Love is so much more than merely a strong affection for someone else.
It transcends all of space and time. It permeates each one of us. It is through the purest love that God can forgive a multitude of sins, allowing us eternal life.
It’s easy to say that love is one of the most important subjects covered in the Bible. Today, the word love is synonymous with so many other things, including acceptance, tolerance, open-mindedness, and peace. Love is not something reserved for special occasions like Valentine’s Day. It is something to be experienced throughout every day of your life.
Today, we’re going to cover a few Bible verses about love and what it means to love.
Describing a biblical view of love turns out to be no simple matter.
First, the Bible is written in both Hebrew and Greek, and each of these languages has multiple words that we translate as “love.”
There are three distinct Greek words that define love:
All three kinds of love are represented in the Bible, which means that all three are created and blessed by God.
Eros is what we think of first when we consider love. Although it isn't present in the Greek New Testament, it depicts the passionate love praised in the Song of Solomon, which binds lover and beloved together.
Its presence in the Bible testifies that humans are moved by beauty and desire and that passion, romance, and intimacy are essential elements of the human experience.
Phileo, in contrast, is a more stable and constant emotion. Consistency notwithstanding, however, phileo is also a powerful emotion that captures the love of great friends. For example, Jesus wept for Lazarus, whom he loved as a great friend (John 11:35).
Phileo is ultimately not about passion. It concerns commitment, the love that binds one to another in enduring friendship.
Agape dominates the New Testament. However, it is rarely found in contemporary literature of the Greek-speaking world of the first century. Scholars agree that it best captures what we might call “Christian love.”
Agape depicts the self-sacrificing love of a parent for a child and describes both God’s love for the world, as shown in Christ, and the love Christians should show to all people.
Now that we understand these different kinds of love let’s talk about what it means to love.
First, let’s take a look at the definition of the word itself. The official definition of love is “an intense feeling of deep affection.”
Love is typically associated with romantic love. But great love can take on so many different forms. It creates perfect unity.
While many of us would like to feel loved, we face many hurdles in taking actions that allow love to flow freely throughout our lives and relationships. We have many ways of defending ourselves against love and can struggle to give and receive perfect harmony with ease, openness, and vulnerability.
Sometimes it can be hard to open ourselves to love. One way to open yourself to love is by implementing Love & Kindness Meditative Prayers for a start.
With love being so closely connected to meaning and fulfillment, it's valuable for each of us to define love as an action or series of actions we can take to bring us closer to the people we value.
When we define love by a series of actions, it becomes easier to recognize and understand. Think back to everything Jesus did in His life through His love of God and the children of God.
Did He simply talk about love without using His actions to emphasize the point? No, He didn’t. Throughout His life, Jesus showed us His love by leading through example.
Let’s take a look at some verses which can help us lead by that example.
Love is the emotion that reveals our deepest devotion to the Lord. It’s no surprise that there are countless verses about love in the Bible. One could argue it’s the most important topic covered in the Bible.
With that in mind, here are eight Bible quotes about love.
“Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs.”
“Let love and faithfulness never leave you; bind them around your neck, write them on the tablet of your heart. Then you'll win favor and a good name in the sight of God and man.”
“And so we know and rely on the love God has for us. God is love. Whoever lives in love lives in God, and God in them.”
“And now these three remain: faith, hope, and love. But the greatest of these is love.”
“Love must be sincere. Hate what is evil; cling to what is good.”
“If I have the gift of prophecy and can fathom all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have a faith that can move mountains but do not have love, I am nothing.”
“My command is this: Love each other as I have loved you.”
“No one has ever seen God; but if we love one another, God lives in us, and His love is made complete in us.”
One cannot underestimate the power of love, as depicted in the Bible through Christ Jesus and the Holy Spirit. Love is the greatest emotion on earth, it is the bond of peace that can move mountains and split the sea.
The feeling of love connects us to our dear friends, family, and neighbors, and, most importantly, our Heavenly Father. For love isn’t merely a feeling, but the fruit of the spirit. It is a constant action from all of us. And loving God is the most perfect love of all. There can be no greater love.