Love - god is love
Understanding the Holiness of God, as mentioned in our discussion
about God's holiness, causes great fear and anxiety, when we understand
our position relative to the Creator, King, and Judge of all that
exists. Understanding the Love of God in this context is just as
difficult. If we understand God as simply the 'Prime Mover', or a
'Force of Creation' as the philosophical proofs lead us, then it is
hard to see how this 'thing' could be worshipped and adored. But
the Bible says that God is a 'person'. God is a 'person' in the
sense that He has 'personality', a thinking and deciding nature, and
most importantly, a LOVING nature. It is only in with a healthy
understanding of God's nature (that He is a Holy, Transcendent Being
with incalculable wrath against dissent that also loves and desires
more than anything that we be reconciled to Him to experience the life
that was intended for us) that we can understand that this being is
worthy of our worship.
May the Lord direct your hearts into God's love and Christ's perseverance."
2 Thessalonians 3:5
This difficulty in understanding the Love of God is increased because 'Love' is perhaps one of the most misunderstood words we have! How do we define Love? We may think of Love as being synonymous with 'desire', 'lust' or 'need', or maybe a 'feeling'. I love my wife, I love my job, I love this orange. Are they all the same, just different intensities? What about mis-placed love? Perhaps I am married, but I 'fall in love' with another woman. Is this really 'love'? What about 'homosexual love'. Is this the love God radiates, when He says "...God is love..." (1 John 4:16b), so therefore homosexuality is accepted by God, because He is the author of all Love?
We must first understand what the Love nature of God is truly like, and then understand our fallen nature and the stain it causes toward our capacity to 'love'.
Our 'love' is usually selfish and irrational. We 'fall' in and out of love, we have 'tough love' or we put our love in things that are contrary to God's will. We are swayed by feelings, thinking that real love is that intense experience we had in school, not the mature love that we must choose to survive the reality of the world. With this view, it is easy to see how it is not part of our 'nature', since we describe love as something we 'do' or 'get'.
God's love, in contrast, is pure and holy, like His nature. Indeed, one might consider the attributes of His nature to be intertwined and interrelated: His Holiness IS His Love. This casts a little different light upon the comparison of 'our' love to the Love of God. His Love is a purposeful act of self-giving, not getting. Paul put the infinite 'Love of God' in terms that we can understand as finite humans:
Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil [the ways contrary to God's ways] but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. Love never fails."
1 Corinthians 13:4-8a
We can see that the Love of God is self-sacrificing, is not concerned with one's own needs or desires, and is unchanging. This is how the ultimate expression of love is evident in Christ, who is God dying for us to be reconciled back to Him:
Greater love has no one that this, that he lay down his life for his friends." John 15:13
For God so loved the world, that He gave his only Son..." John 3:16a
We can also see how the Love of God is evident in ones life who is truly a Christian:
Dear friends, let us love one another, for love comes from God. Everyone who loves has been born of God and knows God. Whoever does not love does not know God, because God is love...Dear friends, since God so loved us, we also ought to love one another." 1 John 4:7-9, 11
So to summarize, God's Love is His nature. It is pure and holy, it never changes, but it never compromises in order to 'get'. It is there for us, clear as day, in the deeds of the Lord Jesus Christ, and we in return express our Love for God through our devotion to His desires and through the obedience to the command of Christ:
This is my command: Love one another."