The Power of Pure Love!!!
As I read in 1 Corinthians, it is written: “And God hath set some in the church, first apostles, secondarily prophets, thirdly teachers, after that miracles, then gifts of healings, helps, governments, diversities of tongues” (12: 28, KJV).
Delving deeper, I want you to pay attention to the order because as we desire these gifts more emphasis is placed on the one who is willing to share the gospel. While choosing His apostles, Jesus would say, “Follow Me”.
Meaning you had to be willing to leave everything and even everyone you love behind. He was setting the stage for this in the Old Testament with monarchs such as Abraham and Moses.
I have seen people testify that they have been at a job for 10, 15, 25, even 35 years. My children could never understand why I would leave a job after a few years if that.
Contentment With Godliness is Great Gain
As unworthy as I am, I have been endowed with a few of these gifts. I have also learned the hard way that it is better to move when I am told. Versus the consequences that have come when He forced me to move.
What I see is the level of dissatisfaction and discontent in the world. Even in the body of Christ. Everyone is clamoring for the “best” gifts.
This scripture is pivotal. “Wisdom is the principal thing; therefore get wisdom: and with all thy getting get understanding” (Proverbs 4: 7, KJV).
God does everything decently and in order. I will confirm this. Even though we are told to covet the best gifts, these are endowments given by the Holy Spirit.
Do All Things Decently and In Order
Before Paul even goes there, he gives insight into preparing for them. Warning us on the basics of empathy and accountability.
“So when you meet together, it is not to eat the Lord’s Supper, for when you eat, each one hurries to get his own supper first [not waiting for others or the poor]. So one goes hungry while another gets drunk” (1 Corinthians 11: 20-21, AMP). Representing ulterior motives, pride and greed.
Paul then gives us another lesson. Being content with this realization. “Whatever you do [whatever your task may be], work from the soul [that is, put in your very best effort], as [something done] for the Lord and not for men, knowing [with all certainty] that it is from the Lord [not from men] that you will receive the inheritance which is your [greatest] reward. It is the Lord Christ whom you [actually] serve” (Colossians 3: 23-24, AMP).
Let me establish this because it is so important. Our lack of contentment can be a problem. Bear with me.
We Are All One in The Body of Christ
“For the [human] body does not consist of one part, but of many [limbs and organs]. If the foot says, ‘Because I am not a hand, I am not a part of the body,’ is it not on the contrary still a part of the body? (AMP, v. 14-15).
“If the ear says, ‘Because I am not an eye, I am not a part of the body,’ is it not on the contrary still a part of the body? If the whole body were an eye, where would the hearing be? If the whole [body] were an ear, where would the sense of smell be?” (AMP, v. 16-17).
Now pay attention, “But now hath God set the members every one of them in the body, as it has pleased Him (KJV, v. 18). But now are they many members, yet one body.” (KJV, v. 20).
God’s Mercy is Shed Abroad
This is God’s grace. “But quite the contrary, the parts of the body that seem weaker are [absolutely] necessary; and as for those parts of the body which we consider less honorable, these we treat with greater honor; and our less presentable parts are treated with greater modesty, while our most presentable parts do not require it.
“But God has combined the [whole] body, giving greater honor to that part which lacks it, so that there would be no division or discord in the body [that is, lack of adaptation of the parts to each other], but that the parts may have the same concern for one another” (AMP, v. 22-25) Taken from 1 Corinthians, Chapter 12.
Adaptability is a virtue. “For though I be free from all men, yet have I made myself servant unto all, that I might gain the more” (1 Corinthians 9: 19, KJV).
Accept The Holy Spirit’s Gift(s) For You
Otherwise, you are out of line with the word of God. “Nay but, O man, who art thou that repliest against God? Shall the thing formed say to him that formed it, Why hast thou made me thus?” (Romans 9: 20, KJV).
Now to what is pivotal. An area where we all lack vitality. Unselfish love. Because truth and love are incorruptible, indissoluble, and ineradicable.
Because just as we have to be committed to staying saved. We must have the same commitment to love. The Holy Spirit is saying that this is our greatest challenge. Described as a more excellent way. So again, bear with me.
“If I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love [for others growing out of God’s love for me], then I have become only a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal [just an annoying distraction]. And if I have the gift of prophecy [and speak a new message from God to the people], and understand all mysteries, and [possess] all knowledge: and if I have all [sufficient] faith so that I can move mountains, but do not have love [reaching out to others], I am nothing.
Know What Love is and What it Isn’t!
“If I give all my possessions to feed the poor and I surrender my body to be burned (this may mean to boast), but do not have love, it does me no good at all. Love endures with patience and serenity, love is kind and thoughtful, and is not jealous or envious; love does not brag and is not proud or arrogant.
“It is not rude; it is not self-seeking, it is not provoked [nor overly sensitive and easily angered]; it does not take into account a wrong that is endured. It does not rejoice at injustice, but rejoices with the truth [when right and truth prevail].
“Love bears all things [regardless of what comes], believes all things [looking for the best in each one], hopes all things [remaining steadfast during difficult times], endures all things [without weakening]. Love never fails [it never fades nor ends]. But as for prophecies, they will pass away; as for tongues, they will cease; as for the gift of special knowledge, it will pass away.
Nothing is Indestructible but Pure Love
“For we know in part, and we prophecy in part [for our knowledge is fragmentary and incomplete]. But when that which is complete and perfect comes, that which is incomplete and partial will pass away” (1 Corinthians 13: 1-10, AMP). Do you understand?
Confirmed by Jesus, “Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works? And then I will profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity” (Matthew 7: 22-23, KJV).
As I close, let me give you the most concise way that this is summed up. “For all the law is fulfilled in one word, even this; Thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself” (Galatians 5: 14, KJV).
Always coming from a place of love and in truth!!!
Originally written on November 11, 2023.
Thank you, Cassandra Mack, at Cassandra Mack Ministries, for allowing me to sponsor an episode of your podcast.