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I. Brotherly Love is an affection, differing in many respects from Benevolence.

Thus, for example, Brotherly Love is confined to good men as its objects: whereas Benevolence extends to all mankind. erly love respects only the moral character of its objects : Benevolence, their existence and capacity. Brotherly Love is the love of the virtue ; Benevolence, of the happiness; of those who are loved. Benevolence is virtue absolutely, or universally : Brotherly love is only a branch of that virtue. Benevolence exists, and operates, towards those who have no virtue; and was thus exercised by God towards beings, totally lost and depraved; viz. towards mankind, while wholly under the power of sin. In a similar manner, it is exercised by good men towards sinners; and towards such sinners, as, by being enemies to them on account of their goodness, prove, that there is no goodness in themselves. Brotherly love is exercised, and is capable of being exercised, only towards virtuous men; and towards them, on account of their virtue only. Benevolence, being virtue in the absolute sense, must exist, before it can be loved. Brotherly Love is the love of that Benevolence, or of virtue, after it is known to have existed.

According to these observations we find these affections clearly, and abundantly, distinguished in the Scriptures. Thus Benevolence is called Ayann, throughout the New Testament; and, as exercised particularly towards Mankind, is termed pihavégwaria : Acts xxviii. 2. Titus iii. 4. Brotherly love is called piradeApia : Rom. xii. 10. 1 Thess. iv. 9. Heb. xjji 1. 2 Peter i. 7. Love to the Brethren, or Brotherhood, AdeAdorns, is enjoined in various places as a peculiar duty. Thus St. Peter, in his second Epistle i. 7, says, Add to your faith virtue, or resolution, &c.; to godliness Brotherly Love, Wiradenplav; and to brotherly love charity, Ayaan, benevolence. Were Brotherly Love the same with Benevolence, St. Peter would certainly not have directed Christians to add Benevolence to itself. Nor would he here have called the same thing by different names, and thus perplexed his readers, merely for the sake of rounding a period. Other directions

generally resembling this, are given us abundantly in the New Testament.

II. Brotherly Love is the love of Good men.

To prove this, I observe, that the Brethren, spoken of in the New Testament, are always disciples of Christ. This name Christ himself gave them in form. In Matt. xii. 46, we are told, that his mother and his brethren came, desiring to see him. Upon receiving notice of this fact from one of the company, he replied, Who is my mother, and who are my brethren? Then he stretched forth his hand towards his disciples, and said, Behold my mother and my brethren :

, for whosoever shall do the will of my Father who is in heaven, the same is my brother, my sister, and mother. In Luke viii. 21, where the same story is recorded, his words are, My mother and my breth

ren are they, who hear the word of God and do it. Again, Matt. xxiii. 8, he says, Be ye not called Rabbi, for one is your Master,

, even Christ; and all ye are brethren.

In these passages, Christ has declared, that his disciples are his brethren; that these are composed of such as hear, and obey, the word of God; and that all such persons sustain this character.

From him the Apostles took this phraseology, and continued it through their writings.

For whom he did foreknow, he also did predestinate to be conformed, to the image of his Son, that he might be the first-born of many brethren.

Rom. viii. 29. To the saints and faithful brethren in Christ, who are at Colosse. Col. i. 2.

I charge you by the Lord, that this Epistle be read unto all the holy brethren. 1 Thess. v. 27.

These passages from St. Paul, selected out of a multitude of the same import, are ample proofs, that he used the language of Christ in the same sense. Peter, James, and John, use the same language. It is therefore completely evident, that the Brethren, spoken of appropriately in the New Testament, are Christ's disciples; are saints ; are faithful; are holy; are such, as have been sanctified by the Spirit of grace. In this character only are they constituted the objects of Brotherly Love : the character itself being the thing, which, in them, is required by Christ to be loved. It is indeed true, now, as, formerly, that all who are of Israel are not Israel. Some, who appear to be Christ's disciples, are not really his dis

, ciples. But since our limited minds are unable to distinguish appearance from reality, God has commanded us to govern both our views, and our conduct, by appearance. So long, then, as men appear to be the disciples of Christ, we are bound to regard, and particularly to love, them as his disciples.

