Living to Love: Part Four

Love is Indestructible (1 Corinthians 13:8-12)

How Is Love Indestructible?

Not only is love flawless, but love will never fail, or cease to have force or authority in this life or in the life to come . Love is permanent and complete. Without Christ’s indestructible love, we fail to fulfill the law of God and we are incomplete.

1 Corinthians 13:8-10 ”Love never ends. As for prophecies, they will pass away; as for tongues, they will cease; as for knowledge, it will pass away. For we know in part and we prophesy in part, 10 but when the perfect comes, the partial will pass away. 11 When I was a child, I spoke like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child. When I became a man, I gave up childish ways.”

When the fullness of time has come , Spiritual Gifts will cease: prophecy, tongues, and knowledge will cease.  . They cease because they are not needed when Christ comes again. Christ has the perfect knowledge, Christ knows the future, and praying in tongues will not be needed. Christ is the perfect and what we have is the partial. Love, is eternal. It is permanent. It does not flee from you, but rather resides in your heart. You cannot contain love and you are driven to share it with others. Which we are commanded to do. (John 2:7)

Paul is emphasizing this because the Corinthians prized all these gifts. The Corinthians failed to realize that these gifts were given to them to help them mature and become adults in their faith and not just remain “infants”.

Ephesians 4:11-16 (NIV): “So Christ himself gave the apostles, the prophets, the evangelists, the pastors and teachers, 12 to equip his people for works of service, so that the body of Christ may be built up 13 until we all reach unity in the faith and in the knowledge of the Son of God and become mature, attaining to the whole measure of the fullness of Christ. 14 Then we will no longer be infants, tossed back and forth by the waves, and blown here and there by every wind of teaching and by the cunning and craftiness of people in their deceitful scheming. 15 Instead, speaking the truth in love, we will grow to become in every respect the mature body of him who is the head, that is, Christ. 16 From him the whole body, joined and held together by every supporting ligament, grows and builds itself up in love, as each part does its work.”

We are given these gifts so that we will become stronger and more mature in our faith. So that we can become the full, mature body of Christ that we were created to be, instead of being knocked down by the enemy. I find the phrase, “Speaking truth in Love”, interesting in v.15. There’s that word again! LOVE. We cannot escape it. You see, these gifts: prophecy, tongues, and knowledge  , which we will never truly be until Christ comes. And once Christ has come, these things will come to an end. One thing that will never end, is LOVE. If we are commanded to speak the truth in love, then if it perished, we would not be able to speak the truth. We would not be able to be Christ’s disciples and share His word. That is why love is so important. That is why love is indestructible.

What Does Indestructible Love Look Like?

1 Corinthians 13:12 (ESV): “For now we see in a mirror dimly, but then face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I have been fully known.”

I find this little fact interesting: Ancient mirrors were made from polished metal, therefore the mirrors were dimmer than ours today. Thus, when one looked in the mirror, it was a dim reflection looking back at them. Paul says: “…for now we see in a mirror dimly, but then face to face.” You see, we always ask questions like “why do bad things happen?” or “Why is this happening?” Well, this verse tells us that what we see right now of those answers is just a response compared to what we will get when we are face to face with Jesus. We simply are not able to hold the information because it is too much for us and our finite minds. Right now, it’s just like v. 10 says, we are the partial and Christ is the perfect. When Christ comes, we will know the perfect! Hallelujah!

How Can We Apply Indestructible Love To Our Lives?

The mirror illustration helps show the perfect and imperfect. Paul was writing in a time where there was sin, brokenness, pain, suffering, and hate (the dimmed mirror) – the imperfect time. This certainly hasn’t gotten any better as time has passed. We believers, the church, followers of Christ, are awaiting the perfect time (Christ’s return, face to face with Christ). When Christ returns, there will be no need for tongues, prophecy, and knowledge. We are given these gifts so that we will be prepared for His coming.

“Like a bride waiting for her groom, we are a church ready for you. Even so come, come Lord Jesus come.”

This new song, “Even so come” by Passion Band describes it perfectly. The Bride and Groom analogy is all about love!

This will all be replaced by the perfection of Christ. Our partial knowledge will be displaced by the perfect and full knowledge of God. The one thing that will not be replaced is love. Why? Because GOD IS LOVE. He will never “not” be needed. He will never diminish or become extinct.  The awesome thing about it is we  have Christ’s perfect love available to us! We have access to His perfect love. When we allow it, we can have the most superior love there is in our hearts, Jesus Christ.

 

 

 

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