I don’t know about you, but the last two months have been really challenging to me. We have looked through 1 Corinthians 13:4-7 and each individual attribute of love. Let us look at the verse one more time as a reminder.
“Love is patient and kind; love does not envy or boast; it is not arrogant or rude. It does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful; it does not rejoice at wrongdoing, but rejoices with the truth. Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.” (ESV)
Our team have done an absolutely fantastic job of expanding on each attribute, if any of the above confuse you then I encourage you to go find the post written on it and see what our authors have to say.
When you look at the verse though, you may wonder: “Those verses are so nice, they sound all pretty and they describe love, but how do they make any difference in my life?” They may actually be far more practical than you may think at first. Just consider these verses:
“A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another: just as I have loved you, you also are to love one another. By this all people will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another” – John 13:34-35 (ESV)
“This is my commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you.” – John 15:12 (ESV)
“And may the Lord make you increase and abound in love for one another and for all, as we do for you.” – 1 Thessalonians 3:12 (ESV)
And if you look at the rest of 1 Corinthians 13 you see just how important Paul is telling us that love is:
“If I speak in the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I am a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal” (13:1)
Have you ever heard those sounds? I am a musician and I am telling you right now that they are not pleasant to be around. Does that mean that if I do not love that I am not pleasant to be around? Think about it.
“If I give away all I have, and if I deliver up my body to be burned, but have not love, I gain nothing.” (13:3)
Something else to think about. You can be the most charitable and good person that anyone has ever seen and the Bible says that if you do not have love that you gain nothing!
So now faith, hope, and love abide, these three; but the greatest of these is love. (13:13)
Faith, hope and love are amazing things. But the greatest (the biggest, the most important, the one we need the most) of these is love.
It looks to me like God takes love pretty seriously. He loves us so much that He sent His own Son to die that we may be saved (John 3:16). This is one of God’s perfections: God is love.
So if God loves perfectly, this means that we should too. And He hasn’t just left us hanging, He told us exactly what we must do to love perfectly. He wants us to live out 1 Corinthians 13:4-7.
Lets do a little test. Can you take this passage and substitute “love” with your own name? I dare you to try so that you can see how you are doing. I’ll show you using my own name:
AJ is patient and kind; AJ does not envy or boast; she is not arrogant or rude. she does not insist on her own way; she is not irritable or resentful; she does not rejoice at wrongdoing, but she rejoices with the truth. AJ bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.
Please don’t read that as truth, it is a bunch of lies, I am the total opposite to some of those statements. But I am working to be able to say that statement truthfully. I used to have this stuck up next to my bed to remind me how I need to love people through the day.
Could you substitute your name in there? Would it be truthful? (Heads up, you should be saying no to that question). Would you like to work on making it more truthful? If so, I hope you will join me in committing to working on these things through the power of the Holy Spirit, so that we can show Christ and through our immense love for one another.