We often speak of love when we really should be speaking of the drive to dominate or to master, so as to confirm ourselves as active agents, in control of our own destinies and worthy of respect from others.
We shall say without hesitation that the atheist who is moved by love is moved by the Spirit of God; an atheist who lives by love is saved by his faith in the God whose existence (under that name) he denies.
We were lost and dead in sin. We were by nature objects of God's wrath. But God Loved us That Love caused Him to do something about our situation. God is rich in mercy, so He made us alive with Christ even when we were dead in transgressions. God acted on His Love for us and saved us by His Grace Grace is the result of the actions of His Love. The remarkable thing about His Grace is that He didn't ask us to do anything but believe Him. God didn't ask us to perform some great deed. He didn't demand obedience from us before He would save us. God made us alive with Christ 'even when we were dead in transgressions and sins.' God is showing the universe 'the incomparable riches of his grace, expressed in his kindness to us in Christ Jesus.' (Ephesians 27) God was Kind to us 'in' Christ because He Loved us.
What importance can we attach to the things of this world? Friendship? It disappears when the one who is liked comes to grief, or the one who likes becomes powerful. Love? it is deceived, fleeting, or guilty. Fame? You share it with mediocrity or crime. Fortune? Could that frivolity be counted a blessing? All that remains are those so-called happy days that flow past unnoticed in the obscurity of domestic cares, leaving man with the desire neither to lose his life nor to begin it over.
What is a scientist? We give the name scientist to the type of man who has felt experiment to be a means guiding him to search out the deep truth of life, to lift a veil from its fascinating secrets, and who, in this pursuit, has felt arising within him a love for the mysteries of nature, so passionate as to annihilate the thought of himself.
What is grace? It is the inspiration from on high: it is love; it is liberty. Grace is the spirit of law. This discovery of the spirit of law belongs to Saint Paul; and what he calls "grace" from a heavenly point of view, we, from an earthly point, call "rigtheousness."