Castle, Love resided there as chaplain. Soon after the presbyterian system was established in England he was ordained in Aldermanbury Church by Mr. Horton and two others (the date assigned by Brook, 23 Jan. 1644-5, is impossible). While still residing at Windsor, he preached an inflammatory sermon in Uxbridge on 31 Jan. 1644-5, the day on which the commissioners to treat of peace between the king and parliament arrived in the town (cf. Lysons, Parishes in Middlesex not described in the Environs of London, pp. 178-9). He asserted in his 'Vindication' that his preaching there was accidental and that none of the commissioners were present. On the complaint of the commissioners he was sent for by the commons and confined to the house during continuation of the negotiations. In 1645 he was nominated by ordinances of the lords and commons preacher at Newcastle (Barnes, Memoirs, p. 34), but does not appear to have gone thither; on 25 Nov. in the same year he preached before the commons, and was not accorded the customary vote of thanks. Before 1647 he was settled as pastor at St. Ann's, Aldersgate, whence he subsequently moved to St. Lawrence Jewry. As a zealous presbyterian he soon made himself obnoxious to the independents; and when they gained the ascendency he was committed to custody; he was twice subsequently cited before the committee for plundered ministers, and although discharged for want of proof his movements were watched.
In 1651 he was accused of plotting against the Commonwealth. The affair is known as Love's plot, He was charged with corresponding with Charles Stuart and with the prince's mother (Henrietta Maria) between October 1649 and June 1651. It seems that one Colonel Titus had been commissioned by certain presbyterians to carry several letters to the queen-mother in France; the queen's replies were conveyed by Colonel Ashworth, and were read in Love's house in London. On 18 Dec. 1650 a pass was obtained for Love's wife to enable her to proceed to Amsterdam, doubtless in connection with the same negotiations. Further, Love had received letters from Scottish presbyterians who were friendly to Charles II, and consultations had been held in his house (among other places) regarding the demands made on the English presbyterians by Argyll and others for money for the purchase of arms.
Love was ordered to be arrested on 14 May 1651, and was committed close prisoner to the Tower for high treason. He was tried before the high court of justice on 20, 21, 25, and 27 June, and 5 July, and was condemned to be executed on 16 July (cf. Thornwick, Interregnum, pp.287 sq.) He was subsequently reprieved for a month, and then again for a week, but was finally executed on Tower Hill, 23 Aug. 1651, and privately buried, 15 Aug., at St. Lawrence Church (see order of council of state under that date, State Papers, Dom.) Robert Wilde wrote a poem on 'The Tragedy of Mr. Christopher Love at Tower Hill,' 1651, 4to.
To the last of Love's petitions to the parliament, 16 Aug., he appends a 'brief and full' narrative of the whole plot, in which he virtually acknowledges all the charges made against him at the trial. Both Kennett and Echard mention the story that a reprieve from Cromwell was intercepted and destroyed by incensed royalists.
By his wife (who shortly after married Edward Bradshaw, mayor of Chester in 1648 and 1653), Love had five children, one of whom was born after his death.
Love's works were: 1. 'The debauched Cavalier, or the English Midianite,' 1643. 2. 'England's Distemper, having Division and Error as its Cause, &c Together with Vindication of the Author from ... aspersions.' London, 4to, 1645; the sermon preached at Uxbridge. 3. 'Short and plaine Animadversions on some Passages in Mr. Dels' Sermon,' 4to, London, 1646, 5nd edit. 1647. 4. 'An Answer to an unlicensed Pamphlet,' 4to, 1646, written in answer to the above. 5. 'A modest and clear Vindication of the . . . ministers of London from the scandalous aspersions of John Price,' anon., London, 1649, 4to (ascribed to Love in Illumination to Sion College, 1649, anon.) 6. 'A cleere and necessary Vindication of the Principles and Practices of Mr. Christopher Love,' &c., 4to, London, 1651. His posthumously published petitions and narrative to the parliament, speech and prayer on the scaffold, letters to his wife, were published in various unauthorised forma in 1651. He also appears as editor, and may have been author, of 'The Main Points of Church Government and Discipline,' London, 1649, 12mo.
Love's executors, Edmund Calamy, Simeon Ashe, Jeremiah Whitaker, William Taylor, and Allan Geare, issued after his death: 1 . 'Grace, the Truth and Growth and different Degrees thereof (fifteen sermons), 1652, 4to, and 1810. 2. 'Heaven's Glory, Hell's Terror' (seventeen sermons), 1653, 4to, 1810; Dutch version, 1867 (Sneek, 'De Neerligkheid das Hemels'). 3. 'The Soul's Cordial, in two Treatises: (1) How to be eased of the Guilt of Sin, (2) Discovering Advantages by Christ's Ascension ' (twenty-two sermons), 1653. 4. 'A Treatise of Effectual Calling and Election,'