Posts Tagged ‘1 Corinthians 13:7’

Fear exposes but love covers

February 20, 2016

Proverbs 17--9

In the Verse of the Day for February 20, 2016 we find yet another reference to love in Proverbs 17:9 in the Amplified Bible:

He who covers and forgives an offense seeks love, but he who repeats or gossips about a matter separates intimate friends.

Proverbs 10:12 (AMP) goes on to contrast the actions of hatred and love:

Hatred stirs up strife, but love covers and overwhelms all transgressions [forgiving and overlooking another’s faults].

The covering of sin of others in the context of love is indeed an admirable action mentioned in Proverbs; however, the expression “to cover one’s own sins” is not a positive action, as Proverbs 18:23 reveals. Here the Hebrew verb kasha, means to conceal or to “cover up.”

Proverbs 28:13 (NKJ) points this out:

He who covers his sins will not prosper, but whoever confesses and forsakes them will have mercy.

The Verse of the Day from Proverbs 17:19 along with Proverbs 10:12 reveal the connection between the covering of sins and love. This connection is further reinforced

1 Peter 4:8 (AMP)

Above all, have fervent and unfailing love for one another, because love covers a multitude of sins [it overlooks unkindness and unselfishly seeks the best for others].

The Book of James concludes with this reference to the covering of sins

James 5:19-20

19 My brothers and sisters, if anyone among you strays from the truth and falls into error and [another] one turns him back [to God], 20 let the [latter] one know that the one who has turned a sinner from the error of his way will save that one’s soul from death and cover a multitude of sins [that is, obtain the pardon of the many sins committed by the one who has been restored].

In a discussion Love Never Publicly Exposes the Faults of Others Pastor Mitch Horton mentions 1 Corinthians 13:7 which states that “love bears all things.” He elaborates with these comments:

The word bear is the Greek word stege which simply means a roof or a covering. In this verse it means to cover by silence the offences of others! In fact the Berkeley translation of the New Testament of this phrase reads, Love covers all things in silence. . . . A believer who walks in love will not gossip about others’ problems!

Pastor Horton concludes his comments with a reference to Mrs. C. Nuzum, author of the book The Life of Faith [1] [who] has this to say about love covering with silence:

Love covers sins, even when there is a multitude of them. Love not only hides the evil in others, but refuses even to speak of it. Then, if we tell of the evil someone has done, criticize, judge, condemn, or murmur against anyone, no matter who he is or what he has done, we are proving that we have not love, because love covers in silence.

It has been said that fear exposes or uncovers sin, but love covers a multitude of sins. Of course, the Word of God once again reminds us of this eternal truth regarding fear and love:

1 John 4:18 (AMP):

18 There is no fear in love [dread does not exist]. But perfect (complete, full-grown) love drives out fear, because fear involves [the expectation of divine] punishment, so the one who is afraid [of God’s judgment] is not perfected in love [has not grown into a sufficient understanding of God’s love].

To close this discussion here is a musical composition that repeats this message: “There is no fear in love.”

[1] Mrs. C. Nuzum, The Life of Faith (Springfield, MO:  Gospel Publishing House, 1928, 1956), p. 84.

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Just how much God loves me

May 13, 2014

1 John 2-15-17

To be sure, there are times when we pray, and our Father answers in a clear, direct manner that leaves no doubt that God heard our prayer. Many times the answer comes directly from the Word of God which is delivered to a congregation, but upon listening intently, the message seems custom-crafted to fulfill a prayer request that we have uttered individually. Such was the case a week ago when I heard a message by Minister Ulysses Vargas, who delivered a message during the Tuesday evening “Hour of Power” at Christian Provision Ministries in Sanford, NC. The inspired teaching from 1 John 2:15-16 was designed to help the congregation “to understand just how much God loves you.” For me it was an answer to prayer.

As an adjunct professor at Carolina College of Biblical Studies, many times I will begin my classes with a short devotional which ends with a word of prayer, as I ask God to widen our comprehension that we might know more fully just how much God loves us. After reviewing my notes and reflecting upon the message by Minster Vargas, I realized that God answered that prayer, and I was inspired to compose this poem in response:

“. . . Just how much you love me.”

 1 John 2:15-16

 

Father, expand my mind and widen my comprehension

To recognize your ways to an even greater dimension.

As I call upon your name and bow in humility,

Help me to understand just how much you love me.

Enlighten my eyes with the wisdom that comes from above.

You call me beloved, one worthy of your endless love.

When I am tempted, knowing that you love me dispels all fear.

As I seek to please you, open my ears that I might hear

Your word and endeavor to hide it deep within my heart.

Despite past failures, misdeeds, and shortcomings on my part,

Your love is constant and never changes but ever grows,

Unfolding in matchless beauty as a dew-kissed rose.

You say do not love worldly things or pleasures that they bring.

You show me God’s love is to be prized more than anything.

God desires that each individual believer might know Him and experience His unconditional love, that is, to have a personal knowledge of who He is, to know Him.This kind of knowing corresponds to the Greek word ginosko, translated “to know” in the New Testament.  Biblical scholar E.W. Bullinger in his Critical Greek Concordance and Lexicon translates the verb:

To perceive, observe, obtain knowledge of or insight into.  It denotes a personal and true relationship between the person knowing and the object known, i.e. to be influenced by one’s knowledge of the object, to suffer one’s self to be determined thereby.

God desires that we know him, as He expresses His deep desire for intimacy on a very personal level. We come to know God through the Word of God which makes known the love of God. As we establish and maintain our relationship with Him, we also experience the love of God, the most powerful force in the universe. Once an individual knows God on such an intimate, experiential level, that person “knows for himself or herself,” and that individual is forever changed.

As the days of our lives unfold, we have come to recognize that God’s love still prevails—the love of God, the highest form of love, called agape, never fails. As 1 Corinthians 13 reminds us:

Love never gives up, never loses faith, is always hopeful, and endures through every circumstance.

The chapter presenting the greatest definition of the love of God closes with this reminder:

13 Three things will last forever—faith, hope, and love—and the greatest of these is love. (New Living Translation)

As Minister Vargas reminded us, God desires that we know just how much he loves us.

Richard Smallwood and Vision offer a stirring rendition of “Oh, How He Loves You and Me”:

On the day after Valentine’s Day, love still prevails

February 15, 2014

1-John-4-10

On the day after Valentine’s Day, the Verse of the Day for February 15, 2014 continues to focus on love:

1 John 4:10 KJV

Herein is love, not that we loved God, but that he loved us, and sent his Son to be the propitiation for our sins.

The lyrics to the popular love song “My Funny Valentine” express the following profound yet simple truth:

Stay, funny Valentine, stay.

Each day is Valentine’s Day.

1-corinthians-13 7-8

And so on the day after Valentine’s Day, love still prevails—the love of God, the highest form of love, called agape, never fails. As 1 Corinthians 13 reminds us:

Love never gives up, never loses faith, is always hopeful, and endures through every circumstance.

The chapter presenting the greatest definition of the love of God closes with this reminder:

13 Three things will last forever—faith, hope, and love—and the greatest of these is love. (New Living Translation)

A previous blog entry on love closed with the Jim Brinkman song performed by Amy Sky: “Love Never Fails.” On the day after Valentine’s Day, the message bears repeating: