“Love is the one true innovation”
– Jon Foreman

My mom was one of 21 siblings, and my grandmother said that whenever a child was born, love was born with it. There was an inexhaustible supply; there was ALWAYS enough love no matter how big her family got.

In nature, if one wins, the other loses. Economists call this “zero sum”; when you add up the gains and losses of both sides, they add up to zero. Assuming no outside interference, the lion gains food and life at the expense of the gazelle it eats.

Those who think the physical world is all that is real would agree this is the way things are, along with its companion: cause and effect. Everything happens because something else already in existence caused it.

But choosing to love against our natural inclinations is different. Think about loving an enemy, or even those whom we have no expectation of getting loved back. That is unnatural in the most precise meaning of the word, something that would not happen if nature took its course.

When we choose to love thus we create an event without a cause. And love as a moral choice is evidence that the universe is not a closed system: to die for a stranger or to love an enemy is just plain unnatural. Love reaches in and disrupts the natural order.

Those who say the physical universe is all there is must ignore this moral potential. They would reduce it to a series of chemical reactions in our brains but can’t give a logically rigorous explanation as to why someone would sacrifice or love with no strings attached. They may insist it’s the “selfish gene” or some sort of evolutionary programming to propagate our species but it can’t be proven by experiment and at any rate begs the question.

And this is why Judeo-Christian thought states that God is love, and that alone out of all the creation stories, only Judeo-Christian thought asserts that God created “ex nihilo”, out of nothing.

Because love alone can create events without prior cause. It can create care for the unlovely, love for an enemy – or create a universe. God loves, and commands love. And He further demonstrates this love when He becomes man, dies for estranged mankind and resurrects, His final word on the defeat of sin.

The Bible nothing less than the story of God’s proactive love reaching down to create a good world and then to mend it after we fell.

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