If I speak in the tonguesa1 of men and of angels, but have not love, I am only a resounding gong or a clanging cymbal.
If I have the gift of prophecy2 and can fathom all mysteries3 and all knowledge,4 and if I have a faith5 that can move mountains,6 but have not love, I am nothing.
If I give all I possess to the poor7 and surrender my body to the flames,b8 but have not love, I gain nothing.
Love is patient,9 love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud.105
It is not rude, it is not self-seeking,11 it is not easily angered,12 it keeps no record of wrongs.136
Love does not delight in evil14 but rejoices with the truth.157
It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.168
Love never fails. But where there are prophecies,17 they will cease; where there are tongues,18 they will be stilled; where there is knowledge, it will pass away.
For we know in part19 and we prophesy in part,
but when perfection comes,20 the imperfect disappears.
When I was a child, I talked like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child. When I became a man, I put childish ways21 behind me.
Now we see but a poor reflection as in a mirror;22 then we shall see face to face.23 Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I am fully known.2413
And now these three remain: faith, hope and love.25 But the greatest of these is love.26