Love Is a Precious Gift From Jesus. --Love is a precious gift, which we
receive from Jesus. Pure and holy affection is not a feeling, but a principle.
Those who are actuated by true love are neither unreasonable nor blind.
There is but little real, genuine, devoted, pure love. This precious article
is very rare. Passion is termed love.
True love is a high and holy principle, altogether different in character
from that love which is awakened by impulse, and which suddenly dies when
Love is a plant of heavenly growth, and it must be fostered and nourished.
Affectionate hearts, truthful, loving words, will make happy families and exert
an elevating influence upon all who come within the sphere of their influence.
True Love Versus Passion. --Love . . . is not unreasonable; it is not blind.
It is pure and holy. But the passion of the natural heart is another thing
altogether. While pure love will take God into all its plans, and will be in
perfect harmony with the Spirit of God, passion will be headstrong, rash,
unreasonable, defiant of all restraint, and will make the object of its choice
an idol. In all the deportment of one who possesses true love, the grace of God
will be shown. Modesty, simplicity, sincerity, morality, and religion will
characterize every step toward an alliance in marriage. Those who are thus
controlled will not be absorbed in each other's society, at a loss of interest
in the prayer meeting and the religious service. Their fervour for the truth will not die on account of the
neglect of the opportunities and privileges that God has graciously given to
That love which has no better foundation than mere sensual gratification will
be headstrong, blind, and uncontrollable. Honour, truth, and every noble,
elevated power of the mind are brought under the slavery of passions. The man
who is bound in the chains of this infatuation is too often deaf to the voice of
reason and conscience; neither argument nor entreaty can lead him to see the
folly of his course.
True love is not a strong, fiery, impetuous passion. On the contrary, it is
calm and deep in its nature. It looks beyond mere externals, and is attracted by
qualities alone. It is wise and discriminating, and its devotion is real and
Love, lifted out of the realm of passion and impulse, becomes spiritualised,
and is revealed in words and acts. A Christian must have a sanctified tenderness
and love in which there is no impatience of fretfulness; the rude, harsh manners
must be softened by the grace of Christ.
Sentimentalism to Be Shunned as Leprosy. --Imagination, lovesick
sentimentalism, should be guarded against as would be the leprosy. Very many of
the young men and women in this age of the world are lacking in virtue;
therefore great caution is needed. . . . Those who have preserved a virtuous
character, although they may lack in other desirable qualities, may be of real
There are persons who have for some time made a profession of religion who
are, to all intents and purposes, without God and without a sensitive
conscience. They are vain and trifling; their conversation is of a low
order. Courtship and marriage occupy the mind, to the exclusion of higher and nobler
The young are bewitched with the mania for courtship and marriage. Lovesick
sentimentalism prevails. Great vigilance and tact are needed to guard the youth
from these wrong influences.
Daughters are not taught self-denial and self-control. They are petted, and
their pride is fostered. They are allowed to have their own way, until they
become headstrong and self-willed, and you are put to your wits' end to know
what course to pursue to save them from ruin. Satan is leading them on to be a
proverb in the mouth of unbelievers because of their boldness, their lack of
reserve and womanly modesty. The young boys are likewise left to have their own
way. They have scarcely entered their teens before they are by the side of
little girls of their own age, accompanying them home and making love to them.
And the parents are so completely in bondage through their own indulgence and
mistaken love for their children that they dare not pursue a decided course to
make a change and restrain their too-fast children in this fast age.
Counsel to a Romantic, Lovesick Girl. --You have fallen into the sad error
which is so prevalent in this degenerate age, especially with women. You are too
fond of the other sex. You love their society; your attention to them is
flattering, and you encourage, or permit, a familiarity which does not always
accord with the exhortation of the apostle, to "abstain from all appearance
of evil." . . .
Turn your mind away from romantic projects. You mingle with your religion a
romantic, lovesick sentimentalism, which does not elevate, but only lowers. It
is 53 not yourself alone who is affected; others are injured by your example and
influence. . . . Daydreaming and romantic castle building have unfitted you for
usefulness. You have lived in an imaginary world; you have been an imaginary
martyr and an imaginary Christian.
There is much of this low sentimentalism mingled with the religious
experience of the young in this age of the world. My sister, God requires you to
be transformed. Elevate your affections, I implore you. Devote your mental and
physical powers to the service of your Redeemer, who has bought you. Sanctify
your thoughts and feelings that all your works may be wrought in God.
Caution to a Youthful Student. --You are now in your student's life; let your
mind dwell upon spiritual subjects. Keep all sentimentalism apart from your
life. Give to yourself vigilant self-instruction, and bring yourself under
self-control. You are now in the formative period of character; nothing with you
is to be considered trivial or unimportant which will detract from your highest,
holiest interest, your efficiency in the preparation to do the work God has
Results of Unwise Courtship and Marriage.--We can see that innumerable
difficulties meet us at every step. The iniquity that is cherished by young as
well as old; the unwise, unsanctified courtship and marriages cannot fail to
result in bickerings, in strife, in alienations, in indulgence of unbridled
passions, in unfaithfulness of husbands and wives, unwillingness to restrain the
self-willed, inordinate desires, and in indifference to the things of eternal
interest. . . .
The holiness of the oracles of God is not loved by very many who claim to be
Bible Christians. They show by their free, loose conduct that they prefer a
wider scope. They do not want their selfish indulgences limited.
Guard the Affections. --Gird up the loins of your mind, says the apostle;
then control your thoughts, not allowing them to have full scope. The thoughts
may be guarded and controlled by your own determined efforts. Think right
thoughts, and you will perform right actions. You have, then, to guard the
affections, not letting them go out and fasten upon improper objects. Jesus has
purchased you with His own life; you belong to Him; therefore He is to be
consulted in all things, as to how the powers of your mind and the affections of
your heart shall be employed.