Summary: “Beloved, let us love one another, for love is from God; and everyone who loves is born of God and knows God. The one who does not love does not know God, for “God is love” (1 John 4:7-8 NASB)
“Beloved, let us love one another, for love is from God; and everyone who loves is born of God and knows God. The one who does not love does not know God, for “God is love” (1 John 4:7-8 NASB)
There are probably fewer words in the modern English language that have been more distorted, misused, abused and overused than the word “love.” As a consequence the word love has lost its original meaning. Love as taught in the Bible is not simply a sentiment, platitude, or indefinable emotion. Most of the people who say they love may just be tolerating and some people may probably have hidden motives. As numerous scholars have researched and discussed, the Greeks have identified, there are different forms and styles of expressing love. To describe these styles, the Ancient Greeks came up with five terms (Mania, Eros, storge, agape and philia) to symbolize the five types of love, which are an attempt to describe the different motives for love.
First is Mania – Manic love is almost not a love at all. The word “lust” is probably not strong enough – “obsession” is closer to the word. This is the love of possession.
Second is Eros – Eros is obviously the root word for “erotic,” but it does not describe sexual love only, it actually describes all emotional love; the feeling of love. Eros Love – stands for passionate, sensual, longing, sexual, romantic love.
Third is Philos – Philos love, generally refers to affection between friends. From this word we have Philadelphia, the “Brotherly Love.”. Philos describes the love between two people who have common interests and experiences, or a fondness.
Fourth is Storgy – storgy is the love one has for a dependent. It is commonly called “motherly love.” It is a kind of family and friendship love. This is the love that parents naturally feel for their children; the love that member of the family have for each other; or the love that friends feel for each other.
Finally “Agape love”, in its purest form, requires no payment or favor in response. Agape is the highest of the five types of love in the Bible. Jesus Christ showed this kind of divine love to his Father and to all humanity. The most common word for God’s love for us is Agape (I John, John 3:16) and the love we are commanded to have for one another (Matt. 5:44, I Cor. 13). This is an unconditional love that sees beyond the outer surface and accepts the recipient for whom he/she is, regardless of their flaws, shortcomings or faults. This kind of love is all about sacrifice as well as giving and expecting nothing in return. The translation of the word agape is love in the verb – form: it is the love demonstrated by your behavior towards another person. It is a committed and chosen love. Agape love seeks only the highest good of others. The meaning of this word for love stands in sharp contrast to that of the other four words. This word alone points to a completely self-sacrificing love, a love that lacks self-interest, self-gratification and self-preservation. Agape love is motivated primarily by the interest and welfare of other. Let us look at this Agape love in details.
God Himself always existed in the fullness of a family-like reality; Father, Son, Holy Spirit. (Trinity is one God existing in three Persons.”) The Father has never been without the Son, the Son never without the Father, neither ever without the Spirit, the Spirit never without either. The amazing mystery of the origin of the human personality is the Trinitarian essence or substance or reality of God. And God so designed that He would develop man not only to be able to relate to his fellow man but to be able to relate to Himself. In fact, as you probably are aware, the human heart cries for Agape love more than anything else. It's the theme of more songs, more plays, more books, more films, more...more literature in general, more poems than any other thing. We long to love and be loved. We long to find that Agape love. And that understanding draws us all the way from Genesis to letter of 1 John, which presents for us a study of God’s love.
Bible exposes the Greatest Act of Love in (Romans 5:6-11) God loves because that is His nature and the expression of His being. He loves the unlovable and the unlovely, not because we deserve to be loved, but because it is His nature to do so, and He must be true to His nature and character. God’s love is displayed most clearly at the Cross, where Christ died for the unworthy creatures who were “dead in trespasses and sins” (Ephesians 2:1), not because we did anything to deserve it, “but God commends His love toward us in that while we were yet sinners Christ died for us” (Romans 5:8). The object of agape love never does anything to merit His love. We are the undeserving recipients upon whom He lavishes that love. His love was demonstrated when He sent His Son into the world to “seek and save that which was lost” (Luke 19:10), and to provide eternal life to those He sought and saved. He paid the ultimate sacrifice for those He loves. There is nothing in this world that men prize so much us they do Love. Show me a person who has no one to care for or love him, and I will show you one of the most miserable beings on the face of the earth. Why do people commit suicide? Very often it is because this thought steals in upon them—that no one loves them; and they would rather die than live.