The Truth About Love: The Fruits of The Spirit Series

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Introduction

Love. This is a word that I consider to be sacred. This word can conjure up an intense feeling inside of you for someone that you care for on such a deep level, that the word “love” is the only word in the human vocabulary, across all languages, that can even come close to defining this feeling.

Yet, this word also gets tossed around more than any other. Many say this word without actually meaning it. Others, say this word without truly knowing it’s meaning.

It is my duty today, to share with you what the bible says about love. However, what I’m going to share with you is the truth about love. This will not be a blog post that covers the surface level meaning of love. Oh no…I want to share with you what God Himself says via the bible, about this profound emotion.

I pray that after you read this post, that you’ll walk away with a deeper appreciation for this topic and that you’ll internalize the truths presented to you today and apply it to your life.

The fact of the matter is this; this blog post along with all of it’s truth will mean absolutely nothing if you do not practice it. Be a “doer” of the word and not just a consumer of the word.

Let’s begin.


grayscale photography of bird

What are the fruits of the Spirit?

But the Holy Spirit produces this kind of fruit in our lives: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. There is no law against these things!

Galatians: 5:22-23 | NLT

I want to begin this journey into the truth about love by beginning with the above bible passage. This entire series will dive deep into each of the 9 fruits of the Holy Spirit listed above.

The very first fruit that is mentioned is love, and that is what this entire post will be about. None of the following information will be my interpretation of what love is. No. Instead, I’m going to show you God’s interpretation.

I will share with you many bible verses pertaining to this very specific fruit and then follow each verse with my own thoughts and opinions on how we can apply the truths we learned together to our lives.

So, with that being said, let’s learn together what God has to say about the most powerful emotion in all of existence, love.


selective focus photography of You Are Loved book

The characteristics of love according to the bible

Love is patient and kind. Love is not jealous or boastful or proud or rude. It does not demand its own way. It is not irritable, and it keeps no record of being wronged.

It does not rejoice about injustice but rejoices whenever the truth wins out. Love never gives up, never loses faith, is always hopeful, and endures through every circumstance.

1 Corinthians 13:4-7 | NLT

If you ever wondered exactly what love is, the above passage tells you. What’s amazing about this passage is that it describes Jesus! He was the physical embodiment of all of those characteristics listed.

There is a human, superficial love that prevalent in our society today more than ever, and then there is divine love. It is this divine love that Jesus walked and talked all throughout the Gospels.

It is this very same love that is listed as the first fruit of the Spirit in Galatians 5:22.

God the Father also expressed this amazing divine love when he sacrificed His only Son, Jesus, to die for the sins of all mankind.

For this is how God loved the world: He gave his one and only Son, so that everyone who believes in him will not perish but have eternal life.

John 3:16 | NLT

But God showed his great love for us by sending Christ to die for us while we were still sinners.

Romans 5:8 | NLT

If that doesn’t show how much God loves us then I don’t know what will. God the Father, sent His Son to die for a world that rejected Him. Just think about that for a minute and let it sink in.

He sent His only Son to die for a planet full of people who did not believe, respect, and rejected Him. Yet, He still sent His Son to die for them because He still loved them!

That is a level of love that only God possesses. Hmmm…if that kind of love is only capable of being internalized and expressed by God Himself…and the Godhead is comprised of God the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit…and if a person accepts Jesus as their LORD and Savior….and if by doing that the Holy Spirit makes his dwelling inside of that born-again believer….then that means that born-again believer is now capable of divine love as well!

How is that possible? Well, with Christ all things are possible for those who believe. A person who isn’t born-again isn’t capable of such love, that is a fact. And by “such love”, I’m not just talking about the sacrificial part as we just learned, I’m also referring to all of the other characteristics as well.

When the Holy Spirit makes His home in a believer, He changes that person. They feel different, talk different and act different. The reason for that is explained in the following passage:

Either way, Christ’s love controls us. Since we believe that Christ died for all, we also believe that we have all died to our old life. He died for everyone so that those who receive his new life will no longer live for themselves. Instead, they will live for Christ, who died and was raised for them.

So we have stopped evaluating others from a human point of view. At one time we thought of Christ merely from a human point of view. How differently we know him now! This means that anyone who belongs to Christ has become a new person. The old life is gone; a new life has begun!

And all of this is a gift from God, who brought us back to himself through Christ. And God has given us this task of reconciling people to him. For God was in Christ, reconciling the world to himself, no longer counting people’s sins against them. And he gave us this wonderful message of reconciliation.

So we are Christ’s ambassadors; God is making his appeal through us. We speak for Christ when we plead, “Come back to God!” For God made Christ, who never sinned, to be the offering for our sin, so that we could be made right with God through Christ.

2 Corinthians 5:14-21 | NLT

When the Holy Spirit is living inside of someone, that person is now “woke”. Their eyes are opened up to the reality that Jesus Christ came and died for them, and also came back to life to give them eternal life.

