Summary: The act of loving is what makes a person better than he is. Love enlarges the boarders of our heart, it deepens us & overflow from us. It is by loving that we come nearer to God & knit our soul to that of Jesus. To refuse to love is to contract inward
[LIVING IN LOVE SERIES] 1 CORINTHIANS 13:6b-8a
THE PRODUCT OF REAL LOVE
Here we find Real Love’s Outcome. Love, says Browning, “is the energy of life.” The Bible says where God is, love is, for God is love. All of these 15 colors and hues of the spectrum of love we find in this passage are verbs in the original Greek. What this means is that love is not simply a feeling, or an abstraction or passive; love is active. Love is only love when it acts (1 John 3:18). So we should do all the good we can, to all the people we can, for as long as we can.
The act of loving is what makes a person better than he is (CIT). Love enlarges the boarders of our heart, it deepens us and overflow from us. It is by loving that we come nearer to God and knit our soul to that of Jesus. To refuse to love is to contract inward, shrivel, decay and die. To live in the Spirit is to love.
Paul has been contrasting love by teaching what it is not, he now flips the coin and returns to the positive side of love and gives the last five qualities. These qualities also reveal what love brings to those who love. For God’s love is the fountain from which goodness flows.
I. LOVE BRINGS (SUPPORTS) TRUTH, 6b.
II. LOVE BRINGS (DEVELOPS) EMPOWERING, 7.
III. LOVE BRINGS (IS) SUCCESS, 8a.
The first element is a contrast with the last negative which it follows. But rejoices with the truth.
Love rejoices with truth as opposed to rejoicing with thoughts, words, or actions that are not right or unrighteous according to God. Unrighteousness justifies sinful actions, words, and attitudes. Love is concerned about truth not about selfish opinions. It does not look for tidbits of untruth to pass on. It refuses to float along with gossip. Some Christians who refuse to participate in evil, enjoy watching it or hope others fall into it. Rejoicing in anyone’s sin is wrong. We are to rejoice only with the truth.
Do you become glad at learning of another’s calamity, failure or faults, or at the exposing of the weaknesses of others? That is not love for love covers a multitude of sin (1 Pet. 4:8). Love does not spread gossip and those that love will be offended at the sharing of gossip. Love rejoices with learning, comprehending and sharing truth.
The mind that seeks after God, the source of eternal love, rejoices with learning of and comprehending His truth. Those that love search for God’s truth and with truth comes their rejoicing. Good doctrine is right thinking about God, ourselves and others. Right thinking, in turn allows us to love one another in truth, with what is real, rather than in a setting of self-deception.
WILLIAM GLADSTONE, a prime minister of England in the nineteenth century, one night was working late on an important speech he was to give to the House of Commons the next day. At about two o’clock in the morning a woman knocked on his door, asking the servant if Mr. Gladstone would come and comfort her young crippled son who lay dying in a tenement not far away. Without hesitation the busy man set his speech aside and went. He spent the rest of the night with the boy, comforting him and leading him to accept Jesus Christ as Savior. The boy died about dawn, and Gladstone returned home. He told a friend later that morning, “I am the happiest man in the world today.”
The true greatness of Gladstone was not in his political position or attainments but in his great love, a love that would risk his political future to show the love of Christ to a young boy in great need. As it turned out, that morning he also made what some historians claim was the greatest speech of his life. He gained that victory, too, but he had been willing to lose it for the sake of a greater one. Love endeavors to see things as they are. To love a person to heaven is getting all the facts right.
On the other hand, love does not focus on the wrongs of others. It does not parade their faults for all the world to see. Love does not disregard falsehood and unrighteousness, but as much as possible it focuses on the true and the right. It looks for the good, hopes for the good, and emphasizes the good. So it rejoices in those who teach the truth and live the truth.
A SCOTTISH MINISTER was known for his love and encouragement of the people of his church and village. When he died someone commented, “there is no one left to appreciate the triumphs of ordinary folk.” Love appreciates the triumphs of ordinary folk. Our children are built up and strengthened when we encourage them in their accomplishments and in their obedience. Love does not rejoice in falsehood or wrong, but its primary business is to build up, not tear down, to strengthen, not weaken.