1 Corinthians 13:4-8
Charity suffers long, and is kind; charity envies not; charity braggs not itself, is not puffed up,…
is not feebleness, cowardice, indifference, nor imbecility; but a principle perfectly consonant with the largest mental endowments, the loftiest aims and the noblest endeavours, with freedom of speech, firmness of purpose, and unwearied perseverance in well-doing; while it is totally opposed to all temporising expedients, vacillating policies, and inconstant endeavours. Christ is our example of long-suffering charity; yet witness how He clears His Father's temple of the sacrilegious throng, and rebukes the wickedness of the Scribes and Pharisees. It is the depth of the river, not its shallowness, that makes it so smooth and gentle in its flow; and the mountain stream, which in the drought of summer went brawling from rock to rock and from pool to pool, with a thousand disturbances of its surface and misdirections of its course, now, when the autumn rains have fallen, or the winter snows have melted, and tributary torrents have swollen it to full flood, guides with an evenness and beauty between its green banks, with a placidity of strength and a unity of might which, while pleasant to behold, is terrible to withstand. Even so charity, subordinating all the feelings and faculties of the soul to one Divine impulse, and consecrating all to one holy and benevolent purpose, flows on with a mild and gentle majesty, undisturbed by rude speeches and unkind actions, and never diverted from its aim by the annoying accidents of society, straight forward to the vast ocean of blessed being, its destined union with God in Christ, and all that is great and good and happy in the universe. The tranquil meekness of charity, therefore, is perfectly consistent with true grandeur of soul, and of all true grandeur of soul is itself an essential element; even as the most perfect harmony consists with the mightiest tones in music, and the nicest cultivation of plants contributes to their most stately forms and most luxuriant fruitfulness, and the careful discipline of domestic animals results in the development of superior stature, with more strength of muscle, and greater fleetness of course, and whatever else belongs to the utmost perfection of their nature.
(J. Cross, D.D.)
Parallel VersesKJV: Charity suffereth long, and is kind; charity envieth not; charity vaunteth not itself, is not puffed up,