Love is a commitment of the will to the true good of another person. Of course, people who love each other usually do have strong feelings too, but you can have those feelings without having love. Love, let me repeat, is a commitment of the will to the true good of another person.
— J. Budziszewski, from How to Stay Christian in College, p. 100
So often people think that Christianity is only something soft, only a kind of gooey love that loves evil equally with good. This is not the biblical position. The holiness of God is to be exhibited simultaneously with love.
— Francis Schaeffer, from The Mark of the Christian, p. 175 (of The Great Evangelical Disaster)
The skeptic asks why God could not have made us to always choose good. Philosophers of note have raised this as the sharpest edge of their challenge to Christianity. But here, too, the challenge violates reason.
Alvin Plantinga of the University of Notre Dame, who is considered by many to be the most respected Protestant philosopher of our time, has made a strong and compelling argument against this challenge of the skeptic. He argues that this option bears a false view of what God’s omnipotence means. We must realize that God cannot do that which is mutually exclusive and logically impossible. God cannot make square circles. The terms are mutually exclusive. Continue reading
We must remember that the person to whom we are talking, however far from the Christian faith he may be, is an image-bearer of God. He has great value and our communication to him must be in genuine love. Love is not an easy thing; it is not just an emotional urge, but an attempt to move over and sit in the other person’s place and see how his problems look to him. Love is a genuine concern for the individual.
— Francis Schaeffer, from The God Who Is There, p. 120
The Christian notion of love may come perilously close to curing the disillusionments of commercialized romance.
— Os Guinness, from The Last Christian on Earth, kindle location 2123
True love, then, is “wrapped” in relationships, and whenever those relationships involve some level of authority and submission, the love of the Son for the Father, and of the Father for the Son, instruct us concerning just what love really is. Our sentimental notions of love need to be displaced with the real-life love shown us in this Father-Son relationship. No greater love exists than this love, and so no better model exists by which we may learn, and relearn, how love is rightly expressed. True love, more often than we think, is shown precisely in loving obedience or in loving authority. May we reflect deeply on the love relationship of the Father and the Son and allow this reality to reshape the love relationships of our lives.
— Bruce Ware, from Father, Son, and Holy Spirit: Relationships, Roles, and Relevance, kindle location 1418
Christian love, whether exercised toward the brethren, or toward men generally, is not an impulse from the feelings, it does not always run with the natural inclinations, nor does it spend itself only upon those for whom some affinity is discovered. Love seeks the welfare of all, Rom. 15: 2, and works no ill to any, 13: 8-10; love seeks opportunity to do good to ‘all men, and especially toward them that are of the household of the faith,’ Gal. 6:10.
— From Vine’s Complete Expository Dictionary of Old and New Testament Words
Love is not easy to define. The apostle Paul spent a whole chapter describing it. “Love is patient and kind; love is not jealous or boastful; it is not arrogant or rude. Love does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful; it does not rejoice at wrong, but rejoices in the right….” (1 Cor. 13:4-7 RSV). The last phrase is particularly helpful in defining love, Love is desiring (and doing) the good of the other.
— Norman Geisler, from The Christian Ethic of Love, p. 19
Love, in the Christian sense, does not mean an emotion. It is a state not of the feelings but of the will; that state of the will which we have naturally about ourselves, and must learn to have about other people.
— C. S. Lewis, from Mere Christianity
… remember what love is: not a feeling, not an emotion, not a state of romantic excitement, but a commitment of the will to the true good of the other person. Such commitments are sealed by promises; that’s what the marriage ceremony is about. The feelings are just gravy, and they may come and go.
— J. Budziszewski, from Ask Me Anything, p. 63