Who then is our Saviour and Redeemer? God or Love? Love; for God as God has not saved us, but Love, which transcends the difference between the divine and human personality. As God has renounced himself out of love, so we, out of love, should renounce God; for if we do not sacrifice God to love, we sacrifice love to God, and in spite of the predicate of love, we have the God — the evil being — of religious fanaticism.

"The Essence of Christianity" by Ludwig Feuerbach

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    The logic is somewhat convoluted, but both instances of "out of love" mean "motivated by love, for the sake of love". According to the author, love is the higher ideal, and God may be sacrificed or renounced for the sake of love. Sep 30, 2017 at 12:17

1 Answer 1


I could not understand what is meant by "As God has renounced himself out of love" from this limited excerpt -- I had to read back for more context -- but in both cases, as Luke Sawczak says in his comment, "out of love" means "motivated by love". Examples:

As he passed by the doorway leading into the smoky and inviting depths of the bar, the father paused, but, out of love for his children, he continued walking home.

It was out of love that you risked being honest with me about your past, and it was out of love that I accept you as you are.

The actual meaning is still confusing since (earlier in this section of the book) Feuerbach draws distinctions between different kinds of "love" ("human" love, "devilish" love", "divine" love), and you need to understand these differences in order to understand his overall message.


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