Parental Love even between Animals
1. God's exhibition of the Agape using different approaches and means just to re-connect to us teaches us the methodology of using different possible approaches to arrive at a possible solution. This is not just significant in Love, but also in all aspect of Life. If you love your daughter so much, but she doesn't listen to you, only her boyfriend, can you step aside and let her boyfriend take your role as a parent for a while to talk to her?
2. It also signifies how we are meant to love each other and how un-relenting our efforts in Love should be. Lawrence Fishbourne disowned his daughter for venturing into the pornographic Industry because she wants to make it just as Kim Kardashian did. As grossly stupid as that may seem, was it right for Mr. Lawrence to disown her? If you were in his shoes, what would you have done? But God, despite our righteousness described as filthy rags still loved us even at that state. God never gave up on us, hence we shouldn't give up on each other come what may.
3. Humility and Love goes hand in hand. God sending His son to die for us is an very good example of Humility. And as from Jesus' birth, His life till His death, Humility played a major role in all of these Aspect of the manifestation of God the son.
4. Judging others is very wrong. When you judge someone you condemn the person of the sin You do not commit. You know what this means? We are all sinners, all with spots and blames. We are not perfect and we all have the adamic nature in us. So, if Mr. A lies but condemns Mr. B who steals, to God there is absolutely no difference between the lying and the stealing, hence both parties leveling on an equal platform of sin. So why condemn another? Why the judgement? Only God has the right to judge because He created us and is blameless, having the 100% rights and quality to judge us.
Romans 2: 1-4: "You, therefore, have no excuse, you who pass judgment on someone else, for at whatever point you judge the other, you are condemning yourself, because you who pass judgment do the same things. Now we know that God’s judgment against those who do such things is based on truth. So when you, a mere man, pass judgment on them and yet do the same things, do you think you will escape God’s judgment? Or do you show contempt for the riches of his kindness, tolerance and patience, not realizing that God’s kindness leads you toward repentance?"
1. Is Love Blind? If yes, then I think I have the right to blame love if I blindly fall in love with a wrong person.
First and foremost, the quote "Love is blind" is so true. But should the lover be? The answer is NO! We mistake the love for the lover and these are two different but connected entities in this quotation. What does it mean for Love to be blind? It means anyone can love anyone irrespective of external factors/qualities such as race, height, distance, background, wealth, social status, class etc. Therefore, a president can love and even marry a lady who is a house help. A female accountant can love and even marry a toilet cleaner. But does it stop there? Love as we have said is a soul-to-soul connection, so therefore these people who are loving each other irrespective of the external influences must be able to connect to create personality compatibility. In this respect, the lovers should never be blind. Be cautious and know exactly how suited you are and if the president finds himself highly compatible with the house help, then such love has a very high probability of lasting. If this is understood, we can re-define the quote by saying "Love is blind but the lover shouldn't be.
2. If we are in likeness with God, why can't we see Him, touch Him or have a physical communion with Him?
We are created in His likeness. This is definitely sure, but also He created us with the body, since he molded us from clay. And before the fall of Man, Man had the Image of God, this was the connecting factor and hence the Nature of the body or rather flesh of man then. But after the fall what happened? Man lost that Image and the flesh took upon itself a new nature which is the sinful Nature and God is not in flesh form, God is spirit:
Romans 2:1-4: "God is spirit, and his worshipers must worship in spirit and in truth." So, at this point, the flesh and the spirit cannot go hand in hand and since the flesh has taken up a new Image of sin, the flesh CAN NEVER Commune with the spirit. And that is why the Bible records some attributes of the flesh and some attributes of the spirit which are so directly opposite each other.
John 3:6: "Flesh gives birth to flesh, but the Spirit gives birth to spirit. ... That which is born
of the flesh is flesh, and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit. ..."
