Is Love Really the Most Important Thing?
From a Christian Perspective
by J.M. Troppello
I Corinthians is known as the ‘love’ chapter in the Bible.
Verse one of this chapter says that if you don’t have love, you sound like a brass or clanging cymbal. Even if you have the gift of prophecy and understand ‘all mysteries and all knowledge,’ and even if you have faith that could move mountains—that means nothing if you don’t have love.
Read through this chapter from I Corinthians. It’s a short chapter and only has 13 verses.
Though I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I have become sounding brass or a clanging cymbal. 2 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. 3 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.
4 Love suffers long and is kind; love does not envy; love does not parade itself, is not puffed up; 5 does not behave rudely, does not seek its own, is not provoked, thinks no evil; 6 does not rejoice in iniquity, but rejoices in the truth; 7 bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.
8 Love never fails. But whether there are prophecies, they will fail; whether there are tongues, they will cease; whether there is knowledge, it will vanish away. 9 For we know in part and we prophesy in part. 10 But when that which is perfect has come, then that which is in part will be done away.
11 When I was a child, I spoke as a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child; but when I became a man, I put away childish things. 12 For now we see in a mirror, dimly, but then face to face. Now I know in part, but then I shall know just as I also am known. 13 And now abide faith, hope, love, these three; but the greatest of these is love. (I Corinthians 13, NKJV)
This chapter ends by saying that faith, hope, and love abide. Yet the greatest of these is love.
Love really is the greatest thing.
Love can bridge the gap between people who have been divided. Love can cause you to pray for people who’ve hurt you. Without God’s love working in your heart, you don’t have the capacity to love others unconditionally.
The Different Types of Love
Our Pastor did an in-depth study years ago on the different types of love. I learned a lot during that study. It was interesting learning about the different types of love.
C.S. Lewis wrote the book, The Four Loves in 1960. This book was based on a sermon series he’d done with the BBC several years before the book was published. The following list describes the four types of love that were mentioned in the Bible, from the Greek language.
Storge – Affectionate love that you have for familiar people, places, or things.
Philia – Friendship love that you have for those close connections.
Eros – Passionate and romantic love for your spouse or significant other.
Agape – Unconditional love where you offer grace and compassion.
Offering Love to the World
Consider some of the following verses in the Bible about love.
1. Hatred stirs up strife, But love covers all sins. (Proverbs 10:12, NKJV)
2. This is My commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you. (John 15:12, NKJV)
3. Let all that you do be done with love. (I Cor. 16:14, NKJV)
4. And above all things have fervent love for one another, for “love will cover a multitude of sins.” (I Peter 4:8, NKJV)
5. He who does not love does not know God, for God is love. (I John 4:8, NKJV)
6. For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life. (John 3:16, NKJV)
7. With all lowliness and gentleness, with longsuffering, bearing with one another in love. (Ephesians 4:2, NKJV)
8. But, speaking the truth in love, may grow up in all things into Him who is the head—Christ—(Ephesians 4:15, NKJV)
The Bible speaks about the agape—unconditional—kind of love many times. Those verses are just some of the examples. It’s so important for Christians to show the love of Christ to other Christians and to those in the world.
It’s only possible to love the way that God loves by accepting the help of the Holy Spirit. Throughout my life, I’ve faltered so many times when I should’ve shown God’s love, and I didn’t. I’m thankful for God’s grace and forgiveness. His mercies are new each day. Through His power, I can love others.
Article syndicated by Mustard Seed Sentinel on Medium.com.
About the Author
J.M. Troppello is an author, writer, and poet. She is the publisher of the online Christian lifestyle magazine, Mustard Seed Sentinel.
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