God’s Love is an Agape love which is the highest form of love and His love is never ending for us. Now there are many times that love is referred to in the New Testament and most of the references are referred to “His Agape Love”. This is the type of love that the Apostle John speaks about in (John 3:16). This love is totally sacrificial and is committed to the well-being of another. Also this is God’s kind of love. This is a fruit of the Spirit who indwells in us as a believer in Jesus Christ (Galatians 5:22). Now as we look at the fruit of the Spirit in (Galatians 5:22), we as believers in Christ can look at it like this; First, real joy is love enjoying. Second, Peace is love resting. Third, Patience (or longsuffering) is love waiting. Fourth, kindness is love reacting. Fifth, Goodness is love choosing. Sixth, Faithfulness is love keeping its word. Seventh, Gentleness is love being able to empathize. Eighth, Self-control is love being in charge. We should remember that this kind of love is not something we can work upon our own; it is an outflow of the Holy Spirit.
In book of (I John), there are 105 verses about love which is mentioned more than forty times. That’s a lot of verses in such a short epistle about love. With seven words, however, the apostle John summarizes his teaching on this important topic, “We love, because He first loved us.” We love Him because He first loved us, and we love others because He first loved us. Love starts and stops with God. He is the Author. He created it out of His very nature, and He desires that we share and experience this wonderful gift to humankind.
When you think about it, our similarities to God are few. We are not omniscient, omnipresent, or omnipotent. But God is love, and He wants us to share that attribute with Him and with others. What a marvelous privilege! We are most like God when we love. I think it is interesting to compare the most familiar verse in the Bible with another verse that John wrote. Most people can quote (John 3:16), but look at (I John 3:16): “By this we know love, because He laid down His life for us. And we also ought to lay down our lives for the brethren.”
I understand that the numbers or references on the verses are not in the original, but the two 3:16 verses have a complementary message: love gives sacrificially. The world knows little about sacrificial love. In defining love, I needed to provide three different definitions to give the full scope of it. Here in (I John 4:7-8); He tells us that “Love” is the dominant theme of these verses. John addressed his readers here as “Beloved,” then he said let us love one another: for love is of God; and every one that loveth is born of God, and knoweth God. Then John said, He that loveth not knoweth not God; for God is love.
- First there are many times that love is referred to in the New Testament and most of the references are referred to “His Agape Love”. This is the type of love that the Apostle John speaks about in (John 3:16). This love is totally sacrificial and is committed to the well-being of another. Also this is God’s kind of love. This is a fruit of the Spirit who indwells in us as a believer in Jesus Christ (Galatians 5:22).
- The second kind of love mentioned is phileo. This is a brotherly kind of love. The Bible says to “be kindly affectionate to one another with brotherly love, in honor giving preference to one another” (Romans 12:10). Furthermore, we are admonished to “let brotherly love continue” (Hebrews 13:1), implying that it can diminish if not watched over and cultivated. This healthy form of love should saturate the body of Christ.
- The third type of love is eros. This is sensual or sexual love. Though this word is not used specifically in Scripture, it is certainly implied through the admonitions concerning marriage. Although the world has tried its best to distort this and this seems to be the type of love that is written about, sung about, and acted out the most and God invented eros love for the most intimate part of marriage.
I think that sums up the definitions and also gives us the background that John was setting for us. It is amazing that love is so complex we cannot define it easily, and yet John, “that apostle whom Jesus loved,” summarizes it so beautifully by saying, “We love, because He first loved us.”
If I asked you why God created you, what would your answer be? Why were you born? You and I were created so that God could express His love to us and we could respond with love. Because He is love, and because that is His very nature, He wanted an object for His love. So He created man and woman. You and me.
How does God express His love? In many ways, but let’s look at a few.
- First, God expresses His love through creation. The trees, the lovely flowers, the gorgeous mountains, the bright stars, the moon in all of its stages and these are tangible expressions of His love. I look at the ocean and think, of “The One who makes the tides ebb and flow cares for me”. I climb the mountains in all of their majesty and think, The One who created these is omnipotent in my life. God expresses His love for us through creation.
- Second, God expresses His love in giving us the freedom to choose. That sounds strange, doesn’t it? It almost seems that He would love us more if He had made the parameters a bit tighter. His love is so great, however, He has given us the freedom to say no. No one wants to be married to a robot. The wonder of love is when a person chooses to love you. He delights when we choose to love Him out of our free will, which in love He gave us. In giving Adam and Eve the free will to choose to sin, He showed a new dimension of His love and He loves willful sinners.
