How Is Your Love Life? Part One

Galatians 5: 19 – 26

Jesus said, “By this all will know that you are My disciples, if you have love for one another.” (John 13:35).

Our culture is one noted for synthetics, substitutes, and simulations.  When anything of value is made, immediately someone will copy it.  It is the most common form of flattery. One common characteristic of the fakes is they never meet the standards of the genuine.

Our Lord said “love.”  Many of His followers took Him at His word and did it.  The impact and influence was so dramatic that the world tried to copy it.  Hoping for the same fulfilling result offered by genuine love, the world has come up even more empty as a result of fake love.

Love such as Christ spoke of is revealed to be a product of a Holy Spirit-filled life.  In Galatians 5:22 we are given a list of the “fruit” of the Spirit.  Upon first looking at the passage, it appears there is an improper verb tense used.  The word “fruit” is singular, but the result is plural.  This is easily understood when we understand the meaning of what the Greek word translated “fruit” means to our modern mind.  It was the word “karpos” which can be translated “harvest.”  The time of harvest is still called the fruit season in some areas.  In this light the writer was saying “The things the Holy Spirit harvests in a believer’s life are….”

What follows is a bumper crop of what a life that is obedient to Jesus results in, by the power of the Holy Spirit. Standing forth as the first on the list is what energizes all others … love. It is the trademark of a Spirit filled life. It has to be expressed because love is a verb, an active verb, meaning it is something that you do. To say you love a person or institution and not show it is an oxymoron. 

Consider this Greek word translated “love” in comparison with the others. 

“Agape” is the Greek word translated “love.” We have one word, love for a variety of emotions, acts, and attitudes. The definitive Greek language has several.

Another is “eros.”  They used this word to speak of love that we know as physical attraction between persons on a sexual level.  Their word for that emotion was not related to what was meant by agape.  We get our word “erotic” from their word. How would it sounds to say “I erotic you?”

“Philos,” was the Greek word for a kind of love which we describe by friendship or brotherly love.  It is warm affection apart from any sexual attraction at all.

“Agape” is the Greek word most often translated as love in the Bible.  The word emerged in the Bible era meaning “the ultimate willful act of self-sacrificing for the welfare of someone else.” Agape kind of love is Calvary’s love.  The proto-type of agape is the love Christ showed us. We ought to love one another.