Once that realization kicks in, they no longer have the motivation to please themselves with their natural, sinful desires. Instead, they want to live the rest of their lives doing what pleases the One who saved them from eternal death.


person holding Holy Bible

What true love is

See how very much our Father loves us, for he calls us his children, and that is what we are! But the people who belong to this world don’t recognize that we are God’s children because they don’t know him.

Dear friends, we are already God’s children, but he has not yet shown us what we will be like when Christ appears.

But we do know that we will be like him, for we will see him as he really is. And all who have this eager expectation will keep themselves pure, just as he is pure.

Everyone who sins is breaking God’s law, for all sin is contrary to the law of God. And you know that Jesus came to take away our sins, and there is no sin in him. Anyone who continues to live in him will not sin.

But anyone who keeps on sinning does not know him or understand who he is.

Dear children, don’t let anyone deceive you about this: When people do what is right, it shows that they are righteous, even as Christ is righteous. But when people keep on sinning, it shows that they belong to the devil, who has been sinning since the beginning.

But the Son of God came to destroy the works of the devil. Those who have been born into God’s family do not make a practice of sinning, because God’s life is in them. So they can’t keep on sinning, because they are children of God.

So now we can tell who are children of God and who are children of the devil. Anyone who does not live righteously and does not love other believers does not belong to God.

This is the message you have heard from the beginning: We should love one another. We must not be like Cain, who belonged to the evil one and killed his brother. And why did he kill him?

Because Cain had been doing what was evil, and his brother had been doing what was righteous. So don’t be surprised, dear brothers and sisters, if the world hates you.

If we love our brothers and sisters who are believers, it proves that we have passed from death to life. But a person who has no love is still dead. Anyone who hates another brother or sister is really a murderer at heart. And you know that murderers don’t have eternal life within them.

We know what real love is because Jesus gave up his life for us. So we also ought to give up our lives for our brothers and sisters. If someone has enough money to live well and sees a brother or sister in need but shows no compassion—how can God’s love be in that person?

Dear children, let’s not merely say that we love each other; let us show the truth by our actions.

1 John 3:1-18 | NLT

God is so awesome that not only did He love is with such a crazy, passionate love, sent His Son to die for us, but He also says that we are his children! Even John, who wrote the above passage, was blown away by this.

John also makes it very clear that those of us who live in Jesus does not continue to sin.

However, if someone claiming to live in Jesus is living a lifestyle that totally contradicts that, then they’re either lying or they just don’t know Him or understand just who He is.

If you were to know and understand who Jesus is then living a lifestyle of continued sin would be the furthest thing from your mind.

Instead, you will be focused on living a lifestyle that pleases God, not because a change in lifestyle is what will save you, but because a change in lifestyle is a result in being saved.

John also gave us a stern warning. He warned that we would be hated by the world as a result of this life-changing love of God. However, he also warned us about hating others as well.

Hating someone else is compared to being a murderer at heart, and that murderers do not have eternal life inside of them.

He sums up the passage by saying that our actions speak louder than words. We can tell someone we love them until we’re blue in the face, but if our actions prove otherwise then our words mean nothing.

If you have an abundance of something, and see someone who is in need of what you have an abundance of, yet choose to not bless them, how can you claim that you walk in love?


man wearing black cap with love your neighbour print during daytime

Express divine love for one another

Dear friends, let us continue to love one another, for love comes from God. Anyone who loves is a child of God and knows God. But anyone who does not love does not know God, for God is love.

God showed how much he loved us by sending his one and only Son into the world so that we might have eternal life through him. This is real love—not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as a sacrifice to take away our sins.

Dear friends, since God loved us that much, we surely ought to love each other. No one has ever seen God. But if we love each other, God lives in us, and his love is brought to full expression in us.

And God has given us his Spirit as proof that we live in him and he in us. Furthermore, we have seen with our own eyes and now testify that the Father sent his Son to be the Savior of the world.

All who declare that Jesus is the Son of God have God living in them, and they live in God. We know how much God loves us, and we have put our trust in his love.

God is love, and all who live in love live in God, and God lives in them. And as we live in God, our love grows more perfect. So we will not be afraid on the day of judgment, but we can face him with confidence because we live like Jesus here in this world.

Such love has no fear, because perfect love expels all fear. If we are afraid, it is for fear of punishment, and this shows that we have not fully experienced his perfect love. We love each other because he loved us first.

If someone says, “I love God,” but hates a fellow believer, that person is a liar; for if we don’t love people we can see, how can we love God, whom we cannot see? And he has given us this command: Those who love God must also love their fellow believers.

1 John 4:7-21 | NLT

It’s clear from the very beginning of this passage that divine love is a clear indicating factor that God does indeed live in a person. Again, I’d like to make it known that I am referring to “love” as “divine love” as to distinguish it from the common form of “love” that more popularly known.

