Day 34: Love is never happy when others do wrong, but it is always happy with the truth. (1 Corinthians 13:6)
Love is never happy when wronged but is at peace on happiness by truth
1 Corinthians 13:6, ESV: “it does not rejoice at wrongdoing, but rejoices with the truth.” 1 Corinthians 13:6, NLT: “It does not rejoice about injustice but rejoices whenever the truth wins out.”
1 Corinthians 13:6, CSB: “Love finds no joy in unrighteousness but rejoices in the truth.”
What does it mean that love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth (1 Corinthians 13:6)?
First Corinthians 13:4-6 contains a list of several things love “does not” do. The final item in this list is that love “does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth.” Love loves the truth. Love does not love evil, or, as the ESV puts it, “it does not rejoice at wrongdoing.”
Corinth was an evil place with pervasive idol worship and rampant sexual immorality. The recently converted Christians in Corinth sometimes had a hard time shaking the old habits. One man involved in egregious immorality had been tolerated in the church (chapter 5), and the Lord’s Supper had been dishonored to the point of including gluttony and drunkenness (chapter 11). To combat these evils, Paul taught that love does not enjoy or “delight in” such actions; rather, true love finds joy in truth and righteousness.
Psalm 1:1-2 offers the proper attitude concerning truth: “Blessed is the man who walks not in the counsel of the wicked, nor stands in the way of sinners, nor sits in the seat of scoffers; but his delight is in the law of the LORD, and on his law he meditates day and night.” The “blessed” person despises evil but loves God’s truth, reflecting upon it constantly.
Psalm 5:4 says, “You are not a God who delights in wickedness.” The God who is love (1 John 4:8) delights in what is true and just. God loves us, and He “desire[s] truth in the inner parts” (Psalm 51:6). In other words, God does not ignore our sin just because He loves us. In fact, it is because of His great love that He provided the means of cleansing our sin in Christ (1 John 4:10).
True love rejoices in what is right and good. Anything that covers up sin or seeks to justify wrongdoing is the polar opposite of godly love. Love does not sweep sin under the rug. Love does not try to find ways to get away with bad behavior, and it does not put up with injustice. Instead, it treasures truth, celebrates good behavior, and promotes virtue. True love has nothing to hide.
Further, to “not delight in evil” carries the idea of not gloating over someone else’s guilt. It is common for people to rejoice when an enemy is found guilty of a crime or caught in a sin. This is not love. Love rejoices in the virtue of others, not in their vices. Sin is an occasion for sorrow, not for joy.
Basically, to exhibit God’s kind of love, we must have God’s perspective on sin and righteousness. The better we understand love, the more we will sorrow over those who commit sin. The more we love the truth, the better we can love those around us.
What Does 1 Corinthians 13:6 Mean? ►
does not rejoice in unrighteousness, but rejoices with the truth;
1 Corinthians 13:6(NASB)
Man was made in the image and likeness of God, but that image became distorted and marred when sin reared its ugly head, and man chose the path of disobedience over the pathway to peace, the highway to holiness or the road of righteousness.
Instead of choosing to live in innocent dependence upon their Creator, man freely chose to rebel against the true and living God, which resulted in an inputed sin nature and an inherited tendency towards sin.
The true nature of fallen man.. not only delights in evil but has a predisposition towards giving a half-truth, a distorted truth, a part truth or a non-truth, and yet we are told that LOVE does not delight in evil but LOVE rejoices in the truth.
The true nature of man is diametrically opposite to the godly nature of the Lord Jesus Christ, and we can only attain to the standard that God requires of all his children, if we die to self and live to Christ – if we keep the old sin nature nailed to the cross and live and move and have our being in the new born-again nature.. of the Christ-life, that we receive at salvation.
If the spiritual fruit of love is to bud, blossom and mature in our life, we must keep our eyes looking to Jesus and our hearts submitted to the Spirit.. as we humbly kneel before the Father and say, ‘Thy will not mine be done..’
What does 1 Corinthians 13:6 mean?
Paul is describing true, Christlike love. This is from the Greek root word agape. That term means a godly, selfless love. This is distinguished from other terms such as phileo, meaning brotherly love, or eros, meaning sexual attraction. Paul provides 14 descriptors of agape love, half are positive and half are negative, to capture the essence of how believers should live in relationship with each other. Most of the problems Paul has addressed in this letter could be boiled down to the Corinthians’ refusal to love each other in this way.
Paul now adds to the list.
Love does not rejoice in wrongdoing, or unrighteousness or injustice. In short, love does not delight in evil. Paul may have been referring to several specific issues among the Christians in Corinth, but this statement is true in all cases. Anytime a believer finds him- or herself tempted to root for or enjoy injustice or wrong choices, we can know we are not motivated by love for God or for each other.
Why would anyone rejoice over wrongdoing? Perhaps we root for someone who has been wronged to get revenge. Perhaps we pick a side and cheer for one believer to defeat another in a lawsuit (1 Corinthians 6:1–11). Perhaps we enjoy seeing two people connect in a romantic relationship despite its sexual immorality (1 Corinthians 5:1–2).
In such cases, our motive is not love for brothers and sisters in Christ.
Love does rejoice with the truth, however. The truth, no matter how difficult it may be, is always the best path through any situation. It is the way of and to Christ, who is the Truth (John 14:6). Wanting what is true to be understood and accepted by others is one way we express love.
First Corinthians 13:1–13 is one of the most loved and well-known passages in the Bible, but Paul places it after his teaching on the spiritual gifts for a specific reason. Some of the gifts may seem impressive, but if attempted without self-sacrificing love for others, they become meaningless, even destructive. Paul uses 14 verbs to describe what love does and does not do. Love is the foundation for Paul’s teaching in the following chapter on prophecy, tongues, and even orderly worship. While this section is often quoted in romantic settings, such as a wedding, the concept in mind is that of agape: a self-sacrificing, godly love.
Paul responds to the Corinthians’ over-emphasis on certain spiritual gifts by showing them that all gifts are worthless if not practiced through godly love. Paul provides 14 descriptors of love, all action verbs, all choices made out of a commitment to set self aside and serve others. Choosing to love each other in this way would solve many of the problems Paul has confronted in this letter. The spiritual gifts provide a glimpse of what is knowable, but when the perfect comes, we will know all. Love is the greatest of all the virtues.