ISSL Reflections November 12 2023 Romans 13:8–10; 1 Corinthians 13:8–13 Post 2

Today, let’s read both of these passages and then return to the 1 Corinthians passage and reread it.

In part this passage deals with time. What do you hear it telling you about time and the ending of things?

Romans 13:8-10 (NRSVue)

Owe no one anything, except to love one another, for the one who loves another has fulfilled the law. The commandments, “You shall not commit adultery; you shall not murder; you shall not steal; you shall not covet,” and any other commandment, are summed up in this word, “You shall love your neighbor as yourself.” Love does no wrong to a neighbor; therefore, love is the fulfilling of the law.

1 Corinthians 13:8-13 (NRSVue)

Love never ends. But as for prophecies, they will come to an end; as for tongues, they will cease; as for knowledge, it will come to an end. For we know only in part, and we prophesy only in part, but when the complete comes, the partial will come to an end. When I was a child, I spoke like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child. When I became an adult, I put an end to childish ways. For now we see only a reflection, as in a mirror, but then we will see face to face. Now I know only in part; then I will know fully, even as I have been fully known. And now faith, hope, and love remain, these three, and the greatest of these is love.

What does Paul tell us will end?

And on the other side, what does he tell us will not end?

After he mentions “… knowledge … will come to an end…” he introduces the idea that some things are partial or incomplete, and yet, he tells us “the complete” can come. And apparently to offer another illustration of this he references what a child can think, reason and know as opposed to an adult who “put[s] and end to childish ways.

And to still give another illustration he contrasts seeing a reflection and seeing “face to face.

I can’t help but think Paul is trying to help us catch a glimpse of the eternal and at the same time, hold what we think we know with a sense of humility.

What do you think? Does Paul offer you any reassurance that we can know something of the eternal given we live in a world where things will come to an end and cease?

{ubi caritas et amor, Deus ibi est}

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