When you combine what we have learned up until now, that makes a lot of sense. A person who does not have the Holy Spirit of God in them is not capable of expressing a form of love that only God is capable of expressing.

John goes on to remind us that just as God loved us to much as to send His only Son to die for us, we should also love one another with this same divine love.

What he says next is also interesting because, by us expressing this form of divine love with one another, we’re essentially manifesting the very expression of God Himself here in this world.

Which makes total sense because the Holy Spirit is God, and the Holy Spirit lives inside of believers. So while nobody has ever seen God in His “true form”, we can see God in our lives by carrying out what God is, which is love.

The passage explains that God IS love. So if we’re expressing this divine love to someone, then we’re showing them God live in living color. How? Well, again, mankind is not capable of such love on their own. It’s just not possible.

So, the only way to become capable of such love is to be born-again. Once the Holy Spirit (who is also God) lives inside of you, you’ll too be capable of expressing that same divine love.


two person standing on gray tile paving

Digging into the 9 traits of divine love

Now that we have a good overview of what “divine love” is, I would like to really dig into each trait that make up what divine love is. I guess another word we can use is “ingredients” of divine love.

Essentially, all of these traits/ingredients make up the full recipe of expressing divine love.

So, for the rest of this post, I will include a dedicated section for each trait of divine love.

These sections will comprise of 3-5 bible verses that speak specifically about the trait and as always, I’ll include my thoughts and opinions on how we can go about applying this to our lives.

I pray that you have been blessed with the knowledge that the Holy Spirit has been pouring over us so far and that you stick around to receive an overflow of blessing.

So, without further ado, let’s dig deep into the 9 traits of divine love!


brown wooden bench in field

Divine Love Trait # 1: Patience

My understanding of patience before beginning this study was pretty limited. I’ve always heard of the phrase, “patience is a virtue”, but it never really clicked for me. I mainly understood “patience” as in not being in such a hurry.

However, the bible really expounds upon that into something so much more. I learned that part of trusting in God is to learn to be patient. Being impatient is actually a sign of not having complete trust in God.

While life does have a way of really testing and wearing down our patience, it is up to us to draw on God for a divine level of patience to help combat the trials and tribulations of life.

This divine level of patience can only come from a divine level of love. Which is why it’s one of the traits of divine love. This level of patience can only be possible with the power of the Holy Spirit operating in our life.

So, let’s dig into some bible verses to see what God has to say about walking in patience.

Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank him for all he has done.

Philippians 4:6 | NLT

This verse describes the very essence of patience. To be patient in the LORD means to not worry about anything because, you know that He is faithful. It also means to put everything, both big and small, into prayer.

God is not only in control of the mountains of our life, but also the pebbles.

Make your requests known to God and then thank Him. This is where patience comes into play. It is in the moments after, that you are thankful to God for whatever happens.

You have a full understanding that is in control and that He works out all things to come together for your good.

So let’s not get tired of doing what is good. At just the right time we will reap a harvest of blessing if we don’t give up.

Galatians 6:9 | NLT

I love this verse because it proves a point that I always make, and that is that God is faithful and a keeper of His promises. Here, Paul is encouraging us to not grow tired of doing the will of God.

There is a promise here that those who do the will of God will reap their reward when it is the right time. So, this fits perfectly in our study of patience.

It also ties in perfectly with the previous verse because they share the same theme, and that is trusting in God to fulfill His promises.

It is during this time of waiting that we are to express our first trait of divine love known as patience.

However, it’s very important to ask God to strengthen our patience so that we can continue doing what is good and to not grow tired during the time of waiting.

Be still in the presence of the Lord,
and wait patiently for him to act.
Don’t worry about evil people who prosper
or fret about their wicked schemes.

Stop being angry!
Turn from your rage!
Do not lose your temper—
it only leads to harm.
For the wicked will be destroyed,
but those who trust in the Lord will possess the land.

Psalms 37:7-9

The beginning of this passage again drives home the point of trusting in God to fulfill His promises. Our patience is tested in the moments after we present our requests to God.

This passage also instructs us in how to carry ourselves in a very common scenario that still plays out on the world stage till this very day.

Especially in the age of social media, where we see those who reject God, living luxurious lives and living with no care in the world.

The bible says to not worry about them or their wicked ways. Even if you see their plans coming to fruition to take advantage of those less fortunate, the bible says to be careful that we do not lose our temper.

It’s not like the actions of the wicked are taking God by surprise! He is in control of all things. There is a promise in this passage that the wicked will be destroyed, but those who trust in the Lord will “possess the land”.

I like how the King James version translates that last part; as it says, “shall inherit the earth”. That is one of the biggest promises of God to his children and is something that we should be looking forward to every single day.


person sitting on floor near people

Divine Love Trait #2: Kindness

If you turn on the news or hop onto social media, it’s no secret that world is lacking in kindness. Due to many reasons, including the current state of world affairs, many people seem to be on edge.

