The point of the post is the we often only love those who are like us in various ways. This “us”conditional love could be offered only toward those who agree with theological system or who are part of our “local church” organization.
While Swanny focuses on those who are part of “institutional churches,” I’ve seen “us”conditional love from those who are more “organic” as well.
Here’s a great quote from Swanny:
A consequence of this categorical “us” system is extreme prejudice. No, you do not get zapped with this internal disease quickly. It actually happens rather slowly over time like a deadly poison drip. It infects the inner-prejudice in all of us until we are absolutely paranoid of becoming like one of “them” outside the walls. We begin to have great contempt for those who fall into the sub-category of sinner. What is implied is “yeah, we are sinner’s too, but not like that sinner over there”, and soon people start to despise anyone who just falls.
Whether we are part of a “local church” organization or not, it is helpful for each of us to consider our reaction to those who are not like us, who do not agree with us, or who may even disparage us. Do we find they fall under the umbrella of love or are we making excuses for not loving them? Are we adding other conditions to “love”?
John’s warning is pretty clear:
If anyone says, “I love God,” and hates his brother, he is a liar; for he who does not love his brother whom he has seen cannot love God whom he has not seen. (1 John 4:20 ESV)
If we find that we are adding conditions to love – conditions that others much meet before we love them – then the problem is not with “them.” The problem is that we do not love God.