Happy Valentine’s Day! Today is a day all about love! As we walk through Ephesians, Paul writes about love over and over, using the Greek “agape” to convey God’s kind of love. The Greeks had several words for love, including philia (brotherly love), storge (familial love, or love for your favorite team), eros (you get that one!) and agape. Agape is a love that is constant, rather than changeable. It is unconditional – there is nothing you must do to earn it. Agape is a love that is selfless and always giving, even sacrificial. For centuries, English Bible translators did not use the word “love” to capture the meaning of “agape” . Instead, they used the word “charity“. We don’t use that word much these days, except to refer to those whose well-being is dependent on others. We pride ourselves on never needing the charity of others; of being the givers and not the receivers. And yet, when it comes to the love of God, we are all charity cases.
God’s love is pure, undeserved gift. It is the gift above all gifts, and Paul prays for us to know this blessing in fullness:
“And may you have the power to understand, as all God’s people should, how wide, how long, how high, and how deep his love is. May you experience the love of Christ, though it is too great to understand fully.” Ephesians 3:18-19
Friends: You are loved by God. May you know the agape that Jesus longs to pour into each of our hearts.