"…“God is love” … an essential attribute of God.
We do not know, and we may never know, what love is, but we can know how it manifests itself…[For example,] we see it showing itself as good will. Love wills the good of all and never wills arm or evil to any. “There is no fear in love; but perfect love casteth out fear.”
Fear is the painful emotion that arises at the thought that we may be harmed or made to suffer....The world is full of enemies and as long as we are subject to the possibility of harm from these enemies, fear is inevitable. The effort to conquer fear without removing the causes altogether futile. As long as we look for hope in the law of averages, as long as we must trust for survival to our ability to outthink or outmaneuver the enemy, we have every good reason to be afraid. And fear has torment. …to know that love is of God and to enter into the secret place leaning on [Him]-this and only this can cast our fear. God is love and God is sovereign. His love disposes Him to desire our everlasting welfare and His sovereignty enables Him to secure it…
Love is also an emotional identification. It considers nothing its own but gives all freely to the object of its affection…It is a strange and beautiful eccentricity of the free God that He has allowed His heart to be emotionally identified with men. Self-sufficient as He is, He wants our love and will not be satisfied until He gets it. Free as He is, He has let His heart be bound to forever.
..The Lord takes particular pleasure in His [people]. .. Earth is the place where the pleasures of love are mixed with pain, for sin is here, and hate and ill will. In such a world as ours love must sometimes suffer… [Yet] the causes of sorrow will finally be abolished...and the new race will enjoy forever a world of selfless, perfect love.
It is the nature of love that it cannot lie quiescent. It is active, creative and benign. …So it must be where love is, it must ever give to its own, whatever the cost.
The love of God is one of the great realities of the universe, a pillar upon which the hope of the world rests. But it is a personal, intimate thing, too. God does not love populations, He loves people. He loves not masses, but men and women. He loves us all with a mighty love that has no beginning and can have no end.
In Christian experience there is a highly satisfying love content that distinguishes it from all other religions and elevates it to heights far beyond even the purest and noblest philosophy. This love God is [not even]…a thing; it is God Himself…
…Christian joy is the heart’s harmonious response to the Lord’s song of love.”
- A. W. Tozer – The Knowledge of the Holy