What is True Biblical Love?
Updated: Sep 15
Some time ago someone from the Mennonite evangelical denomination of EBMC or EMC (they were frolicking between the different churches which are essentially the same doctrinally and practically) posted comments on social media about love. About the need for Christians to just “focus on the simple commandment of love,” quoting Jn 13:35: “By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples, if ye have love one to another.” (they didn’t use the KJV). Apparently this “love” is to be divorced from Biblical truths such as “bible versions,” “method of baptism,” “what church you attend,” “amount of scripture you memorize,” “type of music you listen to,” and “clothes you wear.” Apparently the Bible doesn’t speak about these things but only “love,” and somehow it’s separated from behaviour and beliefs. Oookay. Sadly such horrible lies are common place among “evangelicals” today, incidentally revealing their true nature which is the natural man — a lost and hypocritical estate.
To speak of love between brethren at the expense of truth and obedience, is not Biblical love. At best it’s sentimentalism. Love is never divorced from obedience and truth. The neo-evangelical is very confused, but is it any wonder? So much perversion and heresy on every hand, truth is no longer absolute, and as we see, unable to discern simple Biblical truths. Even love has become a casualty of evangelical heresy. Since God’s Word commands the judging and testing of all things (Jn 7:24; 1 Cor 2:15; 10:15; Lk 7:43; 12:57; Phil 1:9-10; Lev 19:15, 35-37; Pr 21:3, 15), I will judge what he said by Gods Word. Ironically, the Bible says judging is love but another casualty of evangelical heresy.
First of all, true brethren in Christ will indeed love one another (Jn 13:35) for love of the brethren is a huge evidence of true conversion (1 Jn 2:8-11; 3:10-19, 23; 4:7-12, 17-21; 5:2). But what is love? How do we love our brethren? These are foundational questions because what this professing Christian wrote is not true. He (and the rest of BMC and EMC) can call it whatever they want, but it’s not love. It’s sappy emotionalism, humanism, worldly “love” at best which is tolerating error and feeding self esteem. Since love “Rejoiceth not in iniquity, but rejoiceth in the truth” (1 Cor 13:6), truth is everything. The truth of Gods Word will tell us what true love is.
Love is not an emotion. Emotions are unstable and undependable. Love is not broad-mindedness. It is not non-judgmentalism. It is not non-critical tolerance. Love is certainly not disobedience to God’s Word. God gives us the definition of love in multiple places in Scripture and as you’ll note, love is never divorced from obedience. Love is to obey Gods Word, His commandments, His will. “And THIS IS LOVE, that we walk after his commandments” (2 Jn 1:6a). If someone says they know God but keep not His commandments, they are a liar and the truth is not in them (1 Jn 2:3-5). They don’t know God and they certainly don’t love Him.
“And hereby we do know that we know him, if we keep his commandments. He that saith, I know him, and keepeth not his commandments, is a liar, and the truth is not in him. But whoso keepeth his word, in him verily is the love of God perfected: hereby know we that we are in him.” (1 Jn 2:3-5).
Note that it’s by obedience to the Word of God that the love of God is perfected.
Jesus said, “If a man love me, he will keep my words: and my Father will love him, and we will come unto him, and make our abode with him. He that loveth me not keepeth not my sayings: and the word which ye hear is not mine, but the Father's which sent me.” (Jn 14:23-24).
Those that disobey God’s Word prove they don’t actually love the Lord Jesus Christ, regardless of the lip service they give to it. The “Jesus” they love is “another Jesus” (2 Cor 11:4). Obeying, keeping God’s Word is the ONLY means whereby we love God. People that are truly born again will love God by keeping His commandments. It is the hallmark evidence of true conversion. There is much scripture that speak to this. Love is based entirely upon truth. And you can’t demonstrate love without obedience to the truth. Love is walking in the truth toward God and people. It is fulfilling God's law toward God and people. God couldn't love us if He was contaminated by falsehood or error.
How then do we know we love our brethren?
“BY THIS we know that we love the children of God, WHEN we love God, and keep his commandments. For this is the love of God, that we keep his commandments: and his commandments are not grievous.” (1 Jn 5:2-3).
2 Jn 1:5-6 says more of the same:
“And now I beseech thee, ... that we love one another. AND THIS IS LOVE, that we walk after his commandments.”
If we don’t obey God, we don’t love God. If we don’t obey and love God, then we don’t love our brethren. It’s just that simple. That is the cascade effect of what the Bible clearly teaches.
So, in other words, one can evaluate someone’s profession of love by this God ordained criteria: do they actually obey Gods Word and thereby demonstrating their love for God, and therefore loving their brethren according to truth (1 Jn 5:2-3) or are they not. If they aren’t obeying and keeping God’s Word, they aren’t loving God or their brethren. So bearing this in mind what God’s Word says about what true Biblical love is, let’s put to test the things that were listed that supposedly are separated from loving the brethren, while remembering that its altogether impossible to actually love your brethren without firstly obeying God’s Word (1 Jn 5:2-3; 2 Jn. 1:5-6).
1. If you say you love God and thus His children but don’t so much care about His Word as to be utterly horrified and outraged at what modern versions in the English language (and other languages) have done in adding, removing and changing massive amounts of the words that make up God’s Word (which He has magnified above all His name! - Ps 138:2), and thereby also corrupting doctrines of Gods Word, all of which falls under the frightful condemnation of Rev 22:18-19, and not fleeing from these counterfeits unto the real Sword of the Spirit (in English, the KJV) — are you actually loving God and thus loving your brethren? No (1 Jn 5:2-3).
