The Law of Love

Works of the law (which do not and did never attain righteousness) before conversion (Romans 3:28, Galatians 2:16) should not be confused with works out of the (Law of the) Holy Spirit (Which do attain a second justification, James 2:24 | Read also: Ephesians 2:10, Colossians 1:10, 2 Thessalonians 2:17, Galatians 5:22, Galatians 5:6, 1 Thessalonians 1:3).
Paul is preaching against work-righteousness by keeping the Law (which is impossible). James is preaching that true believers must walk in the Law of the Holy Spirit/The Law of Love (read the bottom of the page).

The liberating law (James 1:25): "But there are those who study the perfect law, the law of freedom, and continue to do it. They don’t listen and then forget, but they put it into practice in their lives. They will be blessed in whatever they do." (CEB)

The liberating law of love can be summarized in

Jesus said: "You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your mind, and with all your strength.’ This is the first commandment. And the second, like it, is this: ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ There is no other commandment greater than these.” (Mark 12:30-31, NKJV, emphasis mine).

This is fulfilled by putting your focus on obeying Jesus through the Holy Spirit.

As it is written in Galatians 5:22a-23b:
But the fruit of the Spirit is love […] against such there is no law.

Harry Conn wrote:

     The Spirit of The Law

“The spirit of the law is the reason or motive for keeping the law, the principle or purpose behind it.  The ultimate spirit of the law is love, which comes from a pure heart, a good conscience and a sincere faith ( 1 Timothy 1:5).  The letter of the law is its literal meaning without regard to the motive or principle behind it.  This deals with the outward keeping of the law.  The letter of the law may change, but the spirit behind it is immutable (absolute and unchangeable).  It is possible to break the letter of the law without breaking the spirit of the law (Matthew 12:1-5, 10-13) and it is also possible to keep the letter of the law and yet break the sprit of the law. (Matthew 5:28; 6:2,5; 23:23; Romans 2:27)

True obedience to the law is not simply outward (keeping of the letter of the law) but comes from within, from the motive or reason behind the outward act. (Matthew 23:27, 28; Romans 2:29; 7:6: II Corinthians 3:6)”

Source: Harry Conn, Four Trojan Horses, (Parson Publishing), p106.

“It it clear that even many Christians do not understand the simplicity of what God requires from man.  It’s first impress is written on the heart of every man coming into the word.  The second impress was at Sinai from the voice of God.  An since the life, teaching and atonement of Christ we are finally brought back to one word – Love (benevolence, the spirit of the law).

“For this, Thou shalt not commit adultery, Thou shalt not kill, Thou shalt not steal, Thou shalt not bear false witness, Thou shalt not covet; and if there be any other commandment, it is briefly comprehended in this saying, namely, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself.  Love worketh no ill to his neighbour: therefore love is the fulfilling of the law. (Rom 13:9-10 KJV)”

Source: W Scott Taylor, IdeoAmnosTouTheo

Read also “Sola Fide” for the extend version of the second justification after conversion.

Read also “Love is Obedience” and “Living What We Believe” by William Birch.


The following list might help:

John 14:15
“If you love Me, you will keep My commandments.”

1 John 5:3
“For this is the love of God, that we keep His commandments; and His commandments are not burdensome.”

Matthew 7:12
“In everything, therefore, treat people the same way you want them to treat you, for this is the Law and the Prophets.”

Romans 13:8-10
“Owe nothing to anyone except to love one another; for he who loves his neighbor has fulfilled the law. For this, “You shall not commit adultery, You shall not murder, You shall not steal, You shall not covet,” and if there is any other commandment, it is summed up in this saying, “You shall love your neighbor as yourself.” Love does no wrong to a neighbor; therefore love is the fulfillment of the law.”

Galatians 5:14
“For the whole Law is fulfilled in one word, in the statement, “You shall love your neighbor as yourself.””

Galatians 6:2
“Bear one another’s burdens, and thereby fulfill the law of Christ.”

James 2:8-13
“If, however, you are fulfilling the royal law according to the Scripture, “You shall love your neighbor as yourself,” you are doing well. But if you show partiality, you are committing sin and are convicted by the law as transgressors. For whoever keeps the whole law and yet stumbles in one point, he has become guilty of all. For He who said, “DO not commit adultery,” also said, “DO not commit murder.” Now if you do not commit adultery, but do commit murder, you have become a transgressor of the law. So speak and so act as those who are to be judged by the law of liberty. For judgment will be merciless to one who has shown no mercy; mercy triumphs over judgment.”

Romans 15:1-6
“Now we who are strong ought to bear the weaknesses of those without strength and not just please ourselves. Each of us is to please his neighbor for his good, to his edification. For even Christ did not please Himself; but as it is written, “The reproaches of those who reproached You fell on Me.” For whatever was written in earlier times was written for our instruction, so that through perseverance and the encouragement of the Scriptures we might have hope. Now may the God who gives perseverance and encouragement grant you to be of the same mind with one another according to Christ Jesus, so that with one accord you may with one voice glorify the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ.”

Romans 15:13
“Now may the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, so that you will abound in hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.”’

Source: “Love Fullfills The Law”, theidolbabbler (removed emphasis in Romans 15:1-6). All Scripture passages quoted by ‘theidolbabbler’ are quoted from the NASB (New American Standard Bible). New American Standard Bible Copyright © 1960, 1962, 1963, 1968, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1975, 1977, 1995 by The Lockman Foundation, La Habra, Calif.

Picture source “The Royal Law of Love”: amazonaws
Picture source “The Law of Love”: creationswap


6 thoughts on “The Law of Love

  1. I cannot understand why anyone talks about law and love in the same breath.

    Spirit is Life. Spirit is Love. The principle of the Spirit of Life is Love. What more, then, is needed?

