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Thursday, February 11, 2010

Love Believes in Something Better

I have a problem with the NIV translation of 1 Corinthians 13:7. It says that love always trusts.

Does that mean that a woman who sees her husband arrive late at home, watches him hit the trash cans as he drives up to the house, notices how he stumbles up to the door and says to her with the strong smell of liquor on his breath, "Honey, I only had one beer with the boys," is supposed to trust him? Doesn't she have some obligation to herself to admit this is not the truth? Her lack of trust certainly doesn't mean she no longer loves him.

No, this word "trust" must mean more than the traditional understanding. It must mean believes. Love believes a person can change. Love believes in the possibility of a better time. The ESV, NASB and HCSB all translate this "love believes all things."

This is the way I have raised my children. They have not always been perfect. They have not always been perfectly trustworthy. I never thought that any failure on their part would doom them into that failure's lifestyle. I always believed they would do better some day. They have not disappointed me. Yet, no matter what hole they may have dug themselves into I would still have believed they were capable of coming out of it.

Love doesn't condemn. It believes (though I struggle with the concept of believing all things) always. It does not use the crayons of the past to color the future. It sees a new life beyond the old. It sees change as possible. It believes in the one who is loved.

Love believes in something better.

1 Corinthians 13:7 (NIV)
7 It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.

1 Corinthians 13:7 (ESV)
7 Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.

1 Corinthians 13:7 (NASB)
7 bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.

1 Corinthians 13:7 (HCSB)

7bears all things, believes all things, endures all things.

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