Page images
PDF
EPUB

conveyed under such diversity of circumstance and expression, and the mention of them in the epistle so allied to the occasion which introduces it, viz. the insinuation of his adversaries that he would come to Corinth no more, that I am perfuaded no ata tentive reader will believe, that these passages were written in concert with one another, or will doubt but that the agreement is unsought and uncontrived.

But, in the Acts, Erastus accompanied Timothy in this journey, of whom no mention is made in the epistle. From what has been said in our observations upon the Epistle to the Romans, it appears probable that Eraftus was a Corinthian. If so, though he accompanied Timothy to Corinth, he was only returning home, and Timothy was the messenger charged with St. Paul's orders. At any rate, this discrepancy Thews that the paffages were not taken from one another.

No. IV. Chap. xvi. ver. 10, 11. “Now, if Timo“theus come, fee that he may be with you “ without fear; for he worketh the work of

" the

66 in

“ the Lord, as I also do : let no man there. “ fore despise him, but conduct him forth

peace, that he may come unto me, for " I look for him with the brethren.”

From the passage considered in the preceding number, it appears that Timothy was sent to Corinth, either with the epistle, or before it : " for this cause have I sent unto you Timotheus.” From the passage now quoted, we infer that Timothy was not sent with the epistle; for had he been the bearer of the letter, or accompanied it, would . St. Paul in that letter have said, if Timothy come?" Nor is the sequel consistent with the supposition of his carrying the letter; for if Timothywas with the Apostle when he wrote the letter, could he say, as he does, “I look for him with the brethren ?” I conclude therefore that Timothy had left St. Paul to proceed upon his journey before the letter was written. Farther, the passage before us feems to imply, that Timothy was not expected by St. Paul to arrive at Corinth, till after they had received the letter. He gives them directions in the letter how to treat him when he should arrive; “if he come,

act

act towards him so and so. Lastly, the whole form of expression is most naturally applicable to the supposition of Timothy's coming to Corinth, not directly from St. Paul, but from some other quarter; and that his instructions had been, when he should reach Corinth, to return. Now, how stands this matter in the history? Turn to the nineteenth chapter and twenty-first verse of the Acts, and you will find that Timothy did not, when sent from Ephesus, where he left St. Paul, and where the present epistle was written, proceed by a straight course to Corinth, but that he went round through Macedonia. This clears up every thing; for, although Timothy was sent forth upon his journey before the letter was written, yet he might not reach Corinth; till after the letter arrived there ; and he would come to Corinth, when he did come, not directly from St. Paul at Ephesus, but from some part of Macedonia. Here therefore is a circumstantial and critical agreement, and unquestionably without design; for neither of the two passages in the epistle mentions Timothy's journey into Macedonia at all,

though

though nothing but à circuit of that kind can explain and reconcile the expressions which the writer uses.

No. V.

Chap. 1. ver. 12. “Now this I say, that every one of you saith, I am of Paul, and “I of Apollos, and I of Cephas, and I of " Christ.”

Also iji. 6, “ I have planted, Apollos wa“ tered, but God gave

the increase.' This expression, “I have planted, Apollos watered,"imports twothings; 'first, that Paul had been at Corinth before Apollos; secondly, that Apollos had been at Corinth after Paul, but before the writing of this epistle. This implied account of the several events, and of the order in which they took place, corresponds exactly with the history. St. Paul, after his first visit into Greece, returned from Corinth into Syria by the way of Ephesus; and, dropping his companions Aquila and Priscilla at Ephesus,he proceeded forwards to Jerusalem: from Jerusalem he descended to Antioch; and from thence made a progress through some G

of

of the upper or northern provinces of the Lesser Asia (A&s xviii. 19. 23): during which progress, and consequently in the interval between St. Paul's first and second visit to Corinth, and consequently also before the writing of this epistle, which was at Ephesus two years at least after the apostle's return from his progress, we hear of Apollos, and we hear of him at Corinth. Whilst St. Paul was engaged, as hath been said, in Phrygia and Galatia, Apollos came down to Ephesus; and being, in St. Paul's absence, instructed by Aquila and Priscilla, and having obtained letters of recommendation from the church at Ephesus, he passed over to Achaia; and when he was there, we read that he

· helped them much which had believed through grace, for he mightily convinced the Jews, and that publicly.” Acts xviii. 27, 28. To have brought Apollos into Achaia, of which Corinth was the capital city, as well as the principal Christian Church; and to have shewn that he preached the gospel in that country, would have been sufficient for our purpose. But the history happens also to mention Corinth by name, as the place

« EelmineJätka »