[June 9]
Love as brethren, be pitiful, be courteous. I Peter 3:8
LOVE for the brethren is set forth in the Scriptures as one of the indisputable evidences of our having attained membership in the body of Christ. This love may be of varying degrees, but it must be ours in some degree if we are the Lord's, for "if any man have not the Spirit of Christ he is none of his." (Romans 8:9) But this flame of sacred love for the brethren kindled in our hearts is not sufficient; it must blaze, burn, and produce in us not merely a warmth of love, but a consuming love—love which will not only overlook various weaknesses and imperfections in the brotherhood and will carefully note every good quality, but love which is ready to lay down life on behalf of the brethren because they are of his consecrated ones, however much they may need to strive against sin and weaknesses. Z'07-35 R3932:2(Hymn 218)