Several years ago there appeared on Broadway a political satire called Of Thee I Sing. The opening scene of that musical took place in a smoke-filled hotel room. A group of what we might call super delegates had gathered. They had chosen a man to represent them, and now they were looking for a platform on which he could campaign. They had all kinds of suggestions, and then one of the delegates looked at a chambermaid who was there to clean up the room and asked her, "What do you think the people of the country want?" She responded, "Love. Everybody wants love." And love became the major plank for the platform. It's not so outlandish in comparison to current political platforms based on words like "hope" or "change" or "integrity" or "truth." All of those words get thrown around in today's political campaigns, but they don't mean much. The politicians might was as well be shouting about "bear" or "hot dogs and baseball" or "shopping at the mall."
When we look at the New Testament, we sometimes have the sense that the apostles, the writers of the New Testament, got together in a church council and wanted to find a message that would be very user-friendly. Somebody suggested, "How about love?" and they adopted it. And all of the apostles who wrote stayed on that message. Again and again we are told that we're to be people of love. You can't quarrel with that. It's a good platform, until you get down to examining what love really means. In some cases the devil's in the details. In the New Testament, God is in the details.
In 1 Corinthians 13, after having established that love is essential for Christian ministry, Paul takes a stab at defining love in verses 4-7. He tells us what love is by showing us what love does. ...
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Haddon Robinson was a preacher and teacher of preachers all over the world. His last teaching position was as the Harold John Ockenga Distinguished Professor of Preaching at Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary.