“I say then: Walk in the Spirit, and you shall not fulfill the lust of the flesh.”
‭‭Galatians‬ ‭5:16‬ ‭NKJV‬‬

As believers, we gain a proper understanding of what love is by looking at the word of God. The word of God outlines the standard for Christian conduct and relationships and these principles can also be applied to romantic relationships.

Though marriage is not spiritual in the sense that non-believers can also get married yet for marriage to be done the right way, it should be done God’s way.

When we study the Bible, we see that the same responsibility that the Bible places on us to love our brothers and sisters are the same qualities we use to build healthy flourishing romantic relationships.

Let’s consider two examples. First, we see the instruction in Ephesians 5:22 NKJV:
“Wives, submit to your own husbands, as to the Lord.”

This is a famous principle often emphasized as a cardinal pillar of a godly marriage. However, if you note the preceding verses where Paul is giving instructions to the church (Ephesians‬ ‭5:1-21). He asks them to walk in the light, to be filled with the spirit, to speak in psalms, hymns and spiritual songs amidst other instructions given. He concludes by saying “submitting to one another in the fear of God.” ‭‭Ephesians‬ ‭5:21‬ ‭NKJV‬‬

From the above, we see that the same instruction given to wives is the same instruction given to every believer (I Corinthians 16:16, Hebrews 13:17) Infact, we practice submission to our brethren and spiritual leaders before applying this principle in the context of marriage.

In the second example, we will consider the works of the flesh and the fruit of the Spirit outlined in Galatians 5: 17-25.

Try to think of a relationship where one or both of the parties is always envious or always angry or given to hatred. Now, imagine a relationship where both parties are filled with love, joy, peace, kind to each other, always gentle, patient etc. Do you see how these spiritual principles apply? So a man truly given to walking the way that God has called us to walk, will love the way that God has called us to love.

This is not to over-spiritualize romantic love but to point you towards the wisdom that can be found in the word of God. Decide to love God’s way today.

Bible Reading Plan:
Matthew 13:44 -58, Acts 19:23-41, Psalms 32, Exodus 24-26