“9 Let love be genuine. “
This statement brings a lot of intensity to this section. Paul has been talking about the wickedness of man, their unrighteousness, etc. He has spoken about God’s solution, and the proper response to it. Now he emphatically states that we must love sincerely. You must sincerely, genuinely AGAPE love people. This means preferring people above yourself (Phil. 2:3-4). Then Paul builds this wide chasm between the active attack on your love:
“Abhor what is evil;”
He builds this wide chasm between the two realities. While loving, actively detest what is evil. This will assure you remain in genuine love and not flirting with evil deeds. Abhorring something means you detest it. You affirms its disgusting nature within your main. Then Paul says something else. Listen closely to this remark and remember Paul demonstrates that he is well aware of the artificial yet seemingly insurmountable grasp sin has on us:
“hold fast to what is good.”
Hold fast… this word (kollaó) means to join myself closely with, to cleave. Furthermore it means to adhere to or literally be glued to. The first part of that word “kolla” means glue. HELPS word studies also adds “intimately connected in a soul-knit friendship.” Paul petitions that we love genuinely and the way we will maintain that is assuring that evil is painted as detestable in our souls and we glue ourselves firmly to what is good. We actively sprint towards, embrace, and cleave to what is good.
Spend 1-2 minutes thanking God that you have the ability to love by the power of the Holy Spirit. Then spend 2-3 minutes asking Him to show you how He wants you to love today.
The very next verse says “10 Love one another with brotherly affection. Outdo one another in showing honor.” Are you doing that? Are you out doing someone you know with love? If not, why don’t you try it with SOMEONE in your life: your spouse, best friend, neighbor, anyone! Enjoy 🙂