Matthew 22:37&38 Love God with all your heart, mind and soul, and love your neighbor as yourself, is the first and greatest commandment. 1 John 4:10 tells us that God first loved us, and sent His Son, Jesus, into the world to save us. Of course, there’s John 3:16, where we read that God so loved us that He gave his only begotten Son so that we wouldn’t perish, but have everlasting life. Matthew 12:35 makes it clear that you can’t love anyone else if you don’t love yourself, because you can’t give something you don’t have. You can’t pour water out of a pitcher if there’s no water in it. Love, love, love, love, love…when you read about God, all you read is love. That’s because, as 1John 4:8 tells us, “God is love.”
1 Corinthians 13 is commonly called the “love chapter.” I broke this down verse by verse and thought about how Jesus fit into each one. Here’s what I came up with:
1 Corinthians 13:4-8
Love suffers long and is kind: “Father, forgive them for they know not what they do.” (Luke 23:34)
Love does not envy: Philippians 2:5-8 tells us that Jesus, being in the form of God and equal with Him, humbled Himself to take the form of man and was obedient to God, even unto death on the cross.
Love doesn’t parade itself and isn’t puffed up: Though multitudes followed Him, and He was the Son of God, Jesus didn’t go about with pomp and fanfare. Only in the entry into Jerusalem for the Passover, did the crowds make a procession. (Matt. 21:9-15, Mk. 11:3-10, John 12:12-16)
Love doesn’t behave rudely, seek its own good, isn’t provoked, thinks no evil, and doesn’t rejoice in iniquity, but does rejoice in the truth: From Satan’s temptation in the wilderness, through the Gospels to the resurrection and ascension, Jesus repeatedly said, “verily (truly) I tell you”, “I tell you the truth”, and He is called the way, the truth, and the life. I thought about the arrogance of the Pharisees and the mocking and taunting of the guards and the crowds, and how Jesus could have, with one word, wiped everyone off the face of the earth. But He never spoke that word. Instead, He prayed for their forgiveness. He could even have gone to those very ones who mocked Him and said, “I told you so”, when He rose after three days. But He didn’t.
Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, and endures all things: When I read this verse, I thought about myself, my life, my shortcomings, failures, sins, etc., and what came to mind then is that He loves me anyway, and I’m still here.
Love never fails: He’s still here…Anyway!!