Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no account of wrongs. Love takes no pleasure in evil, but rejoices in the truth. It bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. Love never fails. – 1 Corinthians 13:4-8a BSB
1 Corinthians 13 is often referred to as “the Love Chapter”. The Greek word for love is used 9 times in 13 verses! Repetition is the mother of success. The NEW TESTAMENT was written in Greek. Greek is a much more descriptive and specific language, English can be somewhat limiting comparatively. To truly understand God’s Word we need to go back to the original language. By going back to the original language this helps readers fully understand God’s Word, as it was intended when delivered. As Christians, we should love everybody, just as God loves us! That WORD for God’s love is AGAPE. Technically we are not able to AGAPE anyone, without the HOLY SPIRIT. It is a Godly love. There are four Greek words that are all translated love, but they are different types of love. Eros: Refers to romantic love felt towards one’s spouse. This Greek term is where the word “erotic” is derived from. The word “Eros” is not actually used in either the Old or New Testaments- except when talked about negatively, as in sex outside of God’s allowable confines. See Proverbs 7:18. God never says anything bad about SEX inside of marriage. Sex is a gift of marriage, however God does not, never does HE equate LOVE with SEX. Sex and Love are not equated, they are not considered interchangeable like we do today. When people talk about being “IN LOVE” with someone today, they usually mean they are sexually attracted to them- that is NOT how God sees things. God never uses the EROS to talk about LOVE. The argument of the Homosexual and LGBTQ…XYZ is; “Don’t tell me who to love. Love shows up in many forms….” Again, this is talking about SEX, not LOVE.
Leader, Philia: Refers to feelings one has towards close friends “brotherly love” This word was used in the New Testament to describe Jesus’ love for his disciples (John 20:2) and for Lazarus (John 11:3). Storge: This Greek word refers to love we have for our parents, siblings, our children, and other members of our family. Peter used this word in the negative in Romans 1:31 when he described the pagans that he was in contact with being without “natural affection.” This 4th word is the one that God is talking about here in this LOVE CHAPTER. Agape: This is the kind of love that we should have for all men, and also for our enemies. It is a selfless kind of love that Christians must have in regard to acting in the best interest for all human beings.” But I say unto you, Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you;” (Matthew 5:44). Remember Jesus’ NEW COMMANDMENT? “A new commandment I give unto you, That ye love one another; as I have loved you, that ye also love one another. By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples, if ye have love one to another.” (John 13:34-35) This is the same kind of love Paul talks about here in 1 Corinthians 13.
Conduit, Agape is GOD’s LOVE. It has such a richness and a fullness that only God can deliver, for HE IS LOVE! It consists of many ingredients. It is made up of regard, respect, and caring concern for another person that does not depend on the worthiness or “lovableness” of that person (Romans 5:8, Luke 6:32-35) It has an act of the will which places the welfare of others above the interests of oneself. (Philippians 2:1-5) The standard for AGAPE love is CHRIST! The standard is Christ’s sacrificial love for His people. (John 13:34) Just like the list of ingredients in a product are the ingredients listed here in LOVE. In a product that we purchase the list of ingredients is in proportion to their presence in the product. The items listed first, have a larger percentage of the makeup of the product. Notice the list of INGREDIENTS that make up Agape love. The First word in the INGREDIENTS IS PATIENCE! We must get on GOD’s timing to AGAPE. God’s timing is everything. “God walks ‘slowly’ because He is love. If He is not love, He would have gone much faster. Love has its speed. It is an inner speed. It is a spiritual speed. It is a different kind of speed from the technological speed to which we are accustomed. . .It goes on in the depth of our life, whether we notice it or not, whether we are currently hit by a storm or not. . .” (Theologian Kosuke Koyama) Patience is also known by its earlier used word, LONG SUFFERING. We are never more like God than when we are to be long suffering, patient- on God’s timeline. If we are going to have the love of God, then we need to be IN THE SPIRIT and on HIS schedule, not ours! Be patient in Love and be like Jesus!