Verse of the Day 7-12-21

If I speak in the tongues of men or of angels, but do not have love, I am only resounding gong or a clanging cymbal. 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. 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.-1 Corinthians 13:1-3

Paul begins this chapter on love right after he has just finished talking about spiritual gifts. He lists all these great spiritual gifts that people can and do possess, but he then says that none of these great gifts matter if you don’t have one thing. And that one thing is love. Paul doesn’t mean romantic, touchy-feely love, but he is talking about love that involves more than just your feelings of like or dislike for a person. He is talking about a love that involves your mind and your ability to think and to make choices about those thoughts. That is why Paul says that even if you are a great orator and can deliver a great speech, but you are only doing it to hear yourself talk and motivation is not to demonstrate God’s love to others then you are nothing more than a noise maker. And Paul says basically the same thing about all the rest of the spiritual gifts that he lists here in the opening verses of 1 Corinthians 13. The point Paul is trying to make here is this: it is not the ability to have certain gifts that set you apart as a child of God, but it is how you use those gifts that set you apart. If you are truly a child of God, then everything you do will be motivated by love. You will be motivated by God’s love for you to go out and show the rest of the world God’s love for them.

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