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Faith, Hope and Charity

October 06, 2013

The apostle Paul stated that, for the believer in Christ, three things endure: faith, hope, and charity. He wrote that the greatest of the three is charity. Charity is from the Greek word, agape -- which means , or general love and affection. What makes it special in the Christian's life is that he or she is able to love even those abuse, use and persecute them.


Bernie Parsons 

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Faith, Hope and Charity

by Bernie Parsons


Presented to Load church of Christ on 10-06-2013

Presented to Globe church of Christ on 10-13-2013


While doing the lesson on being ready to give an answer for the hope that is within us, I came across the scripture that spoke of faith, hope and charity.


1 Corinthians 13:13 "And now abideth faith, hope, charity, these three; but the greatest of these is charity."


These three things drive the life of the believer in Christ.




Faith is more than a confession of faith. It is more than merely believing that something is true. Faith is trust. We not only believe that Jesus is the son of God, but we trust Him and His word.


Hebrews 11:1 "Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.

2 For by it the elders obtained a good report.

3 Through faith we understand that the worlds were framed by the word of God, so that things which are seen were not made of things which do appear."


Hebrews 11:6 "But without faith it is impossible to please him: for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him."


Therein is the trust revealed – we not only believe that God is, but also that He rewards those who diligently seek Him! We trust Him to reward us as has been promised.


Romans 1:16 "For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek.

17 For therein is the righteousness of God revealed from faith to faith: as it is written, The just shall live by faith."


Our faith leads us to live righteously, because we trust that the rewards will be worth it.


1 Thessalonians 1:2 “We give thanks to God always for you all, making mention of you in our prayers;

3 Remembering without ceasing your work of faith, and labour of love, and patience of hope in our Lord Jesus Christ, in the sight of God and our Father;"


Our faith leads us to work the works of God’s righteousness. We labor in love.


1 Peter 1:6 "Wherein ye greatly rejoice, though now for a season, if need be, ye are in heaviness through manifold temptations:

7 That the trial of your faith, being much more precious than of gold that perisheth, though it be tried with fire, might be found unto praise and honour and glory at the appearing of Jesus Christ:

8 Whom having not seen, ye love; in whom, though now ye see him not, yet believing, ye rejoice with joy unspeakable and full of glory:

9 Receiving the end of your faith, even the salvation of your souls."


As we studied last time, our faith leads to hope of eternal salvation of our souls.




1 Thessalonians 5:6 "Therefore let us not sleep, as do others; but let us watch and be sober.

7 For they that sleep sleep in the night; and they that be drunken are drunken in the night.

8 But let us, who are of the day, be sober, putting on the breastplate of faith and love; and for an helmet, the hope of salvation.

9 For God hath not appointed us to wrath, but to obtain salvation by our Lord Jesus Christ,

10 Who died for us, that, whether we wake or sleep, we should live together with him.

11 Wherefore comfort yourselves together, and edify one another, even as also ye do."


As we studied last time, salvation is our hope. Without that hope, we would, as the apostle Paul wrote, be of all men most miserable!


1 Thessalonians 4:13 "But I would not have you to be ignorant, brethren, concerning them which are asleep, that ye sorrow not, even as others which have no hope.

14 For if we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so them also which sleep in Jesus will God bring with him.

15 For this we say unto you by the word of the Lord, that we which are alive and remain unto the coming of the Lord shall not prevent them which are asleep."


Christ gives us hope which others do not have. This hope leads us to live pure lives.


1 John 3:1 "Behold, what manner of love the Father hath bestowed upon us, that we should be called the sons of God: therefore the world knoweth us not, because it knew him not.

2 Beloved, now are we the sons of God, and it doth not yet appear what we shall be: but we know that, when he shall appear, we shall be like him; for we shall see him as he is.

3 And every man that hath this hope in him purifieth himself, even as he is pure."


We not only live in hope, but that hope leads us to lives of love toward others.


2 Thessalonians 2:16 "Now our Lord Jesus Christ himself, and God, even our Father, which hath loved us, and hath given us everlasting consolation and good hope through grace,

17 Comfort your hearts, and stablish you in every good word and work."


Our faith – trust -- supports the hope of righteousness, causing us to love others.


Galatians 5:5 “For we through the Spirit wait for the hope of righteousness by faith.

6 For in Jesus Christ neither circumcision availeth any thing, nor uncircumcision; but faith which worketh by love."




The word charity used in 1 Corinthians 13:13, “faith, hope and charity” is from the Greek agape, which indicates general love, benevolence, or affection. It indicates love for love’s sake.


1 Corinthians 16:14 "Let all your things be done with charity."


1 Timothy 1:5 "Now the end of the commandment is charity out of a pure heart, and of a good conscience, and of faith unfeigned:"


1 Peter 4:8 “And above all things have fervent charity among yourselves: for charity shall cover the multitude of sins.“


1 Corinthians 13:1 "Though I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, and have not charity, I am become as sounding brass, or a tinkling cymbal.

2 And though I have the gift of prophecy, and understand all mysteries, and all knowledge; and though I have all faith, so that I could remove mountains, and have not charity, I am nothing.

3 And though I bestow all my goods to feed the poor, and though I give my body to be burned, and have not charity, it profiteth me nothing.

4 Charity suffereth long, and is kind; charity envieth not; charity vaunteth not itself, is not puffed up,

5 Doth not behave itself unseemly, seeketh not her own, is not easily provoked, thinketh no evil;

6 Rejoiceth not in iniquity, but rejoiceth in the truth;

7 Beareth all things, believeth all things, hopeth all things, endureth all things."


1 Corinthians 13:13 "And now abideth faith, hope, charity, these three; but the greatest of these is charity."


Three things endure: faith (trust), hope (anticipation, expectation), and charity – which is love in general, affection, or benevolence.


We trust God and His promises, so we seek understanding of His will and ways. We want to obey Him and please Him.


We expect and anticipate eternal salvation, therefore we do the work of the Lord.


Most of all, our life is ordered around the goodwill that we have toward others, and the kindness and affection that we show them, for that is the main work that God has set before us.

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