But above all these things put on love, which is the bond of perfection.
Love is a term that is much used in the world today. With everything from books on its meaning and movies that tell “love” stories, to songs and poetry that carry messages like “all you need is love,” love can become a trite idea that lacks real, tangible meaning to people.
The Bible places a high emphasis on love. A concordance search on “love” will yield hundreds of scriptures. Words translated “love” in the Bible sometimes relate to romantic attraction; at other times, they relate to close friendship. The love that characterizes God’s interaction with us, however, is selfless and focused on our needs. When the Bible speaks of us developing this love, a good overall definition is the outgoing concern human beings are to demonstrate to others as defined by the law of God (1 John 5:2-3). The Bible consistently teaches that the love God wants us to develop is not a mere feeling, but is a motivation that must lead to action. Love is practical and tangible. Jesus Christ taught that the actions of His life provide an example of how we are to love others (John 15:12-13). Paul’s treatise on love in 1 Corinthians 13 (commonly called “the Love Chapter”) provides tangible examples of what love looks like in action.
Colossians 3:14 links love with perfection. This makes sense when we understand that our goal in life is to become “perfect” as God is perfect (Matthew 5:48) and that God’s perfect character is defined by love (1 John 4:8). Therefore, growing in love is the process of perfecting the character of God in our lives.
Tomorrow on the Daily Bible Verse Blog: “What Paul Preached: the Kingdom of God.”