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TEXT. 4 And that, because of false brethren, unawares brought in, who
came in privily to spy out our liberty, which we have in Christ Jesus, that they might bring us into bondage.
PARAPHRASE. preached to the gentiles, to the eminent men of the
church at Jerusalem, yet neither * Titus who was with 4 me, being a greek, was forced to be circumcised: Nort
did I yield any thing, one moment, by way of subjection $ to the law, to those false brethren, who, by an unwary admittance, were slily crept in, to spy out
NOTES. plant, by urging, that the apostles knew not what it was that he preached, nor had ever owned it for the gospel, or him for an apostle. Of the readiness of the judaizing seducers, to take any such advantage against him, he had lately an example in the church of Corinth.
3 * š x hvayxágon is rightly translated, 66 was not compelled," a plain evidence to the galatians, that the circumcising of the convert gentiles, was no part of the gospel which he laid before these men of note, as what he preached in the gentiles. For if it had, Titus must have been circumcised ; for no part of his gospel was blamed, or altered by thiem, ver. 6. Of wbat other use his mentioning this, of Tirus here can be, but to show to the galatians, that what he preached, contained nothing of circumcising the convert gentiles, it is hard to find. If it were to show that the other apostles, and church at Jerusalem, dispensed with circumcision, and other ritual observances of the Mosaical law, that was needless; for that was sufficiently declared by their decree, Acts xv, which was made and communicated to the churches, before this epistle was writ, as may be seen, Acts xvi. 4, much less was this of Tilus of any force, to prove that St. Paul was a true apostle, if that were what he was here labouring to justify. But considering his aim here, to be the clearing himself from a report, that he preached up circumcision, there could be nothing more to his purpose, than this instance of Titus, whom, uncircumcised as he was, he took with him to Jerusalem ; uncircumcised he kept with bim there, and uncircumcised he took back with him, when he returned. This was a strong and pertinent instance to persuade the galatians that the report of his preaching circumcision was a mere aspersion.
4 + cidè, “ Neither,” in the third verse, according to propriety of speech, ought to have a “nor," to answer it, which is the s'oè, “ nor," here; which, so taken, answers the propriety of the Greek, and very much clears the sense ; s Titos Avayxkoon, de apos @paverčQuev, “ Neither was Titus compelled, nor • did we yield to them a noment."
I Tñ ÚTotayñ, “by subjection.” The point those false brethren contended for, was, That the law of Moses was to be kept, see Acts xv. 5. St. Paul, who, on other occasions, was so complaisant, that to the jews he became as a jew, to those under the law, as under the law (see 1 Cor. ix. 19–22), yet when subjection to the law was claimed, as due in any case, he would not yield the least matter; this I take to be his meaning of dè & PEQJLEV Tñ ÚT OTayñ for, where compliance was desired of him, upon the account of expedience, and not of subjection to the law, we do not find it stiff and inflexible, as may be seen, Acts xxi, 18—26, which was after the writing of this epistle,
5 To whom we gave place by subjection, no not for an hour ; that
the truth of the gospel might continue with you. 6 But of these, who seemed to be somewhat (whatsoever they
were, it maketh no matter to me; God accepteth no man's per
our liberty from the law, which we have under the
gospel : that they might bring us into bondage * to 5 the law. But I stood my ground against it, that the 6 trutht of the gospel might remain f among you. But
as for those y, who were really men || of eminency and
* “ Bondage,” What this bondage was, see Acts xv. 1,5, 10.
5 + " The truth of the gospel.” By it he means here, the doctrine of freedom from the law; and su he calls it again, ver. 14, and chap. iii. l, and iv. 16.
“ Might remain among you.” Here he tells the reason himself, why he yielded not to those judaizing false brethren: it was, that the true doctrine, which he had preached to the geutiles, of their freedom from the law, night stand firm. A convincing argument to the galatians, that he preached not circumcision.
