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TEXT. 27 For this is my covenant unto them, when I shall take away their
sins. 28 As concerning the gospel, they are enemies for your sakes: but
as touching the election, they are beloved for the fathers' sakes. 29 For the gifts and calling of God are without repentance. 30 For as ye, in times past, have not believed God, yet have now
obtained mercy, through their unbelief:
PARAPHRASE. “ liverer, and shall turn away ungodliness from Ja. 27 « cob. For this is my covenant to them, when I 28 “ shall take away * their sins.” They are, indeed, at
present, strangers to the gospel, and so are in the state of enemies t; but this is for your sakes: their fall and loss is your enriching, you having obtained admittance, through their being cast out : but yet they, being within the election, that God made, of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, and their posterity, to be his people,
are still his beloved people, for Abraham, Isaac, and 29 Jacob's sake, from whom they are descended. For
the favours, that God showed those their fathers, in calling them and their posterity to be his people,
he doth not repent of; but his promise, that they 30 shall be his people, shall stand good f. For as you,
the gentiles, formerly stood out, and were not the people of God, but yet have now obtained mercy, TEXT. 31 Even so have these also now not believed, that, through your
27 * “ Take away," i. e. forgive their sins, and take away the punishment they lie under for them. ,28 + 'Bx@coi, “ enemies," signifies strangers, or aliens, i. e. such as are no Jonger the people of God. For they are called “ enemies,” in opposition to “ beloved," in this very verse. And the reason given, why they are enemies, makes it plain, that this is the sense, viz. for the gentiles sake, i, e. they are reiected from being the people of God, that you' gentiles may be taken iv, to be the people of God in their room, ver. 30. The same signification has sz@pos, 66 enemies," chap. v. 10, xat" súaSyérsoy &x@pci, “ as concerning the gospel ene. “ mjes," i. e, all those, who not embracing the gospel, not receiving Christ for their king and lord, are aliens from the kingdom of God, and all such aliens are called typol, “ enemies.” And so indeed were the jews now: but yet they were xat excoyinin dyarnlod, “ as touching the election beloved," i. e. were not actually within the kingdom of God, his people, but were within the election, which God had made of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, and their posterity to be his people, and so Ciod had still intentions of kindness to them, for their fathers sake, to make them again his people.
29 į So God's not repenting is explained, Numb. xxiii, 19-24.
mercy, they also may obtain mercy. 32 For God hath concluded them all in unbelief, that he might
have mercy upon all.
PARAPHRASE. so as to be taken in, through the standing out of the 31 jews, who submit not to the gospel *: Even so they,
now, have stood out, by reason of your being in mercy admitted, that they also, through the mercy
you have received, may again hereafter be admitted. 32 For. God hath put up together, in a state of revolt
from their allegiance † to him, as it were in one fold,
NOTES. 30 * See Acts xiii. 46.
32 + Eiz anodelav, “ in unbelief.” The unbelief here charged nationally, on jews and gentiles, in their turns, in this and the two preceding verses w bereby they ceased to be the people of God, was evidently the disowning of his domi. nion, whereby they put themselves out of the kingdom, which he had, and ought to have in the world, and so were no longer in the state of subjects, but aliens and rehels. A general view of mankind will lead us into an easier conception of St. Paul's doctrine, who, all through this epistle, considers the gentiles, jews, and christians, as three distinct bodies of inen.
God, by creation, had no doubt an unquestionable sovereignty over mankind, and this was at first acknowledged, in their sacrifices and worship of him. Afterwards they withdrew themselves from their submission to him, and found out other gods, whom they worshipped and served. This revolt from God, and the consequence of it, God's abandoning them, St. Paul describes, chap. i. 18-32.
In this state of revolt from God were the nations of the earth, in the times of Abraham; and then Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, and their posterity, the israel. ites, upon God's gracious call, returned to their allegiance to their ancient and rightful King and Sovereign, to own the one invisible God, Creator of heaven and earth, for their God, and so become his people again, to whom he, as to his peculiar people, gave a law. And thus remained the distinction between jews and gentiles, i.e. the nations, as the word signifies, till the time of the Messiah, and then the jews ceased to be the people of God, not by a direct renouncing the God of Israel, and taking to themselves other false gods, whom they worship. ped: but by opposing and rejecting tre kingdom of God, which he purposed at that time to set up, with new laws and institutions, and to a more glorious and spiritual purpose, under his son Jesus Christ : him God sent to them, and him the nation of the jews refused to receive as their lord and ruler, though he was their promised king and deliverer, answering all the prophecies and types of him, and evidencing his mission by his miracles. By this rebellion against him, into whose hand God had committed the rule of his kingdom, and appointed lord over all things, the jews turned themselves out of the kingdom of God, and ceased to be his people, who had now no other people but ihose, who received and obeyed his son, as their lord and ruler. This was the date10 Eld, “ unbelief," here spoken of. And I would be glad to know any other sense of believing, or unbelief, wherein it can be nationally attributed to a people (as visible here it is) wbereby they shall cease, or come to be the people of God, or visible subjects
TEXT. 83 O the depth of the riches both of the wisdom and knowledge of
God! how unsearchable are his judgments, and his ways past
finding out! 34 For who hath known the mind of the Lord, or who hath been
his counsellor ? 35 Or who hath first given to him, and it shall be recompensed unto
him again? 36 For of him, and through him, and to him, are all things : to
whom be glory for ever. Amen.
