How would you define love? With today being the first day of February, the month of love, I thought it would be interesting to see how you would define love. My good friend, Webster, defines love as:
strong affection for another arising out of kinship or personal ties
attraction based on sexual desire
affection based on admiration
affection and tenderness felt by lovers
a warm attachment, enthusiasm or devotion
To quote Captain Jack Sparrow,
What say you?” (Sorry, had to throw that one in there for my son, Sam.)
It’s interesting how we use the word love in our culture. We love everything from our mother to our candy bar. We throw the word love around so casually, it seems to have lost meaning.
In Scritpure there are three different Greek words translated as love
philia- brotherly love
eros- sensual love
agape- selfless love
Do you think you could go back through Webster’s list and determine which Greek word would apply? I found it interesting to do so. It is easy to see we rarely mean agape when we use the word love. We’re more often than not referring to philia or eros.
While you may have philia for your spouse and your best friend, eros is reserved for your spouse alone. Agape is that deep abiding love that isn’t conditional. It’s selfless. It’s what Christ has for us. It is what we read about in Romans 5:8,
But God demonstrates His own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.”
It is the kind of love Jesus calls us to have for one another in John 15:12 when He says,
My command is this: Love each other as I have loved you.
If we could grasp and apply this type of love for one another, all or almost all of the world’s problems would cease to exist. How do you love? Are you just looking for friendship? Or are you looking for personal gratification in all you do and say? When and where do you walk in agape? Something to think about as we kick off the month of February. God wants to teach us how to love, if we’re willing. He’s already given us the textbook, all we have to do now is show up for class. I’m in! Are you?
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