Love never fails. It’s become a platitude familiar to so many of us, as Christians. But do we actually believe that to be true? Or, is it true for everyone? Or just a select number of really good Christians.
These are the questions, and dangerous assumption, Steve counters in this week of Chalke Talk. As he argues, much of these assumptions are down to how we’ve misread certain biblical texts – especially those written by Paul.
Steve lays out how the pendulum has swung back and forth between “fire” being describing as transforming love and punitive damnation. But quoting the previous pope, Joseph Ratzinger, Steve finds: “Building on the views of the earliest Christian theologians that I mentioned earlier, he suggested that JESUS is God’s purging fire.
That it is he who burns away our ‘dross’ through the heat of his TRANSFORMING LOVE. And, that’s exactly what I have discovered in my work, over the decades, since I founded Oasis.”
So what do you think? Do you think that Paul really meant it when, in chapter thirteen of his famous first letter to the Corinthian church, he proclaimed ‘Love never fails’? And, if so, what are the implications for us, for our friends, and for that 12-year-old boy in the newspaper headline?