Had an amazing, eye-opening and thought provoking chat with a friend today on the true and biblical meaning of Love.
The Bible indicates that love is from God. In fact, the Bible says "God is love." Love is one of the primary characteristics of God. Likewise, God has endowed us with the capacity for love, since we are created in His image.
"I love you" is an emotion we try and convey-
But "love" is an action - lying down your life for the brethren.
In contrast, our love is usually conditional and based upon how other people behave toward us. This kind of love is based upon familiarity and direct interaction. The Greek word "phileo" defines this kind of love, often translated "brotherly love." Phileo is a soulish (connected through our emotions) kind of love - something that can be experienced by both believers and non-believers.
This is in contrast to agape, which is love extended through the spirit. Agape love requires a relationship with God through Jesus Christ, since the non-regenerated soul is unable to love unconditionally. Agape love gives and sacrifices expecting nothing back in return.
Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs.
Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. Love never fails.