BIBLE READING: I Corinthians 13
13 And now abideth faith, hope, charity, these three; but the greatest of these is charity.
Paul teaches that these three things should abide in the life of believers. They are all important. “Faith” is extremely important. We are saved by grace through faith. “Hope” is also essential in our lives. It literally means confidence in. Hope is the product of faith. I have hope because I believe, or have faith in God’s Word, and the promises God has made in His Word. A lack of faith produces an absence of hope. So why is “charity”, or love, the “greatest”?
Let me put it this way:
1. WITHOUT FAITH, IT IS IMPOSSIBLE TO PLEASE GOD
2. WITHOUT HOPE, IT IS IMPOSSIBLE TO TRUST GOD
3. WITHOUT LOVE, IT IS IMPOSSIBLE TO REPRESENT GOD
Let me put it another way:
1. FAITH IS EVIDENCED IN THE HEART
2. HOPE IS EVIDENCED IN THE HEAD
3. LOVE IS EVIDENCED IN THE HANDS
Love reaches out to others. I can have faith but not reach others. I can have hope but not reach others. But if I have love, there is no way I will not reach others. “For God so love”. “We Love Him because He first loved us”. Throughout this entire chapter, we see that all the wonderful traits we could have in our life will mean nothing if we don’t show the love of God. This chapter shares all the things that will show up in our lives if we have the love of God in our hearts. Yes, truly, “The greatest of these is charity”.