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Love to the Brethren.

Love to the Brethren.

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Published by GLENN DALE PEASE
BY REV. CHARLES SIMEON, M.A.



John XV. 12. This is my commandment, That ye love one
another, as I have loved yoii.
BY REV. CHARLES SIMEON, M.A.



John XV. 12. This is my commandment, That ye love one
another, as I have loved yoii.

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Published by: GLENN DALE PEASE on Jun 26, 2014
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LOVE TO THE BRETHRE. BY REV. CHARLES SIMEO, M.A. John XV. 12. This is my commandment, That ye love one another, as I have loved yoii. THE law and the Gospel are in perfect unison with each other: the law, as a covenant, sends us to the Gospel, that we may obtain mercy with God ; and the Gospel sends us back again to the law, as a rule of life, that, by obeying its comm.ands, we may honour and glorify our God. The loving our neigh- bour as ourselves was enjoined by the law, and indeed was a summary of all the duties of the second table ^ Our blessed Lord, enjoining the same duty from new considerations, calls it " a new command- ment," and emphatically his commandment; that so we may be led to examine it with stricter attention, and to regard it with deeper reverence : he says, in effect, Labour constantly to fulfil that old command- ment • Compare Lev. xix. 18. with Rom. xiii. 8 — 10. & Gal. v. 14. 827.] LOVE TO THE BRETHRE. 14/ ment of the law; and, that you may never want either a directory to guide, or a motive to animate, you in your exertions, take my love to you as the reason and pattern of your love to each other. To elucidate his words, we shall shew, I. How Christ has loved us — We must, of course, content ourselves with a few
 
hints only of a subject, which has a height and depth, and length and breadth that can never be compre- hended, never explored. Consider then the love of Christ to us: 1 . How free ! [Who ever did any thing to procure it ? It exerted itself towards us long before we had any existence in the world. Who can do any thing now to merit it? We deserve to forfeit it every day and hour; but to earn an interest in it is beyond the power of man. We have nothing of our own but sin ; and that would be a poor price to pay for the love of Christ. In- deed, if we deny the freeness of his grace, we rob him of the brightest jewel in his crown.] 2. How tender! [There is not one of his people, however weak and af- flicted, whom he does not watch over with more than paren- tal tenderness, " carrying the lambs in his bosom, and gently leading them that are with young." Yes ; " we have not an High-priest who cannot be touched with the feeling of our infirmities :" " in all our afflictions He is afflicted :" if we are stricken by the hand of persecution, He feels the blow^: "he that toucheth us, toucheth the apple of His eye." In every possible state he sympathizes with us, as a head v.ith the members, and never fails to succour us with " grace sufficient for us."] 3. How abundant! [If we regarded only the temporal blessings we receive at his hands, we must confess his love to us to be very abun- dant. But who can contemplate his unwearied intercessions at the right hand of his Father, or the incessant communi- cations of his Spirit to their souls, and not stand amazed at the exceeding riches of his grace and love? And besides all this, he is " preparing mansions for us in his Father's house," and training us up daily, that we may b6 counted worthy to
 
inhabit them for ever and ever. Well is his love represented as "passing knowledge*^!"] 4. How "Actsix.'l. *Eph, iii.]9. 148 JOH, XV. 12. [827. 4. How costly I [Free as his love was to us, it was not exercised by him but at an expense that exceeds all calculation. Before it could operate for our advantage, he must leave his heavenly glory, assume our fallen nature, endure the scoffs and insults of his own creatures, and " pour out his soul unto death" as a sacrifice for sin. And would he pay this amazing price, in order to redeem our souls from death and hell? Yes, he un- dertook and executed the mighty work; and never drew back till he could say, " It is finished."] From contemplating this stupendous mystery, let us proceed to inquire, II. In what respects his love to us is a pattern for our love to each other — The love which the saints should bear to each other is of a sublime nature, very different from that which they owe to the world around them*^. To re- semble that of Christ to us, it should be, 1. Disinterested — [Our love to the saints should not be confined to those of the same Church or party, nor should it have respect to any pleasure or advantage that we expect to derive from them ; for this is only a refined species of self-love*; it should re- spect them only as children of our heavenly Father, as members of Christ our living Head, and as joint-heirs of the

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