“St. John’s saying that God is love has long been balanced in my mind against the remark of M. Dennis de Rougemont that “love ceases to be a demon only when he ceases to be a God”; which of course can be restated in the form “begins to be a demon the moment he begins to be a god.” This balance seems to me to be an indispensable safeguard. If we ignore it, the truth that ‘God is love’ may slyly come to mean for us the converse, that love is God. I suppose that everyone who has thought about the matter will see what Mr. De Rougemont meant.

Every human love has a tendency to claim for itself divine authority. Its voice tends to sound as if it were the will of God himself. It tells us not to count the cost, it demands of us a total commitment, it attempts to override all other claims and insinuates that any action which is sincerely done “for love’s sake” is thereby lawful and meritorious. ” – C. S. Lewis, The Four Loves

This one shed a lot of light on issues that had been presented to me in the past as being “God’s will” because they were “loving” and therefore “obviously of God” but which I had questioned. And you were right of course, Shawn: what we generally mean when we say the word ‘love’ is usually either ‘storge’, ‘phileo’ or ‘eros’, not ‘Agape’ (the type of love which is  an unconditional and unselfish caring for another). It seems to me that Mr. Rougemont’s point can be applied to other elements associated with God as well, such as truth, and beauty to name a few.

It appears that while God is love, truth, and beauty (among others); and these things are good and of God, these things in and of themselves are not big enough to be gods in their own right and should not be taken as such. Take for instance truth; sometimes it is the right thing to tell the truth as opposed to not, and other times it is the right thing to omit the truth because it would not truly be helpful in the given situation and perhaps cause more damage than good. These godly attributes must all in the end be subject to God (who is the greater, because He alone can encompass these attributes of Himself and not vice-versa), who uses and perfectly combines all of these elements to bring about perfection in every situation.

Agape – Unconditional Love
Charity (agapē, ἀγάπη) is the love that brings forth caring regardless of circumstance. Lewis recognizes this as the greatest of loves, and sees it as a specifically Christian virtue. (- The Four Loves, Wikipedia)


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