and let us animate one another to the mutual returns of love, and kind offices: not abandoning our assemblies,
for, brethren, you have been called to liberty. only abuse not this freedom as a pretext to vice, but in offices of love be as servants one to another.
This is a secure rule, and what I would have you constantly maintain, that they who have believed in God, should take care to be examples of virtue, for that is commendable and useful to mankind.
then the disciples determin'd to send, each of them answerably to his abilities, some relief to the brethren residing in Judea: which they actually perform'd,
but what said the oracle to him? "I have reserved to my self seven thousand men, who have not bowed the knee to Baal."
bless them, but curse not. rejoice with those that do rejoice, and weep with those that weep.
but when you thus offend against the brethren, by wounding their weak conscience, you sin against Christ.
to the weak I became as weak, that I might gain the weak: I became all things to all men, that I might save all sorts of men.
thus I endeavour to be acceptable to all men in all things, not seeking my own advantage, but that of others, so as they may be saved.
I don't mean to prescribe to you, but that the zeal of others may show you are as sincerely well-affected.
for I know your generous propensity, and I mention'd it with applause to the Macedonians, that Achaia was ready a year ago; so that your zeal has influenc'd many others.
for in the christian-dispensation, neither circumcision avails any thing, nor uncircumcision, but an active benevolent faith.
but the fruit of the spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, sweetness of disposition, beneficence, faithfulness, meekness, temperance:
Brethren, if a man be overtaken in a fault, do you, who are spiritual, restore him with all gentleness, taking heed lest you yourselves be overcome by temptation.
and the favour I ask of him is this, that your kindness to me may be crown'd with farther improvements in knowledge and all prudence;
Let the christian doctrine be the familiar subject of your entertainment: in all wisdom instructing and exhorting one another, in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, melodiously tuning your grateful praises to God.
never forgetting the effects of your faith, your charitable offices, and the constancy of your hope in our Lord Jesus Christ; of which God is our witness.
may the Lord make you increase and abound in mutual love, in love towards all men, as we do towards you:
not, that we had no just claim, but to present ourselves as a pattern, which you should imitate,
but to lectures on virtue, that they may teach the young women prudence, to love their husbands,
for God is too just to his promise not to regard your piety, and the love which you have shewn to the christian religion by the assistance ye have given to the saints, and still continue to give.
remember those that are in chains, as if you were confin'd with them; and those who suffer adversity, as being your selves of the same body.
my dear children, let not our love be only in the language of our lips, but in the real effects of the heart.
I add, we that are better inform'd ought to bear the infirmities of the weak, and not study our own pleasure.