Biblical View of Romance/Love


imagesThe Bible mentions love 311 times. The dictionary defines romance as “ardent,  emotional attachment or involvement between people, a love affair.”  The true meaning of love, however, as used in the Bible is given in John 3:16. Love is giving to meet the need; Christ gave Himself to meet the need of mankind.   Love is often confused with infatuation: an elated–feeling, existing when two people “fall in love.” Of the types of love the Bible mentions, we will zero in on two that will apply to this study.   Agape love is represented by God’s love for us, a non-partial, sacrificial love best demonstrated by the gift of love in John 3:16.  This kind of love is patient,  kind, does not envy, does not boast, is not proud, is not rude, is not self-seeking, is not easily angered, keeps no record of wrongs, does not delight in evil but rejoices in the truth, protects, trusts, hopes, perseveres. Love never fails” (1 Corinthians 13:4-8a). Agape has a connection through the Spirit. A true manifestation of this love requires a relationship with Christ.  Without Him, agape love is not exhibited in its truest form. Humans are not capable of reaching this level alone. The Heavenly Father’s Spirit in us, working through us, is capable. “The Spirit produces love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, humility and self-control” (Galatians 5:22-23). Only through that Spirit can humans reach this goal. The other kind of love, phileo, is considered “brotherly love,” usually based upon how others treat us and our feelings in any given situation. It involves direct interaction and sometimes comes with the expectation, wanting something back in return, a demonstrative form of love offered through the soul, but, commanded  by God. “Beloved, let us love one another: for love is of God ; and everyone that loveth is born of God, and knoweth God.  He that loveth not knoweth not God; for God is love.”  (1 John 4:7, 8). Love is the attribute of God that means much to us. If God did not love us, whom He created, He would have annihilated us long ago. Despite our many failures, God keeps working with us (Romans 5:8).  He expects us to love Him totally and to show love toward each other. “And he answering said, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy strength, and with all thy mind; and thy neighbor as thyself” (Luke 10:27). Jesus spoke these words when the Pharisees questioned Him about the greatest commandment of God. Although they tried to trick Him, Jesus did not change the law; He fulfilled it. His sayings about love were not new. The relationships in our lives will either be governed by agape or phileo love.  The manifestation of agape love should  be evident between a man and a woman.   Romance is the physical proof of the love that exists. When that relationship progresses to marriage, the love built between the man and woman only grows deeper as the bond is made stronger through the intimate union of body and soul. “Therefore shall a man leave his father and his mother, and shall cleave unto his wife: and they shall be one flesh” (Genesis 2:24). Biblical love elevates the husband’s affections for his wife to the point of loving his wife “as his own body.” It also instructs wives to submit to their husbands as the head of the household (Eph. 5:25-29). But submission does not mean subservience. On the contrary, when true agape love is manifested in the marriage, the two will act as one, and both will love the other as they love themselves. The tenderness and romance will come out of that love.

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