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THE EPISTLE TO THE ROMANS - Chapter 12 - Verse 15

Verse 15. Rejoice with them, etc. This command grows out of the doctrine stated in Ro 12:4,5 that the church is one; that it has one interest; and therefore that there should be common sympathy in its joys and sorrows. Or, enter into the welfare of your fellow- Christians, and show your attachment to them by rejoicing that they are made happy. Comp. 1 Co 12:26. "And whether— one member be honoured, all the members rejoice with it." In this way happiness diffuses and multiplies itself. It becomes expanded over the face of the whole society; and the union of the Christian body tends to enlarge the sphere of happiness, and to prolong the joy conferred by religion. God has bound the family of man together by these sympathies, and it is one of the happiest of all devices to perpetuate and extend human enjoyments.

Weep, etc. See Barnes "Joh 11:35".

At the grave of Lazarus our Saviour evinced this in a most tender and affecting manner. The design of this direction is to produce mutual kindness and affection, and to divide our sorrows by the sympathies of friends. Nothing is so well fitted to do this as the sympathy of those we love. All who are afflicted know how much it diminishes theft sorrow to see others sympathizing with them, and especially those who evince in theft sympathies the Christian spirit, How sad would be a suffering world if there were none who regarded our griefs with interest or with tears! if every sufferer were left to bear his sorrows unpitied and alone! and if all the ties of human sympathy were rudely cut at once, and men were left to suffer in solitude, and unbefriended! It may be added, that it is the special duty of Christians to sympathize in each other's griefs,

(1.) because their Saviour set them the example;

(2) because they belong to the same family;

(3) because they are subject to similar trials and afflictions; and

(4) because they cannot expect the sympathy of a cold and unfeeling world.

{i} "Rejoice with them" 1 Co 12:26.

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