1 John 4:8

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He that loveth not knoweth not God; for God is love. (ASV)

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Pro

1 John 4:8 "God is Love".

1 Corinthians 13:4 "Love envieth not", i.e. "Love is not jealous".

Exodus 20:5 "I Jehovah thy God am a jealous God".

...Ergo, the Biblical God logically cannot exist. --Robert Stevens 06:33, 5 Apr 2006 (CDT)

Response to Con piece: The context of Exodus 20 makes it clear that the "jealousy" being referred to is YHWH's jealousy of other gods (or the worship thereof): it is part of the First Commandment. "Thou shalt have no other gods before me. Thou shalt not make unto thee a graven image, nor any likeness [of any thing] that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth. Thou shalt not bow down thyself unto them, nor serve them, for I Jehovah thy God am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children, upon the third and upon the fourth generation of them that hate me". So intense was this jealousy that Moses (presumably on YHWH's behalf) ordered a massacre of those who worshipped the Golden Calf (the symbol of El, the previous chief deity). --Robert Stevens 03:43, 15 Jan 2008 (CST)

2nd Response to Con piece: "God was jealous for His people and sought to protect them by removing those who would lead them to worship false gods who did not exist and could not take care of them. God’s love for His people is such that He will protect them from that which will harm them" - "that which will harm them" is God himself, as the Bible clearly states. Con is still trying to redefine the meaning of the word "jealous" (as "concerned", maybe?), and is continuing to ignore the context: a "loving" God would not order a massacre, nor would he punish generations as yet unborn in a fit of jealous pique. --Robert Stevens 08:26, 28 Jan 2008 (CST)

3rd response to Con piece: Con is now presenting a series of flawed analogies to supposedly illustrate the nature of "love", while continuing to ignore the issue of the source of the danger that the "loved" faces. In Con's analogies (corrected), God is also the motorist who will kill the child who runs out into the street (except that this will be a deliberate act), and God is the jealous husband who will beat up his wife if she strays. This second analogy is especially appropriate, because the jealous wife-beater does perhaps "love" his wife, in a twisted sense: he doesn't want to lose her. But Paul is saying that this jealous, twisted "love" isn't true love. And, incidentally, some jealous husbands have been known to vent their wrath on the kids too: just as God declares that he will do. The notion that such a monster will "lovingly" massacre those who reject him (and punish their children too) is an absurdity that most of us wouldn't accept in the case of a human wife-beater: the impasse that we seem to have reached here is that Con is apparently prepared to accept a God who is like this. --Robert Stevens 10:01, 29 Jan 2008 (CST)

Con

PRO fails to acknowledge that their are two unique and opposing definitions for the term, “jealous.” To reach his conclusion, PRO presumes that one definition that leads to his conclusion he seeks while ignoring the alternative definition that does not lead to the conclusion he seeks.

The term, jealous can refer to (1) an attitude or disposition where a person is envious of another person or (2) a zealous vigilance and concern for someone or something.

Thus, the term, jealous, can be used in the sense of being “jealous OF,” or “jealous FOR.” The person who is jealous OF another is one who fears and hates something about another person because that person has something he does not. This is the sense of 1 Corinthians 13:4 where we find that Love is not jealous in the sense of being envious. That same word, in the positive refers to a zeal for another. God can have a zeal, or be jealous, FOR Israel and thereby seek its well-being.

PRO also fails to understanding the distinction between love and jealousy and this can lead to the erroneous conclusion that they are the same. This is not the case, especially as these words are used in the Bible.

1 John 4:8 tells us that God is love. In the context in which this verse appears, we are told, “…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.” (v-7-8). The Biblical position is that people who love are born of God because God is love.

Later, we read, “…this is love,…[God] loved us and sent His Son to be the propitiation for our sins.” (v10) Here we find that love is an action expressed by a person in meeting the needs of others.

Additionally, “There is no fear in love; but perfect love casts out fear…” (v18), and “…If someone says, “I love God,” and hates his brother, he is a liar…” (v20). Here, love is contrasted with fear and hate. To say that God is love is to say that God fears no one and God hates no one. Thus, God does not react to the person but acts according to that which He is.

God is described as being a God of love who is jealous FOR Israel, and is, therefore, concerned for its welfare. God is not envious OF Israel or anything that Israel is or has. There is nothing illogical about a God of love who cares for others but is not jealous of them.

We see how God’s jealousy for His people plays out when we read of the incident of the golden calf when Israel was in the wilderness. We read of the massacre of those who worshiped (or led the people to worship) the golden calf. God was jealous for His people and sought to protect them by removing those who would lead them to worship false gods who did not exist and could not take care of them. God’s love for His people is such that He will protect them from that which will harm them.

PRO objects that a loving God would not punish those who do wrong. PRO does not explain how punishment is incompatible with love. Even a "loving" parent will punish a child who runs out into the street when told not to do so for the purpose of protecting the child. Isn't that punishment an expression of love? Love is not jealous of others but does that mean that love cannot be jealous for others and seek their good? If a person can be jealous for others, can that carry with it actions favoring one person over another? For example, if a person is jealous for his wife, should be not be able to punish a person he finds mistreating her? PRO seems to have a very simplistic view of love (but we do not know what he means by that term) and wants to force this one view onto God but cannot explain why his view of love should be God's view of love. If PRO is going to use the Biblical definition for "Love" that we find in 1 Corinthians 13, then he needs to allow for this love to be that which 1 Corinthians defines it to be. Can love take action against those who do not love and seek to harm others? 1 Corinthians allows love to protect others while PRO seems to argue that love should ignore the needs of others.

Neutral

With regard to PRO's comment--

"3rd response to Con piece: Con is now presenting a series of flawed analogies to supposedly illustrate the nature of "love", while continuing to ignore the issue of the source of the danger that the "loved" faces. In Con's analogies (corrected), God is also the motorist who will kill the child who runs out into the street (except that this will be a deliberate act), and God is the jealous husband who will beat up his wife if she strays. This second analogy is especially appropriate, because the jealous wife-beater does perhaps "love" his wife, in a twisted sense: he doesn't want to lose her. But Paul is saying that this jealous, twisted "love" isn't true love. And, incidentally, some jealous husbands have been known to vent their wrath on the kids too: just as God declares that he will do. The notion that such a monster will "lovingly" massacre those who reject him (and punish their children too) is an absurdity that most of us wouldn't accept in the case of a human wife-beater: the impasse that we seem to have reached here is that Con is apparently prepared to accept a God who is like this. --Robert Stevens 10:01, 29 Jan 2008 (CST)"

PRO needs to--

1. Explain how God must be "...the motorist who will kill the child who runs out into the street." It is not readily apparent how this follows.

2. How the analogy of a man attacking the rapist becomes "the jealous wife-beater [who] does perhaps "love" his wife, in a twisted sense" is incomprehensible. Some explanation has to be given to show the reader how PRO arrives at this conclusion.

PRO has taken a course of argument that bears no relation to that which has preceded and does not logically follow from what has preceded.

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