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TEXT. 21 It is good neither to eat flesh, nor to drink wine, nor any thing

whereby thy brother stumbleth, or is offended, or is made weak. 22 Hast thou faith? have it to thyself before God. Happy is he that

con mneth not himself in that thing which he alloweth. 23 And he that doubteth is damned if he eat, because he eateth not of

faith ; for whatsoever is not of faith is sin. XV. 1 We then that are strong ought to bear the infirmities of the

weak, and not to please ourselves. 2 Let every one of us please his neighbour for his good to edification. 3 For even Christ pleased not himself; but, as it is written, The re

proaches of them that reproached thee fell on me. 4 For whatsoever things were written aforetime were written for

our learning, that we, through patience and comfort of the Scriptures, might have hope.

PARAPHRASE. 21 so as to offend his brother. It is better to forbear flesh, and

wine, and any thing, rather than in the use of thy liberty, in

any indifferent things, to do that whereby thy brother stum22 bleth, or is offended, or is made weak in. Thou art fully

persuaded of the lawfulness of eating the meat which thou eatest : It is well. Happy is he that is not self-condemned in the thing that he practises. But have a care to keep this faith, or persuasion, to thyself: let it be between God arid

thy own conscience : raise no dispute about it; neither make 23 ostentation of it", by thy practice, before others. But he that

is in doubt, and balanceth', is self-condemned if he eat, because he doth it without a full persuasion of the lawfulness

of it. For whatever a man doth, which he is not fully perXV. 1 suaded in his own mind to be lawful, is sin. "We, then,

that are strong, ought to bear the infirmities of the weak, and

not to indulge our own appetites, or inclinations, in such an use 2 of indifferent things as may offend the weak. But let every

one of us please his neighbour, comply with his infirmities 3 for his good, and to edification. For even Christ, our Lord,

pleased not himself: but as it is written, “ The reproaches 4 of them that reproached thee are fallen upon me. For

whatsoever was heretofore written, i. e. in the Old Testament, was written for our learning, that we, through pati

NOTES. 21 * “ Offended and made weak; i. e. drawn to the doing of any thing, of whose

lawfulness not being fully persuaded, it becomes a sin to him. 22 * These two, viz. not disputing about it, which he forbad, ver. 1, and not using

his liberty, before any one whom possibly it may offend, may be supposed to be

contained in these words, “ have it to thyself." 23 • Asaxpirbussos, translated here “doubteth," is, Rom. iv., 20, translated

“ staggered ;” and is there opposed to ivočuvapáson tjeiçı, “strong in the faith ;" or to aanpo popnoes, "fully persuaded,” as it follows in the next verse.

TEXT. • 5 Now the God of patience and consolation grant you to be like

minded one towards another, according to Christ Jesus : 6 That ye may, with one mind and one mouth, glorify God, even the

Father of our Lord Jesus Christ. 7 Wherefore receive ye one another, as Christ also received us, to the

glory of God. 8 Now I say that Jesus Christ was a minister of the circumcision for

the truth of God, to confirm the promises made unto the fathers :

PARAPHRASE. ence and the comfort which the Scriptures give us, might have 5 hope. Now God, who is the giver of patience and consola

tion, make you to be at unity one with another, according to 6 the will of Christ Jesus; That you may, with one mind and

one mouth, glorify the God and Father of our Lord Jesus 7 Christ. Wherefore, admit and receive one another p into fel

lowship and familiarity, without shyness or distance, upon

occasion of differences about things indifferent, even as Christ 8 received us Jews to glorify God, (For" I must tell you, ye

