I saw where a friend of mine had posted a question on Facebook recently. She asked about the beginning of 1 Corinthians 13:8. Love never fails. She wanted to know what we thought that meant exactly.
I never did respond; I’m sorry to say. I got busy and forgot until now. But I did take the time to look up the meaning of the word “fail” in the concordance.
Here’s what I found:
- To fall out of, to fall down from, to fall off
- To fall from a place from which one cannot keep
- To fall powerless, to be without effect
The root word means:
- To be cast down from a place of prosperity or a state of uprightness
- To fail of participating in, miss a share in
We fail. We fail often. I failed many times today. I lost my temper, I was not a good witness at all and I was not a good leader. Yes, we fail. But love never fails.
The love Paul wrote about was the love of God. Agape love – the unconditional love; the deliberate good will toward another’s best interest love. That love does not and cannot fail. Why? Because God does not fail.
The love of God is greater than our sin. It is greater than our failures. It is greater than our guilt over our failures. That is because when Jesus took our sins onto Himself on the cross and then rose from the grave, He was victorious over sin and death. That is the love of God and so love cannot fail.
Whatever we’ve done, however we have failed, those things are no match for the love of God in Christ Jesus. They have been defeated. Forever. And so if I love Him and trust in Him, I am not a failure. No matter how many times I mess up.
Each time that I come to Him and tell Him that I messed up, He forgives me because of what Jesus did for me. Each time, the victory is celebrated once again. Not because of anything I can do, but because of what Jesus has done. Already.
Julie suffered because of her failures in her lifetime. I suffered because I could not get her to see that she was not a failure. Only the Lord could get her to see and He did before she died. That was a very happy day.
God took each one of those mistakes she made and turned them into stones laid in her foundation – stones that taught her His kindness, His unmerited favor, His unfathomable love.
I guess that’s why Paul also wrote, “No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us.”