Tag: 1st Corinthians 11-14

Love’s Excellent Ways!

Scripture reading for November 25th: 1st Corinthians 11-14

Many people get excited about the spiritual gifts.  God gives each person gifts through the Holy Spirit that are to be used to build up the body of Christ.  (1st Corinthians 12:7)  These gifts may be characterized in three general categories.  There are those gifts that impart knowledge–word of wisdom, word of knowledge and prophesy.  Other gifts are used to do something: gifts of healing, miraculous powers, and faith.  Another type of gift is used to reveal something: discerning of spirits, tongues, and interpretation of tongues.  These gifts are given by the Lord through the Holy Spirit as He determines they are needed.  (1st Corinthians 12:11)

In addition to these manifestations of the Spirit, God has also appointed different offices to people to help with the work of ministry.  Some are apostles, sent to evangelize and plant churches.  Others are prophets and teachers who equip the body for ministry.  Others work miracles and facilitate divine healing.  Others may be good at administration and management.  Still others speak in tongues and others interpret.  (1st Corinthians 12:28-31)  God places these gift-people in the body just as He sees fit!  (1st Corinthians 12:18)

We are encouraged to eagerly desire the greater gifts!  But Paul cites the most excellent pursuit–the way of love! (1st Corinthians 13)  We can have any number of the gifts, but without love they are empty and useless.  God Himself is love!  He is patient and kind with us.  He is not easily angered, but is always ready to forgive.  He delights in truth and righteousness.  He is a God of hope and His love never fails!

He encourages us to love like He does.  Love is the greatest gift that we can ever have and give!  We must first follow the way of love and then desire the gifts.  (1st Corinthians 14:1)  Are you following the way of love?  Are you taking time to love God and allow His love to flow through you?  Invite the Holy Spirit to release a fresh ability to love God and  others in your heart today.

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The way of Love

Scripture reading for November 24th: 1st Corinthians 11-14

God gives each person gifts through the Holy Spirit that are to be used to build up the body of Christ.  (1st Corinthians 12:7)  These gifts may be characterized in three general categories.  There are those gifts that impart knowledge–word of wisdom, word of knowledge and prophesy.  Other gifts are used to do something: gifts of healing, miraculous powers, and faith.  Another type of gift is used to reveal something: discerning of spirits, tongues, and interpretation of tongues.  These gifts are given by the Lord through the Holy Spirit as He determines they are needed.  (1st Corinthians 12:11)

In addition to these manifestations of the Spirit, God has also appointed different offices to help with the work of ministry.  Some are apostles, sent to evangelize and plant churches.  Others are prophets and teachers who equip the body for ministry.  Others work miracles and facilitate divine healing.  Others may be good at administration and management.  Still others speak in tongues and others interpret.  (1st Corinthians 12:28-31)  God places these gift-people in the body just as He sees fit!  (1st Corinthians 12:18)

We are all encouraged to eagerly desire the greater gifts!  But Paul cites the most excellent pursuit as the way of love! (1st Corinthians 13)  We can have any number of the gifts, but without love they are empty and useless.  Love is the vital ingredient because the gifts must be used with love and compassion.  God’s heart is to love and heal, not just to do something!  God Himself is love!  He is patient and kind with us.  He is not easily angered, but is always ready to forgive.  He forgives and never keeps a record of the wrongs done !  He delights in truth and righteousness.  His love never fails!

He encourages us to love like He does.  Love is the greatest gift that we can ever have and give!  We must first follow the way of love and then desire the gifts.  (1st Corinthians 14:1)  Take time today to check your heart.  Are you following the way of love?  How’s your love life with God?  Are you taking time to love Him and allowing His love to flow through you?  Invite the Holy Spirit to release a fresh ability to love others in your heart today.

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Keep Love Central!

Scripture reading for November 26th: 1st Corinthians 11-14

The Corinthian church was eager to use the gifts of the Holy Spirit.  Coming out of paganism and idolatry, many were used to the supernatural on the side of evil but were ignorant of the Holy Spirit.  Paul wrote this portion of his letter to give them instructions for the orderly use of the Spirit’s gifts.

“There are different kinds of gifts, but the same Spirit.  There are different kinds of service, but the same Lord.  There are different kinds of working, but the same God works all of them in all men.” (1st Corinthians 12:4-6)  After telling them that the Holy Spirit alone can enable them to say, “Jesus is Lord”, Paul began to instruct them.  The gifts are different for each person, but God is the same God who works them in men who are under Christ’s lordship.

“Now to each one the manifestation of the Spirit is given for the common good.” (1st Corinthians 12:7)  God’s purpose in the gifts is to build up His body, the church.  Gifts are not meant to divide or cause confusion.  The Holy Spirit is the one who gives the gifts to each person to use at the appropriate time for God’s purposes!  All the gifts are important and no person is to be despised because of their gifts.   God wants unity in the body as He has placed them there for that purpose.  (1st Corinthians 12:21-26)

“But eagerly desire the greater gifts.”

“And now I will show you a more excellent way.  If I speak in the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I am only a resounding gong or a clanging cymbal.  If I have the gift of prophesy and can fathom all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have a faith that can move mountains, but have not love, I am nothing.” (1st Corinthians 12:31-13:2)  Paul encouraged the Corinthians, and us as well, to eagerly desire the better gifts.  God wants us to use the gifts He gives under the direction of the Holy Spirit.  But the more excellent way is to let love be flowing in your life as a basic attitude, not to be proud of your gifts.  The gifts without love are harsh and profit no one.   In fact, they can even degrade you and make the gifts unprofitable.  Keep love central!

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The Way of Love!

Scripture reading for November 25th: 1st Corinthians 11-14

Many people get excited about the spiritual gifts.  God gives each person gifts through the Holy Spirit that are to be used to build up the body of Christ.  (1st Corinthians 12:7)  These gifts may be characterized in three general categories.  There are those gifts that impart knowledge–word of wisdom, word of knowledge and prophesy.  Other gifts are used to do something: gifts of healing, miraculous powers, and faith.  Another type of gift is used to reveal something: discerning of spirits, tongues, and interpretation of tongues.  These gifts are given by the Lord through the Holy Spirit as He determines they are needed.  (1st Corinthians 12:11)

In addition to these manifestations of the Spirit, God has also appointed different offices to people to help with the work of ministry.  Some are apostles, sent to evangelize and plant churches.  Others are prophets and teachers who equip the body for ministry.  Others work miracles and facilitate divine healing.  Others may be good at administration and management.  Still others speak in tongues and others interpret.  (1st Corinthians 12:28-31)  God places these gift-people in the body just as He sees fit!  (1st Corinthians 12:18)

We are encouraged to eagerly desire the greater gifts!  But Paul cites the most excellent pursuit–the way of love! (1st Corinthians 13)  We can have any number of the gifts, but without love they are empty and useless.  Love is a vital ingredient because the gifts must be used with love and compassion.  God’s heart is to love and heal, not just to do something!  God Himself is love!  He is patient and kind with us.  He is not easily angered, but is always ready to forgive.  He forgives and never keeps a record of the wrongs done !  He delights in truth and righteousness.  He is a God of hope and His love never fails!

He encourages us to love like He does.  We must grow up in our faith in order to do that.  Love is the greatest gift that we can ever have and give!  We must first follow the way of love and then desire the gifts.  (1st Corinthians 14:1)  Take time today to check your heart.  Are you following the way of love?  How’s your love life with God?  Are you taking time to love Him and allowing His love to flow through you?  Would people say that you were full of the love of God?  Invite the Holy Spirit to release a fresh ability to love others in your heart today.

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