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17. Is revenge wholly prohibited?
If it be possible, as much as lieth in you, live peaceably with all men. Dearly beloved, avenge not yourselves, but rather give place unto wrath: for it is written, Vengeance is mine; I will repay, saith the Lord. Therefore if thine enemy hunger, feed him; if he thirst, give him drink: for in so doing thou shalt heap coals of fire on his head. Be not overcome of evil, but overcome evil with good. (12 Ro. 18 to 21.) 18. Does love promote, and hatred destroy, the comforts of life?
Better is a dinner of herbs where love is, than a stalled ox and hatred therewith. (15 Pr. 17.)
19. Is meekness, wisdom; and passion, folly?
He that is slow to wrath is of great understanding; but he that is hasty of spirit exalteth folly. (14 Prov. 29.)
20. Is self-government better than power over others? He that is slow to anger is better than the mighty; and he that ruleth his spirit than he that taketh a city. (16 Pr. 32.)
21. Should a mature understanding and a child-like disposition be joined together?
Be not children in understanding: howbeit, in malice be ye children, but in understanding be men. (I. Cor. 14. 20.)
22. Is envy one of the worst of passions?
Wrath is cruel, and anger is outrageous; but who is able to stand before envy? (27 Pr. 4.)
23. Is it generally connected with other evil passions? Whereas there is among you envying, and strife, and divisions, are ye not carnal, and walk as men? (I. Cor. 3. 3.) Lest there be debates, envyings, wraths, strifes, backbitings, whisperings, swellings, tumults. (II. Cor. 12. 20.)
24. What is the best preservative from envy?
Let not thine heart envy sinners: but be thou in the fear of the Lord all the day long. (23 Prov. 17.)
25. What knowledge had Pilate of the motives of Christ's enemies?
He knew that the Chief Priests had delivered him for envy. (15 Mr. 10.)
26. How does St. Paul caution us against envy?
Let us not be desirous of vain glory, provoking one another, envying one another. (5 Gal. 26.)
27. How does St. James censure envy and strife?
Who is a wise man and endued with knowledge among you? let him shew out of a good conversation his works with meekness of wisdom. But if ye have bitter envying and strife in your hearts, glory not, and lie not against the truth. This wisdom descendeth not from above, but his earthly, sensual, devilish. For where envying and strife is, there is confusion and every evil work. But the wisdom that is from above, is first pure, then peaceable, gentle, and easy to be intreated, full of mercy and good fruits, without partiality, and without hypocrisy. And the fruit of righteousness is sown in peace of them that make peace. (3 Jas. 13 to 18.)
28. By what solemn consideration are we cautioned against the vile passion of envy?
Grudge not one against another, brethren, lest ye be condemned: behold, the judge standeth before the door. (5 Jas. 9.)
XX. LOVE OR CHARITY.-BENEVO. LENCE OR DOING GOOD. - PITY.SYMPATHY.-MERCY-PEACE.
LOVE OR CHARITY. Commands to—Characteristics of— Arguments by which enforced-Peculiar excellence of. BENEVOLENCE OR DOING GOOD.
PITY. To be shewn to the distressed and friendless-God repays kindness done to them.
SYMPATHY. Duty of-To be fulfilled by self-denying
Christ blesses the merciful-They imitate God, honor him, and fulfil his requirement―This duty extends. to animals.
PEACE. Duty and happiness of peace-makers.
1. What is our duty to our neighbours?
Thou shalt not avenge nor bear any grudge against the children of thy people: but thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. I am the Lord. (19 Lev. 18. and 22 Mt. 39, &c.)
2. Does love fulfil the law to our fellow-creatures?
Owe no man any thing, but to love one another: for he that loveth another hath fulfilled the law.-Love worketh no ill to his neighbour; therefore love is the fulfilling of the law. (13 Rom. 8, 10.)
By love serve one another; for all the law is fulfilled in one word, even in this: Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself (5 Gal. 13, 14.)
3. How does St. Peter enforce this duty?
Be ye all of one mind, having compassion one of another; love as brethren, be pitiful, be courteous: not rendering evil for evil, or railing for railing; but contrariwise, blessing. (1. Pet. 3. 8, 9.)
4. How must our love be proved?
See that ye love one another with a pure heart, fervently. (I. Pet. 1.22.)
My little children, let us not love in word, neither in tongue; but in deed, and in truth. (I. Jn. 3. 18.)
Let love be without dissimulation.-Be kindly affectioned one to another, with brotherly love; in honor preferring one another. (12 Rom. 9, 10.)
5. Must we abound in love?
This I pray, that your love may abound yet more and more in knowledge, and in all judgment; that ye may approve things that are excellent; that ye may be sincere, and without offence till the day of Christ. (1 Phi. 9, 10.)
The Lord make you to increase and abound in love one toward another, and toward all men, even as we do toward you. (I. Thess. 3. 12.)
6. Does the character of God encourage love?
God is love: and he that dwelleth in love, dwelleth in God, and God in him. (I. Jn. 4. 16.)
7. In what endearing manner does Christ recommend love?
A new commandment I give unto you, That ye love one another; as I have loved you, that ye also love one another. By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples, if ye have love one to another. (13 Jn. 34, 35.)
8. How does St. Paul recommend love and other Christian graces to the Colossians?
Put on therefore (as the elect of God, holy and beloved) bowels of mercies, kindness, humbleness of mind, meekness, long-suffering; forbearing one another, and forgiving one
another, if any man have a quarrel against any even as Christ forgave you, so also do ye. And above all these things, put on charity, which is the bond of perfectness. And let the peace of God rule in your hearts, to the which also ye are called in one body; and be ye thankful. (3 Col. 12 to 15.)
9. Does Christ command us to love our enemies?
Love your enemies; bless them that curse you; do good to them that hate you; and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you. (5 Mt. 44.)
10. How does St. James speak of the duty of love?
ye fulfil the royal law according to the scripture, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself, ye do well. (2 Jas. 8.)
11. Must charity be always in exercise?
Let all your things be done with charity. (I. Cor. 16. 14.)
12. Will charity or love induce us to overlook what might otherwise offend us?
Above all things have fervent charity among yourselves; for charity shall cover the multitude of sins. (I. Pet. 4. 8.)
13. What is that beautiful summary of Christian love which the Apostle gives to the Corinthians?
Charity suffereth long, and is kind; charity envieth not; charity vaunteth not itself, is not puffed up, doth not behave itself unseemly, seeketh not her own, is not easily provoked, thinketh no evil; rejoiceth not in iniquity, but rejoiceth in the truth; beareth all things, believeth all things, hopeth all things, endureth all things. Charity never faileth.-And now abideth faith, hope, charity, these three; but the greatest of them is charity. Follow after charity. (I. Cor. 13. 4 to 8, 13. and 14 chap. 1 verse.)
14. What is that important general law which should govern every social relation?
All things whatsoever ye would that men should do to you, do ye even so to them: for this is the law and the prophets. (7 Mt. 12.)