Did God suddenly have a make-over after Malachi, did He only become LOVE when the Word, his son become flesh, or, was He in fact always Love from before time?
If God has always been Love, then maybe we've adopted a view of love that is totally incongruent with with who He is, and the actions he has taken throughout time.
Would this skewed version of Love be anything different from how we by nature have determined our mores-môraz (morality-ethics) stemming from the nature that permeated all of man kind at the fall, acquiring the knowledge of good and evil independently from God?
Prior to our re-birthing, it says we were alienated from the life of God, by nature children of wrath, sons of disobedience. Though now we are in fact His adopted children, possessing His nature which is Love.
Saying all of that to say simply, because of the Father through his love in re-birthing us and not as an act of rape, we became His, but I still see rampant throughout Christendom, a lingering residual stain within the soul, and that being a powerful perception of a yet existing alienation, or not being Loved.
In most, there is a general knowing it no longer has anything to do with 'trying to be like God', but the trap of doing continues in order to be LIKED by God, is pandemic.
If God IS Love, then what needs to be changed within us to embrace the Truth vs what we have clung to as being real?
As I said, the miracle of His grace taking us, who were alienated from His Love-life and making us his sons and daughters doesn't guarantee that we have yet acquired an understanding of the impetus that initiated that action~ His LOVE!
In writing this, the humorous scenes from the movie, The Princess Bride comes to mind, when the actor playing the role of Vizzini redundantly uses the word, 'INCONCEIVABLE' to every one of the questions posed by the actor playing the role of Inigo Montoya....
You are sure nobody's follow' us?
Vizzini: As I told you, it would be absolutely, totally, and in all other ways inconceivable. No one in Guilder knows what we've done, and no one in Florin could have gotten here so fast. - Out of curiosity, why do you ask?
Inigo Montoya: No reason. It's only... I just happened to look behind us and something is there.
Vizzini: What? Probably some local fisherman, out for a pleasure cruise, at night... in... eel-infested waters...
[In the boat in the morning] Inigo Montoya: He's right on top of us. I wonder if he is using the same wind we are using.
[Vizzini has just cut the rope The Dread Pirate Roberts is climbing up] Vizzini: HE DIDN'T FALL? INCONCEIVABLE. Inigo Montoya: You keep using that word. I do not think it means what you think it means.
Any feedback would be delightful in unpacking this.