Galatians 5: 16-25: "This I say then, Walk in the Spirit, and ye shall not fulfil the lust of the flesh. For the flesh lusteth against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh: and these are contrary the one to the other: so that ye cannot do the things that ye would. But if ye be led of the Spirit, ye are not under the law. Now the works of the flesh are manifest, which are these; Adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lasciviousness, Idolatry, witchcraft, hatred, variance, emulations, wrath, strife, seditions, heresies, Envyings, murders, drunkenness, revellings, and such like: of the which I tell you before, as I have also told you in time past, that they which do such things shall not inherit the kingdom of God. But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, Meekness, temperance: against such there is no law. And they that are Christ's have crucified the flesh with the affections and lusts. If we live in the Spirit, let us also walk in the Spirit." If this is the case, we can never see God physically, face to face, not until we drop the flesh which is sinful in Nature and be in spirit (Just like Him-God).
So, the positive we can get about being God's likeness is seeing God when we see ourselves on the mirror. He said we are his Image and likeness and hence we are gods. Does God have ears, eyes, Nose and all that? No body knows, because He has said it in His word that nobody sees me and Live. But it is not inappropriate if you think of God that way, after all, you are his likeness. Some other school of thoughts attribute the 'likeness' to our state of mind and that was exactly what the devil came for when he tempted man to fall. He came to capture the mind. Whichever representation you want to put God in, provided one way or the other it has a link to Biblical references, you may go ahead and have that representation, but be careful not to see God as a mere cosmic wave or a confined representation in our minds, or a force. God is much more than that, He is not only bigger, He is also living and no imagination is large enough to actually contain His existence.
Exodus 33:20-23: "But,” he said, “you cannot see my face, for no one may see me and live.”Then the Lord said, “There is a place near me where you may stand on a rock. When my glory passes by, I will put you in a cleft in the rock and cover you with my hand until I have passed by. Then I will remove my hand and you will see my back; but my face must not be seen.” From this passage, what Moses actually saw which was termed as "God's back" isn't literately God's back, but the glory of God from the past and it was from that Moment, Moses got the inspiration to write the first five books of the Bible [Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers and Deuteronomy]. So, as mysterious as God is (which is one of His attributes), We can have an idea of whom He is and as for me, I will always use myself, my likeness as seeing God himself.
Phileo-Love in Friendship
3. With the attraction comes the Love. So, I have the blood attraction to my two different brothers, that is to say I can love them both as brothers, since the attraction is there. Does that mean I can have a romantic attraction with more than one person and therefore loving more than one person at a time?
This is a very beautiful question. Even the attraction comes in different forms.
Proverbs 19:14: "Houses and wealth are inherited from parents, but a prudent wife is from the LORD."
Matthew 19:5: "and said, 'For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and the two will become one flesh'?"
A blood attraction comes by virtue of our relative's mating characteristics (Parents, uncles, aunts etc). This is the nature of the attraction: Blood, and you take as you get. But that of romance is different. God has positioned us to be in love to only but one person and this is how it is naturally. It is possible to be in Love with one person and maybe exhibit some level of attraction to another, sometimes, the attraction can even be extreme, but that does not mean your love both. Sometimes married men go into promiscuity and it will be as if they do not love their wives, but when caught they beg their lives out just to be back again and do everything possible never to do it (proving, their hearts are still in the marriage and their wives). Here is another passage to back this up:
Songs of solomon 6:8-9: "Sixty queens there may be, and eighty concubines, and virgins beyond number; but my dove, my perfect one, is unique, the only daughter of her mother, the favorite of the one who bore her. The maidens saw her and called her blessed; the queens and concubines praised her."
In other words, Solomon may have sixty Queens and eighty concubines, but he loves only one. His heart speaks and praises only one even to the point the maidens noticed it and joined him in the praise of this one special lady. So, it is not realistic for a person to fall in love with two people but here is another scenario.
The person's love for another may begin to fade, even as he builds up some soul-to-soul connection with a second person. As the love diminishes in the first relationship, it grows in the second. One relationship has to be to the detriment of the other. And this is where Polygamous states are not states bounded on love, but rather on phenomena such as obligations, connections, immediate hormonal stimulation etc, which are all forms of attraction. To fall in love is to do so with One Person.
