Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Spirit of Love

To those who look forward to my ramblings on this blog, my apologies for not having written anything new lately. I've been exceedingly busy with work related writing and our preparation for moving. I have several topics I want to explore on here soon, so please don't change the channel.

In the meantime, I wanted to share another great devotional from Pastor Bayless Conley.

    A More Excellent Way
    In 1 Corinthians 14:1, we are given a foundational truth,

    Pursue love, and desire spiritual gifts, but especially that you may prophesy.

    Notice that this verse leads off with a very direct command.  We are to pursue love.

    It is interesting that this command is given in the context of Paul's teaching on the gifts of the Holy Spirit.  In fact, 1 Corinthians chapters 12-14 deal with the gifts of the Spirit:  the word of knowledge, the word of wisdom, the discerning of spirits, the gift of faith, the working of miracles, the gifts of healing, the gift of tongues and interpretation of tongues, and the gift of prophecy.

    Chapter 12 gives us the definition of those gifts, chapter 13 teaches us the spirit that should characterize their use, and chapter 14 gives us guidelines for their functioning within the context of the local church.

    When it comes to the operation of the gifts of the Spirit, Paul is very clear.  He tells us, "Desire the gifts.  Seek to have these things operating in your life and operating in the life of the local church, but they need to be practiced in love."

    It is with that thought in mind that Paul writes 1 Corinthians 12:31.  Here is what he says,

    But earnestly desire the best gifts.  And yet I show you a more excellent way.

    As we read the following verses we are told that the more excellent way is love.  Again, Paul is giving us the spirit that should characterize the use of the gifts of the Spirit as they function within the context of the local church.

    Desire the gifts.  Earnestly covet them.  But let them operate through a spirit of love.  - Bayless Conley


  1. Wonderful verses to meditate on. I'm often amazed at just how easily our human natures are quick to chase after earthly prizes, when in truth love is the greatest treasure of all. And the only one we will carry with us into heaven.

  2. Great insight, Ron. Thanks for sharing that.