How much charity is praised and recommended in the New Testament Letters

December 26, 2021 • 2 min

From The Sinner’s Guide, page 424
By Venerable Louis of Granada

Behold how highly the great Apostle extols the virtue of charity; how strongly he recommends it; how minutely he enumerates its advantages. He gives it the first place among the virtues, and tells us that it is the bond of perfection, the end of the commandments, and the fulfilment of the law. [1 Cor. xiii. 13; Coloss. iii. 14; 1 Tim. i. 5; Rom. xiii. 8; Gal. v. 14.]

It would be difficult to say more in praise of charity. Certainly these words of the Apostle must suffice to make you love and practise this virtue, if you desire to be pleasing to God.

Charity was also a favorite virtue with the beloved disciple. He frequently mentions it in his epistles, with the highest praise and commendation. And not only in his writings but in his discourses did he display the same devotedness to this virtue.

So frequently did he repeat to his disciples the touching words, “My little children, love one another,” that at last, as St. Jerome tells us, they became somewhat weary of always hearing the same, and asked him: Good master, why do you always give us this one command? His answer, says St. Jerome, was worthy of John; “Because it is the command of the Lord; and if you do this alone it will suffice.”

Without doubt, therefore, he who desires to please God must fulfil this great precept of charity, not only in word but also in deed. “He that hath the substance of this world,” says St. John, “and shall see his brother in need, and shall shut up his bowels from him, how doth the charity of God abide in him? My little children, let us not love in word nor in tongue, but in deed and in truth.” [1 St. John iii. 17, 18.]

Among the works comprised in charity to our neighbor the following are the most important: advice, counsel, succor, forbearance, pardon, edification. These are so strongly linked with charity that the practice of them indicates the progress we have made in the practice of charity.

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