Is God All Loving?

One objection to God centers on the presumption that if God is all loving then why does He severely penalize or punish others who have violated His commands, decrees and laws as expressed through the biblical text? Along with this criterion a person may likewise include the concept of God who allows for pain and suffering in the world and acts of war or violence along with the eternal judgment of hell which I have previously addressed in a few of my other posts.

I believe that the whole misunderstanding to this dilemma stems from the confusion about the nature of God who is ultimately good rather than inclusively loving. Goodness is more accurately defined as being balanced with the concept of justice coupled with the benefits of grace and mercy. For instance, humanely speaking we typically wouldn’t consider someone to be a good judge if he lovingly let the guilty party go free while allowing the innocent party to unjustly suffer. The exception to this is when the eternal Judge  grants clemency to those who are the beneficiaries of Christ’s substitutionary role as both victim and redeemer.

Anyway it’s pretty obvious why government to some degree mimics biblical principles in regards to having some moral absolutes by taking punitive actions towards matters of law otherwise you would end up with lawlessness and civil unrest. So for some to believe  that Darwinistic thought or naturalism will evolve to become a better alternative worldview by means of natural selection and survival of the fittest will only be disappointed to know that moral relativism will only result in the downfall not the uprising of mankind. We have seen this already acted out by the bloodiest regimes of this century that have killed more people than any other point in history as being under an atheistic ideology. This kind of rationale is what allows the abortions clinics to operate by justifying their actions in defining a baby as just an appendage of flesh. This kind of thinking is what is behind genocide which sees a need to exterminate life as based on its own criteria whatever that may be. Who knows perhaps it may be you who will one day be the victim of this godless system. When people become reduced to just animals and devalued to the point of classifying humanity as just another creature then this degradation leads to justify certain acts as instinctual. On the other hand to see the supremacy to human value in having a standardized view towards a  moral law code is to go beyond the confines of individualism to recognizing an overarching and sovereign principle of authority namely God.

So if  all these laws originate with God and not with man then these moral factors, if extrapolated  backwards in time and space from our immediate authority, will only end up at a source which is beyond mere humanity.

Thus mankind is innately hardwired with a moral conscious and it is only through the process of desensitization do we begin to loose touch with some of our moral capacity/faculties. Yet even then there remains a moral imprint which cannot be completely eradicated and the conscious is testable as with the polygraph machine which verifies that we know both psychologically and physiologically when we are being deceptive unless of course you are a sociopath. There has also been some research on this in which children were tested to see if they knew right from wrong and the results indicate that they are not merely a product of nurture but rather of nature.

The scriptures also bear witness to this in Romans which states that we are born with a capacity for morality that sets us apart as a special creation by which we bear the image of God in generally knowing right from wrong and good from evil so that even though mankind doesn’t have the biblical script as a divine guideline they still have an immediate general revelation of moral conscious towards a supreme creator so that they are without excuse. Therefore it is this law of conscience that results in guilt and shame when we transgress these internal law codes.


Romans 2:14-15

14 (Indeed, when Gentiles, who do not have the law, do by nature things required by the law, they are a law for themselves, even though they do not have the law, 15 since they show that the requirements of the law are written on their hearts, their consciences also bearing witness, and their thoughts now accusing, now even defending them.)


So it is God’s intervention and impartation which is the basis for jurisprudence which allows for human civilization and yet this moral knowledge does not necessitate moral fortitude due to the sinfulness of the human nature.


Romans 1: 28-32

28 Furthermore, since they did not think it worthwhile to retain the knowledge of God, he gave them over to a depraved mind, to do what ought not to be done. 29 They have become filled with every kind of wickedness, evil, greed and depravity. They are full of envy, murder, strife, deceit and malice. They are gossips, 30 slanderers, God-haters, insolent, arrogant and boastful; they invent ways of doing evil; they disobey their parents; 31 they are senseless, faithless, heartless, ruthless. 32 Although they know God’s righteous decree that those who do such things deserve death, they not only continue to do these very things but also approve of those who practice them. 


So even if the moral compass is off as seen through the variances among cultures there still remains universal standards of general law which always recognizes that such actions or conditions are invariably wrong such as the rape of a baby among other things.

These moral injunctions and responsibilities are actually an act of love in protecting the rights of others and to some degree even the rights of the offender by limiting the amount of retribution. This also mercifully portrays the boundaries of God’s law by informing us in order to preserve our life from God’s righteous judgments.

So I think what is really being challenged here is not so much the necessity of law and justice as it is the degree or the severity of which some of these crimes are to be punished.

