“Love is love” has become a rallying cry for the acceptance and celebration of various non-traditional relationships, including same-sex relationships, in today’s culture. However, it is essential that we engage this argument critically and assess its compatibility with reality. This article seeks to provide a comprehensive biblical analysis of the “love is love” argument, addressing the logical contradictions and exploring the significance of God’s commandments in understanding genuine love.

By examining the inherent subjectivity and relativism of this slogan, we will discover the fundamental significance of establishing love within moral boundaries and seeking guidance from God’s objective moral law. This analysis will highlight the biblical reasons why the concept of “love is love” does not align with biblical perspectives. In a world where cultural narratives frequently conflict with biblical truth, and where it has now reached a point where it is “forced” upon us, it is essential for Christians to deepen their understanding of love and engage in thoughtful dialogue that is firmly rooted in the timeless wisdom of God’s Word. Thus, we will be able to navigate these complex issues with clarity, compassion, and a commitment to applying biblical principles.

The Boundaries of Genuine Love: Understanding the Classical Perspective

To understand love properly, we must recognize that true love operates within the confines of moral boundaries. Love is not a license to act in any manner one desires, disregarding fidelity, respect, and moral responsibility. Genuine love seeks the well-being of the other person and is rooted in moral laws that promote healthy relationships and human flourishing.

Love within Moral Boundaries

Consider the Ten Commandments, which serve as a comprehensive moral framework that encapsulates God’s entire moral will for humanity. They provide a foundation upon which all other moral commands in the Bible are built. The breadth of the commandments covers every aspect of life, guiding us in living uprightly and morally. For instance, issues like sexuality, racism, hatred, and the value of human life find their basis in the commandments. The commandments teach us to love our neighbours as ourselves, promoting justice, equality, and respect for all people, regardless of their race or ethnicity.

The Loving Spirit of God’s Laws

The laws of God are not only an expression of His own character and will. They have a loving spirit. Laws are not given to restrict our freedom but to direct it. God is not trying to put us in bondage but to set us free, free to fulfil our God-given potential. They are loving counsels given for our highest good.

When we align ourselves with God’s laws, we experience harmony and fulfilment. However, when we disregard or rebel against God’s laws, we experience the consequences of our choices.  God’s laws provide us with guidance and boundaries, not to restrict us, but to protect us. Just as a loving parent sets rules for their child’s safety and well-being, God, in His infinite love, has given us His laws as a loving framework for us to thrive.

Recognizing the Limits of Human Wisdom

The biggest problem we have with a person purporting moral relativism and subjective values, is how human wisdom is overstated. It presumes that we have the wisdom to know what is best in any given situation, when in truth even medical science cannot predict outcomes.

God’s intention in giving us his laws is not to restrict us with legalistic rules or to grant us unlimited freedom without boundaries. Rather, his purpose is to provide a framework of moral guidance that promotes true liberty.  On the other hand, indulging in sinful behaviour without restraint is an abuse of liberty.

God’s Laws: Facilitating True Liberty, Guarding against Licentiousness 

This licentiousness or disregard for moral boundaries in the name of “love” leads to harmful consequences and undermines the well-being of individuals and society.

Let’s compare moral boundaries and God’s love to a fence around a beautiful garden. Pests and roaming animals are kept out by the fence. Plants can grow and bear fruit in the fenced area.

Likewise, God’s laws serve as moral boundaries in our lives. They provide guidance and protection by defining what is right and wrong. Just as the garden thrives within the boundaries of God’s moral principles, we can experience true freedom and fulfilment when we live within the boundaries of God’s moral principles.

Imagine if the fence were removed and there were no boundaries. The garden would be vulnerable to destruction, invaded by harmful elements, and unable to flourish. In the same way, when we disregard God’s moral boundaries, we open ourselves up to the negative consequences of sin and selfishness.

These moral boundaries are inextricably linked to God’s love. He creates them out of love for us, wanting our happiness and flourishing. His laws are not meant to limit us arbitrarily, but rather to guide us toward a life of true freedom and purpose.

