“It (love) always protects…..” I Corinthians 13:7
Allow me to paraphrase this portion of I Corinthians 13:7 – “God’s Affection Is Your Protection”.
The word translated “protect” means “to cover”. You cover what you want to protect don’t you!
But the truth of this expression of love is much more comprehensive that just protecting something physically, it also has the connotation of protecting emotions and reputations. Nowadays we would express it like this, “I’ve got your back!”
To illustrate this I want to refer to the very example of how God’s love protects:
“The Lord God made garments of skin for Adam and his wife and clothed them. And the Lord God said, “The man has now become like one of us, knowing good and evil. He must not be allowed to reach out his hand and take also from the tree of life and eat, and live forever.” Lord God banished him from the Garden of Eden to work the ground from which he had been taken. cherubim and a flaming sword flashing back and forth to guard the way to the tree of life.” Genesis 3:21-24
Keep in mind Adam and Eve had just rebelled against God through deliberate disobedience. Every good and perfect plan God had in mind for these two was now rendered impossible because their sin had broken fellowship with Him. Their sinful act had such devastating consequences that we are still suffering from them. They were so devastating Jesus suffered for them!
But despite their rebellion and fully aware of the destructive impact they would have on humanity for the rest of time, look how God demonstrated His love and mercy through the ways He protected them! Check it out!
1) He made clothing to cover the shame of their nakedness!
Their shame was the result of their own rebelliousness and it permanently impaired the relationship they had with each other and the relationship they had with Him. But in His great love and mercy He covered their shame and gave them a layer of protection!
God had their backs! (And fronts)
2) He sent them out of the Garden to protect them from the tree of life!
Decisions have consequences and their consequence was to be banished from Paradise. But when you read this in context you see that even though it was a punishment for their sin, God still protected them! In His mercy He kept them from access to the tree of life so they wouldn’t eat from the tree and become forever condemned in their sin. God diminished the impact of their consequences and protected them from themselves!
God had their backs!
3) He placed angels to guard the entrance into the Garden!
Angels are often associated with the role of protecting God’s people. That is precisely what they were doing here. They were protecting Adam and Eve from their own flawed judgment and corrupted heart.
God’s love “covered” them with mercy and grace!
If you will commit yourself to Him today He will have your back! He will protect you from your greatest threat – yourself!