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into bondage, if a man standings and Principles, and to A. D. 57: devour you, if a man insult their Persons ; they resent take of you, if a man not the most abusive Behaviour exalt himself, if a man from them. smite you

on the face. 21. I speak as con- 21. Thus they patiently permit cerning reproach, as the very * People that despise and

,

. tho'we had been weak: undervalue me, to use them howbeit, whereinfo- with the utmost Pride and Indigever any is bold (Inity. But as weak and insignifispeak foolishly) I am

cant a Man as they represent me; bold also.

what is there in which I am not able to compare with them?

22. Are they He- 22. If they be the Descendants brews ? so am I: are of Abraham, Yews by Birth, by they Israelites ? so am Language and Religion, so am I. I:

: are they the seed of Abraham ? so am I:

23. Are they mini- 23. If they boast of their Chrifflers of Christ? (I tian Ministry, you may perhaps Speak as a fool) I am think me vain, but 'tis true, if more: in labours more I say, I have far surpassed them abundant, in stripes a- in that Capacity; witness my unbove measure, in pri speakable Toils and Labours, my fons more frequent, innumerable Stripes, the many in deaths oft.

Imprisonments, and Hazards of Death I have gone through for the Sake of Christ and his Gospel; Trials that they have had little or no Share of.

24. Of the Jews 24 & 25. I was whipt five five times received I Times with thirty-nine + Strokes forty Aripes fave one.

at a Time, by order of the Jewish 25. Thrice was I Governors. 'Thrice I was lashed beaten with rods, once by the Heathen Officers, (Arts

AETS suffered shipwrack; a

xvi. 23.) once stoned, (Aets xiv. night 19.) thrice shipwrecked, and for

a

* Ver. 21. Kalo toliar aiga, I speak as concerning Reproacb, i.e. either the Reproaches and Insults those Teachers used toward their Followers; or such as they treated St. Paul with. I have expressed both Senses.

+ Ver. 24. See Deat. XXV. 3. Jofeph. Antiq. Lib. IV. Ch. viii.

A. D. 57. night and a day I have a Night and a Day was tost upon

been in the deep : a Piece * of Wreck before I could

a

get to Land.

26. In journeying 26. Innumerable have been

my often, in perils of wa- Dangers and Hardships in Traters, in perils of rob- vels by Sea and Land, in City bers, in perils by mine and † Country, from Jews and perils By the heathen, Gentiles, and from falfe Brethren

. in perils in the city, in perils in the wilderness, in perils in the sea, in perils among false brethren; 27. In weariness and

27. I have born the Labours of painfulness, in watch- the Day, and the Watchings of ings often, in hunger the Night; the Uneasiness of and thirst, in fasting Want, and the voluntary Pains of often, in cold and severe Abstinence; and have somenakedness.

times not had wherewithal to skreen me from Cold and Nakedness,

28. Besides those 28. Nor are these outward and things that are with- bodily Inconveniencies, the Whole out, that which com.

of my Christian Sufferings; still eth upon me daily,

and

greater the care of all the inward Cares, the Jealousies and

more constant are the churches.

Fears I have for all the Churches I have planted.

29. Who is weak, 29. Not a Christian Member in and I am not weak? any one of them is amicted, whewho is offended, and ther in Mind or Body, but I fymI burn not?

pathize with him, make his Diftemper my own, and bear Part of his Burden. Not a Soul is perverted, prejudiced, or misled in his Christian

Principles,

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* Ver. 25. So Theodoret, Télése tã orders dianugero, πάσαν τήν τε νύκα και την ημέρα διαθέλεσα τήδε κακείσε cao tãy xuuclwy oseguer, i. e. the ship being shatter'd to Pieces, he lived a whole Night and a Day, tost upon a Part of its Wreck. + Ver. 26. In Perils in the Wilderness. 'Ey iguuia, in

έρυμία, the Country. For so the Word signifies very often. "'T'is here opposed to co róasl, the City. We read of no Woods or Wildernesses St. Paul suffered in.

Principles, but my Heart is all on Fire with Zeal to A. D. 57. strengthen and recover him. 30. If I must needs

30 & 31. These are such Matglory, I will glory of ters, such Sufferings, and such the things which con- Affections as these, may warrant cern mine infirmities, mitte to boast, if any Boasting be at 31. The God and all warrantable.

And for the Father of our Lord

Truth of these Facts, I appeal to Jesus Chrift, which is blessed for evermore,

the ever-blessed God, the Father knoweth that I lie not. of our Lord Jesus Christ, whose

Apostle I am. 32.In Damascus the

32 & 33. My very Entrance governor under Are- upon my Apostolical Ministry, was tas the king, kept the an Entrance into a suffering State. city of the Dama- For at Damascus, the first Place scenes with a garri- of my Preaching, the Roman Gofon, desirous to ap- vernor, at the Instigation of the prehend me: 33. And through a

obstinate Jews, ordered Watch window in a basket

and Ward to apprehend me ; was I let down by but the Christian Converts let me the wall, and escaped down the Town-Wall in a Bafhis hands.

ket, and so I escaped.

