When thinking about love you naturally think about a lot of things. We think of the loving our parents, our spouse, our kids, our friends, bologna and cheese sandwiches (that’s all Jason…haha!) Even though we use the same word, love, to describe all of these situations it is safe to assume that the type of love is different based on the context. For example, I love my wife Rachel. That love is different then the love for a bologna sandwich…well I hope so anyways.
When reading through the Bible, you come across various types of love and we are going to dive into these types in a second but there is one type of love that sets the standard for how God expects us to love. That type of love is known as “Agape love”. The first think you may think is, “What is Agape love?”. Let’s study this out a bit.
If you are asking yourself, “What is agape love?” the answer is simple. God is Agape love. In 1 John 4:8 the Word of God says “God is Love”. Agape is one of the most important concepts in the Bible and it refers to a selfless, pure, sacrificial love towards someone with their best interest at heart.
God is love. God is agape love. In 1 John 4:18 the Bible speaks about this perfect love that casts out all fear, all worry, all anxiety, all doubt. Agape love is a love with the power to change someones life. It’s that type of unconditional love that if we can show people, will transform this world and make it a better place. You do not have to be reading scripture to manifest scripture. What I mean by this statement is that if we live out the scripture, it is much more powerful then just memorizing it.
God showed you Agape love and that is what can change your life if you would call upon the name of Jesus. He sent his son to die on a cross (self sacrifice), to cover our mistakes. He isn’t expecting us to be perfect, but to be grateful and to just do our best. Whether we are having a great day or terrible day, His love toward us never changes (unconditional). That is agape love.
In John 3 we see a story about a Pharisee named Nicodemus. Nicodemus was a ruler of the Jews. One night when nobody was watching, he snuck out to meet Jesus to ask Him some questions. Nicodemus was confused about the spiritual nature Jesus was teaching about. This is where the famous John 3:16 scripture comes into play as Christ explains to Nicodemus the love or Agape love of God towards us. It blew Nicodemus away.
Lets read John 3:16-19:
“For God so loved the world, that He gave His only Son, so that everyone who believes in Him will not perish, but have eternal life. For God did not send the Son into the world to judge the world, but so that the world might be saved through Him. The one who believes in Him is not judged; the one who does not believe has been judged already, because he has not believed in the name of the only Son of God. And this is the judgment, that the Light has come into the world, and people loved the darkness rather than the Light; for their deeds were evil.
This is such a powerful portion of text but what I want to focus on is the last sentence. It states”and people loved darkness rather then light”. This term love here is the term Agape love. Think about this. They loved their darkness (this can be sin, selfishness, addictions, etc) so much that they sacrificed everything to get it. We see this so often. Families fall a part, businesses go down in flames, friendships lost…all for what? “What is Agape love?” is a question we should all seek because it’s when we truly understand the self sacrificial love of God towards us, has the potential to transform our life.