Love (part 4)

Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. Love never fails.” 1 Corinthians 13:4-8a NIV

Dear Heavenly Father – Please fill us with your love. Open our understanding so we can see how desperately we need you or our efforts to love will fail. Help us accept your love and share it with others. – Amen

Love – Every day this week, this world still needs love.  We still need the power of love to transform, unite, heal, cast out demonic forces and accomplish the will of God. Love!!! If you have been reading these posts about love – or if you are just joining us – God has lead you here because He wants you to know He loves you. It is not an accident you are here – He wants you to learn and experience love, true love – His love.

We have studied how love has the power to save us and transform us. Love is the power. We have begun to study what love is and isn’t. Yesterday we spent a bit of time on the middle part of verse 5 as there is a lot in those few words. Now through the assistance of the Holy Spirit let us learn more about what love is and isn’t. So let us read, starting at the end of verse 5 in a couple different translations:

“…thinks no evil; does not rejoice in iniquity, but rejoices in the truth; bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. Love never fails.”  1 Corinthians 13:5d-8a NKJV

“…it takes no account of the evil done to it [it pays no attention to a suffered wrong]. It does not rejoice at injustice and unrighteousness, but rejoices when right and truth prevail. Love bears up under anything and everything that comes, is ever ready to believe the best of every person, its hopes are fadeless under all circumstances, and it endures everything [without weakening]. Love never fails [never fades out or becomes obsolete or comes to an end].” 1 Corinthians 13:5d-8a APMC

Love does not thing evil nor delight in evil, does not rejoice in iniquity, and does not rejoice at injustice and unrighteousness but love rejoices with the truth and when right and truth prevail.  Love sorrows in injustice. Injustice does not correct injustice, but it compounds it into more sorrow and grief.
Have you ever watched those ‘instant karma’ compilation videos on the internet? Someone(s) put together multiple videos that have been posted online and set it to silly music, of people doing something blatantly wrong and instantly something bad happens to them. The videos are compiled in a way that makes it funny to view. However, we are called to love everyone – EVERYONE – therefore we should not be amused at the evil that befalls them. 
A few days ago, I watched a friend get caught by one of his girlfriends in a lie – I couldn’t stop giggling. I felt bad for them both and how destructive evil and lies are, but I saw God’s hand all over it and couldn’t help but laugh. I hope I was delighting in the knowledge that God is using it to answer my prayers for their salvation and delighting in Lord exposing the truth (He is a good God – what is done in darkness shall always be exposed and it is a blessed thing to see God at work). I hope I was not delighting in the evil that came upon them – I prayed for them that night – that the turmoil in their lives would turn them to Christ and that God would use it to transform them and turn them to repentance!  Truth is, my heart hurts for that situation – that man is using multiple women and trying to play them against each other and God needs to intervene!  
(Verses on God exposing things done in secret: Luke 8:17, Luke 12:2-3, 1 Cor. 4:5, Mark 4:22, Ephesians 5:11, John 3:19-21, Ecclesiastes 12:14, Job 12:22, etc.)
God loves us; do we love God? Or do we love our sin, the evil things in our lives, rejoicing in iniquity? Are we happy when one of our plans goes off without a hitch, even when it is contrary to God’s plan?
God made us and loves us; do we love ourselves in truth? When God exposes what is deep inside us in the dark place – when He shines the light inside and exposes the truth – do we respond correctly? Do we love truth?

Love always protects, bears all things, and bears up under anything and everything that comes. Some versions say protect and others say to bear a situation. New Living Translation says love “never gives up”.  So, I guess we need to take this back to the original Greek – “stegei”. Stegei, according to Strong’s Lexicon, is a verb in present tense that means, “To cover, conceal, ward off, bear with, and endure patiently. From stege; to roof over, i.e. to cover with silence.”  So basically, love covers a multitude of sin (1Peter 4:8)
God loves us; do we love God by defending Him and protecting Him? Granted God does not really need our help defending His reputation, He can sent fire down from heaven, speak through a burning bush and is in control of everything. But, what about our social media posts and our behavior? 
I saw a post that said, “They will know you are Christians by your Love, political put-downs, unkind memes, name calling, and divisive self-entitled talk.”  I was so saddened by it. I private messaged the person who posted it and said, “it is true – and let me apologize for those in bondage who embarrass my Lord that way. May the Lord deal with them. Please know that Christians have sin battles too and some who profess are not Christians. Please seek God and do not stumble because of sinful men.” (I had to say something, I have been witnessing to this person for months and cannot have the enemy use my struggling brethren against God salvation revelations.) So yes, love God enough to fight for Him in truth, as the spirit guides.
God made us and loves us; do we love ourselves with enduring patiently? Be ever so careful with this. The line here between godly self-love and pridefully hiding our flaws is a very, very thin line. Cover yourself, prayerfully, with the blood of Christ and trust God to do the rest. If you try to cover your sins and evil, and are not repentant, to protect yourself will only result in God exposing them in front of the world. Forced humility is a difficult pill to swallow.  So, just love yourself by staying under God’s covering and staying right with the Lord.   

