Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Love and Free Will

I wanted to share a quote that I read from William Barclay's commentary on the letters of John and Jude  in relation to 1 John 4:16, in which we learn that God is love:

Unless love is a free response it is not love. There can be no love which is not spontaneous love. Had God been only law He could have created a world in which men moved like automata, constantly obedient to the laws of the universe and of God because they had no more choice than a machine has. But, if God had made men like that, there would have been no possibility of a personal relationship between God and man. Love is of necessity the free choice and the free response of the heart; and, therefore, before men could love God in any real sense of the term, their will had to be free; and, therefore, God by a deliberate act of self limitation, had to endow men with free will that the very purpose of creation might be fulfilled.
The fact that God is love and wants us to love Him reveals to us the nature of free will. Man exercises that free will in choosing to love God will all their heart, mind and soul.