1 Corinthians 13:4

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Love suffereth long, [and] is kind; love envieth not; love vaunteth not itself, is not puffed up, (ASV)

Contents

Pro

1 John 4:8 "God is Love".

1 Corinthians 13:4 "Love envieth not", i.e. "Love is not jealous".

Exodus 20:5 "I Jehovah thy God am a jealous God".

...Ergo, the Biblical God logically cannot exist. --Robert Stevens 06:35, 5 Apr 2006 (CDT)

Con

PRO fails to acknowledge that their are two unique and opposing definitions for the term, “jealous.” To reach his conclusion, PRO presumes that one definition that leads to his conclusion he seeks while ignoring the alternative definition that does not lead to the conclusion he seeks.

The term, jealous can refer to (1) an attitude or disposition where a person is envious of another person or (2) a zealous vigilance and concern for someone or something.

Thus, the term, jealous, can be used in the sense of being “jealous OF,” or “jealous FOR.” The person who is jealous OF another is one who fears and hates something about another person because that person has something he does not. This is the sense of 1 Corinthians 13:4 where we find that Love is not jealous in the sense of being envious. That same word, in the positive refers to a zeal for another. God can have a zeal, or be jealous, FOR Israel and thereby seek its well-being.

PRO also fails to understanding the distinction between love and jealousy and this can lead to the erroneous conclusion that they are the same. This is not the case, especially as these words are used in the Bible.

1 John 4:8 tells us that God is love. In the context in which this verse appears, we are told, “…love is of God; and everyone who loves is born of God and knows God. He who does not love does not know God, for God is love.” (v-7-8). The Biblical position is that people who love are born of God because God is love.

Later, we read, “…this is love,…[God] loved us and sent His Son to be the propitiation for our sins.” (v10) Here we find that love is an action expressed by a person in meeting the needs of others.

Additionally, “There is no fear in love; but perfect love casts out fear…” (v18), and “…If someone says, “I love God,” and hates his brother, he is a liar…” (v20). Here, love is contrasted with fear and hate. To say that God is love is to say that God fears no one and God hates no one. Thus, God does not react to the person but acts according to that which He is.

God is described as being a God of love who is jealous FOR Israel, and is, therefore, concerned for its welfare. God is not envious OF Israel or anything that Israel is or has. There is nothing illogical about a God of love who cares for others but is not jealous of them.

We see how God’s jealousy for His people plays out when we read of the incident of the golden calf when Israel was in the wilderness. We read of the massacre of those who worshiped (or led the people to worship) the golden calf. God was jealous for His people and sought to protect them by removing those who would lead them to worship false gods who did not exist and could not take care of them. God’s love for His people is such that He will protect them from that which will harm them.

Neutral

Edit this section to note miscellaneous facts.

I suppose one could argue as to the inflections of meanings of the word "jealous," being mindful that the Old Testament reference was written in Hebrew while the New Testament reference was in Greek. Otherwise, it makes an interesting syllogism.

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