Love – Hebrew: Ahavah

Love is found 261 times in the Hebrew Scriptures; 239 times in the new testament.


Ahavah in Hebrew means ‘love.’

The root of ahavah is ahav which means ‘to give.’  Dividing that root even further is av or a part of ‘abba’ meaning ‘father.’ Love or ahavah in Hebrew is the action of giving from a father and is the first revealing of a family; a father’s love begets the family.

“You are not to bow down to them or serve them; for I, Adonai your God, am a jealous God, punishing the children for the sins of the parents to the third and fourth generation of those who hate me, but displaying grace to the thousandth generation of those who love me and obey my mitzvot” (Exodus 20:5-6, Complete Jewish Bible).

“Adonai your God is right there with you, as a mighty savior. He will rejoice over you and be glad, he will be silent in his love, he will shout over you with joy” (Zehpaniah 3:17).

“I prayed to Adonai my God and made this confession: “Please, Adonai, great and fearsome God, who keeps his covenant and extends grace to those who love him and observe his mitzvot!” (Daniel 9:4).

Hebrew Word Pictures

א Alef – An Ox and means ‘first strength.’

ה Hey – A Window and means ‘behold’ or ‘reveal.’

ב Bet – A House and means ‘house’ or ‘family.’

ה Hey – A Window and means ‘behold’ or ‘reveal.’

The Hebrew Word Picture for ahavah:  first strength reveals the family revealed.

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