“Love does not gloat over other people’s sins, but takes its delight in the truth.” (1 Corinthians 13:6/Complete Jewish Bible –CJB).
As I have done previously I have been checking out English versions for interesting variations. I have printed out an alphabetical list of translations from Bible Gateway. Going over this, as I arrived at ‘C’ I discovered the above rendering of the Complete Jewish Bible which is copyrighted 1998 by David H. Stern.
The word ‘gloat’ refers to what we focus on, what we dwell on. Yet it also implies a selfish motive attached to this consideration of somebody’s behaviour.
I am afraid; sometimes a spirit of competition may be at work between Christian believers: “I think I am the better musician than he or she.” – “He may be a good and spiritual preacher but mark ye well, hurray; here he has made a futile mistake!”
Or think of doctrinal issues: “This fellow seems to put things pretty well, his systematic theology seems to be well thought out, yet here I found something where he is seriously wrong!”
Consider aspects of Christian behaviour: “She appeared to be such a good example of Christian living. But now I got her, today she revealed a serious flaw. She did something that might help change our ranking in being spiritual and holy!”
I do not know if you ever discover yourself enjoying mistakes of other Christians. Yet please, let me tell you, this is not really what God has called us to do. He would rather have us raise each other to higher levels of faith and godliness.
Love “rejoiceth with the truth.” Perhaps you remember that once Jesus referred to Himself as to the truth personified. “Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.” (John 14:6/KJV).
Happily focussing on the truth thus could mean setting our eyes on Jesus. What would Jesus do? How would he react? How would he think about this or that person?
Jesus said He is the way to the father. Through Him we can get closer to our heavenly father.
Rejoice in Jesus! Consider how your fellow Christian could be uplifted through the Lord’s power!
He can do great things! He can bless, strengthen and sanctify fellow believers! This is what he has died for on the cross of Calvary!
Just now I recall, many years ago I have read the following in a Christian magazine: A preacher encouraged people and co-workers in his church to pray: Lord, please bless my Christian brother/ my Christian sister more than me!
Of course by that he did not mean we should not earnestly seek God’s blessing for our own lives. Yet he wanted to teach us we should highly esteem each other. This prayer could help us give up any competition and join forces to accomplish the task God has called us to do!