1 Corinthians 13:13
Parallel Verses
New International Version
And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love.

King James Bible
And now abideth faith, hope, charity, these three; but the greatest of these is charity.

Darby Bible Translation
And now abide faith, hope, love; these three things; and the greater of these [is] love.

World English Bible
But now faith, hope, and love remain--these three. The greatest of these is love.

Young's Literal Translation
and now there doth remain faith, hope, love -- these three; and the greatest of these is love.

1 Corinthians 13:13 Parallel
Commentary
Clarke's Commentary on the Bible

And now [in this present life] abideth faith, hope, charity - These three supply the place of that direct vision which no human embodied spirit can have; these abide or remain for the present state. Faith, by which we apprehend spiritual blessings, and walk with God. Hope, by which we view and expect eternal blessedness, and pass through things temporal so as not to lose those which are eternal. Charity or love, by which we show forth the virtues of the grace which we receive by faith in living a life of obedience to God, and of good will and usefulness to man.

But the greatest of these is charity - Without faith it is impossible to please God; and without it, we can not partake of the grace of our Lord Jesus: without hope we could not endure, as seeing him who is invisible; nor have any adequate notion of the eternal world; nor bear up under the afflictions and difficulties of life: but great and useful and indispensably necessary as these are, yet charity or love is greater: Love is the fulfilling of the law; but this is never said of faith or hope.

It may be necessary to enter more particularly into a consideration of the conclusion of this very important chapter.

1. Love is properly the image of God in the soul; for God is Love. By faith we receive from our Maker; by hope we expect a future and eternal good; but by love we resemble God; and by it alone are we qualified to enjoy heaven, and be one with him throughout eternity. Faith, says one, is the foundation of the Christian life, and of good works; hope rears the superstructure; but love finishes, completes, and crowns it in a blessed eternity. Faith and hope respect ourselves alone; love takes in both God and Man. Faith helps, and hope sustains us; but love to God and man makes us obedient and useful. This one consideration is sufficient to show that love is greater than either faith or hope.

2. Some say love is the greatest because it remains throughout eternity, whereas faith and hope proceed only through life; hence we say that there faith is lost in sight, and hope in fruition. But does the apostle say so? Or does any man inspired by God say so? I believe not. Faith and hope will as necessarily enter into eternal glory as love will. The perfections of God are absolute in their nature, infinite in number, and eternal in their duration. However high, glorious, or sublime the soul may be in that eternal state, it will ever, in respect to God, be limited in its powers, and must be improved and expanded by the communications of the supreme Being. Hence it will have infinite glories in the nature of God to apprehend by faith, to anticipate by hope, and enjoy by love.

3. From the nature of the Divine perfections there must be infinite glories in them which must be objects of faith to disembodied spirits; because it is impossible that they should be experimentally or possessively known by any creature. Even in the heaven of heavens we shall, in reference to the infinite and eternal excellences of God, walk by faith, and not by sight. We shall credit the existence of infinite and illimitable glories in him, which, from their absolute and infinite nature, must be incommunicable. And as the very nature of the soul shows it to be capable of eternal growth and improvement; so the communications from the Deity, which are to produce this growth, and effect this improvement, must be objects of faith to the pure spirit; and, if objects of faith, consequently objects of hope; for as hope is "the expectation of future good," it is inseparable from the nature of the soul, to know of the existence of any attainable good without making it immediately the object of desire or hope. And is it not this that shall constitute the eternal and progressive happiness of the immortal spirit; viz. knowing, from what it has received, that there is infinitely more to be received; and desiring to be put in possession of every communicable good which it knows to exist?

4. As faith goes forward to view, so hope goes forward to desire; and God continues to communicate, every communication making way for another, by preparing the soul for greater enjoyment, and this enjoyment must produce love. To say that the soul can have neither faith nor hope in a future state is to say that, as soon as it enters heaven, it is as happy as it can possibly be; and this goes to exclude all growth in the eternal state, and all progressive manifestations and communications of God; and consequently to fix a spirit, which is a composition of infinite desires, in a state of eternal sameness, in which it must be greatly changed in its constitution to find endless gratification.