4. Is it possible to love material things. If yes, is it right?
This is a very significant question which relates 100% to our contemporary Love world of today. From previous parts of this series, we have discussed how Love is the soul-to-soul connection between two (or more) people of which it increases as their personalities get more compact. But material things do not have a soul, therefore, establishing such a situation with material things is not possible. But this does not stop there, remember that there is a kind of Love which is unidirectional and totally independent of the person or thing you are loving. This is the Agape and as we have seen, Agape is not only exhibited by God, we humans can also exhibit and show Love in an Agape magnitude. So, if peradventure we love any material, it will definitely be an agape kind of Love.
If this is the case, is this right? Absolutely No! In fact, it is very dangerous. Agape love entails doing anything for who you love and ready to give up your own life even to ensure you are with the entity you are loving. When Agape is involved, not even your Life can stand in the way. Take for instance Money!
Ecclesiastics 10:19: "A feast is made for laughter, and wine makes life merry, but money is the answer for everything."
The Bible records that Money answers everything. Other translation would say 'money gives everything' Money is essential and much needed and without it, we may not even survive. In fact, during the time of old, money was accepted even in the temple
2 Kings 12:4: "Joash said to the priests, "Collect all the money that is brought as sacred offerings to the temple of the LORD--the money collected in the census, the money received from personal vows and the money brought voluntarily to the temple." So, there is no part of the Bible which condemns money, but here is what the Bible says about the love of money:
1 Timothy 6:10: "For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil. Some people, eager for money, have wandered from the faith and pierced themselves with many griefs." This verse just explains it all. The love of money is the root of all evil. Some have wandered and pierced themselves with many grief just because of this. Is this in reality true or not? Material things could be liked and given some level of attraction, but not shown love. Even in the attraction phase, showing too much attraction as in obsession becomes addiction (addiction to internet, video games, fashion etc). These situations are even medical situations and presently, there is a field of medicine (The Addiction Medicine) which studies these psychological situations! So material things are actually meant to be used and if necessarily given some level of attraction, in some small magnitude.
6. If it is possible to love material things, then We can also love Animals, having Life. Why then should we Kill them for our consumption? From our last Q & A, we can see that even non-living things can be loved, if that is the case, Animals (with Life) can be.
Genesis 1: 26-30: "Then God said, “Let us make man in our image, in our likeness, and let them rule over the fish of the sea and the birds of the air, over the livestock, over all the earth, and over all the creatures that move along the ground.”So God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him; male and female he created them.God blessed them and said to them, “Be fruitful and increase in number; fill the earth and subdue it. Rule over the fish of the sea and the birds of the air and over every living creature that moves on the ground.”
Then God said, “I give you every seed-bearing plant on the face of the whole earth and every tree that has fruit with seed in it. They will be yours for food. And to all the beasts of the earth and all the birds of the air and all the creatures that move on the ground—everything that has the breath of life in it—I give every green plant for food.” And it was so" [Other translations would say "I've given your dominion over the Earth" And when God was giving Man that Dominion, these translations put it as "Dominate" the Earth]. The two entities outside this domination of Man are: Man himself and God. Through out this series, the Love we talk about is between Man and Man (which can also be in different forms) and between God and man (Agape).
Matthew 22: 34-40: "Hearing that Jesus had silenced the Sadducees, the Pharisees got together. One of them, an expert in the law, tested him with this question: “Teacher, which is the greatest commandment in the Law?”
Jesus replied: “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments.”
From Matthew, we can see that the greatest Commandments are to love God and love ourselves. This is to say, we suppose to show Love to ourselves and God, but dominate all other things, both living and non-living here on Earth. And when we say dominate, what does it mean? To make something totally subjected to your use, suppressing or not minding its rights (if living). And this is the main reason why right from time, sacrifices, offerings and all kinds of celebrations included the slaughtering of Animals which is still so till today.
