Last week, during our weekly Bible study, we discussed the love of God and read many scriptures which encourage love. After the session, one of the youths came to me and told me that he noted the Bible has used the word love in many verses. He then challenged me to tell him the number of times the word is used in the Bible. I admired his way of thinking and decided to write this article to answer his question, “How many times is love mentioned in the bible?”
The number of times the word love appears in the Bible varies depending on the Bible version. For example, the term “love” appears in the New International Version 551 times (319 in the Old Testament and 232 times in the New Testament. On the other hand, this term appears in the King James Version 310 times (131 times in the Old Testament and 179 times in the New Testament.
Join me as we delve into the topic of love in the Bible. We will uncover answers to questions such as the Hebrew meaning of love and what the Bible says about love. We will also go through verses where love is mentioned, so read until the end of this article.
What is love according to the Bible?
According to the Bible, Love is more than an emotional feeling; it embraces Good and resists Evil. In 1 Corinthians 13:4-8, the Bible says that love is patient, selfless, respectful, kind, and forgiving. Love rejoices in truth, protects, hopes, and trusts. Love does not fail, cause harm, or easily get angered. Therefore, when you love someone, you endure them and wish them no harm at all times. You forgive those whom you love just like God forgave us and allowed His son to die on the cross for our sake.
What is the Hebrew meaning of love?
The Hebrew word used to refer to love in the Bible is “Ahavah.” It means to have affection towards someone or something. However, in the Bible, this word also refers to love in action. For example, Israel was supposed to show their love for God through their actions. They showed love for God by obeying his teaching and following his commandments. They also showed their love for God by worshipping and offering Him sacrifices. Therefore, the Hebrew meaning of love is showing love through your actions.
What does the Bible say about love?
The Bible says a lot of things about love. It says in 1 John 4:7–8 that God is love, and it comes from Him. Therefore, love is one of the characteristics of God. Everything that God does for his people is influenced by love. According to John 3:16, God was motivated by His love for His people and the world, so he offered his son to die and save the world. God does not care whether we are worthy of His love or not. He showed His love for us even while we were sinners by giving his son to die for us, as stated in Romans 5:8.
The Bible also says we should love everyone, including our enemies, in Matthew 5:44. According to 1 John 4:19, the Bible says that we should love others because God loved us first. Therefore, by loving one another, we are reflecting the great love of God.
In addition, the Bible says that we show our love for God by obeying his commandments. According to 1 John 5:3, the Bible says that when we keep and obey the commandments of God, we show our love for Him. God’s love encourages us to follow his ways and live according to his will without getting tired.
Where does love first appear in the Bible?
The word love first appears in Genesis 22:2. The Bible says that God told Abraham to take his only son whom he loved so much and sacrifice him at the region of Moriah. Abraham is said to have Faithful love for God. Even in his Old age, after God granted him a son with his wife Sarah, he was ready to sacrifice the son that he had prayed so much for to have as burned offering for God.
After God told Abraham to sacrifice his son, Abraham obeyed God and took him to Mount Moriah to sacrifice him as a burned sacrifice. This is the love that we Christians should have for God. We should always trust in God and let our love for him drive us to obey his word without hesitation.
Is love the most used word in the Bible?
No, love is not the most used word in the Bible. Love is not among the top five most commonly used words in the Bible. Love has been used less than 1000 times in all Bible versions, whereas words like Lord, God, Man, Israel, People, and others have been used more than 2000 times in the Bible. However, according to 1 Corinthians 13:13, the Bible says love is the greatest attribute.
How many types of love are there in the Bible?
There are four types of love in the Bible; Eros, Storge, Philia, and Agape love. The first type of love is eros. It is a Greek word used to mean Sexual or romantic love. This is the love a Husband and a Wife should have for each other. The second type of love is storge. It refers to the familial love a family should have for each other. It is the love a mother or a father has for their children.
The third type of love in the Bible is philia, which refers to friendship. It is the kind of love David and Jonathan had for each other. It is also devoted love for one another. The fourth type of love is agape. This type of love is used to show God’s love for His people and the world. Christians are supposed to emulate this love towards each other.
What did Jesus teach about love?
Jesus teaching about love involved love for God, our neighbors, and our enemies. According to Matthew 22:36-40, Jesus said that the two greatest commandments are to love God with all our strength and being and to love our neighbors as we love ourselves. In John 14:2, Jesus said that those who follow his commandments are the ones who love him, and he will disclose Himself to them. Therefore, Jesus gave the commandment of love as his greatest commandment during his teaching about love and instructed that we should follow his command to show our love for him.
Also, According to Matthew 5:43-45, Jesus taught about love for our enemies. Jesus taught us that we should love our enemies and pray for those who oppress us so that we can be children of God. Therefore, as Christians, we should always show love to one another.
Instances of love in the Bible.
- Matthew 5:44 says that Jesus gave instructions to love our enemies and pray for those who oppress us.
- Matthew 22:37 says that Jesus gave a commandment to his people that they should love God with all their being.
- Deuteronomy 7:9 says that God is a faithful God who keeps his promise of love to everyone that loves Him and obeys His commandments.
- John 14:21 says that Jesus said that those who follow His commandments are those who love him, and you will also love them.
- 1 Chronicles 16:34 says that we should always be thankful to God, for his love is everlasting.
- John 3:16 says that God gave His son Jesus Christ to die for our sins because of His love for us.
- Exodus 34:6 explains that God is compassionate, slow to anger, and abounds in love.
- Romans 12:9 says that love should not have hypocrisy.
- 1 Corinthians 13:13 says that we should abide in hope, faith, and love. However, the greatest of the three is love.
- Jeremiah 31:3 says that God appeared to his people, saying He has loved his people with everlasting love.
- John 15:12-13 says that Jesus gave a commandment to his people that they should love each other as he loves them.
- Colossians 3:19 says that Husbands should love their wives.
- Ephesians 4:2-3 explains that we should be patient, humble, and gentle with everyone in love.
- 1 Corinthians 13:4-8 says that love is patient, selfless, respectful, kind, and forgiving. Love rejoices in truth, protects, hopes, and trusts. Love does not fail or easily get angered.
As a devout Christian, I have always been passionate about the Christian faith. This inspired me to pursue a degree in Religious studies and a Masters in Theology in college. I have also been privileged to teach 4 Christian courses in a college and university. Since I am dedicated to spreading the word of God, I am actively involved in the Church. Additionally, I share his word online and cover diverse topics on the Christian faith through my platform. You can read more about me on the about us page.