- Third, God expresses His love by putting us in a family. I love this truth you and I are part of a large family and God is Father, Jesus Christ is our elder Brother, the Holy Spirit is our indwelling Comforter. Beyond that, the body of Christ comprises our brothers and sisters! A woman who is an only child said she loved knowing that she really has siblings, and in reality they are blood relatives. Think of the security, the protection, and the fellowship the family of God affords. Taking church lightly, and attending sporadically, is ingratitude toward the One who put us in a family. It’s akin to refusing to show up for family reunions because we have other things that are more important.
- Fourth, God expressed His love in sending the Holy Spirit to live within us. He said He was going to send one just like Himself to reside in us. He did not just love us; He empowered us to love Him and others!
- Fifth, God expresses His love by engineering our circumstances for our good and His glory. Almost everyone can quote (Romans 8:28), but few of us really grab hold of the truth that He loves us enough to make all things work together for good. He is vitally interested and involved in everything that interests or involves us. God expresses His love toward us in being intensely involved in our lives.
- Sixth, God expresses His love toward us by providing heaven. We had absolutely nothing to do with it. His Son is still busy preparing a place for us, and we get there only by the grace of God.
- Seventh, God expresses His love toward us by His uninterrupted presence in our lives. One writer put it this way: “For He Himself has said, ‘I will never leave you nor forsake you’ (Hebrews 13:5). This Presence is there during the death of loved ones; during sleepless nights over a wayward child; during bad results from medical tests; during financial woes. Often the numbness of pain keeps us from sensing His presence, but He is there nonetheless. Each time I listen, I’m sending a message to you and what you say matters; and you’re important to me and I love you.
Now there are days that I felt sad and alone. So I just knelt before the Lord and cried out, to “God, it’s just me again.” In the fog, Jesus whispered to me in His loving way, “I’m here my child”. And I’ll always be here, no matter what.” I couldn’t stop praising Him for His love and presence. I’m sure you could write ways that God has expressed His love to you. But the bottom line is, He expresses His love. His love is not dormant; He actively expresses it day in and day out. Having looked at some of the ways He expresses His love, we need to see what His love is like because He wants us to express that same type of love toward Him and others. What does God’s love look like?
To begin with, His love is perfect. His love is everything it possibly can be. One Sunday morning before coming to church, I knelt down by my bed, struggling in spirit. God said to me in clear way, “My Child, you can trust my perfect love.” I wept with joy. I have clung to that truth ever since. You and I can trust perfect love. And God’s love is absolutely perfect. His perfect love is a gift. We can’t work for it. Every time someone gives a gift and the receiver tries to repay the giver, it is no longer a gift. We could never earn His love, and He gives it out of His very nature. God just can’t help loving you. His perfect love that He gives us is everlasting. We need to memorize this verse: “I have loved you with an everlasting love; therefore with loving-kindness I have drawn you” (Jeremiah 31:3). We can do nothing to make God stop loving us. What good news! God’s love never, ever fades. Furthermore, His perfect, everlasting love that He gives the believer is unconditional. Some people were raised-up hearing, “I’ll love you if,” or “I’ll take you back when” There is no if or maybe or fine print or footnotes to God’s love. It is totally unconditional. He never says, “I’ll take you back if you do something right.” But it goes farther. God’s perfect, everlasting love that He gives us unconditionally is a sacrificial love. That is what the Cross is all about: “God so loved the world that He gave his only begotten Son.” Now God wants us to have this same sacrificial love toward one another. It doesn’t make any difference whether people reject us or not, we still express love toward them. Of course, its supernatural source is the Holy Spirit. If that is not enough, God’s perfect, everlasting, sacrificial, unconditional love that He gives us is immeasurable. The apostle Paul assures us that we are “rooted and grounded in love,” and we need to be “able to comprehend with all the saints what is the width and length and depth and height” (Ephesians 3:17–18). Paul also tells us that His love “passes knowledge” (verse 19). I think Paul is indicating that while we need to try to grasp all the ramifications of such perfect love in every sphere, and it is immeasurable; we will never be able to take it all in.
