The Definition of ‘Love’

DATE WRITTEN: Friday, 2020-05-22
WRITTEN AT: Okeechobee, FL

BIBLE REFERENCE: 1 Corinthians 13:4
TRANSLATION: The Passion Translation (TPT)

BIBLE TEXT: Love is large and incredibly patient.[f] Love is gentle and consistently kind to all. It refuses to be jealous[g] when blessing comes to someone else. Love does not brag about one’s achievements nor inflate its own importance.

OBSERVATION: It would seem appropriate that Webster and other dictionary writers would have simply put as their definition for ‘Love’: See 1 Corinthians 13 in the written Word of God. Let’s take time today to really allow the beginning verses of this chapter to soak in and clarify, or remind us, of the meaning of a word we use and abuse a lot.

APPLICATION: Notice that at weddings where the focus of the whole ceremony, and the whole idea of what brought a couple together, is the subject of ‘Love’. Of particular interest is the ‘go-to’ place for pastors when trying to reiterate the key word that will hold marriages together. I have not been to a ceremony where the best dictionary is taken out to help define ‘love’, but instead the Bible is always used, as the pastor aims to find the most authoritative description of this important word. Because we have so many ways that we use the word ‘love’, it becomes a challenge to really share with a couple what we are actually feel about the subject. You see, in the Bible, there are 5 different words to better define what we are saying in reference to ‘love’, but they can’t be used in a marriage ceremony, because we don’t use these words in our current vocabulary: Ahab; Agapao; Agape; Phileo; and Philadelphia. However, we know from experience that we assume several things when we think of love and we have to be very careful with that. Think about the following: a). If someone gives us an unexpected gift, whether monetary or something else of value – we may tend to think that they really love us; b). If someone really looks out for us and tries to protect us from harm, we may tend to think they love us; c). If someone is always saying nice things to us or about us, we may tend to think that they really love us; etc, etc. However, let me encourage you to read the entire chapter of 1 Corinthians 13 and be reminded of what God has to say about the subject of ‘love’. He used Paul to teach this lesson to the church in Corinth, and He had it included in the Bible so that all those that followed – you and I, could understand what true love is. In just the first 4 verses, Paul shared that he could talk all day long and even in many languages, but if he did it without love in his heart, he would merely be speaking empty words. Paul probably saw where many of his parishioners were good talkers, and they may have even done like we tend to do today, where we may say to a Brother or Sister that we love them, so he wanted them to know that they needed to speak from a heart of love. I would carefully challenge us with the same thought, and I particularly ask God to give me that kind of love and grace to speak from an honest and contrite heart. Paul also wanted to make it plain that even if he may have been gifted with great knowledge and of prophecy, but was void of love for his brethren, he gained nothing at all. God knew that we would get caught up on monetary gifts, so He had Paul address this also. Paul even took it as far as giving sacrificially, even of himself, but he clarified that if he went even that far, and did not do it in love, then he would gain nothing. Friends, I pray that as we meditate on this thought today, that our lives would be impacted by what Paul had to say in the Scripture, and in what God taught us throughout His Word. God showed us what love is, when He permitted His only Son to be sacrificed on a criminal’s cross for our good. I pray that we would learn to love with that kind of passion. Then perhaps, we might understand the true meaning of Love and be able to practice it without a sense of selfish gain.

PRAYER: Oh that we would be able to love folk that may have said something to us or about us that we didn’t appreciate. Oh that we might truly learn the type love that God showed at Calvary – unselfish and sacrificial. Lord, You have shown in Your Word that unless we love with all our heart, our efforts are useless. What the world needs now, is love. May the greatest love ever shown, be portrayed through us as we deal with others today. This is my humble plea for self and for all my readers today, oh Lord. AMEN!

FOOTNOTE: There are two more pages on my blog at that will provide you with additional information, one of them being ‘To Know Jesus’. If you have been challenged to make a decision today after reading or listening to this devotional, please go to the above page, or speak with a local Bible Teaching Pastor, or contact me at Please allow someone to pray with you and give you help and/or encouragement as you begin, or continue your walk with Jesus. If this devotional was forwarded to you and you would like to see more, please go to Nuggets From God’s Word and see all of my posts, or you may freely subscribe for a daily email conveniently containing each day’s devotional. I would encourage you to find a church home near by your home, and attend as frequently as you could. Get to know God, and allow His people to encourage and strengthen you in your Christian walk, while making every effort to be a blessing to them. God is at work among His people! Please consider growing in your faith, as you worship with fellow believers!

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