Class Notes: 8/11/2010
God's perfect spiritual self esteem was the source of his motivation for virtue love
In our continuing study of the doctrine of love, we are discussing God's love as a model for the believer's virtue love.
We saw that the divine attribute of love is always linked to God's holiness that is composed of his justice and righteousness, and never functions apart from it. Divine love can never be divorced from God's perfect standard.
God's impersonal love provides the basis for the solution to the problem of spiritual death. He sent God the Son to the world to provide salvation.
John 3:16; God "loved the world" that is spiritually dead. So God's impersonal love is directed toward unworthy creatures who have no holiness, virtue, or integrity.
When man became spiritually dead, there was no way God who is perfect could personally love him in spiritual death, but He could impersonally love mankind from the virtue of his perfect spiritual self-esteem.
Since God does not change He has impersonal love toward all creatures. Because all three Members of the Godhead have perfect virtue, integrity and are immutable, we have this perfect, stabilized structure of love.
Only after man believes in Christ and receives the imputation of God's perfect righteousness can God love him personally. But before man can even be offered salvation, God must love him impersonally because his impersonal love is His motivation to provide what is necessary for salvation.
This impersonal love is demonstrated by the fact that "God so loved the world" that was in spiritual death.
As we have seen, impersonal love is based on the virtue in the subject so God does not love anyone personally until after they believe in Christ and receive the imputation of the perfect righteousness of God the Father that provides capacity for His personal love.
God the Father loves both the Son and the Spirit with a perfect, infinite, and eternal love because they both possess perfect righteousness. God the Father also loves His own perfect righteousness, which is the pattern for spiritual self-esteem; this also true of the Son and the Holy Spirit. This personal love is the pattern for spiritual self- esteem.
God the Son has perfect self-esteem in loving His own perfect righteousness, and also personal love for the perfect Father. That personal love for God the Father became the Son's motivation for coming into the world to fulfill of the Father's plan. He was willing and He was obedient.
As God, Jesus Christ possesses perfect and eternal righteousness plus perfect and eternal love and self-esteem. This combination means that Jesus Christ as God resolved all problems from His deity and willingly set aside the prerogatives of his deity during his incarnation. Phil 2:5;
The motivation of God the Father was impersonal love toward the entire human race, such that "He gave His uniquely-born Son."
God's impersonal love for all mankind in the state of spiritual death and in a state of total depravity, is demonstrated in his sending of God the Son into the world as Savior, John 3:16; Rom 5:8.
1John 4:10, "By this virtue-love exists, not because we have loved God, but because He loved us (impersonal love), and He sent His Son to be a propitiation for our sins."
The motivation of God the Son was personal love for the Father that resulted in his obedience to His plan, so that He willingly came into the world. It was not until Jesus Christ arrived at the cross and was judged for our sins that we see the dynamics of His impersonal love for all. He was judged for the sins of the entire human race that was a totally unworthy object.
Since his first advent via the virgin birth, and the incarnation, Jesus Christ is also true humanity and undiminished deity, in the Hypostatic Union. The humanity of Christ was given a prototype spiritual life. He was filled with the Spirit from birth, and continued to reside in the spiritual life during His First Advent, Heb 12:2; Phil 2:5-9.
Our Lord had perfect spiritual self-esteem, spiritual autonomy and spiritual maturity from metabolized doctrine. He never lost His poise or His sense of destiny during the First Advent. He was motivated by perfect personal love for God the Father and for His plan.
He was therefore motivated to go to the cross and bear our sins, 1Pet 2:24;
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