Love that is not informed by and rooted in truth is not love at all. In fact, it could be hurtful, harmful and, as such, even hateful. At its core, I believe love is wanting and working for what is best for someone else. But when we seek to love someone, we are acting out of what we believe is best for them. It is common in the world today to say that love is simply giving someone what they want, but certainly this standard is flawed. If my child wants to eat candy all day I do not think anyone would say I was loving if I let him. Instead, I would be harming my child and failing to show love because I was acting on what my child wanted rather than the truth of what I know is good for him.
It is tempting to go the other way and say we love someone by giving them what we know is best for them. This presumes we do know what is best at all times which would take unlimited knowledge of the person and the situation. Too often people do things with the best of intentions that are actually harmful to others. We justify these things by saying we had good intentions, but good intentions only become good actions when they are based on truth.
Love must be informed by truth if it is to be truly loving. Only God knows what is best for us. His love is not limited by our feeble desires, but instead is rooted in the eternal truth he knows about the world (since he made it) and about us (since he made that too).
True love must be rooted in truth or it fails to be loving at all.
Tomorrow I will be writing on “Truth Expressed in Love.”
These thoughts come from a sermon I preached on Revelation 2:1-7 where the church in Ephesus is commended for how it endures in truth but strongly warned that it has lost love.