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1 CORINTHIANS 13
1. Though I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I have become sounding brass or a clanging symbol.
2. And though I have the gift of prophecy, and understand all mysteries and all knowledge, and though I have all faith, so that I could remove mountains, but have not love, I am nothing.
3. And though I bestow all my goods to feed the poor, and though I give my body to be burned, but have not love, it profits me nothing.
4. Love suffers long and is kind; love does not envy; love does not parade itself, is not puffed up;
5. does not behave rudely, does not seek its own, is not provoked, thinks no evil;
6. does not rejoice in iniquity, but rejoices in the truth;
7. bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.
8. Love never fails. But whether there are prophecies, they will fail; whether there are tongues, they will cease; whether there is knowledge, it will vanish away.
9. For we know in part and we prophesy in part.
10. But when that which is perfect has come, then that which is in part will be done away.
11. When I was a child, I spoke as a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child; but when I became a man, I put away childish things.
12. For now we see in a mirror, dimly, but then face to face. Now I know in part, but then I shall know just as I also am known.
13. And now abide faith, hope, love, these three; but the greatest of these is love.
"LET LOVE COME ALIVE"
All efforts to define love fall silent before the Apostle Paul's magnificent hymn of love. It is a description of Christ and the love He enables in us when He comes to indwell us.
This passage will come alive if you read it three ways:
1. read it as Paul wrote it
2. put the word "Christ " in place of the word "love" and read it again
3. read the passage also as a prayer for your own life, that the virtues of love will be manifest in you.
The miracle of Christ's indwelling power is that the love He revealed is exactly the love He will communicate to others through us.When this quality of love is the basis of a relationship, the miracle of unity is possible.
The virtues of faith, hope, and love, are necessary in this age; but in the age to come, faith will give way to sight (2 Cor. 5:7) and hope will turn into experience (Romans 8:24). Love alone is eternal for God is love (1 John 4:8).
"Now hope does not disappoint, because the love of God has been poured out in our hearts by the Holy Spirit who was given to us."
God's love (agape) is an undefeatable benevolence and unconquerable goodwill that always seeks the highest good of the other person, no matter what he does. It is the self-giving love that gives freely without asking anything in return, and does not consider the worth of its object. Agape is more a love by choice than philos which is a love by chance; and it refers to the will rather than the emotion. Agape describes the unconditional love God has for the world.
Father, help us to honor You in how we are with those around us. Help us to be ever mindful of our heart's condition and to purposefully walk in love with everyone You have placed in our lives and on our paths. May the words of our mouth and the meditations of our hearts be acceptable to You and bring you honor and glory always.