As a result of being on edge, they tend to lash out on those around them. Some, actually enjoy being rude to others and get a kick out of it.

For those who follow Jesus Christ, they are called to be kind, and to be a light shining in the darkness of this world. Both to friends and enemies, believers are commanded to show love, compassion, kindness and all other fruits of the Spirit.

Let’s dig into the word and see what the bible has to say about kindness.

Don’t use foul or abusive language. Let everything you say be good and helpful, so that your words will be an encouragement to those who hear them.

Ephesians 4:29 | NLT

Profanity and dirty jokes are pretty much everywhere, and to be totally transparent with you, profanity is something I still struggle with. Mainly because using profanity was such a normal way of talking for me before coming to Christ.

And while I’ve been following Christ long enough to know better, it’s still something I struggle with. I share this with you so that I don’t come across as one of the “holier than thou” crowd.

I’m a real human being with real flaws. I do however, try to learn from my mistakes, and I know what can trigger such language in me.

For example, listening to secular music such as rap & hip-hop can easily get me in a state of mind where it’s easy for me to start speaking garbage.

That is why I try my best to stay away from such music because I know it has a negative effect on me. Also, anger easily triggers bad language in me.

The subject of anger is a whole other topic that I will dive into in the future, so stay tuned for that.

The apostle Paul is instructing followers of Christ on how to carry themselves when speaking. When we speak, we are to use language that is good and wholesome.

If our choice of words are not encouraging or helpful, then it most likely is just empty words. Making others laugh with joke is obviously okay to do, but here he is strictly highlighting profanity and overall bad language.

Therefore, whenever we have the opportunity, we should do good to everyone—especially to those in the family of faith.

Galatians 6:10 | NLT

Here we are instructed to always do something good to something whenever the opportunity arises. This verse particularly points out that we should especially do good to other fellow believers.

That’s not to say that we are not required to do good to non-believers, because we most definitely are, but the reason I believe this highlights fellow believers is due to the fact that these individuals have the Holy Spirit living inside of them.

So, in essence, when doing something good to fellow believers, you’re doing something good to God Himself directly. As for the non-believers, it’s very important to do good to them as well.

The reason being that, doing something good to those who don’t know Christ is the perfect opportunity to demonstrate the love of Christ to them.

Many people are so accustomed to others showing a lack of respect, that if you come along and do something good to them without expecting anything in return, it may confuse them, but it will also impact them in a positive way and even give them hope in this cold world.

Love your enemies! Do good to them. Lend to them without expecting to be repaid. Then your reward from heaven will be very great, and you will truly be acting as children of the Most High, for he is kind to those who are unthankful and wicked.

Luke 6:35 | NLT

Here is confirmation of what I just mentioned above. We are instructed to show the love of Christ to everyone. Just as God loved us and was kind to us before getting saved, we are to do the same since Christ lives in us.

Jesus promises those that are kind and do good to others that there is a very great reward awaiting them in Heaven. Now, there are of course those in the body of Christ that are wolves in sheep’s clothing.

These individuals do “good acts” towards others, but there is always a selfish motive behind it. Those who are truly the children of God do good acts towards others without expecting anything in return.


woman wearing teal t-shirt standing front of peopled

Divine Love Trait # 3: Generosity

Generosity is a trait that is highly admired among every religion. Someone who is generous is a person that is always at the ready to go above and beyond to help someone else, whether that be with money or their time.

When you read through the Gospels, again you’ll notice that Jesus embodied all of these traits that we are going through in this post.

While there are many, many people who are not followers of Jesus that give more than what’s expected of them in times of need, it is through the power of the Holy Spirit that an individual can do it with even greater love because, it is God Himself working through them to serve others.

It’s time to take a deeper look into the scriptures that pertain to the trait known as generosity.

Share each other’s burdens, and in this way obey the law of Christ.

Galatians 6:2 | NLT

When it comes to “generosity”, it doesn’t just involve being generous with your money, but also with your time. If you ask me, time is worth more than money because it’s something that you can’t get back.

This comes especially into play when you’re witnessing someone in need of help during a moment of trouble. The scriptures instruct us to go and stand side by side with our brothers and sisters, and help them in any way we can.

If God has blessed you with the skill of fixing cars, then go and help the person you see that needs your help. No matter what your skill set is, it can be used to help someone in need.

I was curious to know more about the final part of this verse and I was blown away by what I came across. There’s actually 1,050 commands in the New Testament that we are commanded to obey.

Now, the difference between the laws of Christ and the laws of Moses, is that the followers of Jesus Christ have the power of the Holy Spirit to be able to obey each of these commands.

The prime motivator for the believer to obey each of these commands is the love that they have for Jesus. The believer understands that obeying these commands is simply an act of love and appreciation for what Jesus Christ did for them.

So, here is a pdf file that I came across when researching the law of Christ: Click Here

This pdf is like a goldmine of information that is super valuable for believers. I plan on digging into each of these in future blog posts, that way we can all learn together what these commands are and how we can apply them to our lives.

