Divine Love (Bible Study)

Posted Feb 21, 2023 in Bible Studies

From this Youtube presentation on Divine Love

1 John 4:8 God is love

Psalm 18:30 God is perfect

Malachi 3:6 God is unchangeable

So God's love, whatever that is, is perfect and unchangeable.

1 John 4:8 God "IS" love

This passage does not say that God has love, but that God is love. That means the core essence of God's nature is love.

If God has love, then it can be just one thing he has of many, and he can choose not to have it. But if God is love, that is His essence, that is His being – it can’t be changed, because God doesn’t change. If God stopped being love, He would stop being who He is; He would stop being God.

God does not have love as a possession, it's not an attribute that He uses that is separate from Himself. I have money; I can choose to use it or not.

Because God is love everything He does, all He has, is an spring of that love. All of God's character, methods and principles are expressions of the love that God is. “A good tree bears good fruit,” Jesus says. God is love, so he bears the fruits of love.

So to understand what kind of fruit God should bear – meaning how His government should function – we need to understand what love is as God defines it.

Question: What is love?

There are different types of love. In this study we will focus on 2 different types of love

  1. Divine love
  2. Human love

Question - What is Divine love?

1 Corinthians 13:4-7 Love suffers long and is kind; love does not envy; love does not parade itself, is not puffed up; does not behave rudely, does not seek its own, is not provoked, hinks no evil; does not rejoice in iniquity, but rejoices in the truth; bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.

Divine love is agape, and agape is:

Let's look at these points one by one:

Love is:
LONG-SUFFERING, noun. Long endurance; patience of offense.

Love is:
KIND, adjective. Disposed to do good to others, and to make them happy by granting their requests, supplying their wants or assisting them in distress; having tenderness or goodness of nature; benevolent; benignant.

Love does not:
ENVY, verb. To feel uneasiness, mortification or discontent, at the sight of superior excellence, reputation or happiness enjoyed by another; to repine at another's prosperity; to fret or grieve one's self at the real or supposed superiority of another, and to hate him on that account.
ENVY, noun. Pain, uneasiness, mortification or discontent excited by the sight of another's superiority or success, accompanied with some degree of hatred or malignity, and often or usually with a desire or an effort to depreciate the person, and with pleasure in seeing him depressed. Envy springs from pride, ambition or love, mortified that another has obtained what one has a strong desire to possess.

Love does not exalt itself:
EXALT, verb.

1. To raise high; to elevate.
2. To elevate in power, wealth, rank or dignity; as, to exalt one to a throne, to the chief magistracy, to a bishopric.
3. To elevate with joy or confidence; as, to be exalted with success or victory.
4. To raise with pride; to make undue pretensions to power, rank or estimation; to elevate

Love is not puffed up”
PUFFED, participle passive. Driven out suddenly, as air or breath; blown up; swelled with air; inflated with vanity or pride; praised

Love does not behave itself unseemly:
UNSEEMLY, adjective. Not fit or becoming; uncomely; unbecoming; indecent.


Love is not easily provoked:
PROVOKED, participle passive. Excited; roused; incited; made angry; incensed.

EVIL, adjective

1. Having bad qualities of a natural kind; mischievous; having qualities which tend to injury, or to produce mischief.
2. Having bad qualities of a moral kind; wicked; corrupt; perverse; wrong; as evil thoughts; evil deeds; evil speaking; an evil generation.
3. Unfortunate; unhappy; producing sorrow, distress, injury or calamity; as evil tidings; evil arrows; evil days

Note: some Bible translations, translate this passage as not keeping a record of sin

1 Corinthians 13:5

New Living Translation
Love is not rude. It does not demand its own way. It is not irritable, and it keeps no record of being wronged

Berean Standard Bible
It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no account of wrongs

NASB 1977
Love does not act unbecomingly; it does not seek its own, is not provoked, does not take into account a wrong suffered

GOD'S WORD® Translation
It isn't rude. It doesn't think about itself. It isn't irritable. It doesn't keep track of wrongs…


1. Injustice; unrighteousness; a deviation from morally correct behavior and thinking
2. A particular deviation from morally correct behavior and thought; a sin or crime; wickedness; any act of injustice.
3. Original want/lack of holiness or depravity.

TRUTH, noun.

1. Conformity to fact or reality; exact accordance with that which is, or has been, or shall be.
2. True state of facts or things.
3.  Veracity; purity from falsehood; practice of speaking truth; habitual disposition to speak truth;
4. Fidelity; constancy; honesty; virtue.

BEAR, verb.

1. To support; to sustain; as, to bear a weight or burden.
2. To carry; to convey; to support and remove from place to place; as, 'they bear him upon the shoulder;' 'the eagle beareth them on her wings.'
3. To keep afloat; as, the water bears a ship.

