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TEXT. father of many nations, according to that which was spoken,
“ So shall thy seed be.” 19 And being not weak in faith, he considered not his own body
now dead, when he was about an hundred years old, neither yet
the deadness of Sarah's womb. 20 He staggered not at the promise of God, through unbelief; but
was strong in faith, giving glory to God: 21 And being fully persuaded, that what he had promised, he was
able also to perform. 22 And, therefore, it was imputed to him for righicousness. 23 Now it was not written for his sake alone, that it was imputed
to him; 24 But for us also, to whom it shall be imputed, if we believe on
him that raised up Jesus our Lord from the dead, 25 Who was delivered for our offences, and was raised again for our justification.
PARAPHRASE. should become the father of many nations, according to what God had spoken, by God's showing him
the stars of heaven, saying, So shall thy seed be. 19 And being firm and unshaken in his faith, he re
garded not his own body, now dead, he being about
an hundred years old; nor the deadness of Sarah's 20 womb; He staggered not at the promise of God,
through unbelief, but was strong in faith, thereby 21 giving glory to God; By the full persuasion he had,
that God was able to perform what he had promis22 ed : And therefore it was accounted to him for 23 righteousness. Now this, of its being reckoned to 24 him, was not written for his sake alone, But for ours
also, to whom faith also will be reckoned for righ
teousness, viz. to as many as believe in him, who 25 raised Jesus our Lord from the dead. *, Who was
delivered to death for our offences t, and was raised again for our justification 1.
NOTES, 24 * St. Paul seems to mention this here, in particular, to show the analogy between Abraham's faith, and that of believers, under the gospel: see ver. 17.
25 + See Rom. iii. 25, und v. 6, 10, Epb. i. 7, 11, 14, and v. 2, Col. i. 14, 20—22, I Tim. ji, 6, Tit. ii. 14.
II Cor. xv. 17. I have set down all these texts out of st. Paul, that in them might be seen his own explication of what he says here, viz. that our Saviour, by his death, atoned for our sins, and so we were innocent, and thereby freed from the punishment due to sin. But he rose again, to ascertain to us eternal
NOTE. life, the consequence of justification; for the reward of righteousness is eternal life, which inheritance we have a title to, by adoption in Jesus Christ. But; if he himself had not that inheritance, if he had not rose into the possession of eternal life, we who hold by and under him, could not have risen from the dead, and so could never have come to be pronounced righteous, and to have received the reward of it, everlasting life. Hence St. Paul tells us, I Cor. xv. 17, that " if Christ be not raised, our faith is vain, we are yet in our sins," i. e, as lo the aitajoment of eternal lise, it is all one as if our sins were not forgiven. And thus lie rose for our justification, i. e. to assure to us eternal life, the consequence of justification. And this I think is confirmed by our Saviour in these words, " because I live, ye shall live also,” John xiv. 19.
CHAP. V. 1-11
St. Paul, in the foregoing chapters, has examined the glorying of the jews, and their valuing themselves so highly above the gentiles, and shown the vanity of their boasting in circumcision and the law, since neither they, nor their father Abraham, were justified, or found acceptance with God, by circumcision, or the deeds of the law : and therefore they had no reason so as they did to press circumcision and the law on the gentiles, or exclude those who had them not, from being the people of God, and unfit for their communion, in and under the gospel. In this section, he comes to show what the convert gentiles, by faith, without circumcision, or the law, had to glory in, viz. the hope of glory, ver. 2, their sufferings for the gospel, ver. 3. And God as their God, ver. 11. In these three it is easy to observe the thread and coherence of St. Paul's discourse here, the intermediate verses, (according to that abounding with matter and overflowing of thought, he was filled with) being taken up with an accidental train of considerations, to show the reason they had to glory in tribulations.
TEXT. 1 Therefore being justified by faith, we have peace with God,
through our Lord Jesus Christ. 2 By whom also we have access, by faith, into this grace, whierein
we stand, and rejoice in hope of the glory of God. 3 And not only so, but we glory in tribulations also, knowing that
tribulation worketh patience; 4. And patience, experience ; and experience, hope; 5 And hope maketh not ashamed, because the love of God is shed
abroad in our hearts, by the Holy Ghost, which is given unto us. 6 For, when we were yet without strength, in due time Christ died
for the ungodly.
