“Most important of all, continue to show deep love for each other, for love covers a multitude of sins.” – 1 Peter 4:8.
What does God say about love? What is love according to the Bible? We have been given an abundance of Bible verses about loving others, so we can assume it’s important. For example, John 13:34-35 (TPT) says, “So I give you now a new commandment: Love each other just as much as I have loved you. For when you demonstrate the same love I have for you by loving one another, everyone will know that you’re my true followers…”
We are commanded to love one another as Jesus does. There is not one person Jesus does not love and did not come to save, so by default, we should love everyone we lock eyes with, walk past on the street, hear about in the news, live next door to, or sit next to in class. Christian love is more than just a nice, heart-warming feeling. No matter what resources or talents we have, we are all called to love.
God’s love in us changes us. Love makes our actions and spiritual gifts useful. Great faith, acts of service, and miracle-working power produce very little without love. Love involves unselfish service to others and shows that you care. Not all of us can preach or teach. Not all of us can sing or play an instrument. Not all of us will go to foreign lands as a missionary. But we can all love and love is the greatest witness of the Christian life.
Because no matter how edifying the preaching is or the worship, no matter how much we serve in the church, without love it doesn’t mean a whole lot. It was Jesus’ love that drew others to Him. It was love that built the early church and it will be love that will continue to build the church today. When we realize how unconditionally God loves us, we will begin showing that same love to others. When we realize how much He has forgiven us, we will freely forgive those who hurt us. When we realize that everything we have comes from Him, we will generously share with the needy. As we grow in our relationship with Jesus, we will passionately share the good news of that love.
Such love is beyond our ability to grasp with our minds, but it is not beyond our ability to experience with our hearts. The more we study it, the more we understand it, the more we realize, we will move steadily beyond our understanding. But it does not mean that we cannot have confidence in the fact that God unconditionally loves us. Know it, cling to it, and remember it; don’t underestimate the love of God for you.
When we look back on our lives, we will no doubt remember events and experiences. But more than that, we’ll remember the people who loved us, respected, encouraged, affirmed us, and helped make our lives better.
As Christians, our love for others is a reflection of who God is. We are called to love God and love others. When we do this, our loving behaviors and attitudes point back to God and who He is.
- What’s one way God’s love has changed you?
- How is God’s love moving you to show love to others?
- What is one way your love for others can point them back to Jesus?