The Biblical Meaning of Love

What does the Bible mean when it speaks about love, and how does this stand in contradistinction to what our culture means when it uses the same word? In today’s Seven Minute Seminary, Dr. Scot McKnight helps explain the biblical meaning of love, and why it is so central to the Christian faith.

What Love Means in the Bible:

  1. Love is a rugged commitment (covenant).
  2. Love is a presence.
  3. Love is advocacy.
  4. Love is transformation.

Love is a rugged commitment to be with other people, to be for other people, and to grow together in Christ-likeness.

36 “Teacher, which is the greatest commandment in the Law?” 37 Jesus replied: “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’ 38 This is the first and greatest commandment. 39 And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ 40 All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments.” (Matthew 22:36-40 NIV)

Further Scripture to consider: Romans 12:10; 13:8; 1 Corinthians 13; Galatians 5:6; 5:13-14; Ephesians 3:17-19; 5:2.

“Love is a great idea, until you have enemies to love.” Scot McKnight

Are you interested in learning more about how love holds together the two biblical testaments, reveals God’s character, and compels us toward transformation? In Sola Sancta Caritas, Joe Dongell draws on the work of John Wesley to show how the gospel of Jesus is a gospel of holy love. Get it from our store.

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Dr. Scot McKnight is the Julius R. Mantey Chair of New Testament at Northern Seminary. He is the author of numerous books and blogs regularly at Jesus Creed (http://www.patheos.com/blogs/jesuscreed/). He is ordained in the Anglican Church of North America. He and his wife Kris are active in their church, Church of the Redeemer.

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