Summary On Christian Love
Need love says of a woman, I cannot live without her. Gift love says I long to give her happiness, comfort, protection and if possible wealth. Appreciative love is silent and rejoices that such a wonder should exist. As with many things of an infinite God, the loves blend into one another with seamless continuity. Its hard to see where affection becomes friendship and so on.
Loves Relationship To Righteousness
Let love be without hypocrisy. Abhor what is evil cling to what is good.
Joseph Fletcher, an advocate of situational ethics, once told the story of a farmer whose daughter was seduced by a traveling salesman. Incensed by the violation of his sister, the girls brother was ready to exterminate the salesman with his shotgun. Stepping in, the father admonished his son with the words: Son, you are so full of whats right that youve lost sight of whats good.
Situational ethics is a term which is hardly used any more. This is not because the theory is pass, but because it is so widespread, no one thinks of it as something distinct. Our whole society is situational in its ethics. Situational ethics does not define morality and immorality in terms of biblical revelation, but in terms of love. Moral judgment is determined by the existence or absence of love. A sexual union outside of marriage, but which is thought to be the expression of love, is considered moral. The question then becomes, Is it loving? rather than, Is it right? If it is loving, it is presumed to be right.
Love Takes No Pleasure In Evil And Always Seeks The Truth
There is no room for deceit and lies in a truly loving relationship. Lying about how much you spent at the mall is not real love. Lying about your feelings toward your mother in-law isnt real love. True love isnt vengeful and it doesnt smirk in satisfaction when someone gets what they have coming to them.
When you love with a godly love you dont gossip, bully someone, or extract revenge. Instead, true love speaks the truth graciously and tactfully, refuses to gossip, treats others the way you want to be treated, and does nothing to intentionally harm or malign someone else.
Also Check: What The Bible Says About Being Rich
Sex Attraction And The Spirit Of Lust
Have you ever heard a man see a beautiful woman and declare, Im in love!? Most often its simply desire or worse, the spirit of lust.
The spirit of lust is a terrible thing because its the exact opposite of love . A man or woman in the spirit of lust is looking to relieve themselves at the expense of another. Theyre looking to quench the thirst in their soul which can only be fulfilled by God.
How do you know youre in the spirit of lust? You will feel out of control, and if you do get what you want, you wont be satisfied.
Do not mistaken strong desire for love and dont let desire lead you into the spirit of lust. Desire can be normal and natural thing, but the spirit of lust is abnormal and leads to destruction. Believers have been given the power of self-control to combat the spirit of lust .
Two Aims Of Hypocrisy
So we have seen two ways hypocrisy shows itself. Now ponder where this evil comes from. What is going on? Why do people do this? Why do we do it? There are at least two aims of hypocrisy that I see in the New Testament.
First, there is the aim to get and keep the praise and approval of other people. Hypocrisy is driven by the craving for other people to make much of us. For example, in Matthew 6:2 Jesus said, When you give to the needy, sound no trumpet before you, as the hypocrites do in the synagogues and in the streets, that they may be praised by others. Truly, I say to you, they have received their reward. And in verse 5 he says, And when you pray, you must not be like the hypocrites. For they love to stand and pray in the synagogues and at the street corners, that they may be seen by others. Truly, I say to you, they have received their reward.
In other words, they craved the reward of mens approval and praise. They got it, and that is all they got. Love is not like that, Paul says. It is not hypocritical. It does not crave the praise of men. It is has been set free from that bondage. In fact, that is close to the essence of love: It doesnt think highly of itselfit doesnt think much about itself at all. It is riveted on Christ and all that God is for us in him. The command to love without hypocrisy is really a command to know Christ and love Christ and find your satisfaction in Christ so that you do not crave the praise of men any more.
Also Check: Did Jesus Say Love Thy Neighbor
Infatuation Versus True Love
Accidentally “falling” in love is often characterized as the pinnacle of human existence and experience. Authors, actors, scriptwriters, painters, sculptors and poets have all contributed to this mythic oxymoron.
Falling is an accident, not a mature choice. Perhaps that’s why the root meaning of infatuation is “to be foolish or stupid.” There’s a vast difference between infatuation’s temporary chemistry and the mature, true love that should develop over time between a couple. While infatuation may be a first step, it must grow through constant, sensitive, outgoing attention to become lasting true love.
Falling in love can be described in the vernacular as “puppy love” rather than true love. And regrettably, age is no stranger to this type of infatuation.
As much as one might wish to think that his or her infatuation is the real thing, we should understand that infatuation is not unique to any one person or experience. It has happened to people the world over and from time immemorial .
