We’re in the home stretch of this month’s focus on GOD’S LOVE and it’s time to focus on the most powerful picture painted of this in the Bible–AGAPE LOVE. Agape love is beautifully described in 1 Corinthians:
“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. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.” 1 Corinthians 13:4-7
But it is in 1 Thessalonians that we drill into the staggering depth and full animation of AGAPE LOVE:
“But Timothy has just now come to us from you and has brought good news about your faith and love. He has told us that you always have pleasant memories of us and that you long to see us, just as we also long to see you. 7 Therefore, brothers and sisters, in all our distress and persecution we were encouraged about you because of your faith. 8 For now we really live, since you are standing firm in the Lord.” 1 Thessalonians 3:6-8
This is the highlight of Timothy’s report on how the Thessalonians had stood firm in their deep FAITH and allowed it to express self-less LOVE to others. That convinced the Apostle Paul that their faith was GENUINE.
WHY? Because those two key words—FAITH and LOVE—represent GODLINESS which is expressed through love that can only come from true and surrendered Christian character. This AGAPE LOVE is sacrificial, unconditional, and only possible by the invasion of God’s Holy Spirit.
Agape love subordinates SELF and channels all energy and attention toward the good of others. It is not romantic, sexual, or “brotherly love.” It is unconcerned with the self and concerned solely with the greatest good of another. It transcends our emotions and feelings and commits to sacrifice without expecting anything in return. It is the highest kind of love that serves with humility and self-sacrifice directed toward others.
The New Testament refers to AGAPE LOVE over 200 times.
Agape love is so much more than a feeling. It comes from God’s CHARACTER as an outpouring of WHO HE IS (1 John 4:8).
I ask the Holy Spirit to indwell in my soul and help me express AGAPE LOVE in an unconditional and sacrificial way.
WHAT ABOUT YOU?
How could you express AGAPE LOVE in your life this week?
“Whoever does not love does not know God, because God is love.” 1 John 4:8