The guardian angels of our churches!
(John Angell James, "Christian Fellowship" 1822)
"If I have the gift of prophecy and can fathom all mysteries
and all knowledge, and if I have a faith that can move
mountains, but have not love, I am nothing." 1 Cor. 13:2
We must come back to the first principles of practical
piety, and cultivate the passive virtues of the Christian
character. We must remember that Christianity is being
like Christ, and that unless we partake of that love which
is patient and kind, which does not envy, nor boast, nor
is proud, nor rude, nor self-seeking, nor easily angered,
which keeps no record of wrongs--we are nothing!
Strange indeed it is, that men, who by their own
confession are lost, vile, ruined, helpless sinners,
should lack HUMILITY; and that they who believe
themselves to be saved from hell by unmerited
mercy, should be destitute of LOVE!
We must crucify that selfishness, which fixes upon its
own gratification, and cherish that expansive benevolence
which looks upon the good of others. We must contend
to be lowest--not to be highest! We must seek to please,
and not merely to be pleased.
Let us remember that HUMILITY and LOVE are . . .
the necessary fruits of our doctrines,
the highest beauty of our character, and
the guardian angels of our churches!