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CHAP. XII.

The Content S.
To weigh down ftill more the Disparagement the false

Teachers had caft upon him, the Apostle further prefers
himself to them; on Account of the special Revelations
that God had vouchsafed to make to him. But instances
chiefly in one. He is not puffed up into Pride by these
great Favours and Privileges. God had provided him
a natural Remedy against such an Abuse of them, viz.

A Thorn in his Flesh, his bodily Infirmities, where-
with his wicked Adversaries reproach'd and mortify'd
him. Yet he glories in these divine Revelations as ma-
nifef Proofs of a true Apostleship. Touches again upon
his prudent Resolution not to take Maintenance from

their

A. D. 57: their Church. Confutes the groundless Insinuation of his

Adversaries, that he made private Gain of them, the
he apparently refus'd to take any Thing of them. Ex-
presses again hiš Tenderness toward them, and wisbeth

may find no Neceffity of punishing their Obstinacy at
his next Visit to their Church.
1. т

IS needless for me to en-
"IT is not expedi- 1.

"T" ent for me doubt.

large any further on less to glory: I will what I have done and suffer'd for come to visions and the Gospel, beyond any of your revelations of the

new Teachers. But I shall give Lord.

you one Demonstration more of the Excellency and Truth of ney Apostleship above theirs, from those spécial Revelations God has been pleas'd to make me.

2. I knew a man in 2. Among several of which I Chrift, above fourteen shall choose to instance at present years ago (whether in but in one. About fourteen Years the body, I cannot ago, being about eleven * Years tell; or whether out

after

my

first conversion to Chris-
of the body, I cannot
tell: God knoweth) tianity, I was, methought, caught
such an one caught up up into the third Heaven, having
to the third heaven.

a glorious Manifestation of the

Majesty of God made to me, and
of the Habitation and Society of blessed Angels and Spirits.

3. And I knew 3. Whether, in this Manifesta-
such a man (whether tion, my Soul was still joined to
in the body, or out my Body, or separately conveyed
of the body, I cannot into that blessed Abode, God on-
tell : God knoweth :) ly knows, for I am not able to
determine it.
4.

How that he 4. I can only say, I was in
was caught up into Paradise, the Seat of the Blessed,
paradise, and heard and had a clear and certain Reve-
unspeakable words, lation of such Things made to me,
which it is not lawful

as I am no Way able to express. for a man to utter.

5. Though So Dr. Wbirby placeth it, Anno Dom. 46. and to have been made at Lyfira, Aits xiv.

+ Ver. 4. 'Oux ibor, It is not lawful for a Man to utter, or it is not possible, as the Word often fignifies ; $ róuwa z pés

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5. Of such an one 5. Though therefore I had 4. D. 57. will I glory: yet of waved all my own Actions and my self I will not glo- Qualifications, yet these are such ry, but in mine infir- divine Favours toward me, and mities.

Testimonies for me, that I may justly triumph in them. As to my self, I boast in nothing but the Sufferings and Reproaches for which others are apt to despise me.

6. For though I 6. These I could much longer would desire to glory, dwell upon, without any juft ImI shall not be a fool : putation of Folly and Vanity, for I will say, the (for they are nothing but Truth) truth : but now I for- but I shall say no more, but shall bear, lest any man

refer myself to what you and should think of me above that which he other Christians plainly know of seeth me to be, or that he heareth of me.

7. And left I should 7. Nay indeed GOD has probe exalted above mea- vided against my too high Consure through the a- ceit of myself, upon Account ebundance of the reve

ven of these Favours of Divine lations, there was giy- Revelations to me. For along en to me a thorn in with them I have those natural ger of Satan to buffet Infirmities and Defects of Body,

*
which my Adversaries, those +
me,
Hh

Emislaπαρεγελίας τινΘ- το, άκ εξόν, δυνάμει και αγία άφθεγκλον divas no Salov PRVÚe. Not unlawful by any divine Command, but imposible to be express’d in buman Language, as they were perfectly divine and beavenly Things. Clem. Alexand. Stron. v. pag. 586.

Ver. 7. A Thorn in the Flesh. See Note on Chap. X. 10. and Dr. Wbitby on this Place. See also and compare Numb. xxxiii. 55. Fol. xxiii. 13. Judges ii. 3. Ezek. xxviii. 24.

Joh + Ib. The Mesenger of Satan to buffet me. "Ay Tea ExJävive us tonapisy, So as that the Messenger of Satan buffets me. (Ais xii. 21, 22, 23.) I have paraphras'd this Passage according to the learned Dr. Wbirby's Interpretation, as the clearest and most agreeable to other Passages in these Epistles. If the Reader does not approve of it, he may choose that Sense which several of the antient Fathers, Chryfoftom and Oecumenius, &c. give of it, who, by the Thorn in the Flesh, understand bis Afli&tions and Persecutions, which his Adver saries, the Messengers of Satan, brought upon him.

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