Overcoming Evil with Love

Charity beareth all things, believeth all things, hopeth all things, endureth all things. – 1 Corinthians 13:7

First, we overcome evil by patience, which “beareth all things.” Let the injury be inflicted, we will forgive it, and not be provoked: even seventy times seven will we bear in silence. If this suffice not, by God’s grace we will overcome by faith: we trust in Jesus Christ, we rely upon our principles, we look for divine succour, and so we “believe all things.” We overcome a third time by hope: we rest in expectation that gentleness will win, and that long-suffering will wear out malice, for we look for the ultimate victory of everything that is true and gracious, and so we “hope all things.” We finish the battle by perseverance: we abide faithful to our resolve to love, we will not be irritated into unkindness, we will not be perverted from generous, all-forgiving affection, and so we win the battle by steadfast non-resistance. We have set our helm towards the port of love, and towards it we will steer, come what may. Baffled often, love “endureth all things.” Does God seem Himself to smite love with afflictions? She “beareth all things.” Do her fellow Christians misrepresent her, and treat her ill? She believes everything that is good about them, and nothing that is injurious. Do the wicked rise against her? When she tries to convert them, do they return evil for good? She turns her hopefulness to the front in that direction, and hopes that yet the Spirit of God will bring them to a better mind. And does it happen that all her spiritual foes attack her with temptations and desperate insinuations? She lifteth up the banner of patience against them, and by the power of God’s grace she putteth the infernal enemy to the rout, for she “endureth all things.” What a brave mode of battle is this! Is not love a man-of-war? Is it not invincible? ~ C.H. Spurgeon


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