Give, and you will receive. Your gift will return to you in full—pressed down, shaken together to make room for more, running over, and poured into your lap. The amount you give will determine the amount you get back.

Luke 6:38 | NLT

Jesus was all about giving to others, and since His Spirit lives inside of believers, it naturally should be what believers are about as well.

Here Jesus promises that if you give, you will receive and that what you get back is dependent on what you gave in the first place.

What’s awesome about this promise is that your reward for giving to others is far more valuable that what you could possibly ever give anyone in this world.

So whenever you have the opportunity to give, no matter how small, do it. Do it because first of all you love Jesus and you appreciate everything He has ever done for you. But also do it because the bible promises you that you’ll be rewarded for your good deed.

If you help the poor, you are lending to the Lord—
and he will repay you!

Proverbs 19:17 | NLT

This passage is pretty self explanatory. This promise from the Most High God is very simple to understand; you give, He repays.

When driving around your city, you’re pretty much guaranteed to come across someone who is homeless. That is your opportunity. If you’re worried that they’ll use the money you give them for something bad, offer food.

I’ve even seen other believers give out bags of items, which sometimes even includes cash, to the homeless. This is an area that I need work on because, again I have flaws and I need to do better.

I don’t carry cash on me, so using the idea that I’ve seen other believers use sounds awesome. That way, the next time I come across someone homeless, I can at least bless them with something that I know they’ll use.

I want to end this section of generosity with a powerful bible verse that I came across while putting this together:

And if you give even a cup of cold water to one of the least of my followers, you will surely be rewarded.

Matthew 10:42 | NLT

man praying

Divine Love Trait #4: Humility

Jesus oozed humility. Putting others before yourself is a true mark of a follower of Christ. A perfect example of humility is Jesus giving His own life for you and everyone else on planet earth.

The bible is full of passages that speak on humility and warnings against being prideful. Someone that oozed pride was Satan himself.

It was his very own pride that caused him to turn his back on God, which eventually led to him being cast out of Heaven along with a third of Heavens angels that decided to side with Satan.

Humility is a super important trait to have, so let’s see what the bible has to say about it.

Humble yourselves before the Lord, and he will lift you up in honor.

James 4:10 | NLT

Whether it be in this life or the next (in eternity with Him), God promises to honor those who humble themselves before Him and puts the needs of others before their very own.

Many times we are selfish and only care about our own desires while not considering how others might feel. This kind of attitude goes against what God expects from us.

If we decide to start putting the needs of others before our very own, then we can hold onto the promise that one day God will honor us. However, the goal for being humble should not be to expect a reward, it should simply be done because we love Jesus.

In the same way, you who are younger must accept the authority of the elders. And all of you, dress yourselves in humility as you relate to one another, for

God opposes the proud
but gives grace to the humble.”

1 Peter 5:5 | NLT

Believers are commanded to submit to the authority of the elders of their local congregation that they attend.

These elders possess wisdom and experience that they’ve accumulated over many years and have been given the responsibility to watch over the the souls that God has entrusted to them.

Many, both young and old alike, tend to have a problem with submitting to the authority of church elders. It comes from a position of pride, like if they are somehow seen as someone lesser by simply submitting to authority.

What they don’t understand is that they’re not submitting to man, but to God. The proud are the enemy of God.

There is one thing I would like to mention before I move onto the next verse, and that is believers also need to be very careful to who they’re submitting to.

Especially during these end times, the world is absolutely full of false teachers. These false teachers speak the language of the church, but inside they are wolves, preying on those who are not led by the Holy Spirit.

Many of these false teachers really push the idea of “submitting to authority”, because that is part of their mind manipulation. The goal is to strike fear into the heart of the unsuspecting believer, and to prevent them from questioning the motives of the false teacher.

This can easily be avoided by studying the word and living a life of prayer. Those who fall into the traps of these false teachers are people who do not study the word of God and who have a weak prayer life.

When you are in tune with what the bible teaches, and you have a real personal relationship with Christ, the Holy Spirit will make you sensitive to situations like this.

What is even more scary is that the deceived do not even know they’re being deceived. They ignore the warnings provided to them from other believers who catch on to the ways of the false teacher, yet the deceived refuse to believe.

All that can be done at this point is to pray for those being deceived, and for God to bring judgement upon the deceiver.

For those who exalt themselves will be humbled, and those who humble themselves will be exalted.

Luke 14:11 | NLT

There’s a fair amount of people on this planet that walk around with their nose pointed high to the sky, and who believe that the rest of us are beneath them.

That goes for individuals both inside and outside of the church. It’s expected from non-believers, but when you see fellow brothers and sisters in Christ behaving like this, it leaves a bad taste in your mouth.

This tends to happen with those with titles and positions in the church. They become “puffed up”, and believe that others do not have the authority to question or speak against them since they have “been chosen by God”.

