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rd | What is Love? Baby, it's Patient!

Clearview Today / Abidan Shah
The Truth Network Radio
February 3, 2023 9:00 am

rd | What is Love? Baby, it's Patient!

Clearview Today / Abidan Shah

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February 3, 2023 9:00 am

In today's show, Dr. Shah begins a new series leading up to Valentine's day talking about what love truly is.  

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Happy Friday, everyone!

Today is February the 3rd. I'm Ryan Hill. I'm John Galantis. And you're listening to Clearview Today with Dr. Abbadan Shah, the daily show that engages mind and heart for the gospel of Jesus Christ. You can visit us online at If you have a question or suggestion for a future episode, send us a text at 252-582-5028. You can also email us at contact at

That's right. You guys can help us keep this conversation going by supporting the podcast, sharing it online, leaving us a good review on iTunes. We're going to leave a link in the description of the podcast so you can do just that. But those reviews really help us because it lets iTunes know that you're liking the show and that you want to see more of it. And the algorithm sees all of those reviews and says, hey, we're going to push this content.

The algorithm sees all and knows all. Yeah. And listen, when we're talking about Jesus Christ, we want that content pushed. That's content that we want out there and we want people talking about. Absolutely. Speaking of content that we want out there, Jon, why don't you give them the verse of the book today?

Oh, baby. I almost said 20 Corinthians. 20 Corinthians. It's 2 Corinthians 5, 14, and 15. For the love of Christ compels us, because we judge thus, that if one died for all, then all died.

And he died for all that those who live should no longer live for themselves, but for him who died for them and rose again. What motivates you to do what you do? What is your driving force?

Sunday school answer or real answer? Real answer. Selfishness. Okay. I mean, that's fair.

Comfort. Yeah. Yeah. But truly, I mean, that's what it is. That's what it is.

And that's kind of what Paul is saying. You go ahead and make your point. I don't want to step on the point. No, no. Go ahead.

Go ahead. Well, that's what Paul is saying. It's Christ loves that compels us. That's why we do what we do. Right. Yeah. That's what it is. If love truly was the compelling factor, that really was the motivating factor.

For many of us, I mean, Jon, you gave the honest answer. For many of us, it is selfishness. Right. Right. It's self-centered goals.

It's a self-focused nature. But what if the love of Christ was really what compelled us forward, really what drove us to accomplish things, really what drove us to, just like we're doing on the show, to spread the gospel with any and everyone who will listen? How different would our world be? It would be different.

We would see a noticeable difference. But that is the goal. The more we talk about it and the more that we push it out there, the more that love is going to influence you. It's going to rise up in you, and that's going to manifest itself in your day-to-day life. That's right.

That's the prayer, anyway. I tried something the other day that I had never tried before, that I thought I wasn't going to like. Food? Like the food you did?

Yeah, yeah. It was the food. I was with David.

In fact, David, if you want to turn your mic on and weigh in here. I tried rice pudding. Oh, okay. Pudding, if you're not from the South. And the South, we say pudding.

Yeah. That's what my mama would say, some pudding. But it was pudding made of rice, and it was sweet, and it was nice.

What do you think? It's not made of rice. What is it made of? It's just like pudding, however you make it, but the rice is in it. It was sweet, and I liked it.

So here's the thing. David had been telling me a lot that he's like, dude, I've been eating so much rice pudding lately. But he was on a health kick. So in my mind, I just assumed this is a health food. This is something that you eat.

This is something that people eat to be healthy. And so I took a look at the calories, and I was like, oh my. I was like, how are you eating six of these a day? It wasn't six a day.

How much was it? Six servings. Not six containers.

How many servings per container? Six. What? Wait a minute, wait a minute.

What? Six servings per container. You were eating six. So you ate a container a day? Yes. I see, I see, I see. Not a day. A little container?

No, no, no. The ones from Foodline. Are they huge? Like this big. A tub o' rice pudding. So a tub of rice pudding. You were eating one a day?

Yeah. It's like 600 calories. That wasn't my dinner.