PARAPHRASE. all men, both jews and gentiles, that, through his mercy, they might all, both jews and gentiles, come to be his people, i. e. he hath suffered both jews and gentiles, in their turns, not to be his people, that he
might bring the whole body both of jews and gen33 tiles, to be his people. O the depth of the riches of .
the wisdom and knowledge of God *! How un
searchable are his judgments, and his ways not to be 34 traced! For who hath known the mind of the Lord ; 35 or who hath sat in counsel with him? Or who hath
been before-hand with him, in bestowing any thing
upon him, that God may repay it to him again t? 36 The thought of any such thing is absurd. For
from him all things have their being and original ;
NOTES. of his kingdom, here on earth. Indeed, to enjoy life and estate in this, as well as other kingdoms, not only the owning of the Prince, and the authority of his laws, but also obedience to them is required. For a jew might own the autho. rity of God, and his law given by Moses, and so be a true subject, and as much a member of the commonwealth of Israel, as any one in it, and yet forfeit his life, by disobedience to the law. And a christian may own the authority of Jesus Christ, aud of the gospel, and yet forfeit eternal life, by his disobedience of the precepts of it, as may be seen chap. vii. viii. and ix.
33 * This emphatical conclusion seeins, in a special manner, to regard the jews, whom the apostle would hereby teach modesty and submission to the ever. ruling band of the all-wise God, whom they are very unfit to call to account, for his dealing so favourably with the gentiles. His wisdom and ways are infinitely above their comprehension, and will they take upon them to advise him what to do? Or is God in their debt? Let them say for what, and he shall repay it to them. This is a very strong rebuke to the jews, but delivered, as we see, io a way very gentle and inoffensive. A method, which the apostle endeavours et ery where to observe, towards his nation.
35 † This has a manifest respect to the jews, who claimed a right to be the people of God so far, that St. Paul, chap. ix. 14, finds it necessary to vindicate the justice of God in the case, and does here, in this question, expose and silence the folly of any such pretence.
PARAPHRASE: by him they are all ordered and disposed of, and, for him and his glory, they are all made and regulated, to whom be glory for ever. Amen. :
CHAP. XII. 1-21.
CONTENTS. ST. PAUL, in the end of the foregoing chapter, with a very solemn epiphonema, closes that admirable, evangelical discourse, to the church at Rome, which had taken up the eleven foregoing chapters. It was addressed to the two sorts of converts, yiz. gentiles and jews, into which, as into two distinct bodies, he all along, through this epistle, divides all mankind, and considers them, as so divided, into two separate corporations.
1. As to the gentiles, he endeavours to satisfy them, that though they, for their apostacy from God to idolatry, and the worship of false gods, had been abandoned by God, and lived in sin and blindness, without God in the world, strangers from the knowledge and acknowledgment of him; yet that the mercy of God, through Jesus Christ, was extended to them, whereby there was a way now open to them, to become the people of God. For since no man could be saved, by his own righteousness, no not the jews themselves, by the deeds of the law; the only way to salvation, both for jews and gentiles, was by faith in Jesus Christ. Nor had the jews any other way, now, to continue themselves the people of God, than by receiving the gospel ; which way was opened also to the gentiles, and they as freely admitted into the kingdom of God, now erected under Jesus Christ, as the jews, and upon the sole terms of believing. So that there was no need at all for the gentiles to be circumcised, to become jews, that they might be partakers of the benefits of the gospel. i 2. As to the jews, the apostle's, other great aim, in the foregoing discourse, is to remove the offence the jews took at the gospel, because the gentiles were received into the church, as the people of God, and were allowed to be subjects of the kingdom of the Messiah. To bring them to a better temper, he shows them, from the sacred scripture, that they could not be saved by the deeds of the law, and therefore the doctrine of righteousness, by faith, ought not to be so strange a thing to them. And, as to their being, for their unbelief, rejected from being the people of God, and the gentiles taken in their room, he shows plainly, that this was foretold them in the Old Testament; and that herein God did them no injustice. He was sovereign over all mankind, and might choose whom he would, to be his people, with the same freedom that he chose the posterity of Abraham, among all the nations of the earth, and of that race chose the descendants of Jacob, before those of his elder brother Esau, and that, before they had a being, or were capable of doing good or evil. In all which discourse of his it is plain, the election spoken of has for its object only nations, or collective bodies politic, in this world, and not particular persons, in reference to their eternal state in the world to come. · Having thus finished the principal design of his writing, he here, in this, as is usual with him in all his epistles, concludes with practical and moral exhortations, whereof there are several in this chapter, which we shall take in their order..
TEXT. 1 I Beseech you, therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that
ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service.
God, in so then ARAPHR
PARAPHRASE. 1 It being so then, that you are become the people of
God, in the room of the jews, do not ye fail to offer him that sacrifice, that it is reasonable for you to do, I mean your bodies *, not to be slain, but the lusts
NOTE. 1 * " Your bodies." There seem to be two reasons, why St. Paul's exhor. tations to them is, to present their bodies undefiled to God: 1. Because he had