But also, there are some kinds of Animals which can be trained or identified to have some portions of our Likeness. And for this reason, these Animals tend to relate with us Man and hence treated with Love and kindness. Good examples of such are the Dog and Cat. These Animals can be trained to have some compatible features with us and in that respect are treated as friends/ our like (likeness) and even loved. This is also not a crime and it is indeed appropriate. But that is not to say, we judge any who does eat them, because they do have the right to, if they want. The Ape and Monkey Family too, have a great deal of likeness with us Humans and so, may not be considered as a common kind of meat, even though it is also not wrong if some certain persons choose to eat them (We already have the power to dominate them).
What can we finally learn from this point? We are meant to love each other but use any other material or living thing in this Life. But we have chaos in the world today because we Humans use each other but love these materials/ Animals. And we have seen that when Love is applied to them, it is always extreme and an Agape-like kind of Love. If this is the case, people can kill for power, Nations are ready to wipe out Nations because of land possession/political pride etc. Brothers back-stab brothers, parents sell out their children, history of slavery etc. All these happenings occur simply because of the misplacement of Love. Africa suffers today not because it lacks resources but because of the gross misplacement of this Love. The Bible records that we should love our neighbors as OURSELVES, but is this the case? If We can manage to apply what Jesus Christ said in Matthew 22: 34-40, the world will indeed be a better place, a paradise and a glimpse of what Heaven is all about.
(c) 2013, Infobarrel.com
Dr. Funom Theophilus Makama
23rd. July. 2013
first published on the 13th. February. 2013
Biblical Love Psychology
Amazon Price: $27.35 Buy Now
(price as of Sep 24, 2015)
Biblical Love Psychology is the product of the understanding of the word of God from the Bible and as well the practical application of its Psychology; hence it is easily applicable and understandable irrespective of your belief. Lots of emphasis hits on Love itself, breaking it down into its stages, forms and levels and trying to differentiate these various stages of Love as distinct units. Take for instance, Love can be viewed in two categories, the horizontal (Man to man) and the vertical (God to man) and we will understand that The horizontal (Man to Man) exists with an initial step: THE ATTRACTION! But the vertical has no attraction in its initial phase because God loved us while we were yet sinners, doomed to die. This attraction could be blood (blood relations), romance (eros) or compatibility in likeness (Phileo-friendship).
This Book has explained explicitly the significance of the attraction, independent of Love (despite going hand in hand). It did not stop there, it is vivid in elaborating Love itself which is a deeper level and a soul to soul connect which is in by no means same as the initial step (the attraction). Despite all these wonderful revelations about Love, why do we have failed relationships today? Why are marriages not lasting up to 30 years as it used to be? Why do parents disown their children? Why are relationships so shallow, insignificant and treated like high-school courses where they come and go? A typical or an average young lady in her mid-20s should have experienced a minimum of 7 failed relationships in her life, is this supposed to be so? What about Love application to other phenomena such as material things, Money, Animals, what can we say about this? Despite the vertical kind of Love (God to man) being the AGAPE Love, does that mean man cannot exhibit this Agape? When a person adopts a child, this has definitely by-passed any form of attraction, because despite not being their blood (the attraction), the person adopts and loves this child, can we consider this Agape?
All these questions will be thoroughly answered and as well some doctrinal controversies such as: the doctrine of Hell (is it necessary since God loved us without any form of attraction?), the doctrine of the trinity, and the justification of disowning a child from the fact there is Hell, despite (God) showing us such immense love and many more issues.
So, as much as this basic psychological issue of Love is coming from the foundation of the Bible, it is applicable to everyone. I may not believe in Buddhism, but that doesn't stop me from enjoying any Buddhist Movie and even learn from it. There are lots of principles we can apply from this book into our love-relationships irrespective of our beliefs, so try to read it.
On a final note, we should be cautioned that this Book is not a relationship manual. This is far from it. This book is about Love and solely about Love, of which if we understand its basic principles can be applied to any form of relationships. Psychological tools like the Love graph, the perfect square formula are used to explicitly elaborate Love Psychology. Also, science is brought into the picture for us, to a large extent use critical thinking for the justification of the existence of God. If somewhere in our subconscious we believe in His existence, then we will appreciate the Agape Love better.
ENJOY READING BIBLICAL LOVE PSYCHOLOGY!