grace with justice and mercy for all. To be sure, God often demonstrates a tough love, but it is always just.

Not being a well trained or profound scholar, I’m sure I could err on the side of making things too elementary, but I also believe we can make things way too complicated. The JustLove of Jesus, the apostles and the Hebrew prophets is indeed simple, but it is far from easy.

Needless to say, it’s something I want to promote with all of my heart and strength.
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