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Perfect Love. 1 John 4:18 God is love. 1 John 4:16
Is there Perfect Love??
If God is love, then what kind of love is God?
There are so many types of love! There is the love of pleasure, the love of a mother for a child, the love of a man for a woman, the love of food, the love for a dog or cat, the love between good friends, the love of a beautiful outfit or jewelry, the love for one's country, and the love for God.
Of all the types of love, there are four categories of love in the Greek language.
1. Storge is family affection.
2. Eros is physical love.
3. Phileo is friendship love.
4. Agape love is generous and unselfish love. Agape love is the Love God is and gives.
Storge is family affection. Storge means the love of a parent to a child and a child to the parent. Storge talks about family affection between family members. Even when there are quarrels, the emotional bond and affection of storge is as “blood is thicker than water”. Storge is a “survival” type of love.
Eros is physical love. Eros is the physical love and affection between a man and a woman. When people “fall in love”, emotions cause eros love. The Eros of a married couple is good (Genesis 1:28; Gen 2:18-25). A Godly marriage incorporates Agape, Phileo, and Eros love in decreasing amounts. Eros is part of the way mankind is physically fruitful and multiplies. However, unfortunately, the selfishness and perversion of people turn Eros to evil. That is how we got the negative connotation for erotic.
Phileo is friendship love. Phileo is good friendship between various people, ranging from deep and close friendships to those that are more shallow. Phileo has to do with the relationship of one person to another person with a friendly affection and endearment. Good emotional bonds create Phileo love. Phileo love can grow between family members as relationships mature. “I phileo you”, good friends can say one to another.
Agape love is distinctly different from all the others. Storge love, eros love and phileo love are based on a person’s emotional bonding and affection. These kinds of love are limited by a person’s feelings, emotions, relationship, and circumstances.
Agape love is based on the will of a person over feelings, moods, emotions, type of relationship, and circumstances. Agape love is shown with deliberate actions and decisions to love for the overall betterment. Agape love is not only extended to people you know, but it also extends to people you do not know well and your enemies. This is how God is (John 15:23-25; Romans 1:28-32; Romans 5:6-11).
Agape love seeks out the best and highest good for every person whether the person is evil or good. When relating with a person, no matter their strengths, weaknesses, bad or good points are, one who has Agape love thinks, “What is the best good I can do for this person?” The highest good does not mean that there will be no pain in life, but that the outcome will produce the best character within that person. (Romans 8:28-30; Proverbs 3:11,12; Proverbs 19:18; Hebrews 12:5,6,7,8; the life of Joseph in Genesis 30-46)
Agape love is the kind of love that God demonstrates. “God causes His sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous.” Matt. 5:45
Agape love is universal or for every person that exists in this world. Agape love is a free gift to every person without prejudice and without consideration of their worthiness to be loved. (John 3:16)
Agape love is eternal and unending. (1 Kings 10:9, Psalm 37:28, Rom. 8:37-39)
Agape love never changes. Agape love can never grow more or become less since it is always magnificently, gloriously, generously, grand and large. The other types of love depend on circumstances, but Agape love is the type God is, so it remains unchangeable. (Malachi 3:6)
Agape love never fails. Agape love is unstoppable and always prevails for the right and the most good. (1Corinthians 13:8) The flow of Agape love from the heart of God is through His Son Jesus and is a benevolent love for all and everyone. (Romans 8:1,2)
Agape love is an underserved love, that means that it is given to those who do not deserve it by their words, actions, attitudes, thoughts, what they have or do not have. (Romans 5:6-8) Agape love is without favoritism and God invites everyone to receive His Agape love. Agape love is given without condition or dependence on the recipient of this immense love. Agape love is given without a need for having love returned.
Agape love is demonstrated by a person when he or she obeys God and is committed to God. (John 14:15, 21; 2 John 6; Phil 1:9; Gal 5:22,23; Lk 11:42-43; 1 Jn 2:5)