III. Brotherly Love is, therefore, an affection, directed towards the Virtue of those, whom we love : in other words, it is complacen

In the exercise of Benevolence, we love others, whenever we wish them to be happy; and in this manner we love our enemies, and wicked men universally, however destitute of moral goodness. Our benevolence will, indeed, be particularly exerted in desiring earnestly, that they may become virtuous, in order to their happiness; but we cannot approve, nor love, their moral character; because, by the supposition, it is wholly sinful, and therefore altogether odious.

In the exercise of Brotherly Love, on the contrary, we approve, and love, the moral character of all, whom we love: delighting in their holiness, as an excellent and desirable object. As we approve of the character of Christ himself; so we delight in them, as possessing a share of the same beauty and excellence; as hading the same mind, which was also in him.

cy in Virtue.

IV. Brotherly Love is, in the Scriptures, constituted a peculiar proof of sanctification.

In the verse following the text, Christ says, Hereby shall all men know, that ye are my disciples, if ye have love one to another. Here our Saviour declares this affection to be a peculiar proof to the world, that we are Christians; to be the touchstone, by which his disciples will be examined, and known, by mankind.

Accordingly, the Emperor Julian expressly warns the heathen under his dominion, that the Christians contributed not a little to spread Christianity by their singular love to each other, and by their mutual offices of exemplary kindness. At the same time he declares, that, unless the heathen will follow this powerful example, their religion will never prosper. So remarkable, even in that corrupted age, was the Brotherly Love of Christ's disciples, as entirely to distinguish them from the rest of mankind. In other periods of the Church, it has prevailed, as Religion has prevailed; and decayed, as Religion has decayed: but in all ages it has existed, and been discernible, wherever genuine Christianity has been found.

As this attribute is peculiarly the proof of our Religion to others ; so it is made equally the proof of it 10 ourselves. He that saith, he is in the light, and hateth his brother, is in darkness until now. He that loveth his brother abideth in the light. 1 John ii. 9, 10. In this the children of God are manifest, and the children of the devil. Whosoever doeth not righteousness is not of God; neither he that loveth not his brother. 1 John üi. 10.

Hereby we know, that we have passed from death unto life, because we love the brethren. He that hateth his brother abideth in death.

These passages teach in the clearest manner, that, if we love the brethren, we are children of God, or the subjects of Evangelical virtue, and that, if we love not the brethren, we are not the children of God. If, then, our love to the brethren be probable; if a good reason exist to believe, that we exercise brotherly love; there exists an equal reason to believe, that we have passed from death unto life. If we discover with certainty, that we possess this love; we have arrived at full assurance of our sanctification, and of our title to eternal life.

V. Brotherly love is universally exercised by Benevolent Minds. In other words, every Mind, which is Evangelically benevolent, will of course exercise Brotherly love.

Benevolence is the love of happiness : Brotherly Love is the love of that Benevolence. We love an Intelligent being, as either capable of happiness, or actually the subject of it. When we perceive, that he is benevolent, we further love his benevolence, and him because he is benevolent.

Benevolence is virtue. Brotherly Love, in the abstract denominated Complacency, is the love of virtue. As virtue delights in happiness ; so it necessarily delights in the causes of happiness.

But virtue is the only original, voluntary, and supreme, cause of happiness to the universe. Virtue, therefore, delights in virtue, as being the great cause of that, which it supremely loves. As virtue is the voluntary cause of happiness; it is, of course, supremely excellent and lovely; and is accordingly loved by all virtuous beings.

Hence it is evident, that Brotherly Love, although not virtue in the original or abstract sense, is yet an affection eminently virtuous; and is, therefore, strongly enjoined, and greatly commended, in the Scriptures. This is the love, which, without a formal command, David exercised towards the saints, whom he styles the excellent of the earth, and in whom, he says, was all his delight; which the captive Psalmist exercised towards Zion, the collection of the saints; and sooner than refuse which, he wishes his right hand may forget its cunning, and his tongue cleave to the roof of his mouth. This is the love, which inspired the Prophets, particularly Isaiah, with zeal, and joy, and triumph, when beholding in vision the future prosperity of the Church, and its glorious extension over the habitable world.

