"The royal law"

"The royal law" is the law of love. "If ye fulfil the royal law according to the scripture, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself, ye do well." That is how James refers to it in his epistle. And James had gained his understanding of "the royal law" from the Master, who himself had said, as the beloved John records, "A new commandment I give unto you, That ye love one another; as I have loved you, that ye also love one another." Is not Christianity, then, as taught by Christ Jesus, the religion of love? Not only James but every one of the apostles acknowledged "the royal law" which Christianity teaches. Peter admonished, "See that ye love one another with a pure heart fervently." And Paul, he who wrote to the Corinthian church the finest tribute ever paid to love (I Corinthians 13), wrote also to the Romans, "Love worketh no ill to his neighbour: therefore love is the fulfilling of the law."

Now in a general way the power of love is recognized by all men. They have noticed it at work among the lower animals, and particularly among the birds and the mammals. They have seen its effects in the home life of the peoples of all countries, and beyond that home life also, in philanthropic activities in communities and, at times, throughout whole states. Even on the battle field, where the worst passions are let loose, even there have men observed its gentle presence, with tenderest touch soothing, cleansing, alleviating, healing. The power of love is universally recognized. Men instinctively feel that without it the world would lapse into unutterable chaos; but the mode of its activity is not yet universally discerned to be governed by law,—not even yet discerned by all Christians.

"A living sacrifice"
June 7, 1924

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