Read: 1Cor 13:1-13
If I could speak all the languages of earth and of angels, but didn’t love others, I would only be a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal. 1 Corinthians 13:1
The apostle Paul here writes about love. This passage is commonly read at weddings, but if you look at the context you can see that it’s tucked in between two chapters on spiritual gifts. Paul basically says you can have every spiritual gift and every Christian virtue, but if you’re not loving – if you’re arrogant, if your heart is proud and boastful or unforgiving or jealous (all non-loving attitudes) – all your giftedness and all your virtue are worthless. Love is the greatest Christian virtue and greatest evidence that you are a Christ follower. Without love all the other stuff is posturing and hot air.
So often I see Christians develop what I call a spiritual superiority complex. “I have this gift or that gift.” “I give this much or sacrifice in this way.” “I’m better than those other ‘Christians’ for whatever reason.” I think this is what Paul is addressing here. The big evidence for your spiritual maturity, your connectedness to God, your empowerment by the Holy Spirit isn’t a particular gift, virtue or pet theology, but love.
When you think about it, love is a condition of your heart. It’s evidence that you have surrendered the deepest places of yourself to God’s Spirit.
See, when we stop judging other Christians and start loving them, we display the heart of God and His presence in our lives in a profound way – in fact, in the most profound way.
Let’s face it, judgementalism is ugly, and easy to fall into. Jesus said “who are you to judge someone else’s servant?” He also gave us a new commandment… “Love one another!!!”
One of the greatest arguments against Christianity is how Christians judge and treat each other. Yet Jesus said the whole world would know we were with Him by how we loved one another. Hmmm – time for a heart check maybe.
The judgment and superiority complexes of Christians is as ugly and injurious as anything on earth. But the beauty of Christians loving others well is unparalleled by anything else on earth. Choose to love today and invite the Spirit of God to fill you with an overflow of His love to extend to others.
Dear God – please fill me with your Spirit and your love. Help me to love well, and to humble myself as I choose to extend grace and love instead of judgment and superiority. Thanks for loving me so much and so well. In Jesus’ name I pray, amen.