Bear you one another's burdens, and so fulfill the law of Christ.
In this work of supplying the conditions of human progress, the State has found from time to time its most powerful helper and its most eloquent teacher in the Church of Christ. And in proportion as the State has realized more and more its true idea it has seemed to some to trench upon the work of its best friends. The relief of poverty for instance, the guarantee, that is, of the conditions of life in its lowest form, was long the work of the religious orders. The poor law of Elizabeth was the direct outcome of the suppression of the monasteries. So, too, the education of the people. The Church made manful efforts to supply the defects which the State ignored by its system of parochial schools, and it was not till our own time that the truth came home to men, that national education is a matter of national interest, and can be guaranteed only by the nation itself. So, too, in earlier times the freedom and the sanctity of the individual person were recognized by the Church long before they became embodied in legislation, and in our own time it was the religious instinct of the nation which drove Parliament to sweep away the last trace of slavery. Are we then peevishly to complain of the growth of the responsibility, and activity of the State? Are we to look upon each fresh duty which it undertakes as an invasion of individual rights, or a sort of trespass upon what is the peculiar province of the Church? Shall we not rather see in every successive advance a fresh victory for the Church of Christ? for it shows that the Church has been true to its mission, and has taught its lesson to the world, and has made men feel the truth and the power of the words, "Bear ye one another's burdens", and so fulfil the law of Christ.
(L. R. Phelps.)
Parallel VersesKJV: Bear ye one another's burdens, and so fulfil the law of Christ.