Why Is Love the “Greatest?”

“Three things will last forever – faith, hope, and love – and the greatest of these is love.” (1 Corinthians 13:13 NLT)

When I think of faith, hope, and love I think of concentric circles, almost like a target, with faith and hope being in the outer circles that point to the middle target of selfless, sacrificial love, like that illustrated so vividly in and through the life of Jesus.

Jesus spoke of the power of faith as small as a mustard seed, to move mountains. In my mind I envision a small “dot” like grain of faith that expands and grows into hope for what can’t be seen except with the eye of faith, that results in our faith and hope becoming visible in and through the sacrificial, loving lifestyle of a Jesus follower.

David Jeremiah wrote: “Why is love the greatest of these? When we place our faith in Christ and develop a hopeful attitude, the stage is set for our love to flourish—and love is the fulfillment of all the law. Thank God for His tremendous trio of Spirit-inspired attitudes to rule your mind today.” What do you envision as you think of faith?

For me I see those, especially the “stars” of the Bible, who by faith defeated giants, conquered armies, walked on water, healed the sick, raised the dead, provided for the hungry, and laid down their lives rather than deny the Lord who saved them.

How about hope? What do you “see” with your eye of faith when you think of that word? I see people in my spheres of influence kneeling before the Lord of lords and King of kings pouring out their praise, adoration, and honor to the One to whom they owe their new life in Him. I see the face of my glorious Savior as He welcomes me home to heaven. I see the faces of the saints of old who have persevered and now line the balconies of heaven cheering the arrival of those who have finally found their way home.

And love? Haddon Anderson wrote: “Faith and hope are, in one sense, means to an even greater end, without which they would be incomplete: they transform us so that our lives overflow with Christlike love.” The picture that fills the window of my mind is that of Jesus on the cross, dying so that we might live! Paying the penalty for our sin and for the sin of all those whom He knew would one day kneel at that old rugged cross and plead for mercy.

Love is greatest in my mind because love is a call to action. I can hide my faith and hope, but love demands an outlet. I can’t speak of love and not act upon it. As a Jesus follower I can’t profess to love someone and not intercede on their behalf, nor meet them in their need, nor invite them to share the joy of new life in Jesus.

Love lays down its life for the sake of another; it becomes a beacon of light to those who walk in darkness; a song of hope to those who grieve; a “meal” to those who hunger; a friend to those who are lonely; an extended hand to those who have fallen; a word of encouragement to those who are struggling; a voice of cheer to the sorrowful; an offer of forgiveness to those who have failed.

What is your need today? Whatever it is know this: you are loved! You bear the image of the living God and are of incalculable worth! Christ’s love for you is a doorway, an invitation to find faith, hope, and love. Please don’t shun His great gift that He literally died to give you. You can be more and do more as a Jesus follower than you ever dared dream you could. Trust Him. Extend your hand by faith and say “Yes” to the Savior!

It’s time to come home to Him and experience firsthand why love is the greatest!

Blessings, Ed 😊

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: