To our peril, we think about love and relationships in terms of how we feel about a person or how that person makes us feel. This attitude is understandable in children, but when adults think this way in marriage, the failure of their household becomes the failure of our neighborhoods, our communities, and, sooner or later, civil society.
In the Sermon on the Mount, the love that Jesus preaches has nothing to do with how we feel. In fact, through Jesus’ strict application of Torah, the worse the commandment makes us feel—the more uncomfortable pressure it puts on us—the better our chances of learning how to love others correctly. Yes, that’s right; in the Gospel of Matthew, not only is love not a feeling, but almost always, the love imposed by the Lord’s commandment goes against what we feel. It is only when our feelings are overrun by this commandment that we have any chance of acting correctly toward our neighbor.