Christian Love is Christ's Commandment
What's at the heart of Christian love? Jesus said, "By this all will know that you are My disciples, if you have love for one another." Christian Love - Not a Feeling, but a Lifestyle.
So, what do these scriptures regarding "Christian love" really mean? Is it a warm fuzzy feeling? If I don't have a warm fuzzy feeling for everyone I meet, Christian or otherwise -- does that mean I'm not saved? No, a "warm fuzzy feeling" is not the Biblical definition for "love". So, what is the Biblical definition for love?
Let's search the Scriptures and find out…
A Pharisaic lawyer once asked our Lord, "Teacher, which is the greatest commandment in the law?" Jesus said to him, 'You shall love the LORD your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind.' This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: 'You shall love your neighbor as yourself.' On these two commandments hang all the Law and the Prophets" (Matthew 22:36-40). According to Matthew 7:12 we find the Biblical definition for love: "Therefore, whatever you want men to do to you, do also to them, for this is the Law and the Prophets."
It gets tougher, in Luke's Gospel, Jesus elaborates "Do unto others as you would have them do unto you" principle. He says, "Give to everyone… love your enemies… do good… and lend, hoping for nothing in return; … be merciful, just as your Father also is merciful" (Luke 6:30-36).
Christian love is giving to others those things that you would want them to give you if you were in their situation -- and it's doing so even if they can't pay you back. In fact, it's doing so especially if they can't pay you back! Christian love is respect for others. It's mercy. It's charity.
When the King James translators came upon the Greek word agape (God's Love), in addition to using the English word "love" to transliterate it, they often chose the English word "charity." This was meant to reinforce the idea that agape is a selfless, giving love. God's Love is unselfish and unconditional. Now we know what is meant by Christian love. Now we know what to strive for…tough? Yes, BUT worth it!