NOTES. 7 pricornubársebe,“ receive one another," cannot mean receive one another into

church communion; for there is no appearance that the convert Jews and Gentiles separated communion in Rome, upon account of differences about meats and drinks, and days. We should have heard more of it from St. Paul if there had been two separate congregations, i. e. two churches of Christians in Rome, divided about these indifferent things. Besides, directions cannot be given to private Christians to receive one another, in that sense. The receiving therefore here must be understood of receiving, as a man doth another into his

company, converse, and familiarity, i. e. He would have them, Jews and Gentiles, lay by ali distinction, coldness, and reservedness, in their conversation, one with another; and, as domestics of the same family, live friendly and familiar, notwithstanding their different judgments about those ritual observances. Hence, ver. 5, he exhorts them to be united in friendship one to another, that with one heart and one voice they might conjointly glorify God, and receive one another with the same good-will that Christ hath received us the Jews, tis 86av TGŪ 80, to the glorifying of God for his truth in fulfilling the promises be made to the patriarchs, and received the Gentiles, to glorify God for his mercy to them. So that we have reason, both Jews and Gentiles, laying aside these little differences about things indifferent, to join together beartily in glorifying God. 9 Els sófar toữ 807, “to the glory of God;" i. e. to glorify God, by the same figure of speech that he uses wisis 'Incom,“ the faith of Jesus,” for “ believing in Jesus," Rom. iii. 22 and 26. The thing that St. Paul is exhorting them to here is to the glorifying God with one accord, as is evident from the immediately preceding words, ver. 6; and that which follows, ver. 9, 10, 11, is to the same purpose ; so that there is no room to doubt that his meaning in these words is this, viz. Christ received, or took us, believing Jews, to himself, that they might magnify the truth of God; and took the Gentiles that believed to himself, that they might magnify God's mercy. This stands easy in the construction of his

words, and sense of his mind. 81“Now I say that Jesus Christ was a minister of the circumcision." These

TEXT. 9 And that the Gentiles might glorify God for his mercy; as it is

written, For this cause I will confess to thee among the Gentiles,

and sing unto thy name. 10 And again he saith, Rejoice, ye Gentiles, with his people. 11 And again, Praise the Lord, all ye Gentiles, and laud him, all ye

people. 12 And again, Esaias saith, There shall be a root of Jesse, and he that

shall rise to reign over the Gentiles, in him shall the Gentiles trust. 13 Now the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing,

that ye may abound in hope, through the power of the Holy Ghost.

PARAPHRASE. converted Romans, that Christ was sent to the Jews, and employed all his ministrys on those of the circumcision) for his

truth, in making good his promise made to the fathers, i. e. 9 Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob; And received you, the Gentiles,

to glorify God for his mercy to you, as it is written, “For

this cause I will confess to thee among the Gentiles, and 10 sing unto thy name.” And again he saith, “Rejoice, ye 11 Gentiles, with his people.”. And again, “ Praise the Lord, 12 all ye Gentiles, and laud him, all ye nations." And again,

Isaiah saith, “ There shall be a root of Jesse, and he that

shall rise to reign over the Gentiles, in him shall the Gentiles 13 trust!” Now the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace

in believing, that ye may abound in hope, through the power of the Holy Ghost"

NOTES. words are plainly a parenthesis, and spoken with some emphasis, to restrain the Gentile converts of Rome, who, as it is plain from chap. xiv. 3, were apt ifovBeveic Oxı, to set at nought, and despise the converted Jews, for sticking to their ritual observances of meats and drinks, &c. • Διάκονον σερίδομής, , “a minister of, or to the circumcision." What it was that Christ ministered to the Jews, we may see by the like expression of St. Paul applied to himself, ver. 16, where he calls himself “a minister of Jesus Christ

to the Gentiles, ministering the Gospel of God." 12 ''Ez' autoihin ilmubov, “in him shall the Gentiles trust," rather hope ; not

that there is any material difference in the signification of trust and hope, but the better to express and answer St. Paul's way of writing, with whom it is familiar, when he hath been speaking of any virtue, or grace, whereof God is the author, to call God, thereupon, the God of that virtue, or favour. An eminent example whereof we have a few verses backwards, ver.4, ίνα διά της υπομονής και της wapaxahoews Tūs ypapar tny, entida özwury, “ that we through patience and comfort," rather consolation, “of the Scriptures, might have hope ;” and then subjoins, “ο δε Θεός της υπομονής και της παρακλήσεως, “ now the God of patience and consolation." And so here eam obos, ó Sords entidos, “the Gentiles shall

hope. Now the God of hope.” 13 " The gists of the Holy Ghost, bestowed upon the Gentiles, were a foundation

of hope to them that they were, by believing, the children or people of God, as well as the Jews.