I mean, I guess that's not bad. But I just always assumed that rice pudding, because he was on a health kick, and he was saying stuff like, I've been eating so much rice pudding. I was like, oh yeah, it's just, it's a health food. I don't mind the taste of rice pudding, but I am not a fan of the texture. I'm a texture guy. If it feels weird in my mouth, I don't love it. It's lumpy. It's like cold, sweet porridge. Yeah. That's what I like.

That's a good way to put it. I like oats and oatmeal. I'm all about that. Anything that's mush.

Oh. Mmm. You made that sound so appealing.

My wife will tell you, like grits, like chopped up scrambled eggs, chili, porridge. I love mushy food. If it's some kind of paste, you're on board. I'm on board.

All for it. If I got to chew this meat, nah, I don't want it. No, I just want to swallow it down. Put it in a blender, and I'll slurp it down. Gross. You don't like the rice pudding? The taste is fine, but I don't like the texture.

I don't know. It feels weird. It's very similar to overnight oats, which is like oatmeal. You mix it, put it in the fridge, and you eat it the next day.

You can make it with Greek yogurt or different things like that. I do like overnight oats, but rice pudding is something about it. I can't get on board with that. I'm with you.

I'm with you. How do you like it, Dave? How did you even find rice pudding? I was walking in sheets one day, and I just saw this thing on the shelf and was like, oh, look, it says rice pudding.

I've heard a lot about this, but I've never actually eaten it. I got a container, ate it, was like, that's really good. Went and got another one. Just on the spot. Immediately got another one. That kind of sparked my love for rice pudding. Have you had any today?

Not today. Are you going to have some when you leave here? I'm going to have some mozzarella sticks today.

Ooh. That does sound good. That does sound good. Yeah, Sheetz has some good snacks.

Yeah, Sheetz does have some good snacks. Cool. Well, guys, we've got an exciting episode planned for you guys today. It's not about rice pudding from this point moving forward, unfortunately. Sorry to disappoint you. We're going to go get Dr. Shaw, but if you have any questions or suggestions for future episodes, sorry, rice pudding on the brain, send us a text at 252- It's your brain turned to rice pudding.

252-582-5028 or visit us online at We'll be right back. Hey there, listeners. I'm Jon Galantis.

And I'm Ellie Galantis. And we just want to take a quick second and talk to you about Dr. Shaw's and Nicole's book, 30 Days to a New Beginning, daily devotions to help you move forward. You know, this is actually the second book in the 30 Days series. And the whole point of this devotional is to help us get unstuck from the ruts of life. You know, when it comes to running the race of life, it matters how you start, but a bad start doesn't ultimately determine how you finish the race. You can have a good finish even with a bad start. And that's where this book comes in.

No matter who you are or where you are in life, you're going to get stuck. Instead of going out and buying some gadget or some planner, like I know I've done several times, 30 Days encourages you to find your fresh start in God's word. Life doesn't have a reset button, but our God is a God who does new things.

His mercies are new every day, which means every day is a new chance for you to start over. You can grab 30 Days to a New Beginning on We're going to leave a link in the description box below. And if you already have the book, let us know what you think about it.

That's right. Send us a text, 252-582-5028. Share what God has done in your life through this devotional. Hey, maybe we'll even read your story on the air. Ellie, you ready to get back to the show?

Let's do it. Welcome back to Clearview Today with Dr. Abbadon Shah, the daily show that engages mind and heart for the gospel of Jesus Christ. You can visit us online at, or if you have any questions or suggestions for future episodes, make sure you send us a text at 252-582-5028. Dr. Shah, welcome to the studio today. Hey, good to have you. Good to have you. Good to have you. Listen, it's good to be had. Good to be.

You beat me. You always beat me, so it's good to be here. It's good to have you as well, Dr. Shah.

It's good to have you guys, especially if you're listening for the first time. You've never listened to the show before. Dr. Abbadon Shah is a PhD in New Testament textual criticism, professor at Carolina University, author, full-time pastor, and the host of today's show.

