RCCG Sunday School STUDENT Manual For January 6, 2019 : TOPIC – Practical Love In Marriage (Part 2)
MEMORY VERSE: “There is no fear in love; but perfect love casteth out fear: because fear hath torment. He that feareth is not made perfect in love.” – 1 John 4:18
BIBLE PASSAGE: 1 Corinthians 13:1-13
1 Though I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, and have not charity, I am become as sounding brass, or a tinkling cymbal.
2 And though I have the gift of prophecy, and understand all mysteries, and all knowledge; and though I have all faith, so that I could remove mountains, and have not charity, I am nothing.
3 And though I bestow all my goods to feed the poor, and though I give my body to be burned, and have not charity, it profiteth me nothing.
4 Charity suffereth long, and is kind; charity envieth not; charity vaunteth not itself, is not puffed up,
5 Doth not behave itself unseemly, seeketh not her own, is not easily provoked, thinketh no evil;
6 Rejoiceth not in iniquity, but rejoiceth in the truth;
7 Beareth all things, believeth all things, hopeth all things, endureth all things.
8 Charity never faileth: but whether there be prophecies, they shall fail; whether there be tongues, they shall cease; whether there be knowledge, it shall vanish away.
9 For we know in part, and we prophesy in part.
10 But when that which is perfect is come, then that which is in part shall be done away.
11 When I was a child, I spake as a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child: but when I became a man, I put away childish things.
12 For now we see through a glass, darkly; but then face to face: now I know in part; but then shall I know even as also I am known.
13 And now abideth faith, hope, charity, these three; but the greatest of these is charity.
In the previous lesson, we learnt about erotic/sexual love and friendship love as being crucial for a successful marriage. We shall further consider two other types of love that must be practiced in godly marriages. These are ‘affectionate’ love and ‘sacrificial/charitable love.
1. Storge” – Affectionate love
2. “Agape” – Sacrificial/Charitable love
1. “STORGE” – AFFECTIONATE LOVE
Another Greek word for love is “storge”, translated as affectionate love .
It relates to natural, familial love that must be shown practically among couples, children and extended family members. (Genesis 13:8-9, Ruth 1:16)
It is the care and concern that binds families together do that no matter what external forces come against them, the unity of the group remains unbreakable. (Genesis 14:14-16; Genesis 34:1-7, 25-27; Exodus 2: 2-8). Even though suffering and heartache may come into their experience, storage love binds the family together and strengthens its ties (1Samuel 1:4-8). It is also a supportive love which must be demonstrated in the lines of losses or victory, failure, or success, sickness or sound health, sadness and joy, disappointment or achievement, etc.(Luke 8:41-42, 49-55). It creates a heaven for trust and safety in marriage.
2. AGAPE” – SACRIFICIAL/CHARITABLE LOVE
Agape is used to describe the love that is of and from God whose very nature is love itself: “God is love” (1John 4:8). He demonstrated His own love(agape) towards us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us. (Romans 5:8)
Agape love is also used to describe our love for God (Luke10:27), a servant’s faithful respect to his master (Matthew 6:24), and man utmost love for his wife. God commands all husbands to love their wives as Christ loves the church (Ephesians 5:25-31). Agape love is unconditional love which stands and remains when other types of love quits, and cares when there is no apparent reason to care.
It is beautifully described as charitable love in 1Corinthians 13:1-13. The agape love of God goes past surface, enabling us to look deep into the hearts of others and love them for whom God has made them to be despite the shortcomings or faults. It is love that seeks to give sacrificially (1John 3:16). This is the climax of love that holds the couples together forever “till death do them part”.
A marriage without the presence and commitment of Storge (support and care) and Agape love may be on the express lane to heartbreak.
- What do you understand by affectionate love?
- How important is sacrificial love in marriage?