Growing with God’s Word and Building Up the Body of Christ
1 Corinthians 13:1-13: In today’s reading, Paul describes how love is to be shown toward others. While there are things we don’t yet fully understand, when we act in love we grow in our knowledge of God.
Love never gives up; and its faith, hope, and patience never fail.
1I may be able to speak the languages of human beings and even of angels, but if I have no love, my speech is no more than a noisy gong or a clanging bell.2 I may have the gift of inspired preaching; I may have all knowledge and understand all secrets; I may have all the faith needed to move mountains—but if I have no love, I am nothing.3I may give away everything I have, and even give up my body to be burned —but if I have no love, this does me no good.
4Love is patient and kind; it is not jealous or conceited or proud;5love is not ill-mannered or selfish or irritable; love does not keep a record of wrongs;6love is not happy with evil, but is happy with the truth.7Love never gives up; and its faith, hope, and patience never fail.
8Love is eternal. There are inspired messages, but they are temporary; there are gifts of speaking in strange tongues, but they will cease; there is knowledge, but it will pass.9For our gifts of knowledge and of inspired messages are only partial;10but when what is perfect comes, then what is partial will disappear.
11When I was a child, my speech, feelings, and thinking were all those of a child; now that I am an adult, I have no more use for childish ways.12What we see now is like a dim image in a mirror; then we shall see face-to-face. What I know now is only partial; then it will be complete—as complete as God's knowledge of me.
13Meanwhile these three remain: faith, hope, and love; and the greatest of these is love.
The word “love” in today’s reading is the Greek word “agape” which refers to God’s love (see John 3:16; Romans 5:5-8) and is the kind of self-giving love God’s followers are to show toward others. How many times does the word “love” appear in 1 Corinthians 13? What does today’s reading teach you about love?
Holy God, your love never fails. Teach me to love with patience and kindness and to love without jealousy or conceit. Thank you for your eternal love. Amen.
Those who are harboring grudges
1 Corinthians 16:1-24: Paul concludes his letter with greetings to many in Corinth.