Once Paul had clarified that spiritual gifts without God's love are useless (13:1-3), and that genuine love is supernaturally sacrificial (13:4-7), he then exalted love as being forever superior to all of the gifts (13:8-13). The CONTEXT compares "the perfect" (love) and the "in part" (gifts). Paul's proclamation reveals that whereas love never fails, all spiritual gifts will come to an end. His explanation shows how spiritual gifts are only shared individually (in part), but love (maturity) is shared universally, superceding the gifts and making them unnecessary. Paul CONTRASTS these two truths with an illustration between the immature and the mature - the gifts functioned like a child, but love is like a mature man. He continues his instruction distinguishing between present limitations (seeing dimly/ knowing in part) and future connections (seeing face to face/ knowing fully). In CONCLUSION Paul summarized by exalting three lasting virtues (faith, hope, love), but showing the total superiority of love.
Accurately teaching God's Word verse by verse for the purpose of equipping believers, Jack G. Ebner has served as pastor-teacher at Cascade Bible Church since 1990. Jack and his wife, Bev, have six children and two grandchildren.