Here's a simple Bible test: In the "Love your neighbor as yourself" passage (Mark 12:31), what Greek word is "Love" translated from? Do not lookup the answer. If you do not know the answer, which of the below Greek words would be your guess?
There are three Greek words interpretted as the single English word, "love", in the New Testament: Agape, Phileo, and Storge. Below are definitions of these words:
i) Phileō is a companionable love. ii) This love speaks of affection, fondness, or liking. iii) Kenneth Wuest says, "It is a love that is called out of one’s heart as a response to the pleasure one takes in a person or object." iv) Phileō is a love that responds to kindness, appreciation, or love. It involves giving as well as receiving; but when it is greatly strained, it can collapse in a crisis. v) Phileō is a higher love than eros because it is our happiness rather than my happiness. vi) This love is called out of one’s heart by qualities in another.
i) This love has its basis in one’s own nature. ii) Storgē is a natural affection or natural obligation. iii) It is a natural movement of the soul for husband, wife, child or dog. iv) It is a quiet, abiding feeling within a man that rests on something close to him and that he feels good about.
Agapē or Agapaō
i) Agapē is called out of one’s heart by the preciousness of the object loved. It is a love of esteem, of evaluation. It has the idea of prizing. It is the noblest word for love in the Greek language. ii) Agapē is not kindled by the merit or worth of it’s object, but it originates in it’s own God-given nature. God is love. iii) It delights in giving. iv) This love keeps on loving even when the loved one is unresponsive, unkind, unlovable, and unworthy. It is unconditional love. v) Agapē desires only the good of the one loved. It is a consuming passion for the well-being of others.
Which is being interpretted in Mark 12:27 commanding us to "love the Lord your God?"
Tell me your answers when you see me.