I just moved in to college yesterday. I’ve been packing, unpacking, organizing, going to class, socializing with people I haven’t seen in a few months. I’ve barely had any time to go on the Internet.
I haven’t forgotten this blog, I promise : )
I LOVE TODAY’S VERSE.
I LOVE IT SO MUCH.
Ok so, I love all of 1 Corinthians 13. I realize that it’s over-quoted and that it’s read at pretty much every wedding and I don’t care because it is one of the most beautiful passages in the Bible. Also it will be read at my wedding. It is an entire Bible chapter about the immense importance of love. It’s fantastic.
But this first verse isn’t quoted quite as often as other parts of the chapter, I’m not really sure why. I love what this verse is saying and I love the image attached to it. As you probably know, speaking in tongues is a gift of the holy spirit. People with a close connection to the spirit can do it; therefore if someone can speak in every tongue of men and angels that’s pretty darn impressive. (btw I don’t know very much about gifts of the spirit please don’t ask me anything about them :) )
Paul then compares speaking in tongues without love to “resounding gong or a clanging cymbal”. That’s such a great image. I’ve done school band for the past eleven years, and as such I’ve heard resounding gongs and clanging cymbals played at the wrong moment more often than I would like. It’s very jarring and often annoying, and the most annoying part is that it means nothing.
That’s the way I see “impressive” religious acts done without love. It calls attention to itself, but it’s also meaningless. That meaninglessness just makes the act annoying.
On the other hand, if the gong or cymbal player plays musically, in the way their instrument is supposed to be played, it’s awesome. It adds so much to the music.
If a “religious” person acts out their religion in the way they’re supposed to—with love as their motivation—the action is beautiful. It adds so much to the world.
Any action, when done without love, is meaningless.