You can follow him on his website. You know the website. You know what it is. I do. Say it. Wow, you actually knew. Are you surprised? No. Wow. You knew it. On today's episode, with it being the beginning of February, there's a major holiday that happens in February.

Maybe you've heard of it. My wife's birthday. Well, that does happen in February, but it's not a major holiday.

It is in your household, but it's not for me. It's Valentine's Day. Oh.

Love is in the air. That's right. Everywhere I look around. Like the same Valentine's Day Massacre. No.

I watched a documentary on the Prohibition era last night. I just wanted to flex. We're not talking about a massacre, though. We're talking about love. Love is in the air. Everywhere I look around. Yes.

Nice. We want to talk about, in the days leading up to Valentine's Day, what is love? People think they know what love means, or they might have a lot of different ideas about love. You're one of those people, if you're listening, you think about Valentine's Day and love, and you groan or roll your eyes, things like that. We want to talk to you about love from a biblical standpoint. What does love truly look like?

Right. Well, the Bible gives us a definition of love. It's in 1 Corinthians 13. I will go ahead and qualify for those who may send us an email saying, that's not about St. Valentine's or Valentine's Day.

I agree. When Paul said those words, he was talking about love in the church body. The Corinthians were divided.

They were claiming some to be from Paul, some from Cephas, some from Apollos. Paul was writing to them to tell them how to love each other. It is the classic passage on love. Sometimes I've heard scholars and even some pastors say that, oh, we don't need to talk about this during a wedding ceremony. It's not about that.

Well, yes, it is. It is about love. And of course, I understand the difference between romantic love and just love in general, but still, how can love truly be romantic if it doesn't have the true ideals of love? Yeah, it's not necessarily that there are different types of love.

It's just that there's love. And then I guess there's branches that are not different. They just come from that broad definition. There's an overarching. There you go.

That's the word I was looking for. And you think about 1 Corinthians 13. That is the quintessential love passage, but it is for a reason. Paul's no dummy.

He knows what he's talking about here. Yeah, it's rare that someone just lays it out for us, especially in a book like the Bible, where they're like, here's what it is. Here's the definition. It's not really up for you to discern or to interpret. I'm going to tell you right now what biblical love looks like. Exactly.

Yeah. And Paul does that in Corinthians. Now, just to help our listeners and our viewers, Corinth was the place to be in the ancient world. I've been there. I've been through the Agora, the marketplace. I've even seen the Acropolis way up on top. But Corinth is sitting, ancient Corinth still, sitting on the crossroads between the north and the south, east and the west. It's kind of like on the Isthmus.

Isthmus is this little tiny track of land connecting mainland Greece with Peloponnese. And people came from all over to Corinth to do life, to do business, to watch games. They had the Corinthian games or the Isthmian games there. And Paul purposefully chose to be there, to go there because, you know, think about it. What was his trait?

Anybody remember that? He was a tent maker. Why tent making? You know, it's not like he was, I've heard people say, you know, oh, well, you know, as a student in the theological schools, you know, he must have chosen that as his vocation.

No, not really. I believe this came about when Paul went to Corinth because in Corinth, when people would come from everywhere for the Olympian or the Corinthian games, they needed tents. What better opportunity to share the gospel than when people come to you?

They have to come to you. Yeah. They need your stuff. Right. It wasn't just like Paul had this passion for making excellent tents. It was strategic. It was a strategic choice.

It was not necessarily a family business or anything like that. I think maybe it was some connection there. Maybe he had some experience growing up, but overall, I think he did that so that he could communicate to all the people who are coming from everywhere in Asia Minor or Greece really about Jesus Christ. And so he chose this, but then Paul wrote this letter to them because they were going through a problem, kind of a misunderstanding and lack of true love.

And so he wrote this letter to them, correcting them, guiding them. Yeah. I think it's just kind of telling that a lot of times our problems stem from a lack of understanding about what love is. I think I know what love is and so I'm going to act on it, but really it's selfishness or it's just a misunderstanding of what God's definition of love actually is.

