Summary: A BIBLICAL APPROACH TO A GROWING PROBLEM WITH BELIEVERS OF ALL WALKS AND DENOMINATIONS.
PART - TIME LOVE
To understand the applicable text and it’s significance we must first clarify the correct nature of love and its definition. What is love? Love Is defined as:
(A) An intense affectionate concern for another.
(B) A passionate attraction to another person.
(C) A beloved person.
This is understood in your Standard American Dictionaries; However, the language used does not depict love as intended in the 13th chapter of I Corinthians.
The love as expressed in this Epistle is what the Christians call Agape, also known as the Love of Choice or Devine Love; it is called devine
love, in the sense that it is the love that God commands.
There are truly no exceptions to Agape Love, you are commanded to love your neighbor as yourself and those who willfully spite you. Therefore, even if someone does not appeal to us we can yet love them, accept them, treat them right and do all they will allow you to do to build them up in the faith (if they are believers) or to win them to the faith if they are not (believers).
Agape Love is well trodden in the 13th chapter of I Corinthians, where as Paul responds to questions concerning spiritual gifts and relegates the
consequences for the absence of love.
Looking at verses 4 - 8 Paul makes it very clear that if you posess any gift lacking love then you are
nothing; Moreover, we know and prophecy in part meaning we are incomplete. Which brings me to my argument.
We are looking at Love as explicated in Paul’s Spiritual view in the epistle of the 13th chapter of I Corinthians which are true standards of love and guidelines that we may emulate in our “Daily Christian Walk”.
I believe that we often time get the rightful meaning of “Love” and its importance mixed - up.
(A) Looking at Love 2 Ways
(1) Conditional Love
(2) Unconditional Love
Conditional Love: Is in essence that which from a humanistic perspective is love that contains conditions or stipulations.
We as indivisuals, Christians and the like are willing to render our love but only to attain love or acceptance in return, this is conditional love or
as has been said over the year “love with strings attached.” Such as : “I love you if you live up to my expectations.” “I love you if you make me feel good.” “I love you if you are beautiful and rich.”
Luke 6:32 Says:
But if you love those who love you, what credit is that to you? For even sinners do the same.
Unconditional Love: On the other hand is that which is not subject to any conditions or limitations. There are no strings attached, and no choices.
In Luke 6:27, 28 Jesus Says:
“But I say to you who hear: Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you “Bless those who curse you, and pray for those who spitefully use you.
In this Epistle verses 4 - 7 Paul expresses His deep concerns for the acts of conditional love; furthermore, gives the legitimate answer to
unconditional love. The love that God parts to all because it is His nature.
Nonetheless, there are those that can say the words “ I Love You” but have not the understanding of the requirements of what true love entails.
I John 4:8 Says:
He who does not love does not know God, for God is love.
Knowing that God is love it should be well understood that his love is full - time : winter - summer - spring - fall
It is love that suffers long - It is love that is kind - It is love that does not envy.
It is love that does not parade itself - It is love that is not puffed up.
Part - time love is of the opposite extreme, it is everything opposite of devine love, in the sense that they that posess this character are unstable, unsure and above all, insecure lacking the greatest of all things commanded of God. “To Love.”
Even as we speak today there is someone amongst you that are charaterized by the very lacking of this Devine love; needless to say it is that very one that says he’s a Christian; However, his holy conduct assures you that he is just Part - Time.
Part - Time Love
Will not suffer long, and is not always kind.
Somedays envies - and somedays doesn’t, sometimes will parade himself - sometimes won’t somedays puffed up - somedays not.
Part - Time Love
Love: does not behave rudely, does not seek its own, is not provoked, thinks no evil.
But when you are characterized with Part - Time love
somedays you may behave rudely - somedays you won’t