Love never fails!
Scripture reading for August 20th: 1st Corinthians 12:27-13:13
Each person has been placed in Christ’s body by God as it pleased Him! (1st Corinthians 12:18) We are all arranged and joined together in such a way to function as a unit to accomplish God’s purposes. God appointed some ‘gift people’ to help with the teaching, equipping, and administration of His body. But no matter what gift you may have, God has encouraged all to desire the greater gifts and to pursue the most excellent way: the way of love!
Paul gives us one of the best descriptions of what love looks like that was ever penned! “Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. Love never fails.” (1st Corinthians 13:4-8a)
We can have all the gifts and be filled with faith, but without love we amount to nothing. Pentecostal and charismatic Christians have to be careful in this regard. The church at Corinth was flowing with gifts of the Spirit, but lack of love caused divisions and many other problems. Our flesh can easily get in the way and cause the love of God to cease flowing in our life. Faith works by love. (Galatians 5:5-6)
The proper exercise of the gifts also requires faith and love working together. The gifts are for the edification, exhortation, and comfort of the body. Christ loves His church and all is to be done through love. Love is not rude, boastful, or self-seeking. Love is humble and seeks the best for the other person. Pride and envy are not part of God’s kind of love! His love doesn’t keep record of wrongs and doesn’t remain angry with another person. His love trusts and protects and hangs in there for the long haul. In the end, love like this never fails to produce God’s highest good for the other person and for the Church of Jesus Christ!
“Now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love.” (1st Corinthians 13:13) When all else fades away, love remains the greatest gift of all! Will you ask God for a fresh revelation of His love today?