We experience the transformative power of God’s love in our lives when we recognise and embrace the importance of moral boundaries. His love gives us the ability to make decisions that benefit both our own well-being and the well-being of others. It enables us to live with integrity, compassion, and respect.

“Love is love” fails to understand true love. Love is governed by morality and shapes healthy relationships. Trying to reconcile homosexuality with morality creates logical inconsistencies. Love requires compassion and care for all, but it does not condone morally wrong actions. Christians are called to navigate love and sexuality with wisdom, guided by biblical teachings and a genuine desire to see people flourish in God’s design.

Subjectivity and Relativism: Unraveling the Pitfalls of the LGBTQ+ “Love is Love” Narrative

The biblical view of gender identity and sexual orientation offers a more objective understanding compared to relativistic perspectives. The Bible provides clear guidance on the binary nature of gender—male and female—and the importance of heterosexual marriage within moral boundaries. This objective stance is rooted in God’s design and aligns with logical coherence, contrasting the subjective and inconsistent nature of relativism.

One way to grasp the concept of objective morality is through a moral illustration. Consider the act of stealing. Objectively, stealing is universally recognized as morally wrong. It is not subject to personal interpretation or cultural relativism. Whether someone believes stealing is right or wrong, the objective moral standard remains unchanged. This objective truth serves as a guide for individuals and societies to uphold justice and maintain order.

Similarly, the biblical perspective on gender identity and sexual orientation provides an objective moral framework. It acknowledges that God intentionally created humanity as male and female, establishing a clear distinction in gender roles and relationships. This objective understanding reflects God’s design and purpose for human flourishing.

Inherent Contradictions of Relativistic Views

Relativism, on the other hand, undermines the notion of objective morality by suggesting that gender and sexual orientation are subjective and can be defined individually or culturally. However, this relativistic view lacks logical coherence and leads to inherent contradictions. If every individual can define their own gender identity or sexual orientation based on personal preference, it becomes challenging to establish consistent norms or ethical guidelines.

For instance, if someone claims that their gender identity is fluid and can change from day to day, it raises questions about stability, reliability, and even legal and social implications. How can society function cohesively if gender is in constant flux, with no objective standards or expectations? It becomes increasingly challenging to address practical matters such as legal rights, access to facilities, or even personal interactions.

Relativism’s Impact on Society and Coherence

Relativism is the dry rot of modern civilization. Its damage is subtle at first, but if ignored, it quickly weakens an entire structure. A society devoid of absolutes is a miserable place to live.

Ask a friend who supports homosexual marriage if he or she supports polygamy. Would they agree to a marriage between one man and three women? What about one woman and several men? If they love each other, shouldn’t they be treated equally under the law? If your friend is against polygamous marriage, you should find out why. What moral code supports their viewpoint?

If the ethical foundation for societal laws is democratic or subjective, then everything is up for grabs. Murder, theft, vandalism, fraud, and even polygamy could be put to a vote. There would be no basis to challenge these policies once they have been democratically approved. Of course, there will always be some standard of law, but the question is, “Whose standard?”, “Who decides that standard?” Do we trust majorities to set these standards? Do we trust the inclusion coach who uses the sexual harassment narrative in the workplace, as a opportunity to to advance their LGBTQ+ agenda?

The Biblical Objective View

In contrast, the biblical perspective on gender identity and sexual orientation offers an objective foundation. It recognises that objective truths exist beyond personal feelings or societal constructs. The Bible’s teachings emphasize the significance of the complementary nature of male and female, both in terms of gender identity and the context of intimate relationships within the confines of marriage.

The objective nature of the biblical view on gender identity and sexual orientation provides a solid moral foundation. It ensures consistency, coherence, and societal order, which relativism fails to achieve. By recognizing the binary nature of gender and adhering to the moral boundaries established by God, individuals can navigate these complex aspects of gender dysphoria or gender questioning with the hard truth, trusted science and genuine love.

Moral Foundation and Achieving Societal Order

In light of the moral illustration, it becomes evident that the influence of ideologies like the LGBTQ+ narrative extends beyond personal beliefs and affects various aspects of our lives, including the workplace and the education of our impressionable children. One area where this influence is particularly significant is in the realm of sex education. The question arises: Who has the authority to shape the values and teachings that our children receive in this crucial area?