Love always trusts, believes all things, and is ever ready to believe the best of every person.
This is my struggle. This. Based on a pattern, I (in my flesh) can only trust that I cannot believe all things because they are usually a lie, and cannot believe the best in a person because they are usually so selfish they do not care if they hurt me. I have been so hurt. But the grace of God shines down on me and I have learned, through Christ, I can extend this grace. Humans are fallible. I will probably hurt you – you will probably hurt me (all unintentionally) and it is how we respond and move in grace upon grace to overcome and trust.
God loves us; do we love God enough to trust him? God may say no to one of our prayers – or His answer may be withheld for a period. Do we still trust Him? He let Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego be tossed into the fire – and they still trusted Him without knowing if they would live or die. Do we trust Him that He will protect us in His love and that if something bad happens He is still trustworthy and still has our best interests in mind?
God made us and loves us; do we love ourselves enough to believe the best in ourselves?  When God says we can do something – trust our self to be able to (and if we start to fail, that He will intervene).  Do we trust our self to make the right choices and to do what is right? If we don’t think we will make the right choice – do we call out to go for strength, help and deliverance?        

Love always hopes and hopes all things; its hopes are fadeless under all circumstances. I hope in faith – I believe with God nothing is impossible.  I look at the state of the world, the pandemic, the evil and violence and all I can do is hope in God. We live in hopeless times. I hope my love ones put there hope in God and not in man. I might be too broken to know how to hope in people.  I hope my son, and love ones, will turn to the Lord.  But right now all my hope is in the Lord – and Him accomplishing it.

Love always perseveres endures all things and it endures everything [without weakening]. In God, through grace, in the power of the name of Jesus – I can endure.  This biblical definition of love (especially these last two) cannot be accomplished without God in our lives. How can we hope in people who have a sinful nature and how can we endure the pain of relationship and interacting with people without help from the Lord.  When persecution comes, shall I love the person persecuting me and hate the sin? Will I endure these evil times and the evil that is still coming to our planet? Endure without weakening?
“but those who hope in the LORD will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint.” Isaiah 40:31 NIV
Only under the cover of God!

And finally:
Love never fails. Love never fails. Love never fails [never fades out or becomes obsolete or comes to an end]. God is the beginning and the ending (Revelations 22:13). God is love (1 John 4:8 & I John 4:16). Therefore love is the beginning and ending – if it is the ending then it cannot fail. It must continue on to the end.
If God is love, then God never fails.  There is no love, except in God -so it is no wonder the world passes off some cheap knock-off version of love, because they cannot obtain real love unless they include God in it.  
In God and through His grace – we can love without failing, but only in God.
God loves us; do we have unfailing love for God?  Will we quit when times get tough? Will we walk away when we do not get our way?
God made us and loves us; do we have unfailing love ourselves? Or do we give up even on ourselves?       

Wow! God’s love is too much for me to be able to do without God working in me. If not for grace!!! Thankfully, when you are in a relationship with someone (in this case with God, through Christ Jesus) they help you. So I have help to learn love and learn to practice it. And as we ask, God will fill us with love overflowing and spilling out onto other! It is this, which is meant, by love one another – share the power of God!

If you don’t already, and today you would like to, have a relationship with a God who can communicate with you and be part of your life (and protect you) – one who is full of mighty power and tender love, then please know that I have put the “A, B, C’s of Salvation” in my introduction. Please click here to follow the link.**

Thank you for reading ~ Grace be with you
Be healthy and blessed ~ Love one another
~ Watch and Pray ~
Seek God & keep your eyes on Jesus!

Maranatha ~ Come Lord Jesus!

“If I speak in the tongues of men or of angels, but do not have love, I am only a resounding gong or a clanging cymbal. If I have the gift of prophecy and can fathom all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have a faith that can move mountains, but do not have love, I am nothing. If I give all I possess to the poor and give over my body to hardship that I may boast, but do not have love, I gain nothing.”

Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.

Love never fails. But where there are prophecies, they will cease; where there are tongues, they will be stilled; where there is knowledge, it will pass away. For we know in part and we prophesy in part, 10 but when completeness comes, what is in part disappears. 11 When I was a child, I talked like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child. When I became a man, I put the ways of childhood behind me. 12 For now we see only a reflection as in a mirror; then we shall see face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I am fully known.

13 And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love.” 1 Corinthians 13 NIV

2 Replies to “Love (part 4)”

  1. 🙏🏾🙏🏾 For that courage to address him or her (on the post). They may have not said it (might have been on their minds), but it means so much, so much more to stand for truth. That you defended not only fellow brothers and sisters but The Truth! Yes we stumble too, but let’s not allow the enemy to tarnish us in the eyes of those we’re reaching out to (like you have been witnessing to this person).

    Liked by 1 person

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