Wednesday, November 2, 2005

But Have Not God

Though I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I have become sounding brass or a tinkling 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. (1 Corinthians 13:1-3)
You could possess and exercise all the spiritual manifestations Paul describes in 1 Corinthians 12 (tongues, prophecy, words of wisdom and knowledge, faith, miracles, etc.) but if you do not operate in love, it is all in vain. It has no real, lasting value. It is nothing.

Why?

Because the Bible says that God IS love (1 John 4:8). If we do not have love, we do not have God. If love is not in whatever we do, then God is not in it. Love is inseparable from God; God is inseparable from love.

Many believers at Corinth had become obsessed with their possession and use of spiritual gifts. They thought the gifts were all about them and their exaltation. Lifted up with pride, they departed from the Great Commandment which Jesus taught in Matthew 22:36-40:
  • Love the Lord your God with all your heart, soul and mind.
  • Love your neighbor as yourself.
Without love, we are vain babblers. Without love, there is no benefit. Without love, we are nothing — zero!

But now turn that around and see what happens.

When we speak in love, our words become powerful. When we give ourselves away in love, there is great benefit. When we act in love, our faith becomes very meaningful and the world changes for the better.

The way we turn it all around is by loving God and loving our neighbor, for God IS love. When you enter into intimate fellowship with God, it will be impossible for you to not have love. Then your miracles will be meaningful.