Preaching the Gospel message of love does not mean that we are accepting of the lifestyle of the person to whom we are ministering. I believe this is a common misconception within and without the Body of Christ. There will be times wherein those who are not believers will attempt to force our hand to make us accept them and their lifestyles as they are without them accepting the need to change. Of course, we do not want to lose the person to the forces of evil; however, on the other hand, we cannot compromise the true message of love which says that “God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son…” (Jn. 3:16). We tend to stop there, but the message of love does not end there.
The message of love goes on to say in v.20, “For every one that doeth evil hateth the light, neither cometh to the light, lest his deeds should be reproved (or discovered)…” This would make the recipient of the Gospel message of love accountable for any lifestyle that is contrary to the Word of God. The Gospel message of love teaches us that we are accepting the person because they are in need of a Saviour. It does not teach acceptance and tolerance of sin. If God hates sin, as His children, we, too, should hate sin. Conversely, God loves the sinner; therefore, we should love the sinner as well.
Our job in preaching the Gospel message of love is not to change the person. It is to plant a seed of love from the Word and Counsel of God that will bring the person to the realization that they, too, are in need of a Saviour. Once we have deposited the seed, we have to entrust the individual into God’s hands to give the increase in the same manner in which He has entrusted them into our hands.
The word for today is that the true Gospel message of love does not force anyone to do anything because it takes on the nature of its Source. However, if the person is open to receiving the message of love, we should take advantage of the opportunity to ensure that the message is truly representative of its Source and not of our own personal opinions.