Love is the Greatest (Day 19)

Read 1 Corinthians 13:1-13
    In chapter 12 Paul gave evidence of the Corinthian’s lack of love in the utilization of spiritual gifts; chapter 13 defines real love; and chapter 14 shows how love works. Love is more important than all the spiritual gifts exercised in the church body. Great faith, acts of dedication or sacrifice, and miracle working power have little effect without love. Love makes our actions and gifts useful. Although people have different gifts, love is available to everyone. 
    Our society confuses love and lust. Unlike lust, God’s kind of love is directed outward toward others, not inward toward ourselves. It is utterly unselfish. This kind of love goes against our natural inclinations. It is impossible to have this love unless God helps us set aside our own natural desires so that we can love and not expect anything in return. Thus, the more we become like Christ, the more love we will show to others. 
    God gives us spiritual gifts in order to build up, serve, and strengthen fellow Christians: the church. In eternity, we will be made perfect and complete and will be in the very presence of God. We will no longer need spiritual gifts, so they will come to an end. 
    Paul offers a glimpse into the future to give us hope that one day we will be complete when we see God face to face. This truth should strengthen our faith. We don’t have all the answers now, but one day we will. Someday we will see Christ in person and be able to see with God’s perspective.
    In morally corrupt Corinth, love had become a mixed up term with little meaning. Today people are still confused about love. Love is the greatest of all human qualities, and it is an attribute of God Himself (1 John 4). Love involves unselfish service to others; to show it gives evidence that you care. Faith is the foundation and content of God’s message; hope is the attitude and focus; love is the action. When faith and hope are in line, you are free to love completely because you understand how God loves.