Stones Hill Community Church
Great Chapters of the Bible - 1 Corinthians 13
The New Testament church was not utopia! They had major issues. Paul wrote some super long letters to correct the problems – one of which is 1 Corinthians. Their biggest problem in Corinth? An attitude of entitlement which led to a lack of love. An entitlement mentality is the assumption that one deserves special treatment or privileges. “I deserve more than I have.” “I’m owed something.” “I’m better than this.” “The rules don’t apply to me.” “I’m not starting at the bottom and working my way up.” An attitude of entitlement will inconvenience others. It will free-load off of others. And it will always leave you disappointed because you’re not getting recognition or treatment you feel you deserve. The entitled crave affirmation from others to cover an even deeper insecurity. Paul's answer to entitlement: 1 Corinthians 13. Welcome to another installment of Great Chapters of the Bible!
Locations & Times
  • Ligonier, IN
    151 W Stones Hill Rd, Ligonier, IN 46767, USA
    Saturday 4:00 PM
We welcome you to Stone's Hill today!

A typical Stone's Hill service has:

* music (so feel free to sing out);

* some announcements (things that are upcoming that you can be a part of);

* a message out of the Bible (God speaks to us through his Word);

* and an opportunity for you to respond to the message (either immediately in the case of a decision that needs to be made OR in the future as you live out the message in your daily life.)

So relax and enjoy your morning! We're so glad you are here!
1 Corinthians 13:1-13
Some people in Corinth were refusing to grow up (they were using their spiritual gifts to exalt themselves and then getting offended if weren't honored enough). Paul offers the solution and cure for entitlement. Love. Love is when we do hard things the right way. The description of love in 1 Corinthians 13 has very little to do with emotions or feelings. In fact, love’s characteristics describe choices we often make despite how we feel. Paul's definition of love is about what we give to others as we see and interact with them, not what we expect to receive. Love is an action, not simply an emotion. It shifts the center of focus from ourselves to others. It is easy to “love” when people are lovable; how difficult it is to love when they injure or attack us in one way or another.
Choosing love is a way of life, not just in marriage, but in all relationships. We don’t fall into love. We choose love. So often we fall in love and get “married.” What happens when you fall “out of love” but now you’re married. You choose love. When Paul describes love in 1 Corinthians 13:4-8, he used 15 present tense verbs. They’re not adjectives as some translations make them out to be. So it is not “Love will be this or that, but it is present tense “Love is…” right now – a choice you make, an action you take, more than an inner feeling of emotion. Though emotion may or may not be present, the ability to choose is always there. Just like we choose entitlement, we can choose to love instead – as the regulating principle of all our actions.
There are seven positives (this is what love does) and eight negatives (this is what love doesn’t do). So it is balanced. Love can be defined by what it does and does not do. And that’s based on the choices we make. Paul will tell us seven things that Christian love chooses to do and eight things that it refuses to do, in the pattern two positives, eight negatives, five positives (vv. 4–7). Accumulating fifteen verbs in just three verses to describe the actions and nonactions of love, Paul depicts Christ followers’ spirituality as dynamically active and visibly transformative.
It’s important to read these verses in three ways: with your sinful self in mind, with Jesus in mind, and with Jesus-in-you in mind.
If I live my life according to my own selfish sinful nature and I see myself as entitled, then I could read 1 Cor. 13 this way...
It’s important to read this a second way with "Jesus" replacing the word "Love". When Paul was painting this portrait of love, I believe Jesus was sitting for the portrait...
It's important to read 1 Cor. 13 a third way with Jesus living in you, you can be...
1 Cor. 13:13 And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love.
To restate all this practically… Instead of using a sensational display of spiritual utterance to gain attention, but how about just getting up and going to work every day and using all of your words to build up other people in a way that engenders faith in them? Instead of wowing the crowd with all that the future will bring (and don’t misunderstand, I love prophecy), but how about giving someone just a little bit of hope that their tomorrow will be brighter because you are in their life loving them? And instead of becoming a hero or celebrity (and there’s nothing wrong with that if you use it for God’s glory), but how about just doing little acts with great love every day for as long as you have life? We don’t need sensational people; we need people who are radically committed to love regardless of what their gifts may be.
Nothing is more helpful, in reading a chapter like this, than to ask yourself the questions. “Am I growing in love? Looking back over a year, am I easier to live with now? Am I able to handle people more graciously, more courteously? Am I more compassionate, more patient?” Can you see how that would affect the atmosphere of the home, a church, or a team of teachers? Whether the word is charity, love, or agape, the love Jesus showed us, the love we are to extend to one another is spelled one way: S-a-c-r-i-f-i-c-e. Another way of putting it might be to say that love entails “being for someone,” just as God, who loves and knows us fully (v. 12), is “for us” in Romans 8:31.

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