5 Ways Biblical Love Prevails in Marriage

How can biblical love prevail in marriage? Learn the type of love you need for marriage and practical ways to apply it to see your marriage thrive. This is part of the How Biblical Love Prevails Series.


I don’t pretend to be a marriage expert. But I will share some transformative lessons I’ve learned and hope you will apply them to your marriage. For the most part, I’ve had a great marriage. It wasn’t always perfect. I wanted him to change, but instead God changed me. Then, that changed my marriage to be good. 

If I could sum up my best marriage advice in one phrase, it would be “choose to love.” How can you love your spouse? Choose to love when the other person is being a jerk. Or when he’s not being a jerk. 

Choose to love when you’re tired, grumpy, sick…loving the way Jesus loves means being selfless. There’s one type of love you’ll need for every situation that calls for being selfless.

The Type of Love You Need for Marriage

The New Testament was written in Greek, and in that language, there are several different words for love depending on the type. Let me give you some examples. Here are four types of love in the ancient Greek language:

  • Eros – erotic/sexual love
  • Storge – family love
  • Philia – brotherly friendship
  • Agape – unchanging love that gives sacrificially without expecting repayment

I believe all four types are needed for marriage. It begins with “philia,” you meet someone and become friends. That friendship blossoms and that person is the one. You want to be a family. There’s “storge.” Next the honeymoon arrives and boom, “eros.” Ooo la la!

But then, the marriage gets real. Faults are exposed during all that time spent together. The friendship wanes. The family feels like they got tossed in the vegetable strainer and all the “storge” (family love) drains out.

This is where agape love comes into the picture. It is a type of love that loves the unlovable, even in the face of rejection. It’s when you can’t stand it anymore, but you’ve got to pull everything you’ve got left inside you to be selfless. The word agony in the English comes from agape. See the connection?

Did you know the word love used in the entire “love chapter” (1 Corinthians 13) in the Greek is agape?

So how can we apply this in a practical way? Here are some ideas.

5 Love Actions to See Biblical Love Prevail in Marriage

Show your other half you love him/her through these five love actions and see biblical love prevail in your marriage.

Love Action #1: Shift the Little Things 

Do the little things that your spouse does drive you crazy? Let it go! (Now we all have the song Let It Go in our heads. You’re welcome.) Something I am teaching my kids is to not make a big deal out of the little things. Love your spouse past the little frustrations. It takes maturity. And you’ll find that it’s worth it, because when you choose to love despite the little things, you will have much more peace.

Instead, shift your focus to little things you can do that will bless your spouse. Here are a couple examples:

  • Mom tells the kids, “Daddy’s sick, so we’re going to be quiet and let him sleep.”
  • You both like a second cup of coffee. There’s one cup left, so it’s the other person’s. 

Love Action #2: Pray for Your Spouse.

Praying for my spouse is an act of love because I’m giving up my time. It’s an act of love because I’m taking their needs to the Father and not just mine. When I pray for my spouse, I’m interceding on their behalf. And let your other half know you’re praying for him/her. It’s encouraging to hear. {Related: Here’s how NOT to pray, and what to pray instead.}

Love Action #3: Husband, Lead; Wife, Look to His Leadership

This type of respect can solve a lot of problems, and you will see your relationship grow. Jezebel called the shots in the family. If you read about her life, you can see how much trouble she was. That’s not God’s best for us. Men need to lead and the women need to let them (1 Corinthians 11:3). (Okay, I’m stepping off my soapbox now!) 

Love Action #4: Keep Your Spouse a Priority

What kind of message does it send to your other half when you are so close at the beginning of marriage, but then grow apart? Don’t take each other for granted. Having a regular date night is a practical way to keep your spouse a priority. It takes work, and will help keep the love alive, but the regular closeness will pay off in other areas. 

And it should go without saying, but faithfulness is forever. Never venture toward the timber with sparks in your heart! Before it would even get there, keep your actions and thought life free from temptation

Love Action #5: Say thank you. 

How special is it to receive a handwritten thank you card these days? For someone to not only notice all the tiny tasks you do but also take the time to say so provides a great deal of encouragement. Everyone likes to be appreciated! Do it even if the appreciation is just delivered verbally.

Show your other half you love him/her through these five love actions and see biblical love prevail in your marriage. #LiveYielded Click To Tweet

Remember This

Is your marriage love-based or lust-based? 

Love desires to benefit others at the expense of self, because love desires to give. Lust desires to benefit self at the expense of others, because lust desires to get.

— Edwin Louis Cole

If after reading this, you’re frustrated because you know your spouse has a long way to go in the love department. Maybe you think changes are in order. If that’s you, remember the biblical principle of reaping and sowing. If you sow love, you’re going to reap it. 

How else does biblical love prevail in marriage?

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