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Word Count: 7,475
HE grace of charity or love of which so much is most admirably spoken in this chapter is absolutely essential to true godliness So essential is it that if we have everything beside but have not charity it profiteth us nothing The absence of charity is absolutely fatal to vital godliness so saith the Holy Ghost in this chapter When then you read the apostles high encomiums of charity do not say This is a fancy virtue to which certain special saints have attained and we are bound to admire them for it but we need not imitate them Far from it This charity is the common everyday livery of the people of God It is not the prerogative of a few it must be the possession of all Do not therefore however lofty the model may be look up to it as though you could not reach it you must reach it It is put before you not only as a thing greatly desirable but as absolutely needful for if you excelled in every spiritual gift yet if you had not this all the rest w ould profit you nothing whatever One would think that such excellent gifts might benefit us a little but no the apostle sums them all up and saith of the whole it profiteth me nothing I pray that this may be understood of us at the very beginning lest we should manage to slip away from the truth taught us by the Holy Ghost in this place and should excuse ourselves from being loving by the notion that we are so inconsiderable that such high virtue cannot be required of us or so feeble that we cannot be expected to attain to it You must attain it or you cannot enter into eternal life for if any man have not the Spirit of Christ he is none of his and the Spirit of Christ is sure to beget the
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