Accordingly, the bible mentions such matters as capital punishment, annihilation and damnation as being ordered for certain individuals or societies. This may appear to be harsh or extreme to us but we can’t compete with an omniscient and omni benevolent God who knows the farthest outreaches of these evil actions and their subsequent consequences and therefore only He is best to judge the long term or ultimate effects of such unlawfulness. We can plainly see how some of these moral laws are neglected and their resultant effect on society which has led to some of the pain and suffering which is prevalent among our human cultures of which we are unable to heal the wounds of its injured victims nor reform the ways of its transgressors. Today some of these matters are not taken seriously and they are left to the realm of being archaic by the standards of modern society and contemporary trends of living. For instance sexual immorality is often trivialized and seen as a matter of preference to the point that society does not blush over these kinds of matters.

Yet much of these actions are at the very heart and center of what is to be viewed as essential for the health and survival of community and it is no wonder why these kinds of lawless societies begin to show signs of moral bankruptcy through their break up of families.

Yet more important than just these social factors is the idea that we are creaturely and are under the theocracy of a creator. So as a person intuitively and innately comes to this understanding they then become acutely aware that even though they may temporarily have freedom of choice they are ultimately responsible to the one who gave them life. Sin is not neutral and it no only affects and influences society but it is a flagrant offense of cosmic treason to the one who has given us the breath of life.

Part of the problem when looking at the consequences of violating God’s laws is that as humans we often underestimate our evil behavior and rationalize and trivialize matters until we numb our moral conscious towards matters of right and wrong by arrogantly making the assumption that we are basically good. Yet the problem is that we often wrongfully confuse our principle of goodness with God’s standard of righteousness.

Yet the biblical record states that according to God there is none righteous; not even one and all have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God. Additionally our thoughts are not His thoughts nor our ways His ways and too often when measuring moral infractions we find ourselves just comparing apples to apples and yet God has overturned the applecart in search for something edible only to find that all apples are rotten at the core.

Also God is not to be completely associated or identified with the fruitlessness of humanity in that He exists as a “holy other.” Furthermore the relativity of this age may downplay offense through human comparisons but when compared against the righteousness of God’s character their acts according to the bible is no more than filthy menstrual clothes. A better analogy is if you had a scale in which you weighed the cumulative acts of all humanity against the holiness of God which would still not be enough to tip the scale in mankind’s favor. We can’t think that some good is good enough because God demands moral perfection as no flesh will glory in His sight. What acts of goodness that we are able to do is only just a miniscule reflection of something that is yet more glorious.

Additionally, the appearance of right actions does not mean a true intention or even right thinking as an individual could be motivated by the selfishness of greed, power, self piety, etc. In addition to this God omnisciently discerns and judges the very thoughts and motives of our hearts by which guilt is likewise imposed against the iniquitous party. For example fornication is extended to the point that you become an adulterer of heart through the eyes of lust or you become a coveter without even apprehending your desires or a murderer of sorts through inappropriate anger.


Matthew 5:21

“You have heard that it was said to the people long ago, ‘Do not murder, and anyone who murders will be subject to judgment.’ 22 But I tell you that anyone who is angry with his brother will be subject to judgment.


Matthew 5:27

27 “You have heard that it was said, ‘Do not commit adultery.’ 28 But I tell you that anyone who looks at a woman lustfully has already committed adultery with her in his heart.


So as you can see we all miss the mark of God’s target even though we may possibly perform some good acts throughout the course of our life. However, these acts or works are reckoned to us as being obligatory not meritorious and committing  one sin is the same as reaping the benefits or consequences of all sin whereby the penalty for sin is ultimately spiritual death or separation from God in that the soul that sins will die. This may appear to be an inequality of justice but all sin must be judged as God cannot eternally cohabit with sin or the sin nature.

At this point it becomes quite obvious that there is no one who can live up to the demands of God’s righteousness requirements and even the disciples of Jesus were feeling the weightiness of these commandments by stating “who then can be saved from God’s wrath” whereby Jesus stated “with man it is impossible but with God all things are possible.”

Therefore all sin will be judged accordingly as none of us can be truly spared in that the rigor mortis of spiritual death is a condition of the human soul from inception to the grave. It is only the new birth of the Spirit than can overcome this natural birth of the womb.

In retrospect to this matter the response concerning God is that He is good and His mercy endures forever and therefore God has made a way in making a provision of love, grace, and mercy through the saving act of Christ who delivered us from the ultimate consequences of judgment which is hell. This took place as God himself took on the form of humanity as our representative in bearing the justice of our sins and imputing to us His righteousness which would have otherwise left everyone guilty before the tribunal of God because all have sinned and likewise would have perished. That’s why it is amazing grace because God did for us what we couldn’t do for ourselves even through our best efforts of humanism and religion.

In response to this moral dilemma the bible says that there is no greater love than this then for a man to lay down his life for his friends and yet Christ died for us while we were yet His enemies. The godly interceding for the ungodly and that is something to muse about my friend when questioning God’s capacity for love.

Now in returning to the supposed controversy regarding the severity of sin some may contend  that this is somehow God’s fault in that He created mankind knowing we would be weak and fallible creatures which in turn would make evil choices and therefore we were set up to fail from the get go.

