The Meaning of True Love
Do you know that a lot of Hollywood movies have hoodwinked us into believing that love is this overwhelming feeling or emotion that you have in your heart? Is love really just a feeling or a strong emotion?
What is the meaning of true love? How does the Bible define true love?
1 Corinthians 13:4-8 NKJV
Love suffers long and is kind; love does not envy; love does not parade itself, is not puffed up; does not behave rudely, does not seek its own, is not provoked, thinks no evil; does not rejoice in iniquity, but rejoices in the truth; bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. Love never fails…
According to Paul while writing under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, Love is an ACTION; Love is WHAT YOU DO; Love is HOW YOU BEHAVE; Love is HOW YOU THINK; Love is WHAT YOU SEEK; Love is WHAT YOU REJOICE IN; Love is WHAT YOU HOPE & BELIEVE; Love NEVER FAILS.
Love is a way of living; it’s a character that you show and do.
Why is the divorce rate so high around the world? Why is there so much strife among people? It’s because most people don’t know the meaning of love according to 1 Corinthians 13:4-8.
We are more inclined to want to FEEL the EMOTIONS of love rather than to show ACT and BEHAVE the characteristics of TRUE LOVE.
If LOVE was only a feeling and an emotion – then love wouldn’t require us to “endure all things” or “bear all things”. TRUE LOVE sometimes requires you to do things you wouldn’t necessarily feel like doing.
LOVE IS A COMMANDMENT
Matthew 22:37-40 NKJV
Jesus said to him, “‘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. And the second is like it: ‘YOU SHALL LOVE your neighbor as yourself.’ On these TWO COMMANDMENTS hang all the Law and the Prophets.”
We are COMMANDED to love by Jesus. Love is NOT a suggestion; Love is NOT a choice according to Christ.
The definition of the word “commandment” is an order or injunction given by authority; a command; a charge; a precept; a mandate.
Therefore we are called to not only to love God and to love our neighbor – but we must also TEACH others the TRUE meaning of LOVE and we must TEACH others to LOVE according to what the word of God teaches us.
LOVE isn’t just a feeling. Love is God’s desires in action.
1 Corinthians 13:1-3 NKJV
Though I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, but have NOT love, I have become sounding brass or a clanging cymbal. And though I have the gift of prophecy, and understand all mysteries and all knowledge, and though I have all faith, so that I could remove mountains, but have NOT love, I am nothing. And though I bestow all my goods to feed the poor, and though I give my body to be burned, but have NOT love, it profits me nothing.
Whatever you are doing in your life – what is it that motivates your thoughts, actions & deeds? Are your thoughts and actions motivated by the LOVE of both God and man? Or are you secretly motivated by wanting the praise of men or other self seeking reasons?
In Matthew 6:1-7 Jesus said that we should do our acts and deeds with the motivation of pleasing God and not so that we become glorified by men. The Pharisees, Sadducees & hypocrites were motivated by power, position, fame and they were after the praise of men rather than the praise of God.
I believe that when God does ANYTHING – His primary motivation is LOVE because God IS love (1 John 4:8)
When God sent His only begotten Son to be crucified for the sins of the world – it was out of LOVE (John 3:16)
Matthew 22:35-40 NKJV
Then one of them, a lawyer, asked Him a question, testing Him, and saying, “Teacher, which is the great commandment in the law?”. Jesus said to him, “‘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. And the second is like it: ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ On these two commandments hang all the Law and the Prophets.”
Jesus when asked which is the GREATEST commandment responded immediately by telling them that they must LOVE GOD with our entire being, that is ALL our HEART, ALL our SOUL and ALL our MIND.
Today, are you loving God with everything in you? Today are you motivated in all your thoughts & actions by the LOVE of God?
Paul states in 1 Corinthians 13:1-3, that we can do a lot of things that are good on the outside – but with the wrong motive inwardly. If we DO NOT have LOVE INSIDE US, “it profits nothing.”
God wants us to be motivated firstly by our LOVE for HIM, and our LOVE for our NEIGHBOUR. When we act in LOVE, our reward from God is awesome.
1 Corinthians 13:13 NKJV
And now abide faith, hope, love, these three; but the GREATEST of these is LOVE.