The Greatest Gift of All
“Though I speak with the tongues of men and angels, but have not love, I have become a sounding brass or a clanging cymbal.” 1 Corinthians 13:1
This chapter in the Bible is known as the love chapter. Alan Redpath said, “One could get a spiritual suntan from this chapter.” The Greek culture was enamored by the spiritual gifts they had, particularly the gift of tongues. We are reminded here that all gifts, even the gift of tongues, is meaningless without love. The Greek word translation for tongues means “languages” (Acts 2:11). Some thought the gift of tongues was to have the ability to communicate the gospel in other languages. But, the way we see it here refers to a supernatural language that the believer communicates to God. Paul’s point seems to have been that, even if one could speak in this exalted language, but the person did not have love (behave lovingly), his or her speech would be hollow and empty. Agape, sacrificial love, would consist of seeking the benefit of someone else.
“Gongs & cymbals” were common in some of the popular pagan cults of Paul’s day, they made a lot of noise but possessed no rhythm or musical benefit. Some that spoke in tongues, both then and today, claim that it is the language of angels, but provide no interpretation to the hearers. The Bible says, “Let all things be done decently and in order” and that “God is not the author of confusion.” Therefore, “If anyone speaks in a tongue let one interpret.” 1 Cor 14:27 Love is spoken in many languages and it's author and origin is God Himself. Love is the greatest gift!
Pastor Jack Jimenez