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of the teachers who baptized them, he told them that he and his brethren apostles, who, in respect of their inspiration, were the chief teachers in the church, were sent by Christ, not so much to baptize, as to preach the gospel, ver. 17.
The false teacher, by introducing the Grecian philosophy and rhetoric into his discourses, had endeavoured to render them acceptable to the Corinthians, and had preferred himself to Paul, who he said was unskilful in these matters. Lest therefore, the Corinthians should think meanly of his doctrine and manner of preaching, the apostle told them, that Christ had sent him to preach the gospel, not with wisdom of speech, that is, with philosophical arguments expressed in flowery harmonious language, such as the Greeks used in their schools ; because in that method, the gospel becoming a subject of philosophical disputation, would have lost its efficacy as a revelation from God, ver. 17.That though the preaching of salvation through the cross, appeared mere foolishness to the destroyed among the heathen philosophers and Jewish scribes, yet to the saved from heathenism and Judaism, it was found by experience to be the powerful means of their salvation, ver. 18.–That God foretold he would remove both philosophy and Judaism on account of their inefficacy, ver. 19.and make the Greek philosophers and Jewish scribes ashamed to shew themselves, because they had darkened and corrupted, rather than enlightened and reformed the world, ver. 20.–That having thus experimentally shewn the inefficacy of philosophy, it pleased God, by the preaching of doctrines which to the philosophers appeared foolishness, to save them who believed, ver. 21.–And therefore, notwithstanding the Jews required the sign from heaven, in confirmation of the doctrines proposed to them, and the Greeks expected every doctrine to be conformable to their philosophical principles, the apostle preached salvation through Christ crucified, which he knew was to the Jews a stumbling-block, and to the Greeks foolishness, ver. 22, 23.—But to them who were called, or persuaded to believe the gospel, both Jews and Greeks, that doctrine was the powerful and wise means which God made use of for their salvation, ver. 24.—Therefore, said he, it is evident that the foolish doctrines of God have more wisdom in them than the wisest doctrines of men; and the weak instruments used by God, for accomplishing his purposes, are more effectual than the greatest exertions of human genius, ver. 25.
Having thus defended both the doctrines of the gospel, and the manner in which they were preached, the apostle very pro
perly proceeded to shew the Corinthians, the folly of boasting in their teachers, on account of their learning, their eloquence, their high birth, or their power. Look, said he, at the persons who have called you to the belief of the gospel ; not many philosophers, not many warriors, not many noblemen, have been employed to call you, ver. 26.—But God hath chosen for that purpose, unlearned persons, to put to shame the learned, ver. 27.
-by their success in enlightening and reforming the world, ver. 28.--that no flesh might take any honour to himself, in the
GREEK Text. CHAP. I. 1 Paul called i llavãos xantos anosokos to be an apostle of Jesus ingov Xpisov, dia SɛanuaTOS Christ, through the will Osov, xai Ewo Javns ó adɛ2of God, and Sosthenes our moe. brother,
2 Unto the church of 2 Tη εκκλησια του Θεου τη God which is at Corinth, ovon ev Kopv3w, hylaqueVOLS to them that are sanctified
ev Xpisą Inoov, xantos, in Christ Jesus, called to be saints, with all that in yous, OVV raol TOLS ETIXA AOVevery place call upon the MEVOLS TO ovoua TOU KUplov name of Jesus Christ our nuwv inoov Xpisov EV Tavti Lord, both theirs and ours. Ton@, AUTWV TE xai nuwvo
Ver. 1.-1. A called apostle. Because the faction pretended to entertain doubts of Paul's apostleship, chap. ix. 1. he began this letter with telling them, that he was not, like Matthias, an apostle made by men, neither did he assume the office by his own authority, but he was called to it by Christ himself, who for that purpose appeared to him from heaven, as he went to Damascus to persecute his disciples; and that in calling him to be an apostle, Christ acted by the appointment of God. So Ananias assured Paul, Acts xxii. 14, 15. Wherefore, in respect of the manner in which Paul was made an apostle, he was more honourable than all the other apostles. See Rom. i. 1. note 2.