Yeah. And we have different competing definitions. We have Hollywood telling us what love needs to look like and we have maybe some family examples, good or bad, that show us what an idea of love could be. So we grow up with these hearing, love is this or love feels like this or love looks like this. When those views come into conflict, it's very easy to start looking at other people or other institutions like the church who don't share that definition of love and say, well, you're unloving. You don't act in a loving way. But it's based on this misunderstanding of what love actually is because love is, I can tell you right now, love is not at all what I thought it was. Before I read this and I really took in what Paul is saying here, I had my own idea of what love is and it was very shallow.

Yeah. But what I want to do is in the next few days leading up to Valentine's Day is deal with each of these attributes that Paul lists in 1 Corinthians 13, starting with the first one, which is love suffers long and it's kind. So we talk about suffering long. Let's go to the biblical context. The Greek word is makrothumio. So makrothumio comes from, it's a combination word from two Greek words. Makros means long and thumos is wrath.

So makrothumio is long wrath. So in English, if you've ever heard somebody say, you know, so and so has a short fuse. It means, you know, it doesn't take them long to get angry or to blow up. So also long wrath means someone who has a long fuse. The slow to anger. Slow to anger. They have a long fuse.

Wow. So love suffers long means love doesn't get angry quickly. That's so contrary to how we often operate, how we often live. I mean, it doesn't take very long for people to start rustling your feathers and you just quickly, you know, bristle up at what's happening. Whether or not it's in the context of a romantic relationship, in any kind of relationship, in friendships, in family, in working relationships, if people start to push your buttons, you start to get frustrated. You start to get, you know, I can't believe you'd do that to me.

Yeah. And I think that's something that Paul is doing very intentionally is pointing it back to God, because that's how God is with us. It says that the Lord is merciful and gracious and he's slow to anger. And I think that's something that I know is maybe not quick to anger, but just patience is something that I've always struggled with is just wanting it right here and now. And the longer I have to wait to get what I want, the more frustrated I'm going to become, the more I'm going to start to say, okay, I'm not getting what I want.

So you guys obviously don't care about me. You don't love me. It's not loving because I'm not getting what I want right now.

Paul says it's very opposite. Love is a long suffering and it's very patient. Well, it's very interesting you use the word patience there because you know, in the Hebrew, the word it's used many times to translate the word for patience in the Old Testament. And as a side note, prior to the Septuagint, the Greek translation of the Hebrew Old Testament, you know, that's what Septuagint means.

It is found only once before. So let me give you a couple of examples here. First one is Proverbs 19 verse 11. The discretion of a man makes him makrothumien, slow to anger. And his glory is to overlook a transgression.

So a wise man does not get angry quickly and is willing to overlook someone's fault. That's part of love. Not quickly angry, but willing to overlook. Right. I mean, I think that's a way that we demonstrate love, especially in marriage or in relationships is everybody's going to have faults. But you know, how, how much am I willing to overlook those faults or to work with those faults?

Yeah. There's another one Proverbs 25, 15. By long forbearance a ruler is persuaded and a gentle tongue breaks a bone. So if you want something done by a ruler, wait patiently for him to make up his mind. So the point here is makrothumien has the idea of not getting angry, but it's more than that.

It's also about waiting patiently for someone to get to where they need to be. Yeah. Yeah. What does that, what does that ending phrase mean? A gentle, it was a gentle tongue breaks a bone?

Yeah. Because in a sense, let me pull this up right here because there's the Proverbs, you know, sometime back I did a study of how the Proverbs were linked and it's a great book out there with somebody's dissertation. You know, it was called Apples of Gold in Settings of Silver. And you know, it always kind of, it looks at groups of Proverbs. So look at the Proverbs prior to verse 15, this is Proverbs 25, 14. Whoever falsely boasts of giving is like clouds and wind without rain. By long forbearance, a ruler is persuaded and a gentle tongue breaks a bone. Have you found honey? This is verse 16 now.

Eat only as much as you need lest you be filled with it and vomit. So looking at the tone in which those Proverbs are linked, we're talking about a sense of waiting, calm patience. So gentle tongue breaks a bone means it's just instead of harshly breaking something, giving it time and it begins to, on its own, be bent or broken. Okay. That makes sense.