5. To sum up the reasoning on this subject I think it necessary to observe,

1. That the term faith is here to be taken in the general sense of the word, for that belief which a soul has of the infinite sufficiency and goodness of God, in consequence of the discoveries he has made of himself and his designs, either by revelation, or immediately by his Spirit. Now we know that God has revealed himself not only in reference to this world, but in reference to eternity; and much of our faith is employed in things pertaining to the eternal world, and the enjoyments in that state.

2. That hope is to be taken in its common acceptation, the expectation of future good; which expectation is necessarily founded on faith, as faith is founded on knowledge. God gives a revelation which concerns both worlds, containing exceeding great and precious promises relative to both. We believe what he has said on his own veracity; and we hope to enjoy the promised blessings in both worlds, because he is faithful who has promised.

3. As the promises stand in reference to both worlds, so also must the faith and hope to which these promises stand as objects.

4. The enjoyments in the eternal world are all spiritual, and must proceed immediately from God himself.

5. God, in the plenitude of his excellences, is as incomprehensible to a glorified spirit, as he is to a spirit resident in flesh and blood.

6. Every created, intellectual nature is capable of eternal improvement.

continued...

Treasury of Scripture Knowledge

abideth.

1 Corinthians 3:14 If any man's work abide which he has built thereupon, he shall receive a reward.

1 Peter 1:21 Who by him do believe in God, that raised him up from the dead, and gave him glory; that your faith and hope might be in God.

1 John 2:14,24 I have written to you, fathers, because you have known him that is from the beginning. I have written to you, young men...

1 John 3:9 Whoever is born of God does not commit sin; for his seed remains in him: and he cannot sin, because he is born of God.

faith.

Luke 8:13-15 They on the rock are they, which, when they hear, receive the word with joy; and these have no root, which for a while believe...

Luke 22:32 But I have prayed for you, that your faith fail not: and when you are converted, strengthen your brothers.

Galatians 5:6 For in Jesus Christ neither circumcision avails any thing, nor uncircumcision; but faith which works by love.

Hebrews 10:35,39 Cast not away therefore your confidence, which has great recompense of reward...

Hebrews 11:1-7 Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen...

1 John 5:1-5 Whoever believes that Jesus is the Christ is born of God: and every one that loves him that begat loves him also that is begotten of him...

hope.

Psalm 42:11 Why are you cast down, O my soul? and why are you disquieted within me? hope you in God: for I shall yet praise him...

Psalm 43:5 Why are you cast down, O my soul? and why are you disquieted within me? hope in God: for I shall yet praise him...

Psalm 146:5 Happy is he that has the God of Jacob for his help, whose hope is in the LORD his God:

Lamentations 3:21-26 This I recall to my mind, therefore have I hope...

Romans 5:4,5 And patience, experience; and experience, hope...

Romans 8:24,25 For we are saved by hope: but hope that is seen is not hope: for what a man sees, why does he yet hope for...

Romans 15:13 Now the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, that you may abound in hope, through the power of the Holy Ghost.

Colossians 1:5,27 For the hope which is laid up for you in heaven, whereof you heard before in the word of the truth of the gospel...

1 Thessalonians 5:8 But let us, who are of the day, be sober, putting on the breastplate of faith and love; and for an helmet, the hope of salvation.

Hebrews 6:11,19 And we desire that every one of you do show the same diligence to the full assurance of hope to the end...

1 Peter 1:21 Who by him do believe in God, that raised him up from the dead, and gave him glory; that your faith and hope might be in God.

1 John 3:3 And every man that has this hope in him purifies himself, even as he is pure.

charity.

1 Corinthians 13:1-8 Though I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, and have not charity, I am become as sounding brass, or a tinkling cymbal...

1 Corinthians 8:1,3 Now as touching things offered to idols, we know that we all have knowledge. Knowledge puffs up, but charity edifies...

2 Corinthians 5:10,15 For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ; that every one may receive the things done in his body...

Galatians 5:6 For in Jesus Christ neither circumcision avails any thing, nor uncircumcision; but faith which works by love.

1 John 2:10 He that loves his brother stays in the light, and there is none occasion of stumbling in him.

1 John 4:7-18 Beloved, let us love one another: for love is of God; and every one that loves is born of God, and knows God...

the greatest.

1 Corinthians 13:8 Charity never fails: but whether there be prophecies, they shall fail; whether there be tongues, they shall cease...

