Love is an aspect of God’s nature which is manifested in seeking the best for the one loved. This attribute of His nature was shown to the disciples in the person of Jesus and shared with all those who believed their message so that even today we see the love of God manifested through the Church. This character is not from humans and in all actuality before God showed us love humans did not know what it was. At best our quality of love only seeks the best for the one loving – we sacrifice for something we want, not for the benefit of another. Now that the world has seen God’s quality of love through the Church, today the world has decided it can show this type of love without God. However, since the world can only mimic what is sees from Christians, for it does not know God, it perverts the love of God into that of human love and tries to claim it is at the very least as good of a love, if not better – for it is all inclusive. Sadly, many assemblies today have accepted this worldly love in place of God’s love. But allowing someone to continue doing things that are harmful to themselves is not love at all. Since we have a lot of “fake” love today, it is important for us to know what classifies as the love of God. That is, we need to know the real thing so that we can easily identify when it is being expressed by a Christian and when an unbeliever, or carnal Christian, is trying to mimic it with a human quality of love.

In 1 Corinthians 13:4-7 we are given a very clear definition of the characteristics of the love of God. It starts out with love is longsuffering.

Love is longsuffering… 1 Corinthians 13:4

Longsuffering is a long holding out of one’s anger against unreasonable people and comes from having an objectivity of mind. As we live out our Christian life, we are going to encounter people that are very unreasonable. However, we can learn from God in how and why He manifests longsuffering to help us deal with such people.

The Lord is not slacked concerning the promises, as some count slackness, but is longsuffering towards us, determining that none should perish, but all should come to a change of mind – 2 Peter 3:9

Remember, we are not to love the world. Our commandment is to love one another as Christ loved us.

Do not love the world nor the things of the world. If perhaps someone should love the world, the love of the Father is not in him. Because all the things in the world, the desires of the flesh, and the desires of the eyes, and the arrogant boastfulness of biological life, are not out from the Father but are out from the world. – 1 John 2:15, 16

A new commandment I give to you, in order that you should love one another just as I have loved you, in order that also you should love one another – John 13:34

Love is longsuffering towards other saints because we understand that we are all maturing and some of us can be rather difficult to deal with at times. But the end goal for the Church is that we all come to a oneness of the faith and a fully mature Christian in Christ.

With all humility and objectivity of mind with longsuffering bearing one another in love – Ephesians 4:2

Longsuffering is not something we produce from ourselves, it is a result of us being Spiritual and using the fruit of the Spirit.

But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering … Galatians 5:22

God is longsuffering towards us, both before we were saved and now when we unreasonably reject His ways and go back to the ways of our previous life. Are we being the unreasonable one? Are we demanding that God give us what we want, or seeking His desires for our lives? True love holds its anger towards others when they are being unreasonable because it is seeking the best for them and there are times where a manifestation of anger is not productive. So let us set our minds on things above, start to emanate the things of the Spirit – that is live out the life we have in Christ – and use the fruit that the Holy Spirit provides for us so that we can be longsuffering towards others, seeking the best for them, while examining ourselves and making sure we are not being the unreasonable ones.