We are called to love God. Jewish men recited the following verse both morning and evening, “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your strength” (Deuteronomy 6:5). We are to love Him with all of the heart, the seat of the emotions; with all of the soul, the core of personality; with all of our strength, all that is within us; with all of our might, consumed with Him. How do we work that into our daily lives? By obedience. Three times in (John 14), Jesus reminds us that love equals obedience. In essence He says, “Don’t tell me that you love me and choose to put up with sin!” My love is to be evident in instantaneous confession when sin is pointed out. That’s when He is my center of attention and all my emotional energy moves toward Him. But there is more. Not only am I to love God, but I am to love myself. “You shall love your neighbor as yourself” (Mark 12:31). The world has corrupted this self-love into the motto, “You got to look out for number one.” The Bible does not teach that. The Bible teaches a healthy love for ourselves because we are His workmanship and worth loving. Do you know how people can tell whether they love themselves? By the way they treat themselves. If they abuse their bodies with alcohol or tobacco or overeating, they are not loving themselves enough to care for their bodies. Satan will say, “You’re not worth loving.” But God said, “You are my workmanship. You are worth My Son’s dying for. You are incredibly valuable.” We need to see ourselves as God sees us. Our sense of self-worth can come not from what others think of us but from what God thinks of us. We are the apple of His eye. Not only are we called to love God and ourselves, but we are also called to love our neighbors. This is perhaps the hardest of the three commands.
In (John 14-17), Jesus emphasized that we are to love others. That is how the world is to know we are Christians. True, some people are more lovable than others, but love is not an emotion; it is a decision. We can choose by our will, with the Holy Spirit indwelling and empowering us, to love. We can ask the most unlovable people, “How can I help you to be all God wants you to be?” The first fruit of the Spirit is love; it is the heart of it all. Some people cannot handle love. They are uncomfortable with affection. Sometime they are so scarred emotionally that they are afraid to be loved. They fear you will expect them to love in return and they are incapable of doing that because of damaged emotions. But genuine agape love doesn’t expect love in return, so love them anyhow. Jesus doesn’t stop with calling on us to love our neighbors. He calls on us to love our enemies as well. This is a supernatural calling, and we must rely on the Holy Spirit to give us the capacity to love them. If love is a feeling, we are all in trouble. Our feelings are fickle and they fluctuate. But the decision to do what is the best for others can be steady, no matter what we feel. When the alarm clock goes off on a cold, rainy morning, we get ready for work whether or not we feel like it. By an act of will, we throw back the covers and put our feet on the floor. Now there are times, loving others demands the same kind of discipline and determination. Remember there is nothing God loves like He loves you.
Remember the story of Peter’s catching fish after Jesus telling him to cast his net on the other side of the boat is a familiar one. After breakfast, however, Jesus and Peter talked. Jesus asked Peter three times if he loved Him. Jesus knew the answer but He wanted Peter to realize the answer. Jesus asked the first two times, “Peter, do you Love Me?” That is, “Peter, do you love me with sacrificial love?” And Peter answered, “Yes, Lord; you know that I Love you.” In other words, “Jesus, You know that I love you with brotherly love.” The third time Jesus asked, “Peter, do you even Love Me?” And Peter was grieved because he said unto him the third time, Lovest thou me? And he said unto him, Lord, thou knowest all things; thou knowest that I love thee. Jesus saith unto him, “Feed my sheep”. (John 21:17) Peter never acknowledged in this passage that he loved Jesus with anything more than a friendship kind of love. We need only to read the books of (I Peter and II Peter) to see that Peter had come a long way after this conversation. He later wrote, “And though you have not seen Him, you love Him” (I Peter 1:8). Both epistles are overflowing with love which is agape love for the Lord Jesus Christ.
When God wanted us to know who He is and what He is like, He came in person. God entered time and demonstrated His love through Jesus Christ. We should remember that Jesus our Savior is fully God and fully human. He showed us how to be a loving human, and how to obey God with our lives and also to show love to others. For love to be true, it sometimes has to be velvet and sometimes it has to be steel. Your life without love is empty and meaningless no matter how gifted we are. There’s nothing you can do to get Him to love you and there’s nothing you can do to make Him stop. The creator God is a personal God who loves us. But all creation points us to a loving God, and His love is mostly seen in his Son Jesus Christ. Just remember that his name is Jehovah and that God created all things and His love is never ending.
Now when you open your bible never forget that God loves you. There are two love chapters in the New Testament and they are first Corinthians chapter 13 and first John chapter 4. Jesus said I give you a new commandment that you love one another as I have loved you, that you also love another. One of the most quoted verse in the bible is (John 3:16); and this is about Jesus’ love for the whole world. Now in (John 3:15-16); the Apostle John said, “That whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have eternal life”. Here John tells us; “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” This verse has been translated into more than 1100 languages. This Bible verse tells of the one and only Savior, who loved us with an everlasting love and His name is Jesus. Also this Bible verse recorded in 27 different languages of the world and are understood by more than three-quarters of the earth’s population. Below you will find many scriptures on God’s love. Please take the time to read them and study God’s Word and may God bless you always.
