Love Covers

love covers

Above all, keep fervent in your love for one another, because love covers a multitude of sins. 1Peter 4:8

Proverbs 10:12 says, “Hatred stirs up conflict, but love covers over all wrongs.”
The apostle is talking about interpersonal relationships. As believers we reflect the love of God by forgiving others.

“Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres” (1 Corinthians 13:4–7). Another way that love covers over a multitude of sins is choosing not to take offense at everything. Some sins against us are not worth confronting. Personal slights, snide or mean remarks, and minor annoyances can be easily forgiven for the sake of love. Proverbs 19:11 says, “A person’s wisdom yields patience; it is to one’s glory to overlook an offense.” If we are patient, not envious or self-seeking, we are much less likely to even take offense. Acting in love means we put others before ourselves. Love can cover a multitude of sin in that, when we act in true love, we are prone to overlook minor offenses, tolerate the provocations, and forgive the sin.

Important to note:  Love does not cover over a multitude of sin by sweeping matters under the rug. Some have appealed to the forgiving nature of love in their attempt to hide indiscretion. For example, rather than report child abuse, a church might cover it up. This is not what true love does. Love protects by helping both the victim and the offender (thru restoration and true repentance), and it also strives to prevent further offenses.  But there are still consequences of sin.  Love covering sin also does not mean we disregard our own emotions or ignore our personal boundaries. We cannot “cover” sin by denying that it hurt us. We cover sin by acknowledging it and then extending the forgiveness God has given us to others.