2. Sosthenes. If this person was the chief ruler of the synagogue at Co. rinth, mentioned as active in persecuting Paul, Acts xviii. 17. we must sup.. pose that he was afterwards converted, and became an eminent preacher of the gospel : and having a considerable influence among the Corinthians, be joined in writing this letter, for the reasons mentioned, 1 Thess. Pref. sect. 2.
Ver. 2.-1. The church of God, &c. This is a much more august title than that mentioned, Gal. i. 2. The churches of Galatia.
2. To the sanctified. See Ess. iv. 53. and chap. vi. 11. note 2.
3. To the called into the fellowship of the saints; as the apostle himself explains it, ver. 9.
matter of converting and saving mankind, ver. 29.-the whole glory being due to God, ver. 30, 31. In this light, the mean birth and low station of the first preachers of the gospel, together with their want of literature and eloquence, instead of being objections to the gospel, are a strong proof of its divine original.
New TRANSLATION. I COMMENTARY.
CHAP. I. 1 Paul a CHAP. I. 1 Paul, a miracucalled apostlei of Jesus lously called apostle of Jesus Christ, Christ, by the will of God, agreeably to the will of God, and and Sosthenes ? mr bro- Sosthenes my fellow labourer in the ther,
gospel, 2 To the church of 2 To the worshippers of the true God, 'which is at Corinth; God, who are in Corinth ; to the sepato the sanctified? (ev, 172.) rated from the heathens, by their under Christ Jesus ; to the being under Jesus Christ ; to the callcalled ;3 to the saints ;4 with ed people of God; to those who all in every place 5 who merit the appellation of saints, becall on the name of our cause they have renounced idolatry, Lord Jesus Christ, 6 both and have devoted themselves to their and our LORD:7
serve the true God; with all in every place, who worship our Lord Jesus Christ, who is both their and our Lord who are Jews.
4. To the saints. See Ess. iv. 48. 1 Cor. vi. 1. where the saints are oppos. ed to the unrighteous, that is, to idolaters.
5. All in every place. Though this epistle was written to correct the dis.. orderly practices of the Corinthians, it contained many general instructions, which could not fail to be of use to all the brethren in the province of Achaia likewise, and even to Christians in every place : for which reason, the inscription consists of three members, and includes them all.
6. Call upon the name of our Lord Jesus. Tors TIXO udyons. This exi pression we have, Acts vii. 59. And they stoned Stephen, 17 ixandpevov, calling
upon Christ, and saying, Lord Jesus, receive my spirit. See also Acts ix. 14. xxü. 16. Rom. x. 12, 13, 14.- Praying to Christ was so much practised by the first Christians, that Pliny mentioned it in his letter to Trajan : Carmen Christo, quasi Deo, dicere, They sing with one another, a hymn to Christ as a God.
7. Both tbeir and our Lord. This the apostle mentioned in the beginning of his letter, to shew the Corinthians how absurd it was for the disciples of one master, to be divided into factions under particular leaders. Christ is the only Lord or master of all his disciples, whether they be Jews or Gentiles.
VOL. II. 3
3 Grace be unto you, 3 Χαρις υμιν και ειρηνη and peace from God our απο Θεου πατρος ημων, και Father, and from the Lord Κυριου Ιησου Χριςου. Jesus Christ.
4 I thank my God al- 4 Ευχαριςω τω Θεω μου ways on your behalf, for παντοτε περι υμων, επι τη the grace of God which is γαριτι του Θεου τη δοθειση given you by Jesus Christ; υμιν εν Χριςω Ιησου"
5 That in every thing 5 “Οτι εν παντι επλουτιye are enriched by him, in σθητε εν αυτω, εν παντι λοall utterance, and in all γω και παση γνωσει, knowledge ;
6 Even as the testimony 6 Καθως το μαρτυριον του of Christ was confirmed Χριςου εβεβαιωθη εν υμιν. in you.
7 So that yo come be- 7 Ωςε υμας μη ύςερεισhind in no gift; waiting θαι εν μηδενι χαρισματι, for the coming of our resuden
' απεκδεχομενους την αποκαLord Jesus Christ..