(I John 2:10); “He that loveth his brother abideth in the light, and there is no occacsion of stumbling in him.”
(I John 4:7); “Beloved, let us love one another, for love is of God, and every one that loveth is born of God, and knoweth God.”
(I John 4:11); “Beloved, if God so loved us we ought to love one another.”
(Romans 13:8); “Owe no man anything but to love one another; for he that loveth another hath fulfilled the law.”
(Hebrews 13:1); Let brotherly love continue.”
(Galatians 5:14); “For all law is fulfilled in one word even in this thou shall love thy neighbor as thyself.”
(John 13:34); “A new commandment I give unto you, that ye love one another as I have loved you, that ye also love one another.”
(John 13:35); “By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples if ye have love one to another.”
(I Thessalonians 4:9); “But as touching brotherly love ye need not that I write unto you; for ye yourselves are taught of God to love one another.”
(Romans 12:10); “Be kindly affectioned one to another with brotherly love, in honor preferring one another.”
(I Peter 1:22); “Seeing you have purified your souls in obeying the truth through the Spirit unto unfeigned love of the brethren see that ye love one another with a pure heart feverently.”
(John 15:12); This is my commandment that ye love one another, as I have loved you.
(John 3:16); “For God so loved the world, he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.”
(I John 4:19); We love him, because he first loved us.
(Hebrews 6:10); For God is mot unrighteous to forget your work and labor of love, which ye have shown toward his name, in that ye have ministered to the saints, and do minister.
(Revelation 2:19); I know thy works, and love, and service, and faith, and thy patience, and thy works; and the last to be more than the first.
(Ephesians 6:24); Grace be with all them that love our Lord Jesus Christ in sincerity.
(Mark 12:33); And to love him with all the heart, and with all the understanding, and with all the soul, and with all the strength, and to love his neighbor as himself, is more than all whole burnt offerings and sacrifices.
(I Timothy 1:5); Now the end of the commandment is love out of a pure heart, and of a good conscience, and of faith unfeigned.
(I Timothy 4:12); Let no man despise thy youth, but be thou an example of the believers, in word, in conduct, in love, in spirit, in faith, in purity.
(II Timothy 3:10); But thou hast fully known my doctrine, manner of life, purpose, faith, long-suffering, love, patience.
Now in (I John 4:7-8); the Apostle John instructs us as, beloved, let us love one another: for love is of God; and everyone that loveth is born of God, and knoweth God. Then John said that He that loveth not knoweth not God; for God is love. I believe that God’s love is unique because His love always finds what is best for others and God’s love benefits those who receive it and for those who witness it. We should remember that God’s love works for God’s values; and His truth, His purpose, His joy, and many more things that we cannot understand.
Remember; if you are not saved our God has the power to save anyone that calls upon the name of Jesus Christ and repents of their sins. Now all that are lost need God’s power because we have a problem with sin. The Bible tells us that, “For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God,” (Romans 3:23). Now you can find the way to Heaven in the book of (Romans 10:9). This scripture in the bible tells us that “If you confess with your mouth, that “Jesus is Lord,” and that you believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved.” We all need to confess our sin and ask God for his forgiveness. When you confess Jesus Christ as your Lord, then this involves an agreeing with God about your sin and your need for Salvation. You must repent of your own personal sins, by doing this you are willing to turn away from the direction in life in which you are going. Now to “believe in your heart” is to place your faith in Jesus Christ your Lord and Savior, also you are trusting that Jesus died on the Cross to pay for your sins. But our God proves His own love for us in that while we were still sinners, Jesus Christ died for all of us. (Romans 5:8). If you would like to have Salvation in our Lord Jesus Christ, you sincerely pray a prayer like this one; “Please God, I confess to you my sins and I need for you to save me right now. Then turn away from your sins and place your faith in Jesus Christ as your Savior and Lord of your life. Then you will have a home in Heaven forever. Amen.”
Now this concludes our Bible Study on the Scriptures of love and always remember that Jesus is the only one who loves you and cares for you in His Holy Word. Remember that everything on this web-site is free. Please pass them on to other people if they have helped you.
Your, Brother in Christ,