I used to wonder why the New Testament emphasized love so much as the way to identify a true believer. How could something as vague as expressing affection show that you believed in Jesus? The Scriptures did not tell us to love with our feet firmly planted in mid-air. It told us to love one another because of Jesus and the example he gave us on the cross. We are a community of people who love one another because of what Jesus accomplished for us all. We love because he first loved us. The Son has granted us equal status as members of the family of God and he died to make it happen when we enemies of the one we now call Father (Romans 5:10.) This remarkable love provides the impetus for us to show genuine, passionate concern for one another. When the world sees this uncommon love they will have to ask for the reason behind it. It is because we share a common faith and hope in one man, our Lord Jesus. In the Rise of Christianity by Rodney Stark the reason why early Christianity enjoyed a meteoric rise in the face of huge obstacles was because of their superior ethic.