It is people like this that give the rest of the church a bad reputation. True followers of Jesus Christ walk in humility. They put the needs of others before their own. They do not care about titles or positions.

That’s not to say that they don’r respect the responsibility of those titles or positions, but they do not make it a point to constantly bring up their title or appointment with every social interaction with another person.

Those who clothe themselves with humility and make it a way of life have a promise from God Himself that one day, whether it be in this world or the next, that they will be exalted.


four person hands wrap around shoulders while looking at sunset

Divine Love Trait #5: Courtesy

The term “courtesy” is just another way of saying “polite”. It’s an attitude of treating others with respect and dignity and also is a form of behavior.

This is also a very highly regarded trait to have (along with the other 8), as a believer. It’s impossible to show the love of Christ to someone without being polite. Jesus was as polite as one could possibly get.

So by the power of the Holy Spirit, a person can also live out this trait of courtesy.

I came across some awesome bible verses about this that I would love to share with you, so without further ado let’s do it!

Instead, be kind to each other, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, just as God through Christ has forgiven you.

Ephesians 4:32 | NLT

Here we’re instructed to basically treat others as God has treated us. He Himself embodies all of these characteristics and so expects us to walk in these as well.

If you’re someone who suffers from extreme anger issues, this may sound impossible to do, but what’s great about all of this is that it’s indeed very possible.

God would not expect something of you that He knows would not be possible. The amazing truth to this is that the Holy Spirit that lives inside of believers is the One who makes it all possible.

It is not by their own strength that believers can live out these traits and characteristics. In fact, it is a clear sign of the existence of God that a believer can live out these traits since it is in our very nature not to.

Our natural inclination is to sin. Sin means to break God’s rules. So, our original, sinful nature automatically defaults to sinning. However, when the Holy Spirit dwells in a person, their natural inclination is to worship.

For the whole law can be summed up in this one command: “Love your neighbor as yourself.”

Galatians 5:14 | NLT

The law of Moses had a total of 613 commandments that the Israelites were commanded to obey to the very letter. Obviously, that didn’t turn out so well.

Basically the law of Moses was used as a Mirror, created by God, to show His people their wickedness and their need for a Savior.

When Jesus died and rose again, He fulfilled all of the requirements of the law of Moses, so there is no need for believers to burden themselves with that task.

However, as we saw earlier, the New Testament clearly shows there are still commands that we are expected to obey. The difference however, is that these commandments are things we should be obeying anyways as believers.

There really isn’t a burden to the laws of Christ, especially when we have the Holy Spirit inside of us to help us obey these commands.

When we walk in love, we naturally obey all of the laws of Christ.

Let your conversation be gracious and attractive so that you will have the right response for everyone.

Colossians 4:6 | NLT

As believers, when we are speaking with others, more specifically non-believers, it is important that we are aware of how we are speaking to them.

Our way of speaking must be humble and Christlike. How do we speak like Christ? By reading and studying how he spoke in the Gospels.

I think there are two problems today that is getting in the way when speaking with non-believers.

First, there are those who just sound dull. These are the old-school religious type of folks that speak wisdom, but their choice of words to carry out that wisdom is very bland and boring.

People nowadays have extremely short attention spans, so if you don’t captivate their attention within the first few seconds of the conversation, everything will just be going in one ear and out the other.

You don’t have to sound like a religious robot when conversing with someone, just speak to them like a normal human being. Relate with them. Show them your struggles as well. People want to connect with those who are real.

If the person or people you are speaking to feel like they can’t relate to you because you’ve chosen to speak in an unattractive way, then they’re just not going to listen to anything you’re saying.

Second, there are those in the church who suffer from speaking “Christianese”. The problem with these folks is that they are too spiritual when they speak. Their words mean nothing to those outside of the church because they can’t relate.

For some reason also, these folks tend to even change the way they speak when either on the pulpit or conversing with someone about God. It becomes a character that they’re playing.

This kind of behavior tends to put off those who are listening to them because it doesn’t come across as genuine. Again, read and study how Jesus spoke and imitate Him, not the televangelist.

Finally, as believers we are also supposed to be prepared to have an answer for everyone who comes to us with a question. We are to be ready with words of wisdom and faith.

This is where the Holy Spirit truly shines, because when a false teacher or someone from a false religion comes to you with a doctrine that is contrary to the word of God, the Holy Spirit will impart the wisdom upon you to rebuke that doctrine.

However, you still have to do your part and study up and live a life of prayer so that you are better prepared and equipped to handle these situations.


hands people friends communication
Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

Divine Love Trait #6: Unselfishness

Unselfishness is very similar to kindness, generosity, humility and courtesy. Basically, you’re putting others before yourself. You care more about the well-being and feeling of others than you do of your own.

It’s a sacrificial kind of love that you express to others, which is why it’s one of the traits of divine love. While non-believers also posses this trait, the Holy Spirit amplifies it to a whole other level.

