Bible Studies for Life Sunday School Lesson for July 31

open pocket bible on green surface

Bible Studies for Life Sunday School Lesson for July 31


1 Corinthians 13:1–13

Several weeks ago our family was invited to three weddings on the same day. One was only about 15 miles away, another was 90 miles away and the third was over 100 miles from our home. Since we are like most people, we do not have access to a private jet so decisions had to be made. I went to one, my wife and daughters attended another and we expressed our sentiments to the third couple.

With wedding ceremonies, certain familiar themes and words are expressed. Each vow promised or pledge made includes challenges to love, support and comfort. Our study this week centers around one of the most used words in the English language: love.

Love must undergird everything we do. (1–3)

Known as the love chapter, 1 Corinthians 13 is a revealing continuation of the preceding chapter. In chapter 12, Paul explained how the diversity of gifts distributed by the Holy Spirit should be bathed in love. Without love our hearts are lacking, and so is our ministry to others.

There are days in the Christian life when others will discourage you and even hurt you. This is where genuine love is needed. Our talents, gifts, abilities and personality are not enough to carry us. We must know and share His love.

Love reflects the character of Christ. (4–7)

The love Paul is writing about is not based on emotions or feelings. True love is a verb, not a noun. The descriptive list Paul uses in this section is hard work. I relate it to a time I was in college and worked at a grocery store.

Tuesday was always “truck day.” On truck day, we unloaded an 18-wheeler filled with food.

Rain or shine, cold or heat, we had to unload the truck, verify the inventory count and begin the process of separating and stocking the items. Sometimes it was exhausting, but it was necessary. Love is rewarding, but it also requires heavy lifting and time.

Bible studies, sermons, journaling and quiet times with God do not show the world how much like Jesus you are. Love does. Need some help loving others? Read these verses again, and each time you see the word love, replace it with God. Hopefully, you will begin to see how loved you are.

The challenge is, can the same be said for us and how we treat others? Dwell on His love and ask God to help you when your “truck day” comes. This type of love only comes if we receive help from God. We can only share it if we first possess it.

Love does not diminish, fade or go away. (8–13)

Paul revisits his previous teachings on spiritual gifts and their longevity. Each spiritual gift found in the Church is important and essential to reach people and serve Christ. These gifts are meaningless without love. Love should be the motivation, message and means of all we strive to do in the local church.

One day all gifts will cease. When that time comes, love will remain. Everything we have done in love and by love will last. When we see Christ face to face, we will behold what true love is.

Love is a person and His name is Jesus. If we live and serve others with Him in mind, our efforts will be blessed. Love does not have an expiration date, but our lives do. Get busy loving others.

By Bobby McKay
Pastor of Pleasant Grove Baptist Church in Brookhaven, Mississippi

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