Yet when God formed his original creation it was good but the dilemma to free nature is the dichotomy for the potential of good/evil and without this choice then we are delegated to being robotic entities. God made mankind in such a way in which we would willfully serve or deny him which sets us apart from the animal world regarding our intellect as free moral agents in response to God.

So whether its through personal experience or worldwide observation we see bad things happening and yet even with all of this resident evil the earth may still be considered the best of all potential worlds which God could have possibly made therefore minimizing the impact of evil. Regardless, it is not possible to have a sinless world as we are not God and because we all have a will then sooner or latter the inevitable presence of sin will emerge, such as with Adam and Eve, and so it’s not a matter of “if” mankind would fall but rather “when”. God’s original goodness of man didn’t even make it past the glorious garden and so how much better do you think any of us would have fared on this outcome? Only God himself is perfect and in order for sinless beings to exist means that we would all have to be God which is a contradiction at this point as we are diametrically distinguished as contingent beings apart from God’s necessary being in which we are ontologically different as the creature is not the creator. At best we are made in God’s image as He has left an impression of the divine will upon our hearts.

Yet in spite of this shortcoming it was God who lovingly and mercifully gave us a means of rescue and salvation before the foundation of the world was even laid by providing Christ as our mediator in giving His life as an exchange on our behalf consequently putting to death our fallen adamic nature.

Again the primary infraction is the universality of a sin nature by which we repress our capacity to know and worship God in accordance with the general revelation of truth. For instance we may favor naturalization over intelligent design or Freudian thought against a mind that is cognizant and conscious towards a supreme moral being.

Therefore the primary sin is denial and rejection of God and the honor and glory that is due His name.


Romans 1:18-25

18 The wrath of God is being revealed from heaven against all the godlessness and wickedness of men who suppress the truth by their wickedness, 19 since what may be known about God is plain to them, because God has made it plain to them. 20 For since the creation of the world God’s invisible qualities—his eternal power and divine nature—have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made, so that men are without excuse. 

21 For although they knew God, they neither glorified him as God nor gave thanks to him, but their thinking became futile and their foolish hearts were darkened. 22 Although they claimed to be wise, they became fools 23 and exchanged the glory of the immortal God for images made to look like mortal man and birds and animals and reptiles. 

24 Therefore God gave them over in the sinful desires of their hearts to sexual impurity for the degrading of their bodies with one another. 25 They exchanged the truth of God for a lie, and worshiped and served created things rather than the Creator—who is forever praised. Amen. 


Continuing on in referring to God’s perpetual justice; if this earthly existence is all there was then what justice might there be to allow wickedness to go unpunished in this life or righteousness to be left unrewarded in this domain. Yet determinately God has provided for the realms of life and death according to the eternal habitation of heaven and hell.

In the final analysis, like it or not , it is God’s prerogative to make the rules and we can either obey them or reject them. At this point it is more of a matter concerning moral choice rather than an intellectual problem. It is God who should be consulted on matters of law as it is His gavel which overrules all human government. So if God “is” then His standards are absolute and like Job we must humbly see ourselves as a lump of clay who submits to being molded according to the craftsmanship of the master potter by which we have been designed according to God’s purposes and not our own.

In conclusion the hostile sinner challenges God’s love as they only see God’s wrath and impending judgment but to their fault they neglect to apprehend the salvific benefits of Christ. Maybe the question we should ask ourselves is why in His long suffering has He not already destroyed us in our wickedness and why has He persevered with the human race as long as He has without wiping us off the face of the earth? The scripture tells us plainly why God withholds his judgment and that is because His desire it that none should perish but that all should have everlasting life. So after all maybe you have overlooked  God’s love because you are just looking for love in all the wrong places.

Lastly you may not have no immediate conviction from this post and yet just like the emperor who had no clothes you are unsuspectingly displaying your nakedness in plain sight of all without being aware of your true nature which is spiritually barren and destitute. You may lift your head up high in your prideful procession in life; not willing to look at yourself in fear of noticing your true condition but nonetheless that does not make you any less revealing before God and others. You can’t ignore the fact and it just a matter of time before your parade will be over.

Perhaps you may be convicted by these very words that I spoke of here and maybe these statements may cause you to fear concerning the severity of God’s law then hopefully this will help serve to motivate you to do some serious soul searching. This post was not designed to leave you hopelessly paralyzed with despair nor was it intended to be the sole basis of your decision to follow Christ. One thing that I hope it accomplished was to give you a  glimpse of revelation concerning the essence of God’s goodness and love in which He sent Jesus to personally save you by lovingly allowing you to respond to His kindness which leads us to repentance.

Anyway this may not satisfactorily answer your questions but minimally God’s goodness of justice and love go hand in hand in bringing forth the righteousness of His eternal law which informs, protects, rewards, punishes as well as honors the name of God in bringing about His will and purpose for mankind.

Finally I would like to leave you with a scripture which helps portray the love by which Christ has shouldered our moral burden.


Matthew 11:28-30

28 “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. 29 Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. 30 For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.” 



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