Tuesday, June 22, 2010

1 Corinthians 13

1 If I speak in human or angelic tongues, but do not have love, I am only a resounding gong or a clanging cymbal. 2 If I have the gift of prophecy and can fathom all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have a faith that can move mountains, but do not have love, I am nothing. 3 If I give all I possess to the poor and give over my body [to hardship] that I may boast but do not have love, I gain nothing.
4 Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. 5 It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. 6 Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. 7 It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.
8 Love never fails. But where there are prophecies, they will cease; where there are tongues, they will be stilled; where there is knowledge, it will pass away. 9 For we know in part and we prophesy in part, 10 but when completeness comes, what is in part disappears. 11 When I was a child, I talked like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child. When I became a man, I put the ways of childhood behind me. 12 For now we see only a reflection as in a mirror; then we shall see face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I am fully known.
13 And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love.

Questions to consider:

  • What spiritual gifts are mentioned in verses 1-3?
  • What is the purpose and future of spiritual gifts? How are faith, hope and love superior?
  • What do you need to change about your attitudes and actions toward various people in your life (friends, roommates, husband/wife, mom/dad, etc)?

Possibilities for prayer:

Ah, the love chapter. A lot of people are familiar with the middle chunk of this passage (verses 4-8a), but have you ever stopped to seriously consider what the very first part of the passage is saying? Love is a very serious deal--being able to fathom all knowledge AND a having a faith that can move mountains still results in being counted nothing without the presence of love. Obviously, love is pretty important stuff, and something we should be seeking diligently. Let’s ask God for a revelation of what real love is and looks like, and the courage to press into that and make it a reality in our own lives.