PARAPHRASE. 1 THEREFORE, being justified by faith, we* have peace 2 with God, through our Lord Jesus Christ, By whom we have had admittance, through faith, into that fa
vour, in which we have stood, and glory + in the hope 3 of the glory, which God has in store for us. And not
only so, but we glory in tribulation also, knowing 4 that tribulation worketh patience; And patience
giveth us a proof of ourselves, which furnishes us with 5 hope ; And our hope maketh not ashamed, will not
deceive us, because † the sense of the love of God is
poured out into our hearts by the Holy Ghost, which is 6 given unto us (a). For, when the gentiles were yet
NOTES. 1 * « We," i. e. we gentiles that are not under the law. It is in their names, that St. Paul speaks, in the three last verses of the foregoing chapter, and ali through this section, as is evident from the illation here, “ therefore being jus“ tified by faith, we.” It being an inference, drawn from his having proved, in the former chapter, that the promise was not to the jews alone, but to the gentiles also : and that justification was, not by the law, but by faith, and consequently designed for the gentiles, as well as the jew's.
2 + Kavya usda, " we glory.” The same word here for the convert gentiles, that he had used before, for the boasting of the jews, and the same word be used, where he examined what Abraham had found. The taking notice whereof, as we have already observed, may help to lead us into the apostle's sense : and plainly shows us here, that St. Paul, in this section, opposes the advantages the gentile converts to christianity have, by faith, to those the jews gloried in, with so much haughtiness and contempt of the gentiles.
5 “Because.” (a) The force of this inference seems to stand thus : the hope of eternal happiness, which we glory in, cannot deceive us, because the gifts of the Holy Ghost, bestowed upon us, assure us of the love of God towards us, the jews themselves acknowledging that the Holy Ghost is given to none, but those who are God's own people,
TEXT. 7 For scarcely for a righteous man will one die: yet peradventure,
for a good man some would even dare to die. 8 But God commendeth his love towards us, in that, while we were
yet sinners, Christ died for us. 9 Much more then, being now justified by his blood, we shall be
saved from wrath through him.
PARAPHRASE. without strength (6), void of all help, or ability to deliver ourselves, Christ, in the time that God had appointed and foretold, died for us, who lived
without the acknowledgment and worship of the 7 true God (6). Scarce is it to be found that any one
will die for a just man, if peradventure one should 8 dare to die for a good man ; But God recommends,
and herein shows the greatness of his love * towards
us, in that, whilst we gentiles were a mass of 9 profligate sinners t, Christ died for us. Much
NOTES. 8 * Another evidence St. Paul gives them here, of the love of God towards them, and the ground they had to glory in the hopes of eternal salvation, is the death of Christ for them, whilst they were yet in their gentile state, which he describes by calling them,
6,8 t (6) 'Addsveīs, “ without strength; " 'Aosbīs, “ungodly;" 'Apapiwnos, “ sinners;” 'Ex@pol, “ enemies :" these four epithets are given to them as gentiles, they being used by St. Paul, as the proper attributes of the heathen world, as considered in contra-distinction to the jewish nation. What St. Paul says of the gentiles, in other places, will clear this. The helpless condition of the gentile world in the state of gentilism, signified by dobaveis, without strength, he terms, Col. ii. 13, dead in sin, a state, if any, of weakness. And hence he says to the Romans, converted to Jesus Christ, “ yield yourselves unto God, as “ those that are alive from the dead, and yourselves as instruments of righte“ ousness unto God," chap. vi. 13. How he describes a obecav, ungodliness, mentioned chap. i. 18, as the proper state of the gentiles, we may see, ver. 21, 23. That he thought the title à uaptwhol, “ sinners,” belonged peculiarly to the gentiles, in contra-distinction to the jews, he puts it past doubt, in these words: “ we who are jews by nature, and not sinners of the gentiles,” Gal. ii. 15. See also chap. vi. 17--22. And as for typol, “ enemies,” you have the gentiles before their conversion to christianity so called, Col. i. 21. St. Paul, Eph. ii. 1-13, describes the heathen a little more at large, but yet the parts of the character he there gives them we may find comprized in these four epithets : the åsbeveīs, “ weak,” ver 1, 5, the acestīs, “ ungodly," and droplwroi,“ sin“ ners,” ver. 2, 3, and the ex@pol, “ enemies," ver. 11, 12
If it were remembered that St. Paul all along, through the eleven first chapters of this epistle, speaks nationally of the jews and gentiles, as it is visible he does, and not personally of single men, there would be less difficulty, and fewer mis. takes, in understanding this epistle. This one place, we are upon, is a sufficient instance of it. For if, by these terms here, we shall understand bim to denote NOTE.
