There is a very famous line from an old movie that says, “Love means never having to say you’re sorry.” To hear the world talk about love, you’d almost think that statement is all there is to say about love. But the fact is, love, true love, is a lot more that what we say or don’t say.
According to one reference source that I use nearly everyday, http://www.blueletterbible.org/, the word ‘LOVE’ is used in the New Testament 180 times in 157 verses from Matthew to Revelation. And for the life of me, I can’t find anywhere in the Scriptures where it was said of love that it meant not having to say you’re sorry. Jesus said to love the Lord, love our neighbors, love our enemies. Neighbors we are to love in the same way and to the same degree that we love ourselves. And that means that we don’t do things that would in any way injure or malign them. Loving our enemies can get a little more difficult. . . oh, who am I trying to kid. . . the truth is, loving one’s enemies can be near to impossible, humanly possible that is. But as born again believers, we are not limited by our own human strength. The great Apostle Paul sought God’s relief in his own weakness concerning something that was troubling him severely, and God said to him, “My grace is sufficient for you, for power is perfected in weakness.” (2 Corinthians 12:9) And Paul went on to say that he would then gladly boast all the more about his own weakness so that Christ’s power could reside in him all the more. Paul realized that when he was weak, then he was truly strong.
So when we are faced with the seemingly impossible task of loving an enemy, we can be assured that if we confess our weakness to the Lord, His strength will prevail. And since we know for a fact that Jesus already has the power to love His enemies, He will enable us to do the same.
I saved the part about loving God for the last. In Mark 12, a scribe asked Jesus which of the many commands that were given to Israel was the most important. And Jesus responded saying, “Listen, Israel! The Lord our God, the Lord is One. Love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your mind, and with all your strength.”
Personally, I have come to the realization that the people who love God supremely are the people who obey Him.
And there is no way around that fact. Obedience and love are two of those things that are linked together, for if one loves, they are obedient and if they are obedient, love shows.
As the human instrument that was used to pen more of the NT than anyone else, the Apostle Paul had a lot to say about love. From Romans to Philemon, the great apostle used the word ‘love’ 72 times. My favorite love verses happen to be in Paul’s letter to the church in Rome. First he tells me of how great God’s love is for me that even in the depths of my most degrading moments of life, while I was a dead woman walking, bearing a curse of death, unable to save myself, God placed His love next to me, literally, making a show of His love for me publicly. Then he assured me that there was nothing that could separate me from the love of Christ. No tribulation, no distress, no persecution, no hunger, nakedness, danger or sword. There is nothing high enough, deep enough, nor is there any creature, that is, any created being that could separate God’s love which is in Christ Jesus from me. (Romans 5:8 & 8:35) The power of love can move us from darkness into His light. If you want to read more about love, Click here: BibleGateway.com – Keyword Search: love