Once again, Jesus demonstrated this trait perfectly. He did this by performing the ultimate act of unselfishness by giving His life for the sins of the world.

The following 3 bible verses about unselfishness are sure to open your eyes to this trait.

Don’t look out only for your own interests, but take an interest in others, too.

Philippians 2:4 | NLT

It’s perfectly fine to also look out for yourself. Being unselfish, kind, generous, humble and courteous does not mean that it is a sin to also look out for your own well-being.

Instead, the bible is teaching us to care more for others. You obviously want to care about your health, finances, hygiene, etc., but you’ll want to avoid the trap of only caring about yourself.

Love each other with genuine affection, and take delight in honoring each other.

Romans 12:10 | NLT

When it comes to believers showing love to their fellow brothers and sisters in Christ, it basically comes down to being real with each other. There is way too much fake love going around the body of Christ today.

This fake love comes from being selfish and not truly caring about others, especially other believers.

If someone in your local congregation has been chosen to serve the Lord on a bigger scale, do not envy them, instead love them even more.

Pray even more for them so that the Lord protects them as they carry on more responsibility for the Kingdom.

Don’t be concerned for your own good but for the good of others.

1 Corinthians 10:24 | NLT

Again, there is nothing wrong with caring for yourself, however you should be constantly thinking what can you do to benefit someone else. At the end of the day, God sees all things and rewards those according to their deeds.

I can totally understand the fact that you don’t want to come across as someone “soft” and who is easy to manipulate and take advantage of, but this is where wisdom comes into play.

The Lord is not asking you to put yourself in bad situations like that. What He is saying is that we simply need to care a lot more about the well-being of others than what we think.

God will always bless those who bless others.


man looking on mountain sitting on rock

Divine Love Trait #7: Good Temper

With today’s fast-paced world, ever increasing cost of living, and just all the curve balls that life in this world throws at us, it’s no surprise that tempers can flare up very quickly.

I myself struggle in this area as hot-tempers run naturally in my family. However, as I’m learning from putting together this bible study, this can also be overcome with the power of the Holy Spirit.

I want to share with you some bible verses that I believe can help others who also struggle in this area.

Understand this, my dear brothers and sisters: You must all be quick to listen, slow to speak, and slow to get angry. Human anger does not produce the righteousness God desires.

James 1:19-20 | NLT

This passage teaches believers to always be attentive to the wisdom and wise counsel from others in the body of Christ, especially those who have been in the faith for a long time.

When it comes to our speech, we should choose our words carefully and use wisdom. I truly believe that allowing the Holy Spirit to help strengthen us in the previous traits and characteristics will greatly influence how we carry ourselves when we speak.

This last part is very important because a moment of explosive anger can easily put a stain on your testimony. Yes we all make mistakes, but as I’m learning, mistakes such as losing your temper is due to a weakness in one of the previous traits and characteristics.

A gentle answer deflects anger, but harsh words make tempers flare.

Proverbs 15:1 | NLT

I think it’s pretty well known that saying something harsh to someone, even as a way of “self defense” isn’t such a bright idea. Harsh words will never cool down a hostile situation, instead it’s like pouring gas into a fire.

This is why I believe it’s so important to strengthen ourselves in these traits of divine love because it’s what will help prepare us for hostile moments, where one mistake can turn that moment violent.

Getting into a fight with someone doesn’t put a smile on God’s face.

A hot-tempered person starts fights; a cool-tempered person stops them.

Proverbs 15:18 | NLT

There are people who just feed off of starting fights. Any little thing triggers them into a moment of rage. These kinds of people are weak in every area we have learned about so far.

Someone who is a hot head suffers from extreme selfishness. They have a total disregard for the well-being of others and only care about themselves, hence the whole getting triggered thing.

A cool-tempered person refuses to be involved in nonsense like this. They understand that fighting and feeding into a hot-heads rage doesn’t solve anything. Fighting a hot-head will not make that person less of a hot-head.

However, someone who is strong in the traits of divine love can have better control of the situation and defuse the entire hostile moment.


man holding his hands on open book

Divine Love Trait #8: Righteousness

What is righteousness and how do we attain it? To put it simply, it means being right in God’s eyes. What can we do to achieve this? Nothing, except believe in Jesus Christ as your Lord and Savior.

There is nothing that man can do to ever be right, it is only possible through the saving power of Jesus Christ. Many other religions have acts of faith that one must follow in order to be made right with God.

With Jesus, the only thing that you can possibly do to be made right in the eyes of God is to believe on His Son, the Lord Jesus Christ.

Let’s see what else the bible has to say about righteousness.

Now you are free from your slavery to sin, and you have become slaves to righteous living.

Romans 6:18 | NLT

A very important lesson to understand is that once you become saved, that doesn’t mean you will no longer sin again, and that your sinful nature magically goes away.

What this verse is saying is that after getting saved, and you begin to follow the teachings of the bible, sin will not be the dominant force in your life.

