Taking Agapē Love to Heart

1. What do you observe about God's agapē love?

To Adam he said, "Because you listened to your wife and ate fruit from the tree about which I commanded you, 'You must not eat from it,'
"Cursed is the ground because of you; through painful toil you will eat food from it all the days of your life.
It will produce thorns and thistles for you, and you will eat the plants of the field.
By the sweat of your brow you will eat your food
until you return to the ground, since from it you were taken;
for dust you are and to dust you will return." (Gen 3:17-19, NIV)

For God so loved (agapē) the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him. (John 3:16-17, NIV)

2. What do you observe about Jesus' agapē love?

Jesus gave them this answer: "Very truly I tell you, the Son can do nothing by himself; he can do only what he sees his Father doing, because whatever the Father does the Son also does. For the Father loves the Son and shows him all he does. Yes, and he will show him even greater works than these, so that you will be amazed. (John 5:19-20, NIV)

The reason my Father loves (agapaō) me is that I lay down my life—only to take it up again. (John 10:17)

As the Father has loved (agapaō) me, so have I loved (agapaō) you. Now remain in my love (agapē). (John 15:9)

He took Peter and the two sons of Zebedee along with him, and he began to be sorrowful and troubled. Then he said to them, "My soul is overwhelmed with sorrow to the point of death. Stay here and keep watch with me." Going a little farther, he fell with his face to the ground and prayed, "My Father, if it is possible, may this cup be taken from me. Yet not as I will, but as you will." Then he returned to his disciples and found them sleeping. "Couldn't you men keep watch with me for one hour?" he asked Peter. "Watch and pray so that you will not fall into temptation. The spirit is willing, but the flesh is weak." He went away a second time and prayed, "My Father, if it is not possible for this cup to be taken away unless I drink it, may your will be done." (Matt 26:37-42, NIV also recorded in Mark 14:35-39 and Luke 22:39-44)

3. What do you observe about how disciples are to exhibit agapē love?

I have set you an example that you should do as I have done for you. Very truly I tell you, no servant is greater than his master, nor is a messenger greater than the one who sent him. Now that you know these things, you will be blessed if you do them. (John 13:15-17, NIV)

Jesus replied, "Anyone who loves (agapaō) me will obey my teaching. My Father will love (agapaō) them, and we will come to them and make our home with them. Anyone who does not love (agapaō) me will not obey my teaching. These words you hear are not my own; they belong to the Father who sent me. (John 14:23-24, NIV)

"You have heard that it was said, 'Love (agapaō) your neighbor and hate your enemy.' But I tell you, love (agapaō) your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, that you may be children of your Father in heaven. He causes his sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous. (Matt 5:43-45, NIV)

One of them, an expert in the law, tested him with this question: "Teacher, which is the greatest commandment in the Law?" Jesus replied: "'Love (agapaō) the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.' This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: 'Love (agapaō) your neighbor as yourself.' All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments." (Matt 22:35-40, NIV)

"A new command I give you: Love (agapaō) one another. As I have loved (agapaō) you, so you must love (agapaō) one another. By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you love (agapē) one another." (John 13:34-35, NIV)

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