Life is Empty Without Love
By Martin Murphy

Love is not merely something to talk about; it is something to understand and feel. If a person has never loved or been loved, he or she has not really lived. A few years ago I was with Mary in the Emergency Room of a hospital. Her door was open and the door across the hall was open. A couple of medical personnel were tending to the man when the flat line code appeared. Medical personnel rushed to his room and vigorously attempted to restore life to his body. After all failed they closed the door. Humans enter this world with a vigorous cry, but leave this world with a slight whimper. If one does not love between the cry and the whimper, one has not lived at all.
Jesus gave the commandment to love one another because it would show evidence of the new spiritual birth. "We know that we have passed from death to life because we love our brothers" (1 John 3:14). Spiritual regeneration is one of the theological implications of brotherly love. It is also evidence of spiritual growth.

Love one another is a reciprocal command. Christians must mutually love each other. The injunction to love one another ought to be the desire of the heart; not under compulsion, but freely with a merciful heart. If Christians meditate on the command to "love one another" it will always lead to the desire for the well-being of the other person. Rather than acting on self-interest Christians that love one another will act in the sole interest of the other person.

Christians must love God in response to His love for them, and they are to love each other as a result of their love for God. "We love, because He first loved us. If someone says, ‘I love God,’ and hates his brother, he is a liar; for the one who does not love his brother whom he has seen, cannot love God whom he has not seen. And this commandment we have from Him, that the one who loves God should love his brother also" (1 John 4:19–21, NASB).

Love is the energy of the soul expressed by human affections and action directed to the beloved. Jonathan Edwards made a statement about love that comforts the soul. "But when love is in lively exercise, persons don’t need fear, and the prevailing of love in the heart, naturally tends to cast out fear."

The "love one another" relationship is vitally important. Love is the foundation upon which forgiveness is built, reconciliation acknowledged and peace is the result. Without being redundant, I do want to emphasize, "if one does not love between the cry and the whimper, one has not lived at all."