Faith Family

The Characteristics of Love

As I’m reading one of the most well-known passages in the Bible I wonder how many times we read this without truly understanding what it means to walk in it. Love is defined as the greatest gift and is essential – it’s eternal.

1 Corinthians 13: 1-8
Though I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I have become sounding brass or a clanging cymbal. And though I have the gift of prophecy, and understand all mysteries and all knowledge, and though I have all faith, so that I could remove mountains, but have not love, I am nothing. And though I bestow all my goods to feed the poor, and though I give my body to be burned, but have not love, it profits me nothing. Love suffers long and is kind; love does not envy; love does not parade itself, is not puffed up; does not behave rudely, does not seek its own, is not provoked, thinks no evil; does not rejoice in iniquity, but rejoices in truth; bears all things, believes all things. Love never fails. But whether there are prophecies, they will fail; whether there are tongues, they will cease; whether there is knowledge, it will vanish.

Love suffers long… having patience with imperfect people
Love is kind… actively doing good
Love does not envy… not being possessive or competitive – actually wanting others to get ahead.
Love does not parade itself… being humble and not prideful, taking a back-seat
Love is not puffed up… being arrogant toward others
Love does not behave rudely… having good manners and being courteous
Love does not seek its own… not insisting on our own rights and demanding precedence; rather being unselfish
Love is not provoked… not being irritable or touchy, rough or hostile, but being graceful under pressure.
Love thinks no evil… Not keeping an account of wrongs done to us; instead, erasing resentments
Love does not rejoice in iniquity… finding satisfaction in the shortcomings of others and spreading evil gossip
Love rejoices in the truth… aggressively pursuing that which is good and true to Christ-like character
Love bears all things… defending others, holding them up, bearing with them
Love believes all things… believing the best in others, crediting them with good intentions, and is not suspicious
Love hopes all things… never giving up on people, but affirming their future
Love endures all things… persevering and remaining loyal to the end

This is an interesting follow up to yesterday’s post because all-though the gifts of the Spirit are important to your journey with Christ – they are of no benefit without love. Love conquers all. Without love the most magnificent manifestation of gifts and the most heroic self-sacrifice mean nothing.

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