Highlights In Today's Reading:
The Bible assures us of temptations. Call on God; He will provide a way out (10:13). All we do should glorify God (10:31-33). How much Jesus loves us (11:24-26). The Body of Christ working together wins (chap. 12)! Love described and explained (chap. 13).
Love is the most powerful force in the world. It is the distinct nature of God and of a true Christian. Paul lists more than 15 distinguishing virtues of love. Love suffereth long, and is kind; charity (love) envieth not; charity vaunteth not itself, is not puffed up, Doth not behave itself unseemly, seeketh not her own, is not easily provoked, thinketh no evil; Rejoiceth not in iniquity, but rejoiceth in the Truth; Beareth all things, believeth all things, hopeth all things, endureth all things. Charity never faileth (13:4-8).
Every true Christian has the indwelling nature of God. Every one that loveth is born of God, and knoweth God. . . . for God is love. . . . If a man say, I love God, and hateth his brother, he is a liar: for he that loveth not his brother whom he hath seen, how can he love God whom he hath not seen (I John 4:7-8,20)? We know that we have passed from death unto life, because we love the brethren (3:14).
By this shall all men know that ye are My disciples, if ye have love one to another (John 13:35). All our actions and attitudes are measured by our love. The perfect sacrifical love of God was the motivation for Jesus dying on the cross, and He is our example (3:16). Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends (15:13).
Love is the key to obtaining power in prayer. We forfeit forgiveness from God when we hold a grudge, are resentful, or have an unforgiving spirit: If ye do not forgive (others), neither will your Father which is in heaven forgive your trespasses (sins) (Mark 11:26).
At one time, Peter thought there should be a limitation to forgiving those who wronged him up to only seven times. But Christ replied that forgiveness has no limit and extends to seventy times seven (Matt. 18:21-35; Luke 17:4).
Love will not insist on its own way. Rather, the indwelling Holy Spirit prompts us to promote the welfare of others (I Cor. 10:24,33), even when that means forsaking our own desires, or even best interest. Love will return good for evil because it recognizes our personal debt to the Lord for His great love and mercy (Rom. 5:8; 12:20-21). My little children, let us not love (merely) in word . . . but in deed and in truth (I John 3:18).
Thought for Today:
Forbearing one another, and forgiving one another, if any man have a quarrel against any: even as Christ forgave you, so also do ye (Col. 3:13).
10:24 another's wealth =the well-being of others; 10:25 shambles =meat market; 11:11 man without the woman =independent of; woman is essential to man; 11:13 comely =proper; 12:2 dumb =mute; 12:11 severally =individually; 12:24 tempered =united, assembled, combined; 12:25 schism =division; 13:1 charity =love; 13:12 now we see through a glass, darkly =all we are capable of knowing now is partial and incomplete.
Pray for International Broadcasts in honor of the 90th birthday of Birgit Sjoberg • Government Officials: Rep. Steve Buyer (IN) and Rep. Shelley Capito (WV) • Country: Mauritania (2.6 million) in western Africa • Major language: Hasaniya Arabic • Islamic state with no mission work allowed • 99+% Muslim (predominantly Sunni); .2% Christian (predominantly foreigners) • Prayer Suggestion: Rise early in the morning to lift up your prayers to God and hope in His Word (Ps. 119:147).
Memory Verse for the Week: Matthew 16:27