Gently, like speaking to it and it's breaking. Yeah. And you know, things don't break when you just speak to them. Right. But over a long time, that's what they're saying. You know, so that's my best understanding. So the whole point is this, the idea is not just don't get angry, but it's wait patiently for someone to get to where they need to be.

Right. And it's, it's difficult to do that, especially for me, but I feel like at the same time, and I think this is something that you and I've talked about before is that people have been very patient with me in my life. You know, I know there's been tons of times in my life where I'm not where I need to be, or I'm not where someone else needs me to be in my life. And yet I could say almost all the people in my life who have gotten me to this point now, including you, doctor, I've been very patient with me, you know, just to help develop me and to help bring me to this place. And now at 30 years old, starting to see others in my life, getting to where they need to be. I think that's the challenge for me is to be patient as well, to practice that same patience and that same grace that was shown to me.

Yeah. I know there, we talk about exercising love, but that's the time. Those are times in my life where I've felt loved is when people are patient with me, when I know that I've, you know, I've messed up or I know that I've, I've made a wrong call, or I know that I'm not where, like you said, John, not where I need to be. And people who have been patient with me and showed me grace, that's times where I've like, wow, this person really cares about me because I would, if, if I were in their shoes, I'd fuss me out, but they are patient and gracious and loving. Well, they're being like God, how God is towards us. In Exodus 34, six and the Lord passed before him, meaning Moses and proclaimed the Lord, the Lord, God merciful and gracious, long suffering and abounding in goodness and truth. So in this context, Moses, God is meeting Moses for the second time on Mount Sinai. I remember the first time he gave him the commandments and the people had already built a golden calf at the foot of the mountain and 3000 had to die because of that sin, but God didn't give up on his people. And, but he told Moses to go get a second set of tablets and he's going to re-give his law and he did.

And then God passed before Moses and declared that he was macrothymia, which is he was willing to work patiently with people who are not ready to follow him. So that's how God is with us. And that's why we have to be with other people. Now it doesn't mean that you have to be gullible or just foolish and easily led or misled, but you can still be discerning and patient, give people a chance. How do we, uh, you know, I guess cause our bent, our natural inclination as humans is to be shortsighted and selfish and impatient. How do we cultivate patience?

How do we, how do we work toward loving people in the form of being patient with them? Well, of course, you know, we have to remember how God reaches or treats us, you know, and how he shows grace to us. So also we have to do with others, be Christ-like. Uh, you know, when Peter asked Jesus in Matthew 18, how many times he should forgive his brother? Up to seven times.

And Jesus answered up to 70 times seven. That's how God forgives us time and again, gives us another chance. Of course you can protect yourself. You don't have to be gullible. You don't have to suffer somebody's abuse.

We're not talking about that. We're talking about being willing to, in a relationship, bear with the other person, show compassion. And, um, that's what God has called us to do.

Yeah. You know, I think about how God is, how he waits patiently for us and how he, he has every right, you know, to show wrath into, uh, I don't want to say lose his patience, but he has every right to judge us instantly, but he doesn't, you know, he gives us time. He's given us our entire lives to come back to him.

You know, I know I've said this many times on the podcast, but, and I'm going to keep saying it because it had such a deep impact on me. Dr. Shah, you said most of life is coming back to God. It's also worth noting that God gives us that life. He gives us that time and he waits patiently for us to come.

Yeah. And he knows that in this life we may never truly arrive. So some of our, you know, struggles when, when God deals with us, um, he allows us to make up our own minds in submitting to him. Other times he'll send situations in our lives and we stay in a perpetual state of submission. One problem after another is to simply humble us and to keep us dependent upon him. So his waiting patiently is so deep, so profound that he's willing to let us suffer so that we'll stay dependent on him and he waits on us.

You know? So I was, I was thinking about this yesterday cause I know we're all, we're all fathers at this table. You guys have been fathers longer than me, but you know, Ellie and I were sitting at the table yesterday with, with Gavin and we were going over colors when he was a little early. He sees two, but I think he can kind of grasp his colors. And so we kept looking and we were like, what's this one? He's like blue.