God’s Commandments And True Love
Authors of books about love rarely understand the principle that true love translates into keeping God’s commandments. Consider biblical commentator John Stott’s keen analysis of 1 John 5:31 John 5:3For this is the love of God, that we keep his commandments: and his commandments are not grievous.American King James Version×: “Love for God has a second inescapable consequence, namely obedience. If we truly love God, we not only love his children, but also find ourselves carrying out his commands …
“Love for God is not an emotional experience so much as a moral commitment. Indeed, whether shown to God or human beings, agape is always practical and active. Love for our brothers and sisters expresses itself ‘with actions and in truth,’ and especially in sacrificial service love for God in carrying out His commands. Jesus said the same thing about the meaning of love for Himself ” .
Regrettably, few Bible instructors teach the seamless connection between God’s commandments and true love because they’ve been taught and influenced to believe that God’s commandments are largely arbitrary or outdated in our modern world.
Satan the destroyer, the avowed enemy of humanity and of marital happiness, is the primary opponent of God’s true love . One of his purposes is to destroy the family unit, and in so doing to wreak havoc on human relationships and societies.
However, there is hope. God’s Spirit can enlighten our minds and warm our hearts toward Him and toward other human beings.
Read Also: What Is The Order Of The Bible
Characteristics Of True Love According To The Bible
Photo by Ben White
Do you want to know if your partner is truly in love with you? Do you want to know if you truly love someone? Do you want to learn how to grow your love or inspire other people to purify their love? Do you want to understand what true love really means?
True love is extraordinary. Its not an easy thing to do. It could even be the hardest thing to do in this world as we know it. We might think that were already giving true love, but the truth is it might not just be enough.
If you want to know and understand what true love really is, here are 21 signs, qualities or characteristics of a genuine love according to the verses in the Holy Bible.
The First Exhortation: Let Love Be Genuine
So our focus first is on the first exhortation in Romans 12:9, Let love be genuine. Literally: Let love be without hypocrisy. In a sense we begin a new section here at verse 9, and in a sense we dont.
We do in this sense. Verses 4-8 have been about the use of our spiritual gifts, and now Paul turns from the focus on gifts to the focus on the more general way of love in the church. This is just what he did in 1 Corinthians 12-13. Recall that 1 Corinthians 12 is all about spiritual gifts. But then Paul says at the end of chapter 12 in 1 Corinthians 12:31, But earnestly desire the higher gifts. And I will show you a still more excellent way. If I speak in the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I am a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal. So Paul moves from spiritual gifts to the more general and more excellent way of love. He does that in 1 Corinthians, and he does it here.
But in another sense this is not a new section, because Paul is still unfolding what it means to have a transformed mind from verse 2 and what it looks like when we are not thinking more highly of ourselves than we ought but are thinking highly of Christ with the measure of faith that we have as verse 3 says.
So lets linger here and meditate on what hypocrisy is and why people do it, and what love would look like without it.
Don’t Miss: Old Testament Stories In Chronological Order
Love Binds A Persons Good Virtues In Perfect Unity
True love transforms you into a whole new and better person.
Therefore, as Gods chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience. Bear with each other and forgive one another if any of you has a grievance against someone. Forgive as the Lord forgave you. And over all these virtues put on love, which binds them all together in perfect unity. Colossians 3:12-14
What Is Philia Love In The Bible
Philia is the type of intimate love in the Bible that most Christians practice toward each other. This Greek term describes the powerful emotional bond seen in deep friendships.
Philia originates from the Greek term phílos, a noun meaning “beloved, dear … a friend someone dearly loved in a personal, intimate way a trusted confidant held dear in a close bond of personal affection.” Philia expresses experience-based love.
Philia is the most general type of love in Scripture, encompassing love for fellow humans, care, respect, and compassion for people in need. The concept of brotherly love that unites believers is unique to Christianity. Jesus said philia would be an identifier of his followers: “By this everyone will know that you are my disciples if you love one another.”
Don’t Miss: Definition Of Sanctified In The Bible
Love Gives You The Confidence To Face Even The End Of Time
True love keeps you away from sins and cleanses your soul so that you may become confident even on the Day of Judgment.
In this way, love is made complete among us so that we will have confidence on the day of judgment because in this world we are like him. 1 John 4:17
True love is indeed powerful and thats why its not an easy thing to do. Giving pure love involves making great sacrifices and enduring a lot of pain. However, it rewards genuine happiness and fulfillment in life and beyond.
Perhaps we cannot make our love perfect on our first try. But love is not only a one-time act its an act that we should practice consistently. Remember that practice makes perfect. Therefore, dont stop trying to love truly.
I hope this article serves as your guide, not only in identifying if someone is giving you real love, but most importantly in learning how to give it. Take note that true love is more about giving rather than receiving. So start building true love inside you.
