“For now we see only a reflection as in a mirror; then we shall see face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I am fully known.” (1 Corinthians 13:12)
You are “fully known” by God. He formed you in your mother’s womb. (Psalm 139:13) He has written you on the palms of His hands. (Isaiah 49:16) He has drawn you with loving-kindness. (Jeremiah 31:3) As hard as it is to imagine, He has seen all of the days of our lives before we were even born. Ephesians 1:4 says, “For he chose us in him before the creation of the world to be holy and blameless in his sight.” God knew, before He even MADE the world, everyone who would ever live, all they would ever do and become throughout all of eternity and beyond, because God is not bound by time and space as we are. He is everywhere, all of the time. This is why we only “know in part”: in our frail human form we could not bear the weight of such knowledge. Therefore, we should put our WHOLE trust in the One Who not only judges rightly but literally knows us better than we know ourselves and has our ultimate good in mind.
It boggles the mind to think that our righteous, holy God knew all we would ever do, how we would reject Him and bring shame to His name over and over and over, how some would NEVER bow their knee to Him willingly but would refuse to believe, even in the face of the overwhelming evidence for God, and yet He still chose to set His love upon us and to woo us and pursue us until the end of the age, wanting ALL to come to repentance and for none to be lost. This is why this verse, in the midst of a discourse on love, fits so perfectly. We have to ask ourselves, if we knew all that would happen, how our friends and loved ones would wound and betray and reject us, would we still CHOOSE to love them? I think in many cases, or maybe even most, the answer would be no. “But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us”. (Romans 5:8) In the face of overwhelming unrighteousness and unbelief, God STILL loves us with all His heart. Can we do less than love Him in return? We do but still He pursues. That is AMAZING LOVE. How can it be? And yet, it is.
“And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love.” (1 Cor. 13:13)
Yours in love and in Christ,
(To access the entire “Lessons in Love From 1 Corinthians 13” mini-series, please click here.)