1. Ability without love is nothing (13:1-3). In the world in which we live, to have ability is something of note. To the Lord, however, what good is ability if it is not properly motivated? If I speak and have not love, I make a noise. If I am religious and have not love, I am empty. If I am a philanthropist and have not love, I am poor.
2. What love is (does) and is not (does not) (13:4-7). If you tried to define love succinctly, what would you say? Could you improve upon what the Holy Spirit said? Since I can’t define love succinctly, and I most certainly can’t improve on what the Holy Spirit said, I have come to understand that love is an action motivated by a source greater than myself (I love because of the Lord who first loved me), but even with this, I am not sure how much I actually understand.
3. Love’s association with maturity (13:8-13). We often look at this passage with a view to understanding the duration of spiritual gifts. Paul, however, is tending to the maturity (or lack of it) in the Corinthian church. Whatever abilities there are in the church, what role does love play in it. In truth, it is the greatest of gifts.