4, 5. “ And that,- to whom.” There appears a manifest difficulty in these two verses, which has been observed by most interpreters, and is by several ascribed to a redundancy, which some place in dè, in the beginning of ver. 4, and others to is in the beginning of ver. 5. The relation between 8è, ver. 2, and do?, ver. 5, methinks puts an easy end to the doubt, by the showing si. Paul's sense to be, that he neither circumcised Titus, nor yielded in the least to the false brethren ; he having told the galatians, That, upon his laying, before the men of most authority in the church at Jerusalem, the doctrine which he preached, Tilus was not circumcised; he, as a further proof of his not preaching circumcision, tells them how he carried it toward the false brethren, whose design it was, to bring the convert gentiles into subjection to the law. *« And,” or “ moreover,” (for so dè often signifies) says he, “ in regard to the * false brethren,” &c. Which way of entrance on the matter, would not ad. mit of idè after it, to answer šoè, ver. 3, which was already writ, but without" oss the negation must have been expressed by éx, as any one will perceive, who attentively reads the Greek original. And thus ois may be allowed for an Hebrew pleonasm, and the reason of it to be the preventing the former fè to stand alone, to the disturbance of the sense.
6 9 He that considers the beginning of this verse, atò SÈ TÔ Soxbytwy, with regard to the Aid &è Tès peu adé2085, in the beginning of the fourth verse, will easily be induced, by the Greek idiom, to conclude, that the auihor, by these beginnings, intimates a plain distinction of the matter separately treated of, in what follows each of them, viz. what passed between the false brethren, and him, contained in ver. 4 and 5, and what passed between the chief of the brethren and him, contained ver. 6-10. And therefore, some (and I think with reason) introduce this verse with these words : “ Thus we have behaved " ourselves towards the false brethren ; but,” &c. . | Toy CoxévtWY Elvelu T1, our translation renders," who seemed to be some“ what” which however it may answer the words, yet to an English ear it car
TEXT. son:) for they, who seemed to be somewhat, in conference added nothing to me. 7 But contrariwise, when they saw that the gospel of the uncircum
PARAPHRASE. value, what they were heretofore, it matters not at all to me: God accepts not the person of any man, but communicates the gospel to whom he pleases *, as he has done to me by revelation, without their help; for, in their conference with me, they added nothing to me, they taught me nothing new, nor that Christ
had not taught me before, nor had they any thing to ng object against what I preached to the gentiles. But
on the contrary, †James, Peter, and John, who were
ries a diminishing and ironical sense, contrary to the meaning of the apostle, who speaks here of those, for whom he had a real esteem, and were truly of the first rank; for it is plain, by what follows, that he means Peter, James, and John. Besides, oi dox ytes, being taken in a good sense, ver. 2, and translated, “ those of reputation," the same expression should have been kept in rendering ver. 6 and 9, where the same term occurs again three times, and may be presumed in the same sense that it was at first used in ver. 2.
* Every body sees that there is something to be supplied to make up the sense; most commentators, that I have seen, add these words, “ I learned nothing :" but then, that enervates the reason that follows, “ for in conference they added « nothing to me,” giving the same thing as a reason for itself, and making St. Paul talk thus; “ I learnt nothing of them, for they taught me nothing." But it is very good reasoning, and suited to his purpose, that it was nothing at all to him how much those great men were formerly in Christ's favour: this hindered not but that God, who was no respecter of persons, might reveal the gospel to him also, as it was evident he had done, and that in its full perfection; for those great men, the most eminent of the apostles, had nothing to add to it, or except agaiost it. This was proper to persuade the galatians, that he had no-where, in his preaching, receded from that doctrine of freedom from the law, which he had preached to them, and was satisfied it was the truth, even before he had conferred with these apostles. The bare supplying of oi, in the beginning of the verse, takes away the necessity of any such addition. Examples of the like ellipses we have, Matt. xxvii. 9, where we read áno Únor, for os ato úswv; and John xvi, 17. &x Tv Mahntūr, for oi &x Tūv paOntwv; and so here, taking από των δοκώντων, to be for oι από των δοκώντων, all the difficulty is removed : and St. Paul having in the foregoing verse ended the narrative of his deportment towards the false brethren, he here begins an acconnt of whit passed between him and the chief of the apostles.
+ Peter, James, and John, who, it is manifest, by ver. 9, are the persons here spoken of, seem, of all the apostles, to have been most in esteem and favour with their master, during his conversation with them on earth. See Mark v. 37, and ix. 2, and xiv. 33. “ But yet that,” says St. Paul, “ is of no " moment now to mę. The gospel, which I preach, and which God, who is “ no respecter of persons, has been pleased to commit to me by immediate
cision was committed unto me, as the gospel of the circumcision was unto Peter ; 8 (For he that wrought effectually in Peter, to the apostleship of
the circumcision, the same was mighty in me towards the Gen
tiles) 9 And when James, Cephas, and John, who seemed to be pillars,
perceived the grace that was given unto me, they gave to me and Barnabas the right hands of fellowship ; that we should go unto the heathen, and they unto the circumcision.
