I preached for years that charity (love) was greater than faith and hope. I did not really understand why, but I knew the Word of God said it. “And now abideth faith, hope, charity, these three; but the greatest of these is charity.” (I Cor. 13:13) I began to study for an answer to the question: Why is charity greater than faith or hope?
Faith: “Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.” (Heb. 11:1) Faith is temporary. When we meet Jesus face to face in heaven there will be no more faith. Our faith will be replaced by fact.
God has no faith. In whom or in what would He have faith? We are not like God when we have faith.
Hope: “But if we hope for that we see not, then do we with patience wait for it.” (Rom. 8:25) This hope is not wishful thinking. It is divine anticipation of an event we know will happen and eagerly look forward to it’s happening. Hope is temporary. When we see Jesus face to face in heaven, our hope will have been realised.
God has no hope. For what would He hope? We are not like God when we hope.
Charity: God is love. (I John 4:8) Love is eternal. When we get to heaven our love for God and others will never die.
God loves. We are more like God when we love than when we have faith and hope. This truth explains why the Bible records that love is greater.
“Love is a symbol of eternity. It wipes out all sense of time, destroying all memory of a beginning and all fear of an end.” — Author Unknown