Sunday April 11, 2010 | Greg Boyd
Whoever does not love does not know God, because God is love.
It is impossible to fully grasp God's love because it is infinite! The best we can do is humbly recognize our limitations in this way and give ourselves over to the overwhelming love that God extends to us.
It is impossible to fully grasp God’s love because it is infinite! The best we can do is humbly recognize our limitations in this way and give ourselves over to the overwhelming love that God extends to us. The English language doesn’t have the same level of precision that Greek does when it comes to describing “love”. For this reason Greg reviewed the four Greek words that are often translated as love in English to help us sort out what “love” means. Storge has to do with affection—things we like and appreciate. We may “storge” chocolate more than vanilla. Philos has to do with friendship—those who’s interests we share. We may have friends we work with or who enjoy the same leisure activities we do. Eros has to do with romance/sexuality/passion—we get the word “erotic” from eros. A good marriage should have storge, philos and eros (in addition to agape.) Agape is distinct from the other three in that it is the only one based specifically on a conscious choice rather than feelings/affections/attraction. When the bible calls us to radical (self-sacrificial) forms of love like loving our neighbors, loving God, loving our enemies and so forth, it is agape that is meant here. Only agape can be chosen in this way! In fact, we don’t need to have any of the other forms of love for someone in order to be able to love them the way God calls us to. We simply obey God’s command to love by choosing to agree with God that they are worth loving! Greg spent some time helping us see that God’s love for us isn’t based on the first three types, but rather the self-sacrificial agape love that is evident in 1 John 3:16. Since God IS love (1 John 4:8), God always feels this self-sacrificial love toward us.