Last week I started to dig deeper into 1 Corinthians 14:1 within the context of the surrounding chapters. Why? Because we can find so much more behind the words than we see at first sight:
Follow the way of love, and eagerly desire spiritual gifts, especially the gift op prophecy.
[1 Corinthians 14:1]
Paul starts with a very clear commandment: follow the way of love. In doing so he points back to his words preceding the 13th chapter, and now I will show you the most excellent way. This way is the way of love. The word WAY here is the same word that Jesus used to describe Himself with: I am the way, the truth, and the life (see John 14:6). In the Greek language that is the word hodos (road, path, a general term for a thoroughfare to get from one place to another, manner of life). The way of love is the way of Jesus and not a road we think is popular or convenient. The way of love is living the way Jesus lived; humble, compassionate, serving, gracious and loving. That is never the easiest way, but it is an excellent way.
It is interesting to learn that the first believers in the book of Acts were called 'people who belonged to the Way' (see Acts 9:2). Again that same Greek word hodos. They were known as people who followed the Way, the way of love. When we think of Christians following Jesus, walking the narrow road, we often think of a road full of trouble and difficulties, a road with many restrictions and no fun. But that narrow road is actually the way, the path of love. Divine love with the characteristics as summed up by Paul.
I desire that we will be known again as people who belong to the Way, as people who follow the way of love!