Feel free to share this article and share the right love in the world.
Note: All Bible verses presented in this article are based on the New International Version .
Consider The Life Of Paul
A cat or dogs affection is not what Apostle Paul writes about. His first-hand knowledge about love qualifies him as an authority this specific virtue. He survives a shipwreck, beatings, arrests, imprisonments, and ongoing plots to kill him. Regardless of the circumstance, he brings the Gospel to life for others. He didnt care if anyone loved him or not.
His love epistle focuses on the Corinthians less-than-stellar love walk. Love is not at the forefront of their actions which never cuts it with anyone, whether youre a Christian or not. Pauls wants believers to downplay hypocrisy and let love be heartfelt.
Paul tells us how love emerges.
I Timothy 1:5
The goal of this command is love, which comes from a pure heart and a good conscience and a sincere faith.
Walking in love toward others requires letting the Holy Spirit cleanse us as our faith reaches for more of Him. Paul didnt kid himself about living in a body that wants to sin. He accepted Gods grace but Jesus was His love motivator. He knew that loving others magnifies God.
Also Check: How Many Times Does Bible Say Fear Not
How To Describe Love
Feelings of love can be defined as an amalgamation of various other emotions. Love is caring, compassion, patience, not being jealous, not having expectations, giving yourself and other people a chance, and not rushing.
What is love, then? You ask. Love has most often been used as a noun, but in practice, love is a verb. It is about what we do for others and the many ways we make other people feel loved and cared for.
Also Try:What Is The Definition Of Love Quiz?
How Can We Demonstrate Genuine Love For God
Before we attempt to answer the basic question posed by this article, we want to address the question: Why we should love God?
Most importantly, the Bible instructs us to love God. In the New Testament of the Bible, Matthew 22:37-38, Jesus Christ declares, You shall love the LORD your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind. This is the first and great commandment. The wording of is very similar and, to a slightly lesser degree, so is the wording of Luke 10:27. In addition, there are a number of scriptures in the Old Testament of the Bile that command people to love the Lord your God, including Deuteronomy 6:5 11:1, 13, 22 13:3 19:9 30:6, 16, 20 and Joshua 22:5 23:11.
Now, we will consider how we can demonstrate genuine love for God. In this regard, we want to emphasize that our love for God should be genuine love, not self-serving love that is the antithesis of genuine love. We can demonstrate genuine love for God through our sincere efforts to live according to the teachings of the Bible, Gods Holy Word.
In John 14:15, Jesus Christ specifically addresses this matter, declaring, If you love Me, keep My commandments.
Summary and Conclusion
Also Check: Bible Say About Cremation
The Difference Between Superficial And Genuine Love And Why It Matters
When you love others with genuine love, you also show that you love God.
It is so intriguing to me to see superficial love develop into good ol genuine love. It can be fascinating to see the superficial love that individuals express. Superficial love is the way the world expresses its love you know, love that is expressed, but seeks a return of some sort. It is the type of love that seeks the return of a favor or the expression of love written in a card, an item that is gifted out of gratitude of the thought, idea, or of sentimental value.
As Christians, we are called to grow and excel in genuine love, the type of love that doesnt seek a return of anything. As followers of Christ, we do not love others so others will love us we love because God first loved us without strings attached .
Love is perfected when the fear of not getting something in return vanishes away like vapor over a boiling pot. When we reach such levels in our love, we will be imitators of the love God has showered upon the world.
The next time you decide to love someone in a superficial way, remember that God loved you first. You and I must also be mindful of this reality: a huge portion of your relationship with God is based on how you love others. Love with that genuine love , because this is how you show that you love God.
What Is The Definition Of Love
The English word love can be found 311 times in the King James Bible. In the Old Testament, the Song of Solomon refers to it twenty-six times, while the book of Psalms references it twenty-three. In the New Testament, the word love is recorded the most in the book of 1John followed by the gospel of John .
The Greek language, used in the Bible, has at least four words to describe the various aspects of love. Three of these four were used to write the New Testament. The definition of Phileo is that of a brotherly affection toward someone we really like. Agape, which is the deepest love, means doing good things for another person. Storgay refers to loving one’s relatives. It is a relatively unknown term that is used only two times in scripture and only as a compound. Eros, used to describe a sexual or romantic type of love, is not found in Holy writ.
Two of these Greek words for love, Phileo and Agape, were used in the well-known exchange between Peter and Jesus after Christ’s resurrection . Their discussion is a fascinating study into the dynamics of their relationship at that time and how Peter, still conscious of his denial of the Lord , tries to handle his guilt. Please see our article on the different types of love for more information on this interesting topic!
And you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind, and with all your strength. This is the first commandment. .
Don’t Miss: Omer Bible