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Love or conscience; — which?
Originally published in the January 15, 1890 issue of the Christian Science Series (Vol. 1, No. 18)
Love is the fulfilling of the law. Rom. xiii. 10.
We are met here with one of those enigmatical statements that St. Paul delights to make use of. It sounds like a contradiction in terms, does it not? What can he mean by it? Does he mean absolutely, without qualification, what he appears to be saying? Is the mere sentiment of love all that we need for the daily business of the world — and how is love a fulfilling of law?
Suppose, for instance, I owe a man a thousand dollars; will he accept the statement that I love him in lieu of payment? How would State street and Wall street like to conduct business on that plan? Will love pay the butcher, and satisfy the baker and coal dealer? Does the mother's love for her child appease its hunger and its want of clothes and shelter? Is this what Paul means by the statement? We live in a matter of-fact world — at least, we think we do. This is what our senses tell us. Cold, hunger, and nakedness are facts that we are confronted with every day; so that a good bank account is a desirable thing to have. Tax day and pay day come with invariable regularity; so that we all feel the need of "a friend at court" in the shape of solid cash.
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