Friendship (part 3)

He who loves does not wish to command, nor to rule, but is rather obliged when he is ruled and commanded. He wishes rather to bestow a favor than to receive one, for he loves, and is so affected, as not having satisfied his desire. He is not so much gratified when good is done to him, as when he is doing good. For he wishes to oblige, rather than to be indebted to him; or rather he wishes both to be beholden to him, and to have him his debtor. And he wishes both to bestow favors, and not to seem to bestow them, but himself to be the debtor …This God also has done in the case of men. He purposed to give His own Son for us; but so He might not seem to bestow a favor, but to be indebted to us, He commanded Abraham to offer his son… And these things indeed are so here. But from God the reward of friendship is so great, that it cannot be expressed.

St. John Chrysostom. Homily 11 on I Thessalonians I. B#57, pp. 329-332. The Bible and the Holy Fathers, pp.481-482

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