1 Corinthians 13:13 “And now abideth faith, hope, charity, these three; but the greatest of these is charity.” The word Charity took an odd twist from what it means in the Scriptures and what the world today defines it as. The word defined as charity in the scriptures means love, that is, affection or benevolence. The world concentrates on the word benevolence is the disposition to do good; good will; kindness; charitableness; the love, of mankind, accompanied with a desire to promote their happiness is how it is defined by Webster’s 1828 dictionary. The Internet definition is simply the quality of being well meaning; kindness.
Lets leave the discussion of Charity until we have defined the other two words. Faith throughout Scripture indicated Power with God and from God. Hebrews explains it as “Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.” (Hebrews 11:1) It gives us the power to believe what the world rejects as impossible. Jesus also told us, Luke 17:6 “And the Lord said, If ye had faith as a grain of mustard seed, ye might say unto this sycamine tree, Be thou plucked up by the root, and be thou planted in the sea; and it should obey you.” Actually this tells me our faith is pretty small in the eyes of God, but it also tells me that power is available from God.
Hope is a great word in scripture. It defined by Webster as confidence in a future event; the highest degree of well founded expectation of good; as a hope founded on God’s gracious promises; a scriptural sense. In Scripture it is associate with the Promises of God to us. Romans 15:4 tells us “For whatsoever things were written aforetime were written for our learning, that we through patience and comfort of the scriptures might have hope.”
Hope in what, or whom? Children hope in Santa Claus or the Easter Bunny, or getting exactly what they want for their birthday. There are many adults today that believe in things that are only of this world, but what of eternity? What is your hope there? If you believe in an Eternal God, then you can hope in His promises of Eternal Life and a new home in Heaven. Here on earth as I look around, there is little hope of a better life. Many today believe you are born, you live, and you die. That is the sum and total of their beliefs.
Remember the definition of hope…confidence in a future event? Well, the things “written aforetime”. . .the Old Testament Scriptures tell of a placed called Heaven. Moses spoke of it in Deuteronomy 3:24 “O Lord GOD, thou hast begun to shew thy servant thy greatness, and thy mighty hand: for what God is there in heaven or in earth, that can do according to thy works, and according to thy might?”
David speaks of the God of heaven keep watch on mankind in Psalms 53:2 “God looked down from heaven upon the children of men, to see if there were any that did understand, that did seek God.”
Jesus speaks of Heaven at a place filled with mansions in John 14:1-3 “Let not your heart be troubled: ye believe in God, believe also in me. In my Father’s house are many mansions: if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you unto myself; that where I am, there ye may be also.” This is one of the Promises of Hope.
Faith brings Power, Hope is the Promise of God and Charity is actually a Person and the greatest is Charity in the personage of Jesus Christ in whom lies our Faith and Hope.
Charity – love- is spoken of throught scripture. The most familiar is John 3:16 “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” This verse contains faith (believeth) hope (everlasting life) and Charity (For God so loved the World).
Put aside the foolishness of the world. It takes more faith to believe in evolution than to believe a loving God. Place your faith in Jesus Christ who died to pay the wages of your sin. Ask for forgiveness and receive Christ as your Savior. You will never regret your decision to believe in Jesus Christ.