"If I speak God's Word with power, revealing all his mysteries and making everything plain as day, and if I have faith that says to a mountain, "Jump," and it jumps, but I don't love, I'm nothing." 1 Corinthians 13:2 (MSG)
I enjoy a good mystery. In fact, I almost titled this message, "Who Killed Hank Pittleman" because that is the question in the book I am now reading. But the eternal mysteries, those that we don't have the ability to understand completely, are not of this world but of God, and I don't want to cast any earthly shadow over any of them.
How can the human mind grasp fully that the Lord has no beginning and no end? Everything in our world has a beginning and an end. Even though we say the right words when asked about His existence, we can't really understand it.
And how can three be one? The Trinity consists of God, Jesus and the Holy Spirit. God in three persons, as the song says. If Jesus is God, then how was God still in heaven while Jesus was on earth? If Jesus is God, then why does Jesus pray to God the Father?
How is He able to be everywhere at once? With the billions of people on the earth, how can He hear us all at the same time?
Mysteries. And there are Bible scholars who can explain it all, up to a point.
According to today's verse, all that knowledge is worthless if we don't have love. And there are many who proclaim to be "Christians" who refuse to reach out to those who are hurting or lonely or hungry.
There are some behind the pulpit who are terrific orators. They can deliver a biblical message that will knock your socks off. And some of those churches grow to unbelievable numbers. However, one on one with some of these preachers will reveal that they actually take no interest in anything except the messages they preach. They rely on assistant pastors to do all the "people" work because they take no interest in what their flock is going through.
And that is the bigger mystery to me. I don't worry about how God created the universes, or how He does any of what He does. It is enough for me that He knows and I have placed my faith in Him and trust Him completely. But I cannot figure out how someone could be filled with the Holy Spirit and not love their fellow human beings. Which makes me wonder if they are truly Christians or not.
This world is in pain. A quick look at the news will reveal that no matter where we go, there are those who are crying out for someone to care. If we are to be like our Savior, if we are to make any difference at all, then we must be willing to reach out with the love He has demonstrated and placed within us. That is our purpose. We bring glory to our Creator when we minister to those who are in need of His touch.
"For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in, I needed clothes and you clothed me, I was sick and you looked after me, I was in prison and you came to visit me. Then the righteous will answer him, 'Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you something to drink? When did we see you a stranger and invite you in, or needing clothes and clothe you? When did we see you sick or in prison and go to visit you?' The King will reply, 'Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine you did for me." Matthew 25:35-40 (NIV)