Is God's Love Conditional?

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behappy
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Is God's Love Conditional?

Post by behappy » 05 Apr 2011, 10:57

http://classic.lds.org/ldsorg/v/index.j ... 82620aRCRD

I got this link from Rock Waterman's blog last night. It is a talk from Elder Nelson in 2003 where he says the teaching that God's love is unconditional is an "anti-Christ" teaching. He claims God's love to us is conditional.

Nelson, goes into great detail why he believes this. He quotes several scriptures to prove his point. But what about the scriptures he neglects? I can think of two examples The story of Johna and the Whale. Read Johna chapter 4 and tell me that the message is not God loves all his children no matter what?

The other scripture is one of the shining lights of Christianity. John 3:16 " For God so LOVED the world..."

I have always felt God's love even when I don't follow the commandments. My life experience has shown me that God Always loves me. The scriptures tell me that God loves me. So why is Nelson using God's love like this?

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cwald
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Re: Is God's Love Conditional?

Post by cwald » 05 Apr 2011, 11:51

I just read the link. The Mormon church sure has made a mess of the gospel, IMO.

I think it is possible to "offend" god. But when one says that they feel love even when they don't keep the commandments, I have to question what that means. Do you mean that you feel love when you break GOD'S commandments, or when you break the LDS church's commandments? They are not the same thing.

I find it very hard to "feel gods love" when I am angry, or bitter, or mean-spirited." I doubt I could "feel god's love" if I was out committing adultery, or physically and emotionally abusing my wife.

I find it VERY easy to "feel god's love" even when I don't do my HT, or my FHE, or if i drink a cup of tea, or miss unnecessary church meetings, or spend time cutting fire wood rather than go on the temple trip, or wear a blue shirt to church, or .............
  Jesus gave us the gospel, but Satan invented church. It takes serious evil to formalize faith into something tedious and then pile guilt on anyone who doesn't participate enthusiastically. - Robert Kirby

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RMsister
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Re: Is God's Love Conditional?

Post by RMsister » 05 Apr 2011, 12:12

Okay, well, I had this question as well when I strayed away from the church for a while. And I had a LOOOOOONG talk with my mum about it.
She has 5 children of her own, 1 stepchild and 2 foster children. So 8 altogether.
3 of those children betrayed her in a horrible way, claiming she abused them (which isn't true). 2 of those children ended up having a police record which included imprisonment. Did she stop loving any of them? No. She still loves all of her children.

So, does God stop loving us when we break His commandments? No.
I do not think God's love is conditional.

BUT, I wouldn't want to hang out with a bunch of people in any gang, or with like the queen. So maybe that gives a bit of a feeling about why there are different Kingdoms of Glory. I prefer that over the "Heaven or Hell" concept.

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Tom Haws
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Re: Is God's Love Conditional?

Post by Tom Haws » 05 Apr 2011, 13:09

Conditional? No. Elder Nelson made a grave error. God can't make a silk purse out of a sow's ear, but he can sure love the sow's ear.

Look at it this way. If God didn't love Hitler and Saddam Hussein, could God be happy? God simply has to be either unhappy all the time, deaf and blind, or filled with rejoicing continually in everybody's agency.
Tom (aka Justin Martyr/Justin Morning/Jacob Marley/Kupord Maizzed)
Higley and Guadalupe
Gilbert, Arizona
----
Sure, any religion would do. But I'm LDS.
"There are no academic issues. Everything is emotional to somebody." Ray Degraw at www.StayLDS.com

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mercyngrace
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Re: Is God's Love Conditional?

Post by mercyngrace » 05 Apr 2011, 13:09

If you go to lds.org and run a search, you'll find many talks that say God's love is unconditional. My feeling about Elder Nelson's talk has aways been that he was describing the manifestation of God's love - in other words, the blessings that come through obedience - rather than the feeling God has for His children.

You would be hard pressed to define as conditional the love described as "oustretched still" or compared to the maternal desire of a "hen who gathereth her chicks".

I think Elder Oaks clarified this concept in his more recent address called (iirc) "Love and Law".
Her sins, which are many, are forgiven; for she loved much: but to whom little is forgiven, the same loveth little. ~ Luke 7:47

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HiJolly
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Re: Is God's Love Conditional?

Post by HiJolly » 05 Apr 2011, 13:16

Elder Nelson was asked to write the article with a particular emphasis and so was approaching the subject with a point in mind. So it's not at all a balanced approach, and he says so (after the fact). It was not intended to be all encompasing, from his statement (which I can't find right now, darn it!)

Unconditional, overwhelming and universal love is an eternal attribute of God.


HiJolly
Men are not moved by events but by their interpretations.
-- The Stoic Epictetus

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mercyngrace
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Re: Is God's Love Conditional?

Post by mercyngrace » 05 Apr 2011, 13:24

HiJolly wrote:Elder Nelson was asked to write the article with a particular emphasis and so was approaching the subject with a point in mind. So it's not at all a balanced approach, and he says so (after the fact). It was not intended to be all encompasing, from his statement (which I can't find right now, darn it!)

Unconditional, overwhelming and universal love is an eternal attribute of God.


HiJolly
HiJolly!

If you find it, please post this! I've had discussions with so many people since he gave that talk who have misconstrued his words, applying them like modern day Zoramites to elevate themselves over their "wayard" brethren.

I would love to be able to provide this context and change the tone of those discussions.

MnG
Her sins, which are many, are forgiven; for she loved much: but to whom little is forgiven, the same loveth little. ~ Luke 7:47

behappy
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Re: Is God's Love Conditional?

Post by behappy » 05 Apr 2011, 13:37

HiJolly,

Can you explain what point he was asked to convey?

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Tom Haws
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Re: Is God's Love Conditional?

Post by Tom Haws » 05 Apr 2011, 14:39

HiJolly wrote:Elder Nelson was asked to write the article with a particular emphasis and so was approaching the subject with a point in mind. So it's not at all a balanced approach, and he says so (after the fact).
I thought I might address this in my post above. But I'll just say I agree with you, HiJolly, and amend my statement conjoined with yours to say he made, in my opinion, a strategic error by choosing to do what he did. Law of unintended consequences and all that, you know.
Tom (aka Justin Martyr/Justin Morning/Jacob Marley/Kupord Maizzed)
Higley and Guadalupe
Gilbert, Arizona
----
Sure, any religion would do. But I'm LDS.
"There are no academic issues. Everything is emotional to somebody." Ray Degraw at www.StayLDS.com

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HiJolly
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Re: Is God's Love Conditional?

Post by HiJolly » 05 Apr 2011, 14:42

behappy wrote:HiJolly,

Can you explain what point he was asked to convey?
That there is no blessing from God for sin. Some people seem to equate love with giving goodies.


HiJolly
Men are not moved by events but by their interpretations.
-- The Stoic Epictetus

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