Faith, Hope, Love

Faith, Hope, Love

The Apostle Paul certainly had a way with words. He is credited with writing at least 13 books in the New Testament; 14, if the book of Hebrews is included. His writings have been scrutinized by more scholars and students of the Scriptures than perhaps any other Bible author. Among his most quoted texts is the famous "Love Chapter"; 1 Corinthians 13. As he describes love's characteristics he concludes the passage with the phrase, “And now abide faith, hope, love, these three; but the greatest of these is love" [emphasis added]. These three, faith, hope, love are linked together as a unit, and unbreakable union1.

In linking faith, hope and love, Paul notes that they "abide now" - that is, at the present time they exist together. The inference is that they will not always "abide" together. They will be superseded with only love remaining. Indeed the prior context points out that prophecy, knowledge, tongues will all cease; become obsolete when that "which is perfect has come"2. Until that time, we walk in the Spirit - energized by faith, motivated by love and persevering in hope. These three are the bedrock of our Christian walk in Christ so long as we are in this world.

In this brief study we will explore these three graces. What are they? How do they work? How do they inter-relate? And most importantly, how do I apply their influence in my daily life. I don't think there is a more practical lesson, one that will provide us with a firmer grasp on who we are and who God is, than to know and understand these three.

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Sermons in this series