What follows was submitted to me from a contributor to this blog:
One old Armstrong view hallowed within the old WCG was the definition of love as: an outgoing concern, not an emotion. According to this definition, it is not those mushy, sweet feelings and sentimental appreciation of attributes.
Again: Love is outgoing concern, it is not an emotion, say the Armstrong protagonists, parroting their esteemed paragon of all wisdom and virtue.
The word concern means something that is of interest, or something or someone that we may worry for the welfare of. Trying to avoid the idea that love involves emotion is really difficult, as worry is emotional, and to simply like someone is emotional. If love is concern, then for what shall we be concerned for about God?
Love of country evokes the emotion of pride in consideration of the qualities that we appreciate. To hold the qualities that we love in high esteem is intricately woven of memories that give us pleasure with the certainty of conviction that the object of our affection is true and not an illusion, which is to say, we believe in the nation, person, people or idea.
We can love evil because we appreciate evil, and there is no room for concern in evil. Those who love the Lord Jesus feel their hearts swell with pride and gratitude, being convinced of His goodness and His belief in our eventual completion, as also good and beautiful, in His likeness.
The idea that we love God because He first loved us is exactly like the love of a child for a parent who first loves the child, seeing what the child will become; seeing past the stinking diapers and temper tantrums of the moment; appreciating and esteeming what will be.
Jesus asked the question; who will love his lord more? One who is forgiven little, or one who is forgiven much? The answer, of course, being: One who is forgiven much.
This draws a direct correlation between gratitude and love. Gratitude is a very emotional sentiment. Actually, it is an emotion.
How then is love not an emotion?
Love is not an act, it precipitates the act. In the same way, faith is not an act, it preciptates the act.
Much thanks to the author. This is something, I believe, that has needed to be addressed for some time.
We hear Ron Weinland repeatedly state that love is not an emotion, but an act. We've heard him mock the things that make love what it actually is, anything beyond their dry, clinical definition.
Can you bear the thought of a child being raised in a home devoid of sweet, syrupy, mushy love? I would hate to see the damaged, dry person they would likely grow into. How is that child supposed to feel loved, to feel a bond with his/her parents? How are they to learn how to show love to others, to their future spouse and children?
How can love not be an emotion? The idea is absurd. OWCG worked to kill emotion and thus kill love. Too kill love is to kill relationships, and relationships are the most important thing, particularly our relationship with God.
I grew up in OWCG & it was the coldest church I ever walked into, unlike the churches of my chilhood friends, (yes, I actually attended some). Talk about feeling accepted, and being warmly welcomed! Wow! Didn't experience that at my church. Growing up, OWCG for me was more like school; full of clicks and people who acted like you didn't exist if they didn't esteem you as an equal.
I believe the reason Armstronists hold to this definition is simply to discredit the "worldly churches" because they are so loving! Anything the "worldy churches" do, must be discredited. In their minds, there must be nothing about them that can appear as good, and the Armsrongist churches must resemble them in no way.
So I ask: If love is not an emotion, then why did the Father turn away at the time of Jesus' death on the cross, if not for the emotions that the death of a child evokes in a parent?
It is important that you understand; Everything on this blog is based on my current understanding. Never take anyone's word for it, always prove it for yourself, it is your responsibility. You cannot ride someone else's coattail into the Kingdom.