Verse 5 continues where verse 4 left off. Showing us what the opposite of love looks like.
“or rude. Love does not demand it’s own way. Love is not irritable, and it keeps no record of when it has been wronged.”
“does not behave rudely, does not seek its own, is not provoked, thinks no evil;”
The first thing I noticed in the scripture is that love is not rude and does not behave rudely. Since rude is the opposite of love I looked up the opposites of rude in the Thesaurus. The opposite of rude is civil, considerate, courteous, genteel, gracious, mannerly, polite, thoughtful, well-bred.
I have at many times not fulfilled even one of those things when I have encountered someone who has hurt me or done wrong to me. But we should always treat others with love regardless of how we are treated.
The next thing I noticed is that love does not demand its own way or seek its own. It doesn’t try to force people to believe or do things you want them to do. Those who do that are being manipulative and manipulation is right there with witchcraft in works of the flesh (Galatians 5:19-21). Those that practice those “works of the flesh” will not inherit the Kingdom of God (Gal 5:21).
The third thing that I saw is that love is not irritable or as the New King James says it is not provoked. Irritable means “easily exasperated or excited” (Merriem-Webster.com). How easily do you allow things to provoke you to anger? How easily do you allow things to get under your skin? Think about it. Are you one of those people that allow your emotions to fly off the handle when someone does something to you, regardless of how big or small it is? Or maybe you don’t fly off the handle but you let it rub you the wrong way to the point that it affects your attitude and feelings towards others.
As I was looking at the antonyms of irritable one of them jumped off the page. Long-suffering, which we all know is just another word for patient. Oh how we all love this word (insert sarcasm here). Being patient is not just about waiting for your turn or for answers its also about being patient with others and their own humanness.
The last thing this verse said is that love does not keep a record of wrongs or thinks no evil. The Message Bible says “Doesn’t keep score of the sins of others”. I didn’t realize that this was a game and that scores were to be kept, did you? Well some people do. They keep a record in their mind of everyone and everything that was done to them. We have all done this to a point but I have asked God to help me to let things go and to be more like Jesus. Jesus did not refuse anyone because of their sins. He forgave them all. Had he not we would not have been able to come to him and receive our salvation through him. He loved the people even when they beat him and whipped him and hung him on a cross. He loved them when they betrayed him and spit on him and cast lots over his garments as he was dying. He loves us still that he sits at the right hand of Father God and intercedes on our behalf (Rom 8:34).
He wants us to extend that same courtesy to those around us, regardless of how they treat us. He wants us to treat others that have wronged us just like we treat those who stand by us. Eye opening isn’t it?
Homework: Continue to memorize this chapter and this week add verse 5 to it. Also pray for God to show you were you need to have a heart change in regards to love towards everyone around you.