Sex education is a privilege that should primarily be entrusted to parents who hold the responsibility for imparting moral guidance and instilling values in their children. However, the prevailing ethos of the LGBTQ activists -in the name of tolerance and inclusivity often undermines this parental authority and places it in the hands of external entities, such as educators and curriculum developers, who may subscribe to a different moral framework.

The consequences of this shift in authority can be far-reaching. When the teaching of sex education is divorced from an objective moral standard, it becomes susceptible to subjective interpretations and ideologies that may contradict the moral principles upheld by still the majority of families. This can lead to confusion, moral relativism, and the promotion of behaviours that are contrary to the biblical view of gender identity and sexual orientation.

Moreover, the impact on our professional lives cannot be overlooked. In the workplace, the pressure to conform to politically correct narratives can stifle freedom of expression and religious beliefs. Individuals who hold traditional views on gender identity and sexual orientation may face discrimination, exclusion, or even jeopardize their careers for voicing their perspectives. This intolerance and bigotry towards those who uphold biblical values highlights the need to recognize and protect the right to express diverse opinions without fear of retribution or marginalization.

The prevailing ideologies in society should not supersede the authority of God word, in shaping the values and teachings that impact our lives and children. Just as stealing remains objectively wrong regardless of personal beliefs, the gender identity and sexual orientation offers an objective standard, and this is rooted in God’s word and purpose. Embracing this perspective allows individuals and society to uphold moral integrity, maintain healthy relationships, and experience true human flourishing. It is crucial to recognize the significance of moral boundaries, especially in areas such as sex education, and ensure that our children receive teachings that align with our deeply held beliefs and values.

“Love is not Love” God is Love

Another logical contradiction in the “love is love” ideology is that it implies that love is self-defining, that it cannot be qualified and simply is. This would make love self-existent and foundational, as in “Love is what it is, and you cannot question it.” Love is unquestionably a primal and powerful reality. But it is not self-defining. Biblically speaking there is only one word that can be repeated with “is” in the middle – God.  Only He is self-defining, self-existent, unqualified, and beyond questioning.

To tell the Israelites who sent him, Moses asked God to identify himself. “What shall I say to the people of Israel if I come to them and say, ‘The God of your fathers has sent me to you,’ and they ask me, ‘What is his name?’”  (Exodus 3:13) Remember God’s response? “I am who I am,” God told Moses. He said, “Say this to the people of Israel: ‘I am has sent me to you’.” Exodus 3:14.  God uses phraseology similar to “love is love” to reveal his name, his character and power, to Moses.  Why?

God’s Self-Existence vs. Love’s Dependency

Because unlike love, God is self-existent.  As eternal creator he is not derived.  He is not downstream from something else.  He exists independently from all other beings or causes. He is the original cause, the one to whom everyone and everything owes its existence – including love. Therefore everyone and everything is subject to God and defined by God.

“God is God” is true because God is the independent, eternal creator and sovereign ruler of all things.  “Love is love” is untrue because love is dependent, derivative, and secondary.  Love must be defined.  And only God, as creator, has the right to do so.  Therefore, anyone who believes “in the beginning God created the heavens and the earth” (Gen. 1:1) should reject the phrase “love is love” on logical grounds.

Condemnation of Homosexuality in Scripture

There’s a second reason we shouldn’t accept or use the phrase “love is love.”  Very simply, the phrase is generally used to condone LGBT lifestyles.  But Scripture unequivocally condemns homosexuality.  The apostle Paul wrote, “Do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: neither the sexually immoral, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor men who practice homosexuality, nor thieves, nor the greedy, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God.” (1 Cor. 6:9 – 10)

First, note that homosexuality is not the only topic in this verse. No one who persists in ANY sin without repentance will inherit the kingdom of God. Whoever practises idolatry, greed, or dishonesty as a way of life and never repents of their sin and trusts in Christ to forgive and deliver them is equally guilty in God’s eyes. Homosexuality does not make a person more accountable to God than other sins, such as heterosexual adultery or intoxication (also on the list).

