And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love.
-1 Corinthians 13:13
When you think about your faith journey, what do you think is most important?
The rules you follow?
How often you attend church?
The time of the day you read your Bible?
The number of mission trips you have been on?
What if I told you that all of those things meant nothing if they weren’t done in love?
When we read the Bible, it is clear from the first to last page that love is the theme of God’s work in the world. Everything He does is rooted and built up in love. It’s His character – He cannot change!
The very same is true of Jesus. Being one with the Father, Jesus’s life and ministry were marked with love and mercy. No matter who came across His path, Jesus showed love in ways that changed the world forever.
Paul, writing to those living in the city of Corinth, needed to remind the believers there of the importance of love marking their lives. A sense of self-righteousness was beginning to show up in those who claimed to be true believers of Jesus. Paul wanted to stop this pride and arrogance before it infected the church with evil.
If we claim to follow Jesus Christ, shouldn’t our lives be marked with the same love He lived with? God, in His wisdom, has placed us among those who need to know the love of God before they know the “rules and requirements” of being a “Christian”. Perhaps our understanding of being a Christian would change radically if we lived with love.
How will your actions change if you begin with love? Live with love, and watch your faith and hope begin to rise in strength and power!
Questions For Reflection on 1 Corinthians 13:13
#1 Think of the love that Jesus showed while He walked on earth to all those He encountered. What are the ways that you need to show love to those you encounter every day?
#2 Paul says that love is more important than hope and faith. What is it about love that makes it so important to understand and show? How can you show that love in your life today?
Jesus, thank you for loving me, a sinner who doesn’t deserve Your love or forgiveness. When I was far from You, You still came to find me and brought me close. I am thankful for the love you have shown me. Help me to know how to show that love to others in new ways today. Remind me of Your unending love which calls me to have faith and hope in Your love, and bring to mind those near me who need that same love!
Natalie Regoli is a child of God, devoted wife, and mother of two boys. She has a Master's Degree in Law from The University of Texas. Natalie has been published in several national journals and has been practicing law for 18 years.