all men personally, jews as well as gentiles, hefore they are savingly ingrafted into Jesus Christ, we shall make his discourse here disjointed, and his sense mightily perplexed, if at all consistent.
That there were some among the heathen as innocent in their lives, and as far from enmity to God, as some among the jews, cannot be questioned. Nay, that many of them were not dosesīs, but gebuevos, worshippers of the true God, if we could doubt of it, is manifest out of the Acts of the Apostles ; but yet St. Paul, in the places above quoted, pronounces them altogether åpeesīs, or å Deod, (for that, by these two terms, applied to the same persons, be means the same, i. e, such as did not acknowledge and worship the true God, seems plain) ungodly, and sinners of the gentiles, as nationally belonging to them, in contradistinction to the people of the jews, who were the peuple of God, whilst the other were the provinces of the kingdom of Satan : not but that there were sinners, heinous sinners among the jews : but the nation, considered as one body and society of men, disowned and declared against, and opposell itself to, those crimes and impurities, which are mentioned by St. Paul, chap. i. 24, &c. as woven into the religious and politic constitutions of the geutiles. There they had their full scope and swing, had allowance, countenance, and protection. The idolatrous nations had, by their religion, laws, and forms of government, made themselves the open votaries, and were the professed subjects of devils. So St. Paul, I Cor. x. 20, 21, truly calls the gods they worshipped and paid their bomage to. And suitably hereunto, their religious observances, it is well known, were not without great impurities, which were of right charged upon them, when they had a place in their sacred offices, and had the recommendation of religion, to give them credit. The rest of the vices, in St. Paul's black list, which were not warmed at their altars, and fostered in their temples, were yet, by the connivance of the law, cherished in their private houses, and inade a part of the uncondemned actions of common life, and had the countenance of custom to authorize them, even in the best regulated and most civilized governments of the heathen. On the contrary, the frame of the jewish cominonwealth was founded on the acknowledgment and worship of the one only, true, and invisible God, and their laws required an extraordinary purity of life, and strictness of manners.
That the gentiles were styled šypol, “ enemies," in a political or national sense, is plain from Eph. ii, where they were called, “ aliens from the cominon“ wealth of Israel, and strangers from the covenant." Abraham, on the other side, was called, the friend of God, i. e, one in covenant with him, and his professed subject, that owned God to the world: and so were his posterity, the people of the jews, whilst the rest of the world were under revolt, iind lived in open rebellion against him, vid. Isa, xli. 8. And here in this epistle St. Paul expressly teaches, that when the nation of the jews by rejecting of the Messias put them:selves out of the kingdom of God, and were cast oft', from being any longer the people of God, they became enemies, and the gentile world were reconciled. See chap. xi. 15, 28. Hence St. Paul, who was the apostle of the gentiles, calls his performing that office, the ministry of reconciliation, 2 Cor. v. 18. And here in this chapter, ver. I, the privilege, which they receive, by the accepring of the covenant of grace in Jesus Christ, he tells them is this, that they have peace with God, i. e, are no longer incorporated with his enemies, and of the party of the open rebels against him, in the kingdom of Satan, being returned to their natural allegiance, in their owning the one, true, supreme God, in submitting to the kingdom he had set up in his son, and being received by him as his subjecis. Suitably hereunto St. Jaines, speaking of the conversion of the gentiles to the profession of the gospel, says of it, that “ God did visit the “ gentiles, to take out of them a people for his name.” Acts xv. 14, and ver. 19, he calls the converts, those who, “ from among the gentiles, are turned to God."