Wednesday, January 23, 2013

God as love

From the very beginning of his Oxford years Wesley had visualised God’s essential nature as love; a love displayed amongst the Persons of the Triune Godhead and to all creation. God’s desire for loving relationships then defines and shapes the expression of all the other divine attributes. Human beings, who are made in God’s image, are to be understood primarily in terms of love and relationships, both with God and neighbour. The divine-human interaction is, therefore, to be defined by love and relationship and not by an intellectual comprehension of doctrine. Nor is it to be expressed by conformity to divine laws imposed by a Sovereign God, through a series of decrees that are isolated from mercy and justice. In harmony with this conception, he consistently declared that the whole of the law and commandments can be summed up by the call to love God supremely and the neighbour as oneself. Furthermore, this requirement was also a promise, for God does not ask anything of us that we cannot implement by his grace.—Wesley as a Pastoral Theologian, pages 210-211

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