1 Corinthians 13:13
And now stays faith, hope, charity, these three; but the greatest of these is charity.
Higher than morality, higher than philanthropy, higher than worship, comes love. That is the chiefest thing. When we have that, we reach the very thing for which the New Testament scheme was administered. Love! it is that which brings forth out of obscurity the hidden God which we seek. Send forth all the powers of the soul to search for God, and there is not one of them which, making inquisition according to its own nature, can find Him out and reveal Him, except this Divine Spirit of love! Put wings of imagination on Conscience, and let it fly forth. Say to it, "Go, and find thy God!" Flying through night and through day; above and beneath; among clouds and thunder; through darkness and through light; it would return at length, wing-tired, only to say, "I have found marks of God, in law, in pain, and penalty; I have seen the traces of thunder, and the path of lightning, and the foundations of eternal power; but nowhere have I found the full God." Give the wings of faith to Reason, and send it, in turn, forth from east to west, around the earth, and through the heavens, to see if by searching it can find out God; and it shall say, "I have seen the curious work of His hand, and have marked the treasures that He hath heaped up. The whole earth is full of His glory, and the heavens are unsearchable by us. What God hath done I have felt, but God Himself is hidden from my sight." Let Fear, equipped with faith, pursue the same errand. It would not even know which way to fly, and, turning downward, groping or flying directly amidst infernal things, it would rehearse a catalogue of terrors, of gloomy fears, or brooding superstitions; but the bright sun-clad God it could not see. Let Reverence go forth. But what there is in reverence can never interpret what there is in God. This feeling can touch the Divine orb but in a single point. And the Heavens would say to Reverence, "Such an one as you seek is not in me"; and Hell would say, "He is not in me"; and Earth and Time would repeat, "He is not in us!" It is only Love that can find out God without searching. Upon its eyes God dawns. Wherever it looks, and whatever it sees — that is God; for God is love. Love is that regent quality which was meant to reveal the Divine to us. It carries its own light, and, by its own secret nature, is drawn instantly toward God, and reflects the knowledge of Him back upon us.
(H. W. Beecher.)
Parallel VersesKJV: And now abideth faith, hope, charity, these three; but the greatest of these is charity.