(1 Corinthians 13:4-7 KJV) Charity suffereth long, and is kind; charity envieth not; charity vaunteth not itself, is not puffed up, Doth not behave itself unseemly, seeketh not her own, is not easily provoked, thinketh no evil; Rejoiceth not in iniquity, but rejoiceth in the truth; Beareth all things, believeth all things, hopeth all things, endureth all things.Love is a combination of choices, positive and negative. On the positive side you have patience, kindness, rejoicing in truth, endurance, faith and hope. And that is just what is listed here.
On the negative side there are behaviors to avoid. We should not envy, be arrogant or conceited, rude, selfish, sensitive, dirty minded or enjoying other’s pain.
The key here is the idea of conscious choice. Love is not an emotion Biblically. It is a way of living based on decisions. You can choose to be patient or not. You can choose to be kind or cruel. When you look at the gifts of the spirit, love is not listed. When you look at the fruit of the spirit, it heads the list.
(Galatians 5:22-23 KJV) But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, Meekness, temperance: against such there is no law.Notice that “love” is listed first. Some have said that their should be a colon or semicolon after love. That would follow the Love Chapter in showing how all of these things are simply expressions of love. You will also notice that “fruit” is singular.
The fact that love is first on the list of the fruit of the spirit also reminds us that this kind of love is impossible without the grace of God working in our lives. We can try and might even have times of success, but this kind of love is only sustainable with the power of the Holy Spirit working in our lives.
Does it sound like something that you might want a part of?
homo unius libri