of reputation, and justly esteemed to be pillars, perceiving that the gospel which was to be preached to the gentiles, was committed to me; as that which
was to be preached to the Jews was committed to 8 Peter; (For he that had wrought powerfully * in
Peter, to his executing the office of an apostle to the
Jews, had also wrought powerfully in me, in my ap9 plication and apostleship, to the gentiles ;) And,
knowing + the favour that was bestowed on me, gave me and Barnabas the right hand † of fellowship, that we should preach the gospel to the gentiles, and they
6 revelation, is not the less true, nor is there any reason for me to recede from “ it, in a tittle; for these men of the first rank could find nothing to add, o alter, or gainsay in it.” This is suitable to St. Paul's design here, to let the galatians see, that as he, in his carriage, had never favoured circumcision; so neither had he any reason, by preaching circumcision, to forsake the doctrine of liberty from the law, which he had preached to them as a part of that gospel, which he had received by revelation.
8 * Evepyhoas, “ working in,” may be understood here to signify, both the operation of the spirit upon the mind of St. Peter and St. Paul, in sending them, the one to the jews, the other to the gentiles: and also the Holy Ghost bestowed on them, whereby they were cnabled to do miracles for the confirmation of their doctrine. In neither of which St. Paul, as he shows, was inferior, and so had as authentic a seal of his mission and doctrine.
9 + Kal, “ and,” copulates yvóvTES, “ knowing,” in this verse, with 186vTES, “ seeing," ver. 7, and makes both of them to agree with the nominative case to the verb towxav, “ gave," which is no other but James, Cephas, and John, and so justifies my transferring those names to ver. 7, for the more easy construction and understanding of the text, though St. Paul defers the naming of them, until he is, as it were against his will, forced to it, before the end of his
discourse. it. The giving "the right hand,” was a symbol amongst the jews, as well as other nations, of accord, admitting men into fellowship.
TEXT. 10 Only they would that we should remember the poor; the same
which I also was forward to do. 11 But when Peter was come to Antioch, I withstood him to the
face, because he was to be blamed. 12 For, before that certain came from James, he did eat with the
gentiles : but, when they were come, he withdrew and separated
himself, fearing them which were of the circumcision. 13 And the other jews dissembled likewise with him; insomuch
that Barnabas also was carried away with their dissimulation,
PARAPHRASE. 10 to the children of Israel. All that they proposed, was,
that we should remember to make collections among
the gentiles, for the poor christians of Judea, which 11 was a thing that of myself I was forward to do. But
when Peter came to Antioch, I openly opposed * him 12 to his face: for, indeed, he was to be blamed. For.
he conversed there familiarly with the gentiles, and eat with them, until some jews came thither from James: then he withdrew, and separated from the
gentiles, for fear of those who were of the circum13 cision : And the rest of the jews joined also with him
in this hypocrisy, insomuch that Barnabas himself
11 *“ I opposed him.” From this opposition to St. Peter, which they suppose to be before the council at Jerusalem, some would have it that this epistle to the galatians was writ before that council; as if what was done before the council, could not be mentioned in a letter writ after the council. They also contend, that this journey, mentioned here by St. Paul, was not that wherein he and Barnabas went up to that council to Jerusalem, but that mentioned Acts xi, 30, but this, with as little ground as the former. The strongest reason they bring is, that if this journey had been to the council, and this letter after that council, St. Paul would not certainly have omitted to have mentioned to the galatians that decree. To which I answer, 1. The mention of it was superfluous; for they had it already, see Acts xvi. 4. 2. The mention of it was impertinent to the design of St. Paul's narrative here. For it is plain, that his aim, in what he relates of himself, and his past actions, is to show, that having received the gospel from Christ, by immediate revelation, he had all along preached that, and nothing but that, every-where ; so that he could not be sup. posed to have preached circumcision, or by his carriage to have shown auy subjection to the law; all the whole narrative following, being to make good what he says, ch. i. ll, " That the gospel which he preached, was not ac“ commodated to the humouring of men; nor did he seek to please the jews “ (who were the men here meant) in what he taught." Taking this to be his aim, we shall find the whole account he gives of himself, from that ver. 11, of ch. i. to the end of this second, to be very clear and easy, and very proper to invalidate the report of his preaching circumcision.