Like what's this one? He's green. It was like, okay, some of these you're getting, he could not get red.

He just could not understand the red. And I would say, that's red. He's red.

And he's like, cool. And then I'd go to another one, come back to red. He was like, green. Like, no, this is red.

And I mean, we sat there at that table. We must've done red about 50 times. Every time I'd be like, it's red, red, go back to it, come back to it.

What's this one? Yellow. No, he could not get red. And I was getting, it was a fun thing, but I was getting frustrated. I was really getting impatient with it.

And I was like, all right, well like what's going on? Is he just not going to get red? And I think about God, like all these times that I keep coming back to these same sins and I keep coming back to these same insecurities and these same hang ups, how God doesn't get frustrated. He doesn't get to where he's like, okay, just go to bed. I'm done with you. He's, he's always there waiting patiently for us. And he's like, listen, you can come back.

You can try again. Yeah. And I think many times he's, it's all purposeful. So why would God be like, so second time, if God is the one sending those problems in your life, one after the other, there's no need for him to be frustrated.

That's right. Frustration is a, that's a human element that we often map into things. You know, I heard, I heard somebody, I can't remember who it was. One time they said, as you become a parent, it will refine in you the rough places and it will point out the areas where you are not being Christ-like because that little child, sweet and adorable and loving as they may be, is going to, you know, exercise your patience, going to push you to the limits of your patience. And you're going to realize, you know, just how patient God is with us. Because there are so many times that, you know, when my kids, they're a little bit on the older side now, they're still little, but as they were growing up and they were kind of in that stage of pushing boundaries and learning what was okay and what wasn't, I would just get so irritated. I'm like, I have told you this 17,000 times at this point.

Why is this still a discussion? And it was like, it was like I would hear, you know, God saying the same things to me, but not in the tone of frustration that I had. It was like, Hey, I've told you this, you know this, you know, you know what you should be doing.

And yet you're still being disobedient. He doesn't have to be frustrated with us. He already knows the future.

He knows everything. And I think it goes back to what you said, Dr. Shah, that God never tolerates our sin, but he always works with us to bring us where he wants us to be. You know, he, he's got that, that calmness and that, that patience. Well, the second half of that macrothemia is cristioma. Cristioma means to show kindness. So you find that in Matthew 18, where Jesus says, come to me, all you who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me for I am gentle and lowly in heart. And you will find a rest for your souls. Verse 30 for my yoke is Christos easy and my burden is light.

So the point is that God could burn in his anger or burn us in his anger, but because he loves us, he waits patiently for us and he shows kindness to us. Beautiful. Beautiful. That's a beautiful thing to keep in mind as we head toward Valentine's day. Love is calming.

It's a, it's a source of patience. If you guys enjoyed today's episode or you have questions or suggestions for future episodes, make sure you let us know by sending us a text to 252-582-5028 or you can visit us online at and you can support us financially on that same website. We are grateful for all of our giving partners. We're grateful for this Cleaview Today Show family and your support as we seek to impact the nations with the gospel of Jesus. Amen.

We got a question coming in from Keith G. If you could have Keith G. If you could have any, I'm sorry, if you could have dinner with any theologian living or dead, who would it be? Oh, wow. Great question.

For me? Yeah. Yeah. There's so many. So I'm going to pick one. All right. But this is not necessarily a the one, but I can pick one. It's one is like Martin Hengel.

Okay. Martin Hengel wrote some amazing books, New Testament theology books. He was a, he came from a very rich family. I think it was like they made clothing, textiles, whatever, but he went into theological studies, especially New Testament and very busy businessman. Yeah. And yet when you read his works, his articles, his books, it's like, how did he do this?

Where did he find the time to write articles like this so well researched and documented and footnoted and at the same time run a very prestigious business. And I don't know. Wow. That's awesome. We love you guys. We'll see you next time on clear read today. Bye. We'll see you in the next one.
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-02-03 10:10:23 / 2023-02-03 10:23:56 / 14

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