Summary: Paul describes what love is, what love is not, and what love can do in 1 Corinthians 13:4-7
Love Conquers All
Introduction: Perhaps you've seen this Peanuts cartoon: Linus announces to his cranky sister, Lucy, that he's going to be a doctor. "You, a doctor?" she asks. "How can you be a doctor? You don't love mankind." Linus replies, "I do too love mankind. It's people I can't stand." (Sermon Central ill.)
My brother posted on Facebook that he was confessing his sin. And that he noticed that he didn't have to do it that often but when he did it was usually while being in traffic or after coming out of wal-mart.
Even the very best of people will certainly try your patience and you can bet they won't always show you their best side. But if we have love we can see through the worst in people and hope for the best in them.
The prominent psychiatrist Karl Menninger was featured in an article carried by the "Chicago Daily News" entitled, "Love working miracles for the mentally Ill in Kansas." Dr. Menninger contended that love is one of the most effective cures in healing mental illness. When reporters asked Menninger how it was that 80% of his patients recovered, he replied, the secret is not in electroshock, surgery, group-theraphy, drugs, etc. .. but the real secret is contained in a single word: LOVE! (Sermon central ill.)
Yesterday was Valentines day . . . You may have studied the 4 types of love in the Greek 'Eros' is where we get our word erotic, it means a romantic love; 'Phileo' brotherly love, good friends, it is a chosen love - 'we' choose who to befriend; 'Storge' is family love, a love for our parents, children, and siblings; 'Agape' is made manifest in our acts of charity. In Fact charity means love. It doesn't expect any thing in return. Agape is self-giving not self-serving. The Holy Spirit is the source of Agape love (“But the fruit of the Spirit is love...”-Gal 5:22) Agape love is what all Christians are to manifest in their lives by unconditional acts of goodwill and charity for others.
Paul let's us know that we can speak with angelic tongues, or we can have the gift of prophecy or we can give away all we own, or even sacrifice our bodies, but if we don't have love, we gain nothing.
Scripture: Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. 5 It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. 6 Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. 7 It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. I Corinthians 13: 4-7
Transition: Here we read what love is, what love is not, and what love can do! Let's see first what love is..
What Love Is
In two adjectives the apostle Paul tells us what love is in verse 4. It is patient and kind. Let's look at the first, In the King James it reads “Charity suffereth long ...” Young's literal translation says “long-suffering”, The NIV says “love is patient...” I like how the Darby Bible Translation blends the two, it reads- “Love has long patience”
Love is indeed patient. Love passively endures. It suffers much for a long time. Love will tolerate many slights, injuries, insults, neglects, tantrums, meltdowns, and accusations. It gives the mind power over angry passions. It passively resists the urge to get angry and even when tried greatly love doesn't retaliate, but suffers long. Love doesn't fly off the handle but waits and wishes for the best in everything and everyone. Love is patient. Paul gives us another adjective to describe love it is 'kind'
Love is kind – It is courteous and obliging. It not only wants to help others but eagerly looks for an opportunity to do so. Doing good or being charitable for others is not a burden or inconvenience, it's a passion. Although never at the cost of compromise, love wants to make others happy – simply for happiness sake. Love is a people-pleaser, not for the sake of being accepted but for the sake of seeing other people pleased. It warms their heart to see happy people. Love is friendly, nice, warmly affectionate, gentle, considerate, thoughtful, & caring. Love is kind. Love prefers other people's satisfaction over it's own.
Transition: So Paul tells us that the two adjectives patient and kind are what love is but then he proceeds to tell us what love is not.
What Love Is Not
Love is not proud. It does not give for the sake of being noticed and acknowledged among others. Love sees others as better than themselves and will show it with charity. Love does not vaunt or puff itself up. Love is not boastful. Love is not proud.