BELIEVE, verb.  To have a firm persuasion of any thing. In some cases, to have full persuasion, approaching to certainty in others when doubt is implied.

HOPE, noun. Confidence in a future event; the highest degree of well-founded expectation of good;

ENDURE, verb.

1. To last; to continue in the same state without perishing; to remain; to abide.
2. To bear; to brook; to suffer without resistance, or without yielding
3, to support without breaking or yielding to force or pressure.
4, To bear with patience; to bear without opposition or sinking under the pressure.
5, To undergo; to sustain.

God’s Divine love is called Agape

God's love is:

God’s love often gets confused with human love. And since humans are sinners by birth, no human is capable of projecting divine love on their own.

Human love

Human love is based on the world's standards.

1 John 2:15 -16 Love not the world, neither the things that are in the world. If any man love the world, the love of the Father is not in him. For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the Father, but is of the world.

Human love is based on

Human love is based on worldly standards placed on you by what you do and not who you are:

Human love is

Human love dries up:

Human love is based on feelings which are created by circumstances. Human love needs conditions to love, and when those conditions aren't met, there is no more love.

Human love is a corrupted form of God's agape love. Sometimes when we are receptive to God’s spirit, we channel His agape love. But cut of from God, it becomes Satanic love, which in its most hardened form is the opposite of God’s love: totally selfish and dominating.

Fallen Human love is Satan's counterfeit love, which is actually iniquity.

When you compare human love with divine love, you see they are two different things.

God’s love is for everyone:

John 3:16 for God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten son…

You can always read John 3:16 through divine agape love

John 3:16 for God considered the world more important than He considered Himself, that He gave us that which He loved most: His only begotten son.

Romans 5:8 God demonstrated his love for us that while we were yet sinners, Christ gave His life for us

The Bible says to call no man unclean, or not loveable to God

Acts 10:28. God hath shown me in vision to call no man unclean/unlovable

The life of Jesus reveals how God truly treats sinners

John 14:9. If you have seen me, you have seen the Father

Christ's entire life on this earth was a revelation of God's love in character, methods, principle

1 John 4:18 – Perfect agape love casts out/removes the idea of fear, because fear has torment [direct physical punishment from God, that He could at any time harm us. We believe this because we think we are fine doing our own thing and this fear of harm troubles us, when in reality God is protecting and taking care of us at all times].

Agape carries the punishment that Satan created for sinners upon itself.

We think people should die for doing wrong, so to satisfy that thinking, Jesus died – then we could believe we were forgiven and forgive each other.

Romans 5:6 - For when we were yet without strength {being unable to love and to forgive}, in due time Christ died for the ungodly… For if, when we were enemies (we were enemies with God because of our wrong understanding of love), we were reconciled to God by the death of his Son, much more, being reconciled, we shall be saved by his life.

Jesus died for us, showed us we were forgiven, and then from His life we see how God wants us to live – a new life of divine love, not human love. We have a new mind.

Revelation 12:11 – they overcame him [Satan] by the blood of the lamb and by the word of their testimony.

God's children overcome Satan by the life of Jesus and the truth about God they have experienced themselves.

When Jesus gave up His life on the cross, that was not a sacrifice to an angry God. It's a revelation of what Divine love is willing to go through for our salvation.

1 John 3:1 Behold, what manner of love the Father hath bestowed upon us, that we should be called the sons of God: therefore the world knoweth us not, because it knew him not.

1 John 2 9-11 He that saith he is in the light, and hateth his brother, is in darkness even until now. He that loveth his brother abideth in the light, and there is none occasion of stumbling in him. But he that hateth his brother is in darkness, and walketh in darkness, and knoweth not whither he goeth, because that darkness hath blinded his eyes.

It is this hatred that we have for our brother that causes Jesus to need to die. When we see how much Jesus loves us, without any hate, then we will also love our brother without hate.

1 John 1:5 This then is the message which we have heard of him, and declare unto you, that God is light, and in him is no darkness at all.

If we believe the testimony that Jesus gave us about the Father as being pure light/love and that in him is no darkness, no evil, no iniquity, then we will have a revelation about the truth of God's character being pure divine agape love.

If we believe this, we will believe God will save us from the lies of Satan.

John 12:32 And I, if I be lifted up from the earth, will draw all men unto me.

A magnet has both positive and negative aspects to it.

If we view Jesus through the lies of Satan, we will be drawn to Jesus in a negative way, with ideas of fear and torment and reward and punishment.
If we view Jesus through agape love, we will be drawn to Him in a positive way, with ideas of love, safety, compassion, hope.
Divine love attracts us to Jesus in a positive way, that compels us to obey out of love.
The lies of Satan attract us to God in a negative way, that compels us to obey God out of fear.

Because it believes, hopes, and trusts us, with a perfect unchangeable love.

- Bradley Mock