Psalm 119:161-168 Shin
Powerful people harass me without cause, but my heart trembles only at your word.
I rejoice in your word like one who discovers a great treasure.
I hate and abhor all falsehood, but I love your instructions.
I will praise you seven times a day because all your regulations are just.
Those who love your instructions have great peace and do not stumble.
I long for your rescue, Lord, so I have obeyed your laws, for I love them very much.
Yes, I obey your commandments and laws because you know everything I do.
God’s law is just and gives us peace as the Psalmist here describes. Where does the peace of God come from? It comes from obeying His laws. Loving God with all your heart, your soul and mind and loving your neighbor as yourself. Love is the foundation of God’s law. It’s what makes the world go around. There are three types of love we can show, and they are all part of fulfilling God’s law and handling relationships. Let me point out that love is an action and a choice we make every day, not some gushy feeling when we “fall in love.” That type is called infatuation and is not love. Love is not a feeling. Love is an action word and it is shown by what we say and what we do.
The first type of love is phileo love or friendship love. It’s the type of love you have for a close friend, not acquaintances. Close friends you can share personal things so that you don’t worry about what they will say to others or think, you just know they won’t pass that information on. Our friends help us realize important things about ourselves that we cannot see just by being ourselves. If you are married, this is probably the most important part of the marriage that you have to keep the marriage going. If you start out as friends, you will always be friends and your spouse should be your best friend.
The next type of love is what keeps the first type of love going, and that is agape love. Agape love is unconditional love, the very same love God has for us. When you have unconditional love, you love with an intention. You are intentional in the way you love; you are not easily angered and are full of grace. Grace allows evil to happen without us returning evil back in response. Grace and unconditional love allow things to happen and they try to turn those bad things around to good. That’s what God does He turns the bad to good, there is always something that is good that comes from a bad situation. We just have to patient and wait to see it happen.
The next and final type of love is Eros love or intimacy. This is the only type of love that should be shared between spouses. It is the deepest part of love you can experience. The first two can be very much a part of your relationship with friends, but Eros love is limited to our spouses. We in effect love ourselves when we limit this type of love. We also are having an intimate relationship with God when we obey His law of love. By not sharing our Eros love with others other than our spouses is the best way and most peaceful way we can live.
These three types of love that can be displayed are all ways of obtaining the peace the Psalmist is talking about. Loving God, others and ourselves always develops peace in any relationship we have, whether it’s a great friend, or a spouse. Being intentional in your love is the best way you can love anyone. If you desire peace in your life, just love as much as you can, your heart capacity is not too small if it can fit Jesus in it.
© [David Howard], [David’s Body Temple], 2011-2015.