Love is patient and kind; love does not envy or boast; it is not arrogant or rude. It does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful; it does not rejoice at wrongdoing, but rejoices with the truth. Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.1 Corinthians 13:4-7 ESV
Biblical love always rejoices in the truth. It finds joy in things that are honorable and just, things that are lovely and pure. It does not delight in things that are evil or wrong, or things that dishonor our God. On the surface, this statement seems obvious, but digging a little deeper into these verses will help us to uncover their meaning and application to our lives.
1 Corinthians is a letter Paul wrote to the church in Corinth in the first century. At the time, Corinth was city full of idolatry and sexual immorality. It was a place where people delighted in sin and evil. As people came to the church and chose Christ as their Savior, they found it challenging to shake their old habits and choose righteousness. In many cases, it was difficult to distinguish the sinful behaviors because they were considered so acceptable in their culture. We battle these same worldly norms today, and sometimes fall prey to a similar trap. The world considers it normal, so we don’t see it as sin. We allow sinful behaviors to continue, or we don’t confront our spouses on their sinful choices because the world considers it acceptable—or worse yet, we don’t feel like engaging in the challenge.
Love never denies the truth of what is sin. Love never turns a blind eye to what is sin for the sake of peace in your union. Some choose to ignore sinful behavior because confronting the behavior is just too hard. We “know” how our spouse will respond, so we just let it be. At first, we find it easier to just move past the harsh words thrown in anger or the other sinful behavior we catch our spouse in because we just want the peace restored. We don’t pause to right the wrong. We allow our spouses to get away with the wrongdoing because we just want to move past the moment. But as the offenses increase, as the conflicts continue, we begin stew in silence over the wrongs, keeping a tally of their offenses. The sin of bitterness grows in our heart, and eventually, we will use it as justification for why our marriage is falling apart. We must guard our hearts against celebrating our spouse’s wrong as reason to walk away. Instead, we must confront the sin, addressing it gently as commanded, but hitting it head on until that sin is resolved.
We should never delight in wrongdoing—whether the sin exists in us or in our spouses, we should never rejoice in the disgrace of others. The world may celebrate someone’s downfall to sin, but a person who has devoted their life to Christ only feels sorrow or grief when they encounter sin. Christians mourn the evil of this world as Christ mourns. But Jesus didn’t just stand and weep when He encountered the wicked—He took a stand against unrighteousness. We are to respond in the same way. God calls us to oppose the unrighteousness in this world, and most especially in our marriage. We should be convicted to move until the wrong is righted, until virtue is celebrated and harmony is returned to our relationship.
Press on ~ you are loved 💗