1 Corinthians 13 - The Love Chapter

1 Co. 13: The Love Chapter.

Read 1 Cor. 13 in several translations.

Love; The Greek for this word indicates a selfless concern for 
the welfare of others that is not called forth by any quality of 
lovableness in the person loved, but is the product of a will to love in 
obedience to God's command. It is like Christ's love manifested on the 
cross. [NIV SB] 

"Love," the higher type of love, which recognizes something of 
value in the person or object that is loved; love that is based on 
principle, not on emotion; love that grows out of respect for the admirable 
qualities of its object. This love is that which is seen between the 
Father and Jesus (see John 15:10; 17:26); it is the redeeming love of 
the Godhead for lost humanity (see John 15:9; 1 John 3:1; 4:9, 16); 
it is the special quality demonstrated in the dealings of 
Christians with one another (see John 13:34, 35; 15:12-14); it is used to 
signify the believer's relation to God (see 1 John 2:5; 4:12; 5:3). Love 
for God is shown by conformity with His will; this is proof of love 
(see John 2:4, 5). . . . .This "love" (agape) must not be confused 
with that which is sometimes called love, a quality composed largely 
of feeling and emotion that has the center in self and the desires 
of self. Agape centers the interest and concern in others and 
leads to appropriate action. [SDA Commentary] 

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 possible to practice this love only if God helps us set 
aside our own desires and instincts, so that we can give love while 
expecting nothing in return. Thus the more we become like Christ, the more 
love we will show to others. [Life Application SB] 

It is impossible to know who and what God is but not exercise 
His special love to others. This is the proof of a person's walk 
with God.  Love, in this passage, is absolutely not human.  The human 
heart is a complete stranger to the kind of love described here. The 
definition for God's agape love can be found in John 3:16, it is 
self-sacrificial in nature; in I Corinthians 13, agape love is 
patient, kind, not 
 jealous, doesn't brag, isn't arrogant, doesn't act unbecomingly, doesn't 
seek its own, isn't provoked, doesn't take into account a wrong 
suffered, doesn't rejoice in unrighteousness but in truth, bears all 
things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things and 
never, never fails. And last, agape love has Almighty God as its 
source.  Love is not God, God is love. We cannot exercise this love 
without a personal relationship with Jesus Christ. If you don't see it 
in your life, ask God for it today and be prepared for a radical 
change in your life.  [In His Time; Walk with Wisdom] 

It seems that love has little meaning any more. In most popular 
books, television shows, and movies, the term "lust" would be more 
appropriate than "love." Rarely do we see the kind of love Paul describes 
here-patient, kind, not jealous, not boastful, not proud, not rude, not 
demanding its own way, not irritable, not keeping records of wrongs done, 
always persistent, always hopeful, able to endure any circumstance. 
Surely such love would revolutionize marriages, families, churches, and 
This kind of love is God's kind of love. This is the kind of 
love God wants you to show to everyone around you. You see, love has 
little to do with feelings and more to do with decisions and choices. 
Think of the people with whom you interact every day-- a spouse, 
children, a boss, employees, friends, neighbors, teachers, students. How 
can you show love? Can, you be less irritable, more hopeful, willing 
to persist through the difficult times, more patient, less jealous? 
It doesn't come easy, but true love isn't easy. It is important, 
however. In fact, of faith, hope and love, "the greatest of these is 
love." [The One Year Bible for New Believers re 1Co.13] 

Oil of Kindness
I recall reading some years ago in a newspaper article about an 
old man who carried a small can of "3-In-One Oil" with him wherever 
he went.  When he passed through a door that squeaked he squirted a 
little oil on the hinges.  If a gate was hard to open, he oiled the 
latch ... and thus he passed through life lubricating all the 
squeaking places, making live more pleasant for those who came after him 
... an unusual procedure, yet he derived a great deal of pleasure in 
doing it. 
We see others doing similar deeds like this by planting 
flowers/shrubs along the roadway or picking up litter, planting trees in 
unsightly places or like the good neighbor this Christmas who decorated a 
tree along the rail road to enhance the area with a little beauty. 
In our lives, there are many opportunities for us to perhaps 
spread a little oil of kindness where it will make a big difference in 
a small way.  There's no telling how many lives we may keep from 
rusting and squeaking, how many gates to happiness we may oil that will 
make a life a little easier.  Pastor Fate Thomas 

His Name Is Bill
His name is Bill.  He has wild hair, wears a T-shirt with holes 
in it,  jeans and no shoes.  This was literally his wardrobe for 
his entire four years of college.  He is brilliant.  Kinda esoteric 
and very, very  bright.  He became a Christian while attending 
Across the street from the campus is a well-dressed, very 
conservative church.  They want to develop a ministry to the students, but 
are not sure how to go about it. One day Bill decides to go there.  
He walks in with no shoes, jeans, his T-shirt, and wild hair.  The 
service has already started and so Bill starts down the aisle looking 
for a seat. 
The church is completely packed and he can't find a seat.  By 
now people are looking a bit uncomfortable, but no one says 
anything.  Bill gets closer and closer and closer to the pulpit and when 
he realizes there are no seats, he just squats down right on the 
carpet.  (Although perfectly acceptable behavior at a college 
fellowship, trust me, this had never happened in this church before!) 
By now the people are really uptight, and the tension in the air 
is thick. 
About this time, the minister realizes that from way at the back 
of the church, a deacon is slowly making his way toward Bill.  Now 
the deacon is in his eighties, has silver-gray hair, a three-piece 
suit, and a pocket watch.  A godly man, very elegant, very dignified, 
very courtly.  He walks with a cane and as he starts walking toward 
this boy, everyone is saying to themselves, you can't blame him for 
what he's going to do.  How can you expect a man of his age and of 
his background to understand some college kid on the floor? 
It takes a long time for the man to reach the boy.  The church 
is utterly silent except for the clicking of the man's cane.  All 
eyes are focused on him. You can't even hear anyone breathing.  The 
people are thinking, the minister can't even preach the sermon until 
the deacon does what he has to do.  And now they see this elderly 
man drop his cane on the floor.  With great difficulty he lowers 
himself and sits down next to Bill and worships with him so he won't be 
alone.  Everyone chokes up with emotion. 
When the minister gains control he says, "What I'm about to 
preach, you will never remember.  What you have just seen, you will 
never forget."  Author unknown