λυψιν του Κυρίου ημών Ιησου
Χριςου. 8 Who shall also con- 8 ος και βεβαιωσει υμας firm you unto the end, that έως τελους ανεγκλητους εν τη we may be blameless in the ημερα του Κυρίου ημών Ιησου day of our Lord Jesus Christ.
Ver. 4.-1. On account of the grace of God, that is, on account of the spiritual gifts. For so the grace of God signifies, Rom. xii. 6. Having gifts differing according to the grace that is given to us. See also Ephes. iv. 7, 8. 1 Pet. iv. 10. That grace hath this signification here, is evident from ver. 5.
Ver. 5.-1. With all speech. Ev cayTo 109m, with all sorts of languages. From chap. xiv. we learn that many of the Gentiles at Corinth, as well as of the Jews, were endowed with the gift of tongues.
2. And all knowledge. See 1 Cor. xii. 8. note 2. What is here said concerning the enriching of the Corinthians with all knowledge, is to be understood chiefly of the spiritual men among the Jewish converts ; for most of the Gentile converts at Corinth, were fleshly or weak persons, and babes in Christ, chap. iii. 1. 3.
Ver. 6.–1. When the testimony of Christ : the testimony concerning Christ. So the phrase signifies, 2 Tim. i. 8. See Ess. iv. 24.
Ver. 7.-1. So that ye come bebind in no gift. The apostle speaks here, not of individuals, but of the church at Corinth, as having in it spiritual men, who possessed all the different spiritual gifts which common believers
3 Grace BE to you, and 3 May gracious dispositions be to peace (see Rom. i. 7. note you, with peace, temporal and eternal, 3.) from God our Father, from God our Father, and from the and FROM the Lord Jesus Lord Jesus Christ, by whom God Christ.
dispenses these blessings. 4 I give thanks to my 4 In my prayers, 1 give thanks to God always concerning you, my God always concerning you, on acon account of the grace of count of the grace of God, which was God which was given to given to you through the powerful you, (ev, 167.) through Jesus operation, and agreeably to the will Christ:
. of Jesus Christ : , 5 That ye were enriched 5 I mean, that ye were enriched (cv) with every gift, (see with every spiritual sift by Jesus ver. 7.) by him, EvEN WITH Christ; and in particular, with all all speech,' and all know. sorts of languages, and with a great ledge, 2
measure of inspired knowledge, 6 (K-10, 202.) When 6 When our testimony concerning the testimony of Christ Christ, as the Son of God and Sawas confirmed (ev, 172.) viour of the world, was confirmed among you:
among you, by the miracles which I wrought, and the spiritual gifts I
conferred on you. 7 So that ye come be- 7 So that ye come bihind other hind in no gift, 1 waiting churches, in no gift ; firmly expectfor the revelation (see l ing the revelation of our Lord Jesus Pet. i. 7. note 2.) of our Christ as the Son of God, by his apLord Jesus Christ. pearing in the glory of the Father
to judge the world. 8 (“Os, 61.) Hei also 8 He (God, ver. 4.) also will conwill confirm you until the firm you, until the end, in the belief end, without accusation, in of that testimony ; so as to be withthe day of our Lord Jesus out just cause of accusation, in the Christ.
day of the revelation of our Lord Jesus Christ.
could enjoy. Accordingly he asked them, 2. Cor. xii. 13. Wbat is the thing wberein ye have been inferior to other churches ? See 2 Cor. xii. 12. note 3.
Ver. 8.-1. He also will confirm you. 'Os, here, is not the relative, but the personal pronoun. For the following verse shews that the person spoken of, is God, mentioned ver. 4. I give thanks to my God, &c.
2. Without accusation. The apostle in this, expresses only his charitable judgment, not of individuals, but of the body of the Corinthian church. For by no stretch of charity could he hope, that every individual of a church in which there were such great disorders, would be unaccusable at the day of judgment. See 1 Thess. iii. 13. note 2.