Can A Non-Christian Love?

I received an email today with a question I believe needs to be answered. I pray my response sheds light to both this woman, and anyone else who is wondering the same. She wrote:

I’m not sure if you meant it this way, but from the line “He is with you for a reason, and if he is a Christian, that reason is because he loves you”, suggests that only Christians are capable of love. Does this make sense?

Here was my response:

When it comes to what love is, there are different views. The bible talks a lot about love, and this is the stand-point I’m writing from:

“Love consists in this: not that we loved God, but that He loved us and sent His Son to be the propitiation for our sins.” (1 John 4:10)

As a Christian, I believe love is supernatural because the bible teaches that love is a a person, God Himself. Since God is love, if we do not know Him intimately, then we cannot truly love. This is how the bible describes true love:

“Love suffers long and is kind; love does not envy; love does not parade itself, is not puffed up; does not behave rudely, does not seek its own, is not provoked, thinks no evil; does not rejoice in iniquity, but rejoices in the truth; bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. Love never fails.” (I Corinthians 13:4-8)

I’ve been following Jesus, getting to know Him for a little over five years, and I’ve been married for four, and I’ll tell you, even as a born-again Christian, loving others as described in that Corinthian passage, I fall short at times. I give glory to Christ however, because I see myself loving more and more as that passage defines it, and it’s truly incredible.

So that’s the view of love I am coming from, and I whole-heartedly believe since I experienced what romance movies portrayed as love and then the love Christ offers, that He is real love, and apart from Him, we cannot experience or give His unconditional love to others.

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