Love is one of the most beautiful things you can ever be a part of if you’re with the right person.
People might say, “I would do anything for you” but do they really mean it? Today, love is too often plagued with selfish behaviors that can be toxic and dangerous to a marriage. Such relationships lack sacrificial love.
What is sacrificial love, where does it stem from, and how can it be used to improve romantic relationships? Keep reading to find out.
What is sacrificial love?
For the answer to this question and to study sacrificial love definition, we’ll have to brush up on our knowledge of ancient Greece.
Ancient Greece comprises the years 700 to 480 B.C. During this time, it was believed that there were only four types of love:
Phileo, brotherly love, and compassion for others
Storgē, a familial love, such as the bond between a parent and child
Eros, which is linked to sexual, romantic love, and
Agapē, is a sacrificial love based on principle. This love is synonymous with unselfish behavior and intense affection.
Bible verses about sacrificial love
Perhaps one of the most prominent acts of sacrificial or divine love is spoken of in the scriptures.
In thinking of Bible verses about sacrificial love meaning, John 3:16 springs to mind where it says, “God loves the world so much that he gave his only -begotten Son so that everyone exercising faith in him might not be destroyed but have everlasting life.”
This is the basis for divine love. Not only did God sacrifice his son as a ransom for humankind’s sins, but Jesus himself endured a painful death on a torture stake to save all.
Other noteworthy Bible verses about sacrificial love include:
“But God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.”
“Go on walking in love, just as Christ also loved us and gave himself for us as an offering and a sacrifice, a sweet fragrance to God. (25) Husbands, continue loving your wives, just as Christ also loved the congregation and gave himself up for it. (28) In the same way, husbands should love their wives as their own bodies. A man who loves his wife loves himself.”
– Ephesians 5:2, 25, 28.
“I appeal to you, therefore, brothers, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and acceptable to God, which is your spiritual worship.”
– Romans 12:1
“This is how we know what love is: Jesus Christ laid down his life for us. And we ought to lay down our lives for our brothers and sisters.”
Sacrificial love is exemplified through selfless actions and putting the needs of others before one’s own. Examples include supporting a partner through a difficult time, making compromises for the well-being of the relationship, and making personal sacrifices to ensure the happiness of a loved one.
Why is sacrificial love so important?
Sacrificial love is important because it fosters deep connections, trust, and emotional intimacy in relationships. It demonstrates a genuine commitment to the well-being and happiness of the other person, creating a foundation of love, understanding, and mutual support.
5 characteristics of sacrificial love
Sacrificial love is characterized by selflessness and putting the needs of others first and encompasses several essential qualities that strengthen relationships. Hare 5 key characteristics of sacrificial love:
A prime sacrifice in a relationship that’s pure! Sacrificial love involves prioritizing the well-being and happiness of your partner above your own desires and needs.
Sacrificial love entails patience and forgiveness, recognizing that everyone makes mistakes and experiences shortcomings.
It involves staying steadfast through ups and downs, weathering challenges together, and actively investing in the growth and happiness of the partnership.
15 ways to practice sacrificial love
How can you show sacrificial love in your relationship?
Bible references aside, nobody is expecting you to prove your love to your spouse by dying for them or giving up something precious for their name.
But, what can you sacrifice for your loved ones? Keep reading to find out.
1. Be a good listener
Sacrificial love bible verses, such as Ecclesiastes 3:7, show us that there is “a time to keep quiet and a time to speak.”
Love means sacrifice when it comes to speaking your opinions. Instead of jumping on your spouse’s opinion, listen to them without interruption.
Not only does thisshow love and respect, but learning to listen will improve relationship communication and make your partner feel more comfortable coming to you with their feelings.
2. Give your time
One thing you can sacrifice for your loved ones – friends, family, children, is your time.
Self-care is important, including time by yourself, but showing attention and affection to your loved ones is one of the most valuable gifts you can give.
3. Keep your promises
The night Jesus was to be put to death, he told his apostles, “My soul is deeply grieved.” Then, praying to God in the garden, he said, “My Father, if it is possible, let this cup pass away from me. Yet, not as I will, but as you will.”
What does this mean?
Jesus had agreed to die a sacrificial death, so he was not asking his father to be pardoned from this fate, but his accusers wanted to put him to death as a blasphemer against God, a point that grieved his soul.
Although this title would not be lifted by the authorities, Jesus made it known that he was still willing to do the will of his father, regardless of what happened.
Remain committed to the promises you made to your partner, even when keeping them seems difficult.
4. Develop a deep sense of empathy
Having empathy for your spouse will bring your relationship to new heights. It allows you to look past your perspective and make decisions that benefit both you and your partner.
Engage in daily acts of kindness that show your love and care. It can be as simple as preparing their favorite meal, leaving a heartfelt note, or offering a helping hand without being asked.
Now, we understand “what is sacrificial love?”. It is considered the most beautiful form of love but one may have a lot of questions about it. Let us look at some more such queries in this regard.
Does true love involve sacrifice or compromise?
True love often involves both sacrifice and compromise. Sacrifice demonstrates selflessness and a willingness to put the needs of your partner above your own, while compromise involves finding common ground and working together for the benefit of the relationship.
What is the duration of sacrificial love?
The duration of sacrificial love is not limited by time. It is an ongoing commitment to prioritize the well-being of your partner and make selfless sacrifices for the sake of the relationship, lasting as long as the love itself.
A love so selfless
Sacrificial or divine love is often seen as the ultimate form of love. Many would think that love is sacrifice but it is never a forced decision.
Bible verses about sacrificial love highlight Jesus’ ransom sacrifice as the ultimate display of love for others.
Self-sacrificial love doesn’t necessarily have to be romantic in nature, but it can certainly do wonders for the health of a relationship.
You can practice sacrifice in marriage bylearning to listen, going the extra mile for your partner, having empathy, giving without expecting anything in return, and staying strong during the hard days.
When both spouses learn to sacrifice in marriage, you will strengthen your connection to your partner and contribute to a happier marriage.
Rachael Pace is a noted relationship writer associated with Marriage.com. She provides inspiration, support, and empowerment in the form of motivational articles and essays. Rachael enjoys studying the evolution of loving partnerships Read more and is passionate about writing on them. She believes that everyone should make room for love in their lives and encourages couples to work on overcoming their challenges together.
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