Second, take note that homosexuality is included in this list of sins. This means we cannot redefine homosexuality as neutral or attractive. Along with everything else on this list, it is a sin – something contrary to the character of God. Also on the list of sins is theft. It contradicts God’s design for humanity. Also a sin is homosexuality. It contradicts God’s design for humanity.

“Love is Love” as Promotion of LGBT Lifestyles

So to use the phrase “love is love”, knowing that it is generally used to promote and celebrate LGBT experience, is to call good what God has called bad, to justify what God judges, to affirm what God abhors.  The prophet Isaiah said, “Woe to those who call evil good and good evil, who put darkness for light and light for darkness, who put bitter for sweet and sweet for bitter” (Isaiah 5:20)!

The writer of Proverbs declares, “He who justifies the wicked and he who condemns the righteous are both alike an abomination to the Lord” (Prov. 17:15).  Those who condone what God condemns are openly opposing God’s right to rule His creation and Isaiah warns them in strong terms.  Proverbs says God abominates both those who justify the wicked and those who condemn the righteous.  Both are happening as a matter of course today.  

So the second reason I believe we, especially Christians should reject the phrase “love is love” is because the phrase is used to affirm homosexuality which God calls sin in Scripture.  And in at least these three passages of Scripture we are strictly warned not to call good what God calls bad.

Embracing the Staggering Reality: God is Love

The staggering reality that “God is love” should stop all of us in our tracks.  As an act of love, true love, God sent His Son to die in the place of countless sinners – this is love!  God is love!  

God raised Him from the dead in eternal victory over sin, a day-by-day, practical, life-changing, sin-conquering, growing victory Christ shares with all who come to God through Him – this is love!  God is love!

The absolute best way for you to love those in your life who openly embrace any sin, those who do not yet know Christ as Saviour, and those who do but are struggling with temptation, is to point them to God and His love displayed in Christ. God is love.  And only in the greatest act of love, the sacrifice of Jesus for sinners, will those you love find true joy and peace and eternal life.

God’s Commandments and Objective Moral Law

In the Christian worldview, love is understood in the light of God’s commandments and objective moral law. This perspective acknowledges that God’s moral boundaries are not arbitrarily imposed but are rooted in wisdom and understanding. They provide guidance for living in a way that honors God and promotes healthy relationships among individuals.

The Logical Contradiction

The argument that “love is love” as an absolute moral standard lacks logical basis. Love cannot be the one and only moral absolute, as it is derived and dependent. Unlike God, who is self-existent, self-defining, and unqualified, love is a characteristic bestowed upon creation by the eternal Creator. Love must be defined, and only God, as the ultimate authority, has the right to define it.

The Unbiblical Nature of “Love is Love”

From a biblical perspective, accepting or using the phrase “love is love” becomes problematic when it is generally used to condone LGBT lifestyles. Scripture unequivocally condemns homosexuality as contrary to God’s design for humanity. The apostle Paul wrote, “Do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: neither the sexually immoral, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor men who practice homosexuality… will inherit the kingdom of God” (1 Corinthians 6:9-10). Homosexuality, like any other persistent, unrepentant sin, hinders one’s inheritance of the kingdom of God.

God’s Warning and Definition of Love

Those who condone what God condemns are openly opposing His right to rule His creation. The prophet Isaiah warns, “Woe to those who call evil good and good evil, who put darkness for light and light for darkness, who put bitter for sweet and sweet for bitter” (Isaiah 5:20). Scripture emphasizes that God defines what is good and evil, including matters of sexuality and relationships. Christians should not justify or affirm what God abhors.

God’s Definition of Love

Instead of embracing the flawed notion of “love is love,” Christians should turn to the biblical definition of love. The apostle John succinctly states that “God is love” (1 John 4:15). True love is found in Jesus Christ, who exemplifies love through His sacrificial act of dying for our sins. “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life” (John 3:16). Through Jesus Christ, God offers forgiveness, transformation, and eternal life to all who believe in Him.