Perfect love is the same as the divine love of God. It is the quality of love which exists in the heart of the sanctified child of God who has been baptized with the purging, purifying fire of the Holy Spirit. Perfect love can only be possessed and manifested in a person's life by the grace of the indwelling Holy Spirit. If a person has been sanctified (filled with the Holy Spirit) he will outwardly display the fruit of the Spirit which is described in the fifth chapter of Galatians.
22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith,
23 Meekness, temperance: against such there is no law.
The fruit of the Spirit begins with love which is more than just an emotion. It is a compelling conviction. It is a powerful influence. It is the power of God working in the heart of a man to be God-like, Christ-like, holy and incorruptible. This divine love of God is compassion, concern, consideration, comfort and carefulness. This perfect love places value on every person including our enemies. Every soul is of great value to God and Jesus came to deliver and save them from all their sins. Without respect of persons, we must put great value on every soul. Love is greater than any circumstance and will never seek to hurt another person. Love is sacrificial and easily entreated. This perfect love is of no human origin. It comes from God and is the very essence of God. God is love. Are you like God? Are you full of His love?
35 Then one of them, which was a lawyer, asked him a question, tempting him, and saying,
36 Master, which is the great commandment in the law?
37 Jesus said unto him, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind.
38 This is the first and great commandment.
39 And the second is like unto it, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself.
40 On these two commandments hang all the law and the prophets.
Jesus teaches us the importance and value of this perfect love. This “agape” love makes a person like God. Through sanctification of the heart, the spirit of man becomes like God, showing love to every person with no guile, no evil, no malice, no bitterness, no prejudice, no covetousness, no pride, no envy. The carnal nature which is enmity with God is eradicated and only godliness remains.
28 And one of the scribes came, and having heard them reasoning together, and perceiving that he had answered them well, asked him, Which is the first commandment of all?
29 And Jesus answered him, The first of all the commandments is, Hear, O Israel; The Lord our God is one Lord:
30 And thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind, and with all thy strength: this is the first commandment.
31 And the second is like, namely this, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. There is none other commandment greater than these.
Every disciple and every apostle of Jesus Christ understood the value of perfect love. The writers of the New Testament were moved upon by the Holy Spirit to set forth a record of the plan of salvation which teaches us the power of perfect love. This perfect love makes the sinner a new creature. It also purges the carnal nature making the child of God a partaker or God's divine nature. This experience of full salvation changes the man from being destructive to be edifying. Instead of destroying, we now can build eternal things. Instead of strife, we now can have unity of the spirit and unity of the faith. We have put away the carnal mindedness and put on the robe of righteousness and holiness.
33 Little children, yet a little while I am with you. Ye shall seek me: and as I said unto the Jews, Whither I go, ye cannot come; so now I say to you.
34 A new commandment I give unto you, That ye love one another; as I have loved you, that ye also love one another.
35 By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples, if ye have love one to another.
The love of God in a person is proof to the world that the power of God is working through the gospel of Jesus Christ to change and deliver a person from all sin. When perfect love is the foundation of our experience, we will not think too highly of ourselves, but will prefer others above our own selves. We will seek the good of others. We will be willing to suffer that others might be relieved.
NT:25 GREEK> agapao (ag-ap-ah'-o); perhaps from agan (much) [or compare OT:5689]; to love (in a social or moral sense): KJV - (be-) love (-ed). Compare NT:5368.
NT:26 GREEK> agape (ag-ah'-pay); from NT:25; love, i.e. affection or benevolence; specially (plural) a love-feast: KJV - (feast of) charity ([-ably]), dear, love.
43 Ye have heard that it hath been said, Thou shalt love thy neighbour, and hate thine enemy.
44 But I say unto you, Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you;
45 That ye may be the children of your Father which is in heaven: for he maketh his sun to rise on the evil and on the good, and sendeth rain on the just and on the unjust.
46 For if ye love them which love you, what reward have ye? do not even the publicans the same?
If you only love those who love you, what thanks or reward do you deserve. It is easy to love those who love you. Can you love those who hate you and despitefully use you. This is the perfect love of God. You may pretend that you have this perfect love. You may tell others that you have this perfect love. But unless you can consistently and continually and outwardly display this tender affection, you are not what you think you are.
1 John 4:16-21
16 And we have known and believed the love that God hath to us. God is love; and he that dwelleth in love dwelleth in God, and God in him.
17 Herein is our love made perfect, that we may have boldness in the day of judgment: because as he is, so are we in this world.
18 There is no fear in love; but perfect love casteth out fear: because fear hath torment. He that feareth is not made perfect in love.
19 We love him, because he first loved us.
20 If a man say, I love God, and hateth his brother, he is a liar: for he that loveth not his brother whom he hath seen, how can he love God whom he hath not seen?
21 And this commandment have we from him, That he who loveth God love his brother also.
And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.
1 Corinthians 8:3
But if any man love God, the same is known of him.
1 John 5:1-3
1 Whosoever believeth that Jesus is the Christ is born of God: and every one that loveth him that begat loveth him also that is begotten of him.
2 By this we know that we love the children of God, when we love God, and keep his commandments.
3 For this is the love of God, that we keep his commandments: and his commandments are not grievous.
15 If ye love me, keep my commandments.
16 And I will pray the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter, that he may abide with you for ever;
17 Even the Spirit of truth; whom the world cannot receive, because it seeth him not, neither knoweth him: but ye know him; for he dwelleth with you, and shall be in you.
He that hath my commandments, and keepeth them, he it is that loveth me: and he that loveth me shall be loved of my Father, and I will love him, and will manifest myself to him.
Do you keep the commandments of Jesus Christ? If you are not keeping His commandments by doing them, you are not a Christian. If you love Jesus, you will believe, trust and obey all His words.
Perfect love is the greatest power, above all other powers. No force is as powerful as the perfect love of God coming down from heaven and abiding in the heart and soul of the child of God.
Have you been made perfect in love? Have you received the Holy Spirit since you believed?