    Love has to do with self-compulsion. Law has to do with external compulsion, force. Love is a state wherein all is in stasis, there is order and control. There is need for law to bring about order and control. Its irrational then to speak in terms of a “Law of Love”. Law has to do with force of control and force of punishment. Love has to do with self-control and reward from self-control. Law has to do with where there is incompleteness, insufficiency, and behaviour that is found wanting, a behaviour resulting from lack of fulfilment and needing to be brought under control by another. Whereas love has to do with where there is completeness, sufficiency, and behaviour that is from fulfilment, a behaviour that is under its own control. There is no need for law where there is love BECAUSE there is nothing lacking…

    Where there is love there’s no law, for where there is love there is no need for law.


        Brian o’Herts November 5, 2019
        This is a brief study of John 13:34-35 and 14:15-24, using notations in brackets.
        John 13:34-35 NIV
        34 “A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you [as in laying down his life for them], so you must love one another [i.e. lay down their life for one another as Jesus lay down his life for them].
        35 By this [laying down their life for one another as Jesus had for them] everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.”
        John 14:15-22 NIV
        15 “If you love me, you will keep [guard, from Greek téros to guard] my commandments [injunctions from the Greek ‘entellomai’ meaning to enjoin, to charge or command, with their end purpose envisioned.* And that included laying down their life for one another.]
        * Paul uses the same word when describing the things he writes as being “the commandments of Christ” see 1Cor 14:37.
        16 And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Advocate, to be with you forever. [Jesus would petition God to be present with his disciples until the end of the Jewish world. Before he ascended Jesus evidenced his request was granted—see Matthew 28:20 ]
        17 This is the Spirit of truth, whom the world [i.e. of Israel] cannot receive, because it neither sees him [figuratively see, as seeing the unseen] nor knows him. You know him, because he abides with you [via Spirit of God], and he will be in you [special “fullness” –powers—of Spirit of God].
        18“ I will not leave you orphaned; I am coming to you. [Jesus was coming back in the presence of Spirit of God.].
        19 In a little while the world [i.e. of Israel] will no longer see me [i.e. in the flesh], but you will see me; [i.e. in the Spirit. They would “see” as seeing the unseen, as discerning the special presence of Jesus via Spirit of God] because I live [that is, have new covenant creation life], you also will live [also have new covenant creation life] .
        20 On that day [i.e. Last Day of the world of the Jews] you will know that I am in my Father, and you in me, and I in you [“know” as a body, by virtue of fullness—powers–of Spirit of God].
        21 They who have [hold] my commandments [see v. 14] and keep them [guard them] are those who love me [from Greek agapōn to love]; and those who love me will be loved by my Father, and I will love them and reveal [manifest] myself to them [via Spirit of God].”
        22 Judas (not Iscariot) said to him, “Lord, how is it that you will reveal yourself to us, and not to the world [world of the Jews]?”
        23 Jesus answered him, “Those who love me will keep [guard] my word [see v 15], and my Father will love them, and we will come to them and make our home with them [figurative imagery for special indwelling presence of Spirit of God].
        24 Whoever does not love me does not keep [guard] my words [see v 15]; and the word [see v 15] that you hear is not mine but is from the Father who sent me.
        Concluding thoughts:
        The “keeping” of Jesus’ “commandments” had nothing to do with the OT “ten commandments” The “ten commandments” or Decalogue was an old covenant treaty between God and the nation Israel at Sinai. Rather it had to do with Jesus’ sayings and instructions which Jesus charged his new covenant disciples with as their new covenant Teacher or Rabbi.
        In any case, one did not “keep” a list of offences, which is what the “ten commandments” were. Today, nobody keeps a list of criminal offences, either. We have nothing to do with the law which Israel was associated. We have nothing to do with law today with which we are associated–secular law.
        We have nothing to do with any law all the while we are treating each other with kindness, dignity and respect (“loving one another”). Law is for criminals, and criminals. Criminals fall “under law” when they commit offences that are proscribed by criminal law. They are then prosecuted (tried and punished) by the criminal justice system where they live. To them “the law comes knocking.” It was the same in Ancient Israel.
        So in Jesus’ day “keeping” his “commandments” was taking responsibility as one of his disciple, to live according to what he had charged you with (e.g. to love as he had loved you).
        What this study in John 14 also brings out, is that there is only one Spirit of God, whether it be that of the Father, or that of the Son, or that of the disciples (as a body or as individuals).


      2. Your word study is fine I think. We are indeed not under the law IF we walk in the Holy Spirit (see Romans 8). We are still to keep His commandments to remain in His love (John 15). Even if you do not want to see the Decalogue in there, then it will still refer to the Decalogue for the Decalogue is perfectly obeyed if the love for the neighbour is perfect. “On this hang the Law and the prophets.”


  2. SMH. Ridiculous. You totally missed the point. What you quoted has nothing to do with what I am talking about. Its taking Jesus’ words entirely out of context.

    Jesus was a teacher in Israel and taught his deisciples just as any teacher at the time would do. The teachings of a teacher (Rabbi) were observed by his followers as a demonstration of allegiance to their master. Jesus was stating to his disciples that if they loved him (had loving reverence and respect for him) they will witness it by observing his teachings and instructions. In what today is archaic language instructions is wrongly translated as “commandments”, and of course whenever a teacher of law, as you apparently are, see the word ‘commandment’ the 10 commandments come up in neon lights before the eyes of their imagination. Stop twisting scripture to fit your preconceived ideas and pay attention to context.


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