“Since you have purified your souls in obeying the truth through the Spirit in sincere love of the brethren, love one another fervently with a pure heart.”
love of the brethren
The words “love of the brethren” are derived from one Greek word, which is our word, Philadelphia. This is friendship brotherly love. This love is free from bitterness, hatred, vindictiveness, implacability, fear, worry, anxiety. This love eliminates attitude sins especially the sins which have an object. The Christian who loves relationally is free from attitude sins.
Philadelphia love is the love of reciprocity. We love because someone else loves us. It is a love that likes. We like someone else because they like us. This affection or fondness results in human attachment toward someone else.
This is human love, human affection, the love of liking. The other person we love reflects our thinking. We are fond of them and thus are attracted to them. This is human attraction.
God does not want us to love men as though they were your brothers but love them because they are your brothers. This is not “brotherly love” but “brother- love.”
Philadelphia love occurs only seven times in the New Testament (Ro 12:10; 1 Th 4:9; He 13:1; 1 Pe 3:8; 2 Pe 1:5-7).
Love of the brethren is a horizontal relationship.
Some appear to love but do not genuinely love others. This love is a love which produces pleasure from knowing them. Being with these people give us pleasure.
The result of purifying of the soul is horizontal love for Christian brothers and sisters. This has nothing to do with loving those without Christ. That is a different issue.