RELIGION ROUNDTABLE

Christian love is self-sacrifice, service

The classic definition for love is given to us in 1 Corinthians 13:4-8a: “Love is patient and kind; love does not envy or boast; it is not arrogant or rude. It does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful; it does not rejoice at wrongdoing, but rejoices with the truth. Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. Love never ends.”

The emphasis of Christian love is self-sacrifice and service. If you are looking to find the embodiment of love, then you need only look to Jesus Christ.

Romans 5:8-9: “But God shows his love for us in that while we still sinners, Christ died for us. Since, therefore, we have now been justified by his blood, much more shall we be saved by him from the wrath of God.”

Our desire to love others comes from the fact that Christ loved us first. This is the meaning of love in Christianity.

— Carlton Weathers, Grace Fellowship, Anniston

The gospel plan begins and ends with love

Our Heavenly Father longs for us to realize the great love He has for each of us here on earth.

He has given us many verses about love in the scriptures to help us understand His love.

1 John 4:16 tells us “God is love.” Heavenly Father desires that parents love their children as He loves us.

Jesus said the first and greatest commandment is, “Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind. This is the first and greatest commandment” (Matthew 22:37-38).

Why is this the greatest commandment? We can’t reach up to heaven and give our Heavenly Father a hug. But we can show our love for Him. We can reach out to one of His children here on earth and show them His love by our words and our actions.

A hug from loving parents strengthens us. It gives us the desire to hang in there, to not give up, to keep trying.

This is why the second greatest commandment is, “And the second is like unto it, Thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself” (Matthew 22:39).

We are here on earth to grow and learn. We all make mistakes. But our Heavenly Father and our Savior still love us.

The whole gospel plan begins and ends with love. May we try our best to love and forgive each other just as our Heavenly Father and our Savior love and forgive us. What a wonderful world this would be!

— Wallace Price, Anniston Ward, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints