The word ’agape’ means God’s love.
Jesus describes Agape love beautifully in Luke 6.
27 “But I say to you who hear: Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you,28 bless those who curse you, and pray for those who spitefully use you. 29 To him who strikes you on the one cheek, offer the other also. And from him who takes away your cloak, do not withhold your tunic either. 30 Give to everyone who asks of you. And from him who takes away your goods do not ask them back. 31 And just as you want men to do to you, you also do to them likewise.
32 “But if you love those who love you, what credit is that to you? For even sinners love those who love them. 33 And if you do good to those who do good to you, what credit is that to you? For even sinners do the same. 34 And if you lend to those from whom you hope to receive back, what credit is that to you? For even sinners lend to sinners to receive as much back. 35 But love your enemies, do good, and lend, hoping for nothing in return; and your reward will be great, and you will be sons of the Most High. For He is kind to the unthankful and evil. 36 Therefore be merciful, just as your Father also is merciful.
Agape love might seem unrealistic. Left to our own, we can’t manufacture it naturally. We can experience and express this love only when we have been set free from our sins by Jesus. It involves believing that Jesus died for our sins and rose again to reign victoriously. A revelation and knowledge of this glorious truth brings agape love into our hearts. Agape love is the proof of deliverance from a destructive life and entrance into God’s love.
EXAMPLE OF AGAPE LOVE DISPLAYED
Then the scribes and Pharisees brought to Him a woman caught in adultery. And when they had set her in the midst, 4 they said to Him, “Teacher, this woman was caugh in adultery, in the very act. 5 Now Moses, in the law, commanded us that such should be stoned. But what do You say?” 6 This they said, testing Him, that they might have something of which to accuse Him. But Jesus stooped down and wrote on the ground with His finger, as though He did not hear.
7 So when they continued asking Him, He raised Himself up and said to them, “He who is without sin among you, let him throw a stone at her first.” 8 And again He stooped down and wrote on the ground. 9 Then those who heard it, being convicted by their conscience,[ went out one by one, beginning with the oldest even to the last. And Jesus was left alone, and the woman standing in the midst. 10 When Jesus had raised Himself up and saw no one but the woman, He said to her, “Woman, where are those accusers of yours? Has no one condemned you?”
11 She said, “No one, Lord.”
And Jesus said to her, “Neither do I condemn you; go and sin no more.”
12 Then Jesus spoke to them again, saying, “I am the light of the world. He who follows Me shall not walk in darkness, but have the light of life.”
The Pharisees brought a woman caught in adultery to Jesus. They told Jesus that the Mosaic Law demanded that the adulterous woman be stoned to death. More than carrying out the stoning sentence, the Pharisees wanted to test Jesus. Jesus responded saying that they could indeed stone her and that the first sinless person among them could start the stoning. One by one, the Pharisees left because there was not a single sinless man present. When only Jesus and the woman were left finally, He extended forgiveness to her and sent her home.
Do you think that after that incident she might have gone back to her adulterous life? I reckon not! She had met agape love head-on! In all likelihood, she must have repented and her life would have been transformed. Maybe, for the first time, some of her detractors would have realized that they were sinners and wondered how to be absolved of their sins. Agape love is powerful and far reaching. It is life transforming and uncondemning. It exposes convicts and leads a sinner to the Savior.
‘But earnestly desire the best] gifts. And yet I show you a more excellent way. Though I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I have become sounding brass or a clanging cymbal. 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.
Love never fails.
1 Corinthians 12:31; 1:1-2,8
The Bible says that the most excellent way is a life of love of God in our hearts. We may have everything but if we don’t have God’s love, then we have nothing. God’s love flows into and fills our lives. It soon makes our life productive and successful!