A Word on Wednesday: Agape

“God is love. Love is God”

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A former pastor would say this at least once during every service. Sometimes, it was a centering expression. Other times, it was part of her sermon. At times she sent us out with the reminder.

“God is love. Love is God.”

Her license plate was LUV2LUV. All theology of Christianity should emphasize this foundational point. I recall an Agape Potluck, which was held monthly on the first Sunday. This recurring fellowship activity — where everyone brought what they could, if they remembered — was where I learned the word agape. We all sat and shared in what was presented, and it was enough. God’s teaching to love one another as He has loved us, is enough as well. Love is the key to peace. If we are strong, we remember to praise and thank the Lord. If we are weak, we can receive comfort in the ways of his gifts – faith, hope, and the greatest is love.

Agape, Greek agapē, in the New Testament, is the fatherly love of God for humans, as well as the human reciprocal love for God. In Scripture, the transcendent agape love is the highest form of love and is contrasted with eros, or erotic love, and philia, or brotherly love. In church, agape is used to designate both a rite (communion) and a meal of fellowship (Jude 1:12). Some scholars believe the agape was a form of the Lord’s supper and the bread and wine the sacramental aspect of that celebration.

In practice, I am writing a spiritual memoir where I journey to reach agape love. It is an ultimate goal. I have experienced agape love. It is fleeting, and I lose my grip. However, when there is a firm hold, life is full of blessings and joy. When I am stumbling, His love comforts and cradles me. With His hand guiding me, I hope to bring faith and hope to others who are lost without agape love.

“Whoever does not love does not know God, because God is love.” (1 John, 4: 8)

Love is what we all seek to give and receive in this life. It is omnipresent. Recognize, share, and rejoice in this simple vow to love one another as God has loved us.

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