THE GREATEST GIFT OF ALL
I Corinthians 13:1-13
Dr. Jerry Vines
I think you will agree with me that this is indeed one of the
greatest chapters in all of the Bible. Its language is sublime. A. T.
Robertson the great Greek scholar said that this chapter comes as a
sweet bell between the jangling noises of chapter 12 and 14. Right in
the midst of this discussion of the disorder and confusion and problems
and division they are experiencing in Corinth about the matter of
spiritual gifts, theA kposte Paul devotes time tu this beautiful,
beautiful little chapter on love.
It is very important that we look at this love chapter in its
context. We must always study the Bible in its context. Someone said
text out of context is pretext. You must always be sure that you know
what has gone before a chapter and what is going to come after a
chapter. In that connection it is important for us to notice verse 31
of the previous chapter. In chapter 12 he has laid before us the
matter of spiritual gifts. He has said that every believer has one or
more spiritual gifts, that the Holy Spirit sovereignly chooses which
gifts a believer is going to have. Then he says in verse 31, "covet
(desire earnestly) the best gifts: and yet I show unto you a more
excellent way." In that atmosphere and context he moves to a discussion
of love. There are three categories I want you to jot down that will be
very important to your understanding of this chapter and the whole area
of spiritual gifts. Jot down the gift of the spirit, the gifts of the
spirit and the graces of the spirit. Those three categories are vital
to our understanding. The gift of the Holy Spirit, of course, refers
to the Holy Spirit Himself. The Bible says that when we repent of our
sin and invite Jesus Christ into our heart as our personal Savior, He
comes into our life in the person of the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit
is our Lord's ascension gift to His believing people. When Jesus
ascended back to hea ...
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