Monday, August 26, 2013

Amazing love. How can it be?

Exaltation of the Cross: Heraclius enters Jerusalem with the Cross - Piero della Francesca

It is impossible to write a great Christian Novel without love.

Now let me be clear, it is quite possible to write a great novel without love. Plenty of the great ancient and great modern writers wrote phenomenal works of fiction without including love in it. If you read Homer's Iliad or Hesiod's Theogony, you'll be hard pressed to find any love. At least of the non-sexual kind. The same goes for the works of Moderns such as Hemingway or Conrad.

You can make a great work of fiction without love. Your characters can be realistic, your imagery vivid and your themes fascinating. But it still won't be a work of Christian literature without bringing love into it in some way. This is because love is one of the central themes of Scriptures. All of Scripture points towards the love of God.

Or judgement.

Hm, I may want to backtrack on what I was just saying. It seems there is a lot of judgement in scriptures. So if there's judgement in scriptures how is that love? Well the fact is God's judgement actually cannot be separated from the subject of love. The Judgement of God is upon humanity for their failure to love. That same judgement is only appeased by the Love of Christ. In that way works of judgement are inextricably tied the concept of love.

Love is one of those elements at the core of Christian thought. One whereby God is made known. You don't have to make your work explicitly Christian. But you do have to put in the Christian concept of love, the sacrificial agapean kind in order for it to be a Christian work.

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