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SECTION XIV.

CHAPTER XV. 14-33.

CONTENTS.

In the remaining part of this chapter St. Paul makes a very kind and skilful apology to them for this epistle ; expresses an earnest desire of coming to them; touches upon the reasons that hitherto had hindered him; desires their prayers for his deliverance from the Jews, in his journey to Jerusalem, whither he was going ; and promises that from thence he will make them a visit in his way to Spain.

TEXT.

14 And I myself also am persuaded of you, my brethren, that ye also

are full of goodness, filled with all knowledge, able also to admonish

one another. 15 Nevertheless, brethren, I have written the more boldly unto you

in some sort, as putting you in mind, because of the grace that is

given to me of God, 16 That I should be the minister of Jesus Christ to the Gentiles,

ministering the Gospel of God, that the offering up of the Gentiles might be acceptable, being sanctified by the Holy Ghost.

PARAPHRASE.

14 As to my own thoughts concerning you, my brethren, I am

persuaded that you also, as well as others, are full of good

ness, abounding in all knowledge, and able to instruct one 15 another. Nevertheless, brethren, I have written to you in

some things pretty freely, as your remembrancer, which I

have been emboldened to do by the commission which God 16 has been graciously pleased to bestow on me, Whom he hath

made to be the minister of Jesus Christ to the Gentiles in the Gospel of God, in which holy ministration I officiate, that the Gentiles may be made an acceptable offering to God, sanctified by the pouring out of the Holy Ghost upon them.

NOTE.
16 " Offering." See Isai. Ixvi. 29.

TEXT. 17 I have therefore whereof I may glory, through Jesus Christ, in those

things which pertain to God. 18 For I will not dare to speak of any of those things which Christ hath

not wrought by me, to make the Gentiles obedient by word and

deed, 19 Through mighty signs and wonders, by the power of the Spirit of

God; so that from Jerusalem, and round about unto' Illyricum, I

have fully preached the Gospel of Christ. 20 Yea, so have I strived to preach the Gospel, not where Christ was

named, lest I should build upon another man's foundation : 21 But as it is written, To whom he was not spoken of, they shall see :

and they that have not heard shall understand. 22 For which cause also I have been much hindered from coming to

you. 23 But now having no more place in these parts, and having a great

desire these many years to come unto you;

PARAPHRASE. 17 I have, therefore, matter of glorying, through Jesus Christ, 18 as to those things that pertain to God. For I shall not ven

ture to trouble you with any concerning myself, but only what Christ hath wrought by me for the bringing of the

Gentiles to Christianity, both in profession and practice. 19 Through mighty signs and wonders by the power of the Holy

Ghost, so that from Jerusalem and the neighbouring coun

tries, all along quite to Illyricum, I have effectually preached 20 the Gospel of Christ ; But so as studiously to avoid the carry

ing of it to those places where it was already planted, and

where the people were already Christians, lest I should build 21 upon another man's foundation, But as it is written d,

“To whom he was not spoken of, they shall see; and they 22 that have not heard shall understand.” This has often 23 hindered me from coming to you: But now having in these

parts no place, where Christ hath not been heard of, to preach the Gospel in, and having had, for these many years, a desire

NOTES. 17 Tà após Osdy, “ Things that pertain to God.” The same phrase we have Heb.

v. 1, where it signifies the things that were offered to God in the temple-ministration, St. Paul, by way of allusion, speaks of the Gentiles, in the foregoing verse, as an offering to be made to God, and of himself as the priest, by whom the sacrifice, or offering, was to be prepared and offered ; and then here he tells them that he had matter of glorying in this offering, i. e. that he had had success in converting the Gentiles, and bringing them to be a living, holy, and acceptable

sacrifice to God, an account whereof he gives them in the four following verses. 20 « See 1 Cor. iii. 10. 2 Cor. x. 16. 21 Isai. lii. 15.

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