2. If you say you love God and thus His children but don’t care what He says about baptism, which is the most important commandment for the new believer, an evidence of ones salvation, knowing that the mode is absolutely everything what baptism is all about (yea even what the very word actually means), knowing the very picture of it, immersion in water, a picture of salvation as one having died to the old life and raised to the new one, and the very mode God the Son himself was baptized with and further acknowledging that both pouring and sprinkling are never mentioned in scripture and completely corrupt the ordinance — are you actually loving God and thus your brethren? No (1 Jn 5:2-3).
3. If you say you love God and thus His children but aren’t concerned about what church you attend even though God’s Word is very clear that the only true church is one that is “the house of God, which is the church of the living God, the pillar and ground of the truth” (1 Tim 3:15), and discerning most are on the broad path that leads to destruction and hell (Matt 7:13-14) representative of the large inordinate mustard tree (Matt 13:31-32) & the complete leavening of the loaf (Matt 13:33) but are rather happy committing spiritual adultery with an institution that is not the pillar and ground of the truth which entertains massive doses of the leaven of sin (1 Cor 5:6) and error (Gal 5:9), and false ecclesiology, while personally disobeying the hundreds of passages that command separation from all that wilfully teach and practice error, including Rev 18:4, “Come out of her, my people, that ye be not partakers of her sins, and that ye receive not of her plagues,” — are you actually loving God and thus your brethren? No (1 Jn 5:2-3).
4. If you say you love God and thus His children but aren’t concerned that your music might be offending a Thrice Holy God (and His children) who has commanded the singing of “psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody in your heart to the Lord” (Eph 5:19) and to love obedience to His Word greater than gold and to “hate every false way” (Ps 119:127-128), and to “Abhor that which is evil; cleave to that which is good” (Rom 12:9), and rejecting the fact that ALL so-called “Christian” contemporary music is entirely of the world, of the flesh and nothing about it is Biblical, not its lyrics, not its musicians, not its melody of syncopation, not its beat, not its attraction or adoration, not its flaunting sensual style, and that it altogether has a worldly, non-judgmental, anti-separatist, ecumenical and ungodly philosophy that is most definitely contrary to the sound apostolic doctrine and faith found in God’s Word (Rom 16:17), running in complete opposition to the holiness and godliness and righteousness of the grace of God (Ti 2:11-14), and thus not acknowledging at the same time God’s Word is clear that those who love the world do not have the love of the Father in them (1 Jn 2:15) and are actually the enemies of God (Jam 4:4) — are you actually loving God and thus your brethren? No (1 Jn 5:2-3).
5. If you say you love God and thus His children but aren’t concerned that the clothes you or your spouse wears might offend God (Gen 3:7-11, 21) and could be a stumbling block to men, and that non-gender distinctive clothing are an abomination to God (De 22:5) and not considering what you wear reflects the nature of your heart (“For as he thinketh in his heart, so is he” - Pr 23:7) and that the truly saved live after the Spirit and not after the flesh, for “the old man [flesh] is crucified with [Christ]” (Rom 6:6; Gal 2:20; 5:24) and so “they that are Christ's have crucified the flesh with the affections and lusts,” (Gal 5:24), and that dress relates to the gospel, in that the true grace of God that saves (Ti. 2:11) also “teaches us to deny ungodliness and worldly lusts,” and to “live soberly, righteously, and godly, in this present world;” so as to “purify unto [Christ] a peculiar people, zealous of good works” (Ti 2:11-14) and further relates to the gospel as to who God is (His holiness, righteousness) and how the gospel changes someone's life completely, fruit of true saving repentance, a new creature, old things passed away and all things are become new (2 Cor 5:17) and the believer's affections for God and love for Christ unto obedience & submission to Jesus Christ as Lord — are you actually loving God and thus your brethren? No (1 Jn 5:2-3).
6. If you say you love God and thus His children but don’t so much love Gods Word as to study it diligently and earnestly and to memorize it, as Gods Word commands (“The heart of the righteous studieth to answer” - Pr 15:28; “Study to show thyself approved unto God” - 2 Tim 2:15) so that one need not be an ashamed workman for God (2 Tim 2:15) — are you actually loving God and thus your brethren? No (1 Jn 5:2-3).
The Bible tells us to focus on all these things and much more, demonstrating the simple commandment of love towards the Lord Jesus Christ. It is evidence of true salvation. People that are truly saved will pursue obedience to God’s Word in all things. And it’s not grievous to them either (1 Jn 5:3). And by obeying Gods commandments, they can love the brethren in truth (1 Jn 5:2). That is Gods simple commandment of love (1 Jn 5:1-3; 2 Jn. 1:5-6).
What the professing Christian from EBMC/EMC is propagating is false and fables, fabricated out of sheer cloth, and what he believes is not the exception by any means but the general rule their and in “evangelical” churches today. But it’s got Satan’s fingerprint written all over it, who attacks Gods Word and the doctrines found therein, corrupting Gods truth and causing people to undermine absolute truth, sound doctrine and rebel against God and to believe in another Jesus and gospel and receive another spirit (2 Cor 11:4). He started it 6,000 years ago in the Garden when he whispered to Eve, “Yea hath God said?” (Gen 3) and he’s never stopped. He even tried to do the same with God the Son, but God refuted and rebuked him with His Word (Matt 4:1-11). He comes as an angel of light, as do his ministers, as ministers of righteousness (2 Cor 11:12-15),
The Bible commands separation from institutions such as EBMC/EMC that promote and propagate error and false teachings.
“Now I beseech you, brethren, mark them which cause divisions and offences contrary to the doctrine which ye have learned; and avoid them. For they that are such serve not our Lord Jesus Christ, but their own belly; and by good words and fair speeches deceive the hearts of the simple.” (Rom 16:17-18).
“For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but after their own lusts shall they heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears; And they shall turn away their ears from the truth, and shall be turned unto fables.” (2 Tim 4:3-4).