Instead, the new dominant force in your life will be the power of the Holy Spirit, who will help guide you into all truth and holiness.

Also, the phrase “slaves to righteous living” should obviously not be understood in a negative tone. When you accept Jesus as your Lord and Savior, you are free from the power of sin, and you are free to live a life of doing what pleases God.

Yes, everything else is worthless when compared with the infinite value of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord. For his sake I have discarded everything else, counting it all as garbage, so that I could gain Christ and become one with him.

I no longer count on my own righteousness through obeying the law; rather, I become righteous through faith in Christ. For God’s way of making us right with himself depends on faith.

Philippians 3:8-9

Here Paul literally disowned everything about his heritage and Judaism in order to come to the saving knowledge of Jesus Christ. That is how we are to respond to our faith in Christ as well.

We need to realize that nothing that this world has to offer even comes remotely close in comparison to the saving grace of Jesus Christ.

It doesn’t matter what your bloodline is, your nationality, culture, religion, race, education, none of that matters. None of that will save you. Only Jesus can offer you eternal life.

He personally carried our sins in his body on the cross so that we can be dead to sin and live for what is right. By his wounds you are healed.

1 Peter 2:24 | NLT

This verse makes it clear that Jesus carried OUR sins on the cross, He was sinless. He did this because He loved us so deeply that He performed the ultimate sacrifice so that we can have the opportunity to spend eternity with Him.

The best way to thank Him, outside of accepting Him as your Lord and Savior, is to live for what is right. That includes living out these traits of divine love.

Study the bible and pray everyday so that you can strive to be more like Christ.


three woman sitting near the flower

Divine Love Trait #9: Sincerity

Sincerity is truly believing in something without any ill will or hidden motive. Now, you can obviously be super sincere about something, but be totally wrong.

For example, someone could be totally sincere about worshiping other Gods other than Jesus, but they’d be wrong, since the bible makes it clear that we should have no other gods besides Him.

So, for this final trait, I would like to take a look through some bible verses about sincerity and see what we can learn.

You see, we are not like the many hucksters who preach for personal profit. We preach the word of God with sincerity and with Christ’s authority, knowing that God is watching us.

2 Corinthians 2:17 | NLT

Here Paul is speaking against some false apostles who arrived on the scene to deceive the Corinthians into believing their version of the Gospel.

They were mixing their lies with the truth and trying to profit off the people while doing so. Paul preached the Gospel free of charge. He did not go around selling the Gospel.

These fake apostles, who obviously were not appointed by God as Paul and the other 11 were, were turning the message of the Gospel into a business.

Their motives were not pure and sincere. They did not care about the eternal destiny of the people they were preaching their lies to.

We see a lot of this garbage even today, with these televangelists mixing their doctrines of demons with the word of God and profiting off the people of God.

Now don’t get me wrong, there’s nothing wrong with writing a book, making a website, selling some t-shirts, etc., just as long as you’re not selling the Gospel message to the people.

If you’re hiding the saving knowledge of Jesus Christ behind a paywall then your motives are not sincere.

Now, in full transparency (again), I do plan on running ads on this site at some point in the future, and even adding affiliate links, but my mission is to share the Gospel and what I learn from the bible for free.

I will not put the Gospel behind a pay wall and I will not ask for money. I will run ads, affiliate links and maybe some merch with the Curious Believer “brand” I guess, not sure what else to call it, but that is because it does cost money to run a website.

Don’t worry, I won’t ask you for money to help pay for my own personal jet or over sized mansion.

But the time is coming—indeed it’s here now—when true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and in truth. The Father is looking for those who will worship him that way. For God is Spirit, so those who worship him must worship in spirit and in truth.”

John 4:2-24 | NLT

The religious Jews during the time of Jesus’ ministry had reduced the worship of God to nothing more than outwardly religious acts.

It was dead worship, not true, living worship. God is looking for those who will truly worship Him with their lives because they really do love Him, and not just going along with man-made religious practices.

Don’t just pretend to love others. Really love them. Hate what is wrong. Hold tightly to what is good.

Romans 12:9 | NLT

This final verse is a nice “go-home” verse to sum up what we’ve learned. Just be real with people. Truly love them and show them that you love and care for them.

Don’t do it for show or so that people can think highly of you. Do it because you love Jesus and He loves them even more.

We’re instructed to hate the opposite of loving acts and to hold tightly to what is good, which I believe is speaking to all of the 9 traits of divine love that we covered.

Holding onto these truths will help guide you in living out a life of holiness.


Conclusion

I want to thank you for digging into the word of God with me and learning about the very first fruit of the Spirit, which is love. We now understand that this is not the common form of love that the rest of the world knows, but it is a divine level of love that is only possible to express by the power of the Holy Spirit.

I pray that this bible study was a blessing to you, and I ask that you please share this on social media, and also to your loved ones.


Action Steps:

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