1 Corinthians 13:4-7 NIV Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, 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.
There are three major kinds of love identified by three Greek words; eros, phileo, and agape.
We are most familiar with eros love, or romantic love.
As its name indicates, eros is passionate or sexual love (eros is the source of the English word erotic). The second major kind of love is phileo the Greek word for friendship love.
Philio refers to brotherly love and is most often exhibited in a close friendship. Best friends will display this generous and affectionate love for each other as each seeks to make the other happy.
Agape is the most powerful, noblest type of love. Agape is sacrificial love. Agape love is more than a feeling—it is an act of the will. This is the kind of love that can be commanded and controlled or directed by the mind and will of the person who chooses to love.
This is the love that God has for His people and that prompted the sacrifice of His only Son, Jesus, for our sins.
Agape Is Always Kind
If you and I are to be truly loving, we must live a lifestyle of kindness.
Ephesians 4:32 ESV Be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ forgave you.
It has been said that “kindness is a language that the deaf can hear and the blind can see.
Are you kind to others?
Jesus was always kind. He expressed kindness at the wedding in Cana, when he turned the water into wine so that the bride and groom wouldn't be embarrassed because they ran out of wine.
John 2:1-10 ESV On the third day there was a wedding at Cana in Galilee, and the mother of Jesus was there. Jesus also was invited to the wedding with his disciples. When the wine ran out, the mother of Jesus said to him, “They have no wine.” And Jesus said to her, “Woman, what does this have to do with me? My hour has not yet come.” His mother said to the servants, “Do whatever he tells you.” Now there were six stone water jars there for the Jewish rites of purification, each holding twenty or thirty gallons. Jesus said to the servants, “Fill the jars with water.” And they filled them up to the brim. And he said to them, “Now draw some out and take it to the master of the feast.” So they took it. When the master of the feast tasted the water now become wine, and did not know where it came from (though the servants who had drawn the water knew), the master of the feast called the bridegroom and said to him, “Everyone serves the good wine first, and when people have drunk freely, then the poor wine. But you have kept the good wine until now.”
He was kind to the widow of Nain, when He resurrected her son.
Luke 7:11-15 ESV Soon afterward he went to a town called Nain, and his disciples and a great crowd went with him. As he drew near to the gate of the town, behold, a man who had died was being carried out, the only son of his mother, and she was a widow, and a considerable crowd from the town was with her. And when the Lord saw her, he had compassion on her and said to her, "Do not weep." Then he came up and touched the bier, and the bearers stood still. And he said, "Young man, I say to you, arise." And the dead man sat up and began to speak, and Jesus gave him to his mother.
He was kind to the big crowds he fed, more than 5,000 on one occasion and more than 4,000 on another;
He was kind to his mother by providing for her while he was hanging on the cross,
John 19:26-27 ESV When Jesus saw his mother and the disciple whom he loved standing nearby, he said to his mother, "Woman, behold, your son!" Then he said to the disciple, "Behold, your mother!" And from that hour the disciple took her to his own home.
And He was kind to the thief hanging on the cross next to him.
Luke 23:42-43 ESV And he said, "Jesus, remember me when you come into your kingdom." And he said to him, "Truly, I say to you, today you will be with me in paradise."
Living a life of love marked by kindness is one aspect of living in a way that pleases God.
All people deserve kindness no matter the differences, viewpoints, or cultures. Kindness celebrates others and serves when there is a need. It looks out for the well-being of others and shows compassion when needed. It assists others and shows courtesy and benevolence to anyone. Kind people do not display animosity, ill will, or envy toward others.
Kindness is characterized by benevolence and tenderness. A kind person is disposed to help others and to do so with sympathy and consideration. Godly love will make a person kinder. No one can be loving and unkind at the same time.
1 John 4:8 ESV Anyone who does not love does not know God, because God is love.
That means God is kind. God’s kindness leads to repentance.
Romans 2:4 ESV Or do you presume on the riches of his kindness and forbearance and patience, not knowing that God’s kindness is meant to lead you to repentance?
God's kindness leads to salvation
Romans 11:22 ESV Note then the kindness and the severity of God: severity toward those who have fallen, but God’s kindness to you, provided you continue in his kindness. Otherwise you too will be cut off.
The ultimate expression of God’s kindness is in His grace in Jesus.
Ephesians 2:4-8 ESV But God, being rich in mercy, because of the great love with which he loved us, even when we were dead in our trespasses, made us alive together with Christ— by grace you have been saved— and raised us up with him and seated us with him in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus, so that in the coming ages he might show the immeasurable riches of his grace in kindness toward us in Christ Jesus. For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God,
May God help us to be kind at all times. Were you kind to that person in the line at the today that didn't have quite enough money to pay for their groceries? How about that homeless person you saw yesterday or maybe even this morning?
Look to the cross. See the kindness and mercy that Christ perfectly showed in His ultimate sacrifice for us.
Love is kind. May the Lord fill us with His love so that we might be kinder, more forgiving people for His glory.