The mid-term elections are a constant spectacle of politicking. Watching TV the other night, there were five political ads in a row, each of them with a hint of (or blatant) dishonesty, insincerity, and deceitfulness.

In the middle of all of that, 1 Timothy 1:5 was a breath of fresh air, “The aim of our charge is love that issues from a pure heart and a good conscience and sincere faith.”

God calls Christians to love from a pure heart. ‘Pure’ means unmixed, or uncontaminated. Our love can’t be mixed with selfishness, regret, self-righteousness, or pride. He also calls us to a good conscience. Many anxieties, fits of depression, and bouts with loneliness could be helped if people could just feel clean. Finally, we are called to a sincere faith that touches the deepest parts of our lives, and changes us. This is especially relevant with hypocrisy and fake Christianity that seems like it is everywhere today. Only the gospel promises a clean conscience, changed lives, and a pure love.

In the cross, we see that God loves us and forgives us for our sins, which brings a clean conscience. Knowing that our sins are forgiven gives us a sincere faith in God’s love that transforms us from the inside out. As God’s pure love fills our hearts, it overflows and touches the lives of those around us, which makes it a sincere and pure love from the inside out. The gospel can make us real, genuine, sincere people in a world filled with political ads.