1 Corinthians 14:1 Follow after charity, and desire spiritual gifts, but rather that you may prophesy.

1 Corinthians 16:14 Let all your things be done with charity.

Mark 12:29-31 And Jesus answered him, The first of all the commandments is, Hear, O Israel; The Lord our God is one Lord...

Luke 10:27 And he answering said, You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your strength...

Galatians 5:13-22 For, brothers, you have been called to liberty; only use not liberty for an occasion to the flesh, but by love serve one another...

Philippians 1:9 And this I pray, that your love may abound yet more and more in knowledge and in all judgment;

Colossians 3:14 And above all these things put on charity, which is the bond of perfection.

1 Timothy 1:5 Now the end of the commandment is charity out of a pure heart, and of a good conscience, and of faith unfeigned:

2 Timothy 1:7 For God has not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind.

1 John 4:7-9 Beloved, let us love one another: for love is of God; and every one that loves is born of God, and knows God...

2 John 1:4-6 I rejoiced greatly that I found of your children walking in truth, as we have received a commandment from the Father...

Library
What Lasts
'Whether there be prophecies, they shall fail; whether there be tongues, they shall cease; whether there be knowledge, it shall vanish away. 13. And now abideth faith, hope, charity, these three....'--1 COR. xiii. 8, 13. We discern the run of the Apostle's thought best by thus omitting the intervening verses and connecting these two. The part omitted is but a buttress of what has been stated in the former of our two verses; and when we thus unite them there is disclosed plainly the Apostle's intention
Alexander Maclaren—Romans, Corinthians (To II Corinthians, Chap. V)

Now, and Then
There are some things which we count very precious now, which will soon be of no value to us whatever. There are some things that we know or think we know, and we pride ourselves a good deal upon our knowledge; but when we shall become men we shall set no more value upon that knowledge than a child does upon his toys when he grows up to be a man. Our spiritual manhood in heaven will discard many things which we now count precious, as a full grown man discards the treasures of his childhood. And there
Charles Haddon Spurgeon—Spurgeon's Sermons Volume 17: 1871

Charity and Loneliness.
And now abideth faith, hope, charity, these three; but the greatest of these is charity.-I COR. xiii. 13. The possession of this Divine Charity often necessitates walking in a lonely path. Not merely in opposition and persecution, but alone in it, and here, again, Jesus, who was the personification of Divine lore, stands out as our great example. He was emphatically alone, and of the people there was none with Him. Even the disciples whom He had drawn nearest to Him, and to whom He had tried
Catherine Booth—Godliness

Revival in the Home
Thousands of years ago, in the most beautiful Garden the world has ever known, lived a man and a woman. Formed in the likeness of their Creator, they lived solely to reveal Him to His creation and to each other and thus to glorify Him every moment of the day. Humbly they accepted the position of a creature with the Creator--that of complete submission and yieldedness to His will. Because they always submitted their wills to His, because they lived for Him and not for themselves, they were also completely
Roy Hession and Revel Hession—The Calvary Road

Cross References
Galatians 5:6
For in Christ Jesus neither circumcision nor uncircumcision has any value. The only thing that counts is faith expressing itself through love.

1 Thessalonians 1:3
We remember before our God and Father your work produced by faith, your labor prompted by love, and your endurance inspired by hope in our Lord Jesus Christ.

Hebrews 6:19
We have this hope as an anchor for the soul, firm and secure. It enters the inner sanctuary behind the curtain,

Jump to Previous
Abide Abideth Charity Faith Greater Greatest Hope Love Three
Jump to Next
Abide Abideth Charity Faith Greater Greatest Hope Love Three
Links
1 Corinthians 13:13 NIV
1 Corinthians 13:13 NLT
1 Corinthians 13:13 ESV
1 Corinthians 13:13 NASB
1 Corinthians 13:13 KJV

1 Corinthians 13:13 Bible Apps
1 Corinthians 13:13 Biblia Paralela
1 Corinthians 13:13 Chinese Bible
1 Corinthians 13:13 French Bible
1 Corinthians 13:13 German Bible

1 Corinthians 13:13 Commentaries

THE HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION®, NIV® Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica®.

Bible Hub
1 Corinthians 13:12
Top of Page
Top of Page