Tag Archives: definitions

Love …Endures All Things… 1 Corinthians 13:7


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As I mentioned in previous posts, verse 7 of 1 Corinthians reads like a 4 point list of emphasis in the description of what the “agape” love is designed to be.

“bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.“  1 Corinthians 13:7  (NKJV) (emphasis mine)

Click the links for the posts that discussed “bears all things,” “believes all things,” and hopes all things.” 

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Love …Believes All Things… 1 Corinthians 13:7


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Going through this study of love found in 1 Corinthians 13, I am struck by the beauty and power of what the Lord has designed it to be.  If you are anything like me, you live through your relationships much of the time in a kind of reactionary way, responding to circumstances and trying to do the right thing, but not thinking a lot about what love is.  I am blessed by loving relationships in my life (particularly with my wife), but the more I learn about love, the more I realize how much more profound and powerful love is designed to be.

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Love …Bears All Things… 1 Corinthians 13:7


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This section of 1 Corinthians is a very detailed lesson on the “agape” love. Verses 4-6 start with a few positive aspects of love and then provide a list of several negative aspects that are NOT a part of love. Now, in verse 7, there is a series of four positive aspects of love delivered in short phrases, almost like the bullet-point lists we often see in modern presentations. This is verse 7:

“bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.” 1 Corinthians 13:7 (NKJV)

For reference, here are a couple of other translations of this verse.

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Love… thinks no evil… – 1 Corinthians 13


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The last phrase used in verse 5 of 1 Corinthians 13 is “…thinks no evil.”  This describes an aspect that is NOT a part of love.

“does not behave rudely, does not seek its own, is not provoked, thinks no evil;  1 Corinthians 13:5 (emphasis mine)  NKJV

On first glance this seems obvious.  Of course we are to think no evil.  But, there is much more to this phrase and its context to consider.  The significance of what this is teaching us speaks directly to a real problem we have with our relationships.

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Love… is not provoked… 1 Corinthians 13


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This phrase is the third one in verse 5 that describes a trait that is not a part of love.  It is related to the previous phrase, “…does not seek its own…”  As I discuss below, it is often our selfishness that makes us vulnerable to irritability and being provoked.  Let’s look at the text in 1 Corinthians 13:5.

“does not behave rudely, does not seek its own, is not provoked, thinks no evil;:  1 Corinthians 13:5 (emphasis mine)  NKJV

Consider how other translations handle this phrase.

  • “…it is not easily angered,”  NIV
  • “…it is not irritable or resentful;”  RSV
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Love …does not seek its own… 1 Corinthians 13


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Sin is, at its core, selfishness.  We fail to conform to God’s design for us and miss out on His blessings because we are too busy with our own interests.  Here in 1 Corinthians 13:5 the subject is love.

“does not behave rudely, does not seek its own, is not provoked, thinks no evil;:  1 Corinthians 13:5 (emphasis mine)  NKJV

Selfishness has no part in the true “agape” love being described here.  It is in conflict with the basic definition of this love.  See an earlier post for a discussion about the definition of the love of which this chapter speaks.

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Love …is not puffed up. -1 Corinthians 13


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This is the third aspect of the set described in this verse (1 Corinthians 13:4) that are NOT a part of the love we are to have for each other.

Love suffers long and is kind; love does not envy; love does not parade itself, is not puffed up; 1 Corinthians 13:4  NKJV (emphasis mine)

All three of these are related.  I have heard it described that envy is jealousy regarding another person and that bragging, or parading myself, is wanting others to be jealous of me.  The last one, being puffed up, speaks to an attitude of arrogance.

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Love …does not parade itself… – 1 Corinthians 13


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As we continue through the description of “agape” love provided in 1 Corinthians 13, we come to the next in the series of negative attributes that are not a part of this kind of love.  These are truly relationship killers, whether a part of how we relate to God or each other.  These traits will destroy our relationships and, without our realizing it, destroy us if we possess them.

“Love suffers long and is kind; love does not envy; love does not parade itself, is not puffed up;” 1 Corinthians 13:4 (emphasis mine)

Let’s look at how some different translations word this expression:

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Love …Does Not Envy… – 1 Corinthians 13


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The first two of aspects of love that are described in 1 Corinthians 13:4 speak of what love is.  Now we begin a series of aspects that are not a part of this kind of love.

“Love suffers long and is kind; love does not envy; love does not parade itself, is not puffed up;”  1 Corinthians 13:4 (I used boldface in this quote to highlight the phrase that is the subject of this post.)

Envy has torn apart countless relationships throughout time and formed a barrier through which love cannot exist.  Let’s look at a definition of the word used here.

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Love Suffers Long… – 1 Corinthians 13


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In the last two posts, I introduced 1 Corinthians 13 and talked about the personal nature of love.  Now I want to consider the description of love that is provided for us in this chapter.  Note that each of these points mentioned in verses 4 – 8 is an aspect of this love that we are expected to learn.  They are a package deal.  This “agape” type of love that we have been studying is being described from different perspectives.  Love encompasses it all.

Now let’s study the first aspect of love.

“Love suffers long…”  1 Corinthians 13:4a

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