Text: 1 Corinthians 13:1-3
By Ian Pilongco
Why love is so important to Christians? This is a short question yet very provoking. We may have different answers to it but let us be guided by the words of Apostle Paul in 1 Corinthians 13:1-3 on what he learned from Christ. He emphasizes some values that love can give us in our preaching, faith and sacrifices.
Love gives Value to our Preaching (v1-2)
Speaking or preaching about the truth without love is just like a noisy gong or a clanging bell. If we preach for the sake of compliance, or being a hobby, or just for showmanship, or because of getting paid, etc then what we are doing is useless. It should be understood that before we preach, we must determine our primary objective and examine further our hearts on the genuine reason for the endeavour we come into. If we are commissioned or requested to preach, it is better to contemplate on the matter first before accepting it because without love it will become your burden. It is sad to say that there are some preachers who are grumbling or exploiting in order to serve their personal interest. All of these negative circumstances happen because they don’t have the genuine love to serve. When we realize that it is love that drives us to preach or to serve the ministry then it is time to move on.
Love gives Value to our Faith (v2)
Even we have the faith to move mountains but if we don’t have love, we are nothing. So, it is possible to have an enormous amount of faith and yet there’s no presence of love in it. Faith without love can be manifested by our thoughts, actions or words. It might be that what we are doing is contrary to what we believe in. We believe in God and the salvation thru Jesus Christ but we are not doing what Christ has taught us. When we integrate love into our faith, the results can be significantly evident. All our thoughts, actions and words are aligned towards emulating Christ thus providing our faith with astounding value.
Love gives Value to our Sacrifices (v3)
We may give everything we have or even give up our body to be burned but we have no love, this does us no good. This serves us a warning to every Christians since what we sacrifice for may become a waste. Sacrifices comes in different forms and ways such as our time, effort, wealth, emotions, etc which may serve for different purposes. However, when we give something for God, love should be imbedded with it. Love brings more meaning to every sacrifice we made especially if it is for our redemption. So, before making any spiritual sacrifice, it is better to determine exactly that we are going to do it with love.
Love’s value is not only limited to these aforesaid areas in life. We can actually read so many passages in the Bible on the importance of love. The main concept is that no matter what Christian activity that we are indulging in, it is important that love is associated with it. Let us be reflected on Christ as a symbol of love and taking consideration his remarkable achievements as a result of the power of his love to us.