Summary: You can show love without opening your mouth, but not your heart.
“Though I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I have become sounding brass or a clanging cymbal” (1 Cor. 13:1).
1. Love is a choice. The word though means “if.” I can choose to love God or others, or withhold my love.
• You can control who/what you love.
• You can control when you love.
• You can control the sincerity of your love.
2. You can show love without opening your mouth, but not your heart.
3. What’s in the heart comes out of the mouth.
a. The mouth reveals our evil. “Out of the mouth comes . . . evil thoughts . . . murders . . . false witness . . . blasphemies” (Matt. 15:17-18).
b. Our desires. “The tongues . . . boasteth great things” (James 3:5).
c. Our fickleness. “Out of the same mouth proceedeth blessings and cursing” (James 3:10).
4. Why call it charity? “Have not charity” (v. 1). Charity denotes generous and unselfish concern for others, expecting nothing in return.
5. Your degree of love is constantly changing to love more or less.
By what you say,
By what you do,
By what you feel,
By how you look,
By what you touch.
“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 the truth” (vv. 4-6).
6. God uses the negative to teach us the positive. There are 8 KNOTS to untie:
a. Not envious = jealous.
b. Not parade = not boastful.
c. Not puffed up = not proud.
d. Not behave rudely = appropriate.
e. Not seek its own = selfish.
f. Not provoked = irritable.
g. Not think evil = suspicious.
h. Not rejoice in iniquity = injustice.
7. To love someone, I must look at the world through their eyes.
8. What goes around comes around, both good and bad.
“Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things” (v. 7).
9. You are greatly optimistic when you love the 4 ALLS:
a. Bear all = put up with.
b. Believe all = accepts.
c. Hopes all = looks for best.
d. Endures all = permits.
“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 away” (v. 8).
10. Love is a verb; you have it by what you do, not just by what you are.
11. To say “I love you” is empty without doing love, or giving love.
Love never fails to do the right thing
Love never fails to say the right words
Love never fails to react the right way
Love never fails to give him/her self
“For we know in part and we prophesy in part. But when that which is perfect has come, then that which is in part will be done away” (vv. 9-10).
12. No one has perfect love but Christ, but our God is perfect.
Love without saying it, you are assuming
Say it without love, you are hypocritical
Not loving and not saying it, you are uncaring
Saying it and showing it, true love
“When I was a child, I spoke as a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child; but when I became a man, I put away childish things” (v. 11).
13. Children give love by their simple actions and naivety; adults give love by words and unselfish deeds.
“For now we see in a mirror, dimly, but then face to face. Now I know in part, but then I shall know just as I also am known. And now abide faith, hope, love, these three; but the greatest of these is love” (vv. 12-13).
14. Now we only understand love in part, in heaven we will love wholly.
15. You never lose “love” (misquoted), we leave it. “You have left your first love” (Rev. 2: 2, 4).
• If I lose love, it is not my fault. If I leave love, it is my fault.
• If I lose love, I blame someone else. If I leave love, I know where it is and can find it.
• If I lose it, I might not be able to find it. If I leave it, I can go back.
• You can only go back to find love if you change. Remember, Christ transforms our love.
16. You cannot be in love for its own sake, that’s only a feeling. Love is a relationship, and love gives to the other.
• Giving for the other. “No greater love . . . than this, that (you) . . . lay your life down for your friends” (John 13:13, ELT).