With unconditional love there is no need for grace. It was by grace that God determined to save us from the penalty of sin–the transgression of His moral law of love–and bring us back to loyalty to Himself. (Ephesians 2:5, 8-10).
Grace is undeserved, unmerited love granted in the spirit of forgiveness and pardon conditioned by faith, repentance to righteousness within the time granted in the form of probation. These are the three conditions of God, Who is love and formed the plan of salvation before He created anyone who might need that plan.
Just so you know the Scriptural basis for this conclusion, and that it is not merely a man’s opinion, here are the applicable verses:
Psalm 5:4-6 KJV
“For thou art not a God that hath pleasure in wickedness: neither shall evil dwell with thee. The foolish shall not stand in thy sight: thou hatest all workers of iniquity. Thou shalt destroy them that speak leasing: the Lord will abhor the bloody and deceitful man.”
Psalm 11:4-7 KJV
“The Lord is in his holy temple, the Lord’s throne is in heaven: his eyes behold, his eyelids try, the children of men. The Lord trieth the righteous: but the wicked and him that loveth violence his soul hateth. Upon the wicked he shall rain snares, fire and brimstone, and an horrible tempest: this shall be the portion of their cup. For the righteous Lord loveth righteousness; his countenance doth behold the upright.”
Hebrews 3:13-15 KJV
“But exhort one another daily, while it is called To day; lest any of you be hardened through the deceitfulness of sin. For we are made partakers of Christ, if we hold the beginning of our confidence stedfast unto the end; While it is said, To day if ye will hear his voice, harden not your hearts, as in the provocation.”
Hebrews 4:5-7 KJV
“And in this place again, If they shall enter into my rest. Seeing therefore it remaineth that some must enter therein, and they to whom it was first preached entered not in because of unbelief: Again, he limiteth a certain day, saying in David, To day, after so long a time; as it is said, To day if ye will hear his voice, harden not your hearts.”
1 Corinthians 13:13 KJV
“And now abideth faith, hope, charity, these three; but the greatest of these is charity.”
Why is love the greatest of the three? Because love fulfills the law of love! But why are there three that remain? Faith is a condition–unbelief being the nemesis. Hope is a condition–procrastination being the nemesis. Love is also conditioned–unrighteousness will be destroyed.
Ecclesiastes 3:8 KJV
“A time to love, and a time to hate; a time of war, and a time of peace.”
Ephesians 2:4-5, 8-10, 12-14 KJV
“But God, who is rich in mercy, for his great love wherewith he loved us, Even when we were dead in sins, hath quickened us together with Christ, (by grace ye are saved;)… For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: Not of works, lest any man should boast. For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them…. That at that time ye were without Christ, being aliens from the commonwealth of Israel, and strangers from the covenants of promise, having no hope, and without God in the world: But now in Christ Jesus ye who sometimes were far off are made nigh by the blood of Christ. For he is our peace, who hath made both one, and hath broken down the middle wall of partition between us….”
If love were unconditional, there would exist no condition by which injury or provocation could occur. Without provocation or injury there is no need for mercy, forgiveness, or pardon. Without mercy, forgiveness, or pardon there is no plan of salvation by grace. But we have clear evidence from Scripture that God’s love has the conditions of righteousness, repentance, and faith.