I’ve appreciated this book on Christian love (based on John 13.35, 1 Cor 13, etc.) by Scottish Covenanter Hugh Binning (d. 1653). It isn’t the easiest Puritan Paperback to read, but it is worth the effort. The treatise is short (80 small pages) and there are a few of Binning’s sermons as an appendix (around 25 pages). I’m amazed at how deep and solid this book is – Binning wrote it when he was between 23 and 26 years old. Here are a few of my favorite quotes.
“Self-love is the greatest enemy to true Christian love, and pride is the fountain of self-love” (p. 14).
“Charity and Christian love should be the moderator of all our actions toward men; from thence they should proceed, and according to this rule be formed” (p. 17).
“Caritas non punit quia peccatum est, sed ne peccaretur” [Love does not punish because one has sinned, but so that one should not sin] (p. 23-4).
“He whose sins are covered by God’s free love cannot think it hard to spread the garment of his love over his brother’s sins” (p. 59).
“Humility makes a man compare himself with the best that he may find how bad he himself is, but pride measures by the worst, that it may hide a man from his own imperfections” (p. 74).
As you can see, this is a great little booklet. Don’t forget one like it that I’ve mentioned before, Renihan’s True Love published by EP books.