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Is Love Overrated?

Posted on February 14, 2022

In 1967, The Beatles came out with a new hit song entitled “All You Need is Love.” This priority on love has not faded from our culture. 99.9% of movies have some kind of love emphasis, whether it’s romantic love or a love for family and friends. Every band and musician does songs about love. And let’s not forget the holiday of love, Valentine’s Day, which focuses solely on loving “that special someone.” All of this emphasis on love can become overwhelming, which can lead one to ask, “Is love overrated?” Is love really that important? 


The simple answer is YES! The Bible has a lot to say about love—that is, loving God and others—and it is of the most paramount importance. When asked what was the greatest commandment, Jesus responded, “Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind” (Matt. 22:37). This is the most important thing, period! Jesus followed it up with the second greatest commandment: “Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself” (Matt. 22:39). So loving others is vital as well. 


Jesus said that the true mark of discipleship was love. “A new commandment I give unto you, That ye love one another; as I have loved you, that ye also love one another. By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples, if ye have love one to another” (John 13:34-35). Love is what sets Christians apart from the world (at least it should be). The love of Christ should be flowing through us to those around us. 


After His resurrection, Jesus spoke to Peter, who had recently failed Him. He asked him one simple question three times: “Do you love me?” Peter responded that of course he did. Jesus then replied that Peter should feed His sheep (see John 21:15-17). You see, love should be the motivator in our ministry. We should not serve out of duty, but out of love for Christ. Paul admitted this when he said, “For the love of Christ constraineth us…” (II Cor. 5:14). 


According to I Corinthians 13, love is of the utmost importance. In fact, if you serve God faithfully, if you have great faith, if you give sacrificially to the poor, and yet do all of this without love, then it’s all useless (v. 1-3). Love has all kinds of great qualities—it is willing to suffer, it’s kind, it’s selfless, it’s hopeful, and it endures (v. 4-7). But that’s not all. Paul compares love to faith and hope. How does it stack up? He says, “…but the greatest of these is [love]” (v. 13). That’s pretty important! 


The Apostle John emphasizes love in the epistle of I John. He says that “God is love” (I John 4:16). So if you think that love is overrated, then God Himself is overrated! The truth is, love is absolutely essential. Now let me be clear: the world will often focus on romantic love, and this kind of love can be overrated. But God’s love to us is not so. And our love for Him is the greatest thing in all the world. This Valentine’s Day, whether you have a valentine or not, will you choose to set your love on the Lord? Love Him more and more every day. And when you love God more, you will find that it is easier to love those around you. 

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