Unfailing One-a-Day Tuesday 8/1/23

A life worthy

Love never fails (1 Corinthians 13:8).

What does this mean–Love never fails?

Look, we’ve all been through breakups, we’ve all had loved ones die, we’ve all seen people we’ve tried to love out of addiction or self-destructive behavior fall back into it over and over again. So, if Paul’s saying that love will keep all those things from happening, well, I’m not buying it.

Two things, Beloved

Actually, three things. First, nobody’s selling anything, so put your wallet away.

Second, I don’t think Paul is painting love as some kind of magic power that we can use. Notice, in the previous verses Paul said “Love is…” not, “The person who loves is…” I mean, even if you were perfectly patient and kind and protective and yada yada yada–and you’re not–you can’t expect that life will work as you will it to. That line of thinking takes us down the road of works and earning our salvation and Towers of Babel and all that business. Paul is talking about God’s love, which works in us and through us to do His will. 

Not our will


By the way, if you find yourself frustrated that God’s will lines up with your will less often than you would like, you are part of a very exclusive club called Humanity.

Third, you and I may be misdefining the word fail here. I mean, I usually think of the word fail as meaning not being able to complete the task. However, the word in the Greek, ekpipto, can also mean to end. In fact, that’s how some versions translate the verse: Love never ends. Again, we’re talking about love itself, which is from God, not our ability to love.

Whichever translation–fail or end–is closest to Paul’s meaning, the fact remains that he is talking about the love of God, the love that is perfect and all-powerful and that works in us to the limited extent that we can handle.

You fail, Beloved. 

Love never does.

Happy Tuesday


Unfailing One-a-Day Tuesday 8/1/23 — 2 Comments

  1. Michael, yesterday presented one nightmare after another, and I felt like a humongous failure. This morning I’m exhausted before the day even gets started. But your message gives me a spiritual lift that, Lord willing, will translate into a physical/mental one too.

    God bless.

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