If I speak in the tongues of mortals and of angels, but do not have love, I am a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal. And if I have prophetic powers, and understand all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have all faith, so as to remove mountains, but do not have love, I am nothing. If I give away all my possessions, and if I hand over my body so that I may boast, but do not have love, I gain nothing. Love is patient; love is kind; love is not envious or boastful or arrogant or rude. It does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful; it does not rejoice in wrongdoing, but rejoices in the truth. It bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. Love never ends. But as for prophecies, they will come to an end; as for tongues, they will cease; as for knowledge, it will come to an end. For we know only in part, and we prophesy only in part; but when the complete comes, the partial will come to an end. When I was a child, I spoke like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child; when I became an adult, I put an end to childish ways. For now we see in a mirror, dimly, but then we will see face to face. Now I know only in part; then I will know fully, even as I have been fully known. And now faith, hope, and love abide, these three; and the greatest of these is love. (1 Corinthians 13, NRSV)
This chapter is probably the most read bible passage at weddings because it is all about love.
Just do a search of 1 Corinthians 13 and you will get all images of love.
But is that really what this passage is about. Yes, I will give you Paul uses the word love and talks about what love is, but is love the emotion here?
Because after he describes what love is, he talks about being a child and reasoning as a child, and putting away childish ways, and seeing in a mirror dimly, but then we will see face to face. When will we see face to face? When we will know fully and be fully known.
At the coming of the new kingdom, we will see things clearly, and at that time we will fully know and understand all God is leading us to.
And in all of this, faith, hope, and love remain. When everything else will be done away with. When all is destroyed and the new heaven and the new earth are here, faith, hope, and love will still remain.
These remain, but why?
When the new heaven and earth are here, why do we need faith, the belief in things unseen, as we will be seeing.
When the new heaven and earth are here why do we need hope, the understanding that something is going to happen or is true.
And won’t we be love at that point?