1 Corinthians 13:1–13 (ESV)
The Way of Love
13 If I speak in the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I am a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal. 2 And if I have prophetic powers,
and understand all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have all faith, so as to remove mountains, but have not love, I am nothing. 3 If I give away all I have, and if I deliver up my body to be burned, but have not love,
I gain nothing.
4 Love is patient and kind; love does not envy or boast; it is not arrogant 5 or
rude. It does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful; 6 it does not rejoice at wrongdoing, but rejoices with the truth. 7 Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes
all things, endures all things.
8 Love never ends. As for prophecies, they will pass away; as for tongues, they will cease;
as for knowledge, it will pass away. 9 For we know in part and we prophesy in part, 10 but when the perfect comes, the partial will pass away. 11 When I was
a child, I spoke like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child. When I became a man, I gave up childish ways. 12 For now we see in a mirror dimly, but then face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall know
fully, even as I have been fully known.
13 So now faith, hope, and love abide, these three; but the greatest of these is love.
I believe this is a passage that we need to read on a weekly basis... to be reminded about love. By so completely describing and advocating love’s
divine qualities, Paul reveals the Corinthians’ immaturity. He sharply rebukes all noisy, clanging boasts of superiority. Yet, he alludes to the fact that the Father—who knows His children all too well—still loves them, reaches for them by
His Word, and will embrace them eternally because of Christ, who delivered Himself up for us all.
I pray: O Father, all-knowing, when my brothers and sisters disappoint
and annoy me, take my hands and stretch them wide to embrace them with Your all-embracing love; through Jesus, our mutual Savior. Amen.
A. Engelbrecht, The Lutheran Study Bible (St. Louis, MO: Concordia Publishing
House, 2009), 1968.