The Distinction between Brotherly Love and Complacency, generally understood, is this: the former is exercised by the disciples of Christ towards each other; the latter by all virtuous beings towards all such beings. This is the love, which God exercises towards all his children; the love, exercised by angels towards those, for whom they cheerfully condescend to be ministering Spirits ; viz. those, who shall be heirs of salvation.

Towards God, the complacency of his virtuous creatures is so eminent an exercise of affection, as in a manner to occupy the whole soul. When we remember the moral perfection of God, we are prone to forget his importance as the supreme Intelligent, and the Possessor of supreme happiness; and naturally confine our thoughts to the glorious Excellence of his nature. We love him pre-eminently for this excellence; and scarcely recollect, that he is an object of supreme benevolence. Indeed, whenever the beings loved are wholly virtuous, we are apt to lose our Benevolence in our Complacency; and to be scarcely conscious of any other affection, besides our delight in their excellence of character. When, indeed, we have received peculiar benefits from them, our Gratitude is excited; and often powerfully. But our benevolence, though always exercised, is not unfrequently unobserved by our minds.

Thus have I summarily considered this attribute of a sanctified mind. I shall now proceed to derive from this subject a few

REMARKS. Ist. If the things, which hade been observed concerning this subject, are just ; it follows, that we ought carefully to try our moral character by this great scriptural standard.

By him, who hopes that he is entitled to eternal life, no question can be asked, of higher moment, than whether he is a Christian. To resolve this question, the Scriptures point out no method more obviously, or certainly, effectual, than that, which has been here mentioned. We know, that we have passed from death unto life, because we love the brethren. A good man is a peculiar object; and distinct from all others. The materials, of which his goodness is constituted, are generally capable of being truly understood, and strongly realized. If seen, they cannot but be hated by a bad, and loved by a good, mind. Our love and hatred are engaged, almost only, by moral beings. Doctrines, Precepts, and Ordinances, the Sabbath, the Sanctuary, the Word of God, and the things opposed to them, may, indeed, be in a certain sense objects of these affections; but this can exist only in a subordinate degree, and, perhaps, always with a reference to those moral beings, with whom they are connected. Thus the Sabbath is hated, or loved, merely as a season devoted to God, who appointed it. The same observation is equally applicable to other things of the like nature.

But Intelligent beings; viz. God and his rational creatures ; we love, or hate, for what they are. We love, or hate, them directly; and not for the relation, which they bear to some other object of these affections. Men, particularly, being like or unlike ourselves, of our own party or an opposite, who act, or refuse to act, with or against us, with and against whom we act under the strong influence of sympathy, and who are realized by the powerful impressions of sense; are more easily, uniformly, and strongly, regarded with these emotions, in ordinary circumstances, than any other created beings. Our emotions towards them, therefore, are immediate ; arise spontaneously; are vigorous ; and mingle with all our views, of every kind. Good men love good men of course, and necessarily. Wicked men never exercise complacency towards good men, as such ; they often love them with natural affection; or because they are their friends; or because they are useful to them; but not for their characteristical excellence, or for their resemblance to Christ. Good men love them, as the natural taste relishes sweetness or fragrance, the rose or the honeycomb. Good men love them for themselves; for the moral character, which they possess; and independently of all other considerations. Wicked men in their consciences approve of goodness, and of good men; and cannot, without violence done to their consciences, disapprove of them. But in this approbation the heart has no share. The hearts of wicked men are radically opposed to virtue ; and of course hate it, and, so far as their virtue is concerned, all those by whom it is possessed. Hence have flowed the calumnies, sneers, ridicule, resentment, opposition, and persecution, which good men have received from their enemies ever since the world began.

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