Though I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I have become sounding brass or a clanging cymbal.
1 Corinthians 13:1, NKJV
The typical drum set not only features a ride cymbal to provide a constant rhythm pattern, but also one or two crash cymbals to mark crescendos and climaxes. The crash cymbal was not designed to offer a sustained sound or to blend in with the melody. Like a woman who marries for money, it gets your attention but doesn’t stay with you very long.
Though Greeks in the first century, including those in Corinth, were deeply impressed with eloquence, they somehow did not find it in Paul. Paul’s syntax and vocabulary were viewed as simplistic compared with the great orators and philosophers of his time. Paul teaches us that, in the absence of love, the highest sounding language in the universe is nothing more than a disruptive and fading cymbal crash. Paul teaches us that talk is cheap but love is real.