Imágenes de páginas
PDF
EPUB
[ocr errors]

226

That be, who glorieth, might glory in the Lord. Sect. insaved as we naturally are to the Power of our

3.

Lusts, and the Dominion of Satan, we obtain 1. Cor. I. 31. by him compleat Redemption (m).

So that we

31 That according as it

is written, He that glorieth. may now indeed boast of our happy Change, in let him glory in the Lord whatever Point of Light it be considered; but it is a Boast not of insolent Presumption, but humble Gratitude; as it is written, (Jerem. ix. 23, 24. Ifai. Ixv. 16.) « He that boastetb, let him boast " in the Lord, and in this, that he knoweth ine, “ who exercise loving Kindness; Judgment, and

Righteousness on the Earth."

IM PRO TEM ENT

[ocr errors]

Ver. 17

Ver. 18.

Ver.21.

Ver. 20.

AY Divine Grace form the Taste of Ministers, and their Hearers more to this Doctrine of Christ crucified! May he

everywhere be preached; and that be accounted the truest Wisdom of Wordsy. by which bis Cross may become most efficacious. There cannot be surely a more evident Demonftration of Folly, or a more dreadful Token of approaching Ruin, than despising the Wisdom of GOD, and the Power of GOD. If we are ever shaken by that Contempt for the Gospel, which. so many are continually ready, in our Age, to express; let us recollect, what glorious Effects it hath produced; whilft, in the Midst of such Illustrations of the Wisdom of GOD, the World by all its Wisdom, knew not its Maker. ;. how many Believers have been saved, how many by believing are daily brought into the Way of Salvation? In this View let us triumphantly fay, where is the Wise, the Scribe, the Disputer of this World: What has Wisdom, Learning, Disputation done, in Comparison of what the plain and simple Doctrine of a crucified Saviour has wrought, and is. continually working? Let us earnestly pray, that God would; by the Power of his Grace, disperse the Prejudices of Men; that the Jews.may not so demand a Sign, as that Christ crucified Thould be a Stumblingblock to them, nor the most learned of the Gentiles fo seek after Science, as that the Wisdom of. GOD Tould seem Foolishness to them; but that. both may join in feeling, and owning, how Divinely wise, and how Divinely powerful, the Dispensation of the Gospel is.

Let us not be offended with our Galling, tho' so few of the Wise, the Mighty, and the Noble, partake of its Benefits. If God hath chosen thes

weak

Ver. 23

Ver. 24

Ver. 26.

Ver. 27

(m) Wijdin, Righteousness, &c.] Bos would render the Words, for of him, (in Chrift: Fejus, tubo is made of GOD unto us Wisdom,) ye are Righteousness, Sanctification, and Re: demption, that is,. compleatly, justihed, sanctified and redeemed.

ز

3

Refleétions on the Wisdom of GOD being despised by the World.

227 weak Things, they shall confound the Mighty; and the Foolish, they shall

Seet. Mame the Wife. Never shall we find ourselves truly happy, till we come to feel, that we are naturally foolish and guilty, pollured and enslaved ; and that our Wisdom and Rightecusness, our Sanctification and Redemption, Ver. 30. are in Christ, who is made unto us of GOD all this, and indeed all in all. Then shall we know, and not till then, what true Glory means, even when we can abase ourselves to the Dust in his presence, and have learned only to glory in the Lord.

Ver. 31

[blocks in formation]

The Apostle farther illustrates the Reasons for which he had

declined all Oftentation of Eloquence, when he came among the Corinthians

; and particularly insists on the extraordinary Nature of the Faets and Do&trines he was to teach ; which were of a much higher Original, than any Discoveries which human Wit or Learning could make, and were to be traced up to the immediate Teachings of the Holy Spirit ; their Nature being so wonderful, that it was difficult for the corrupted Minds of Meń to receive them, even when they were taught. 1 Cor. II. 1, to the End., 1 CORINTHIANS II. 1.

1 CORINTHIANS II. I. A

NDI, Brethren, when
I came to you, came I

HAVE observed that the Design of God in Sect. 4. 110t with Excellency of the Gospel is of a very humbling Nature, ad -wr Speech, or of Wisdom, mirably calculated to stain the Pride of human 1 Cor. II. 1.

declaring

Glory, and bring Men to boast in him alone. And
with Truth and Pleasure, I can say to you, my
Brethren, that in perfect Harmony with this wise
and excellent Scheme, when I first came among
you, I came not with the Pomp of Language (a),
or worldly Wisdom, with the laboured Charms of
Eloquence, or Philosophy : For I remembered,

that

(a) The Pomp of Language.] This certainly alludes to the vain Affectation of Sublimity and Subtilty, so common among the Greeks of that Age, and very remote from the true Eloquence, in which, (as was observed above,) our Apostle did fo remarkably excel. Ff 2

L' Enfant

Sect. 4.

[ocr errors]

2 Art.

228 He bad preached in the Demonstration of the Spirit

that I was declaring to you no human Invention, declaring unto you, th which needed or admitted such Ornaments of

Testimony of GOD. 1 Cor. H. 1. Recommendations, but was exhibiting the Testi

mony of GOD to a plain Fact, for which I pro-
duced authentick Evidence by visible Divine
Operations. I therefore endeavoured to exhibit
it in as intelligible a Way as I could, and treated
it as one who believed, that it really came from
God, and so needed not the varnishing of human
For I was previously determined in my

2 For I determined not Mind, that fond as I knew you were of refined to know any Thing among

you, save Jesus Christ, and Speculation, and polite Address, I would appear him crucified. to know (b), and employ myself to make known, nothing among you (c) but Jesus, as the Chrift, the great promised Messiah of the Jews, even. that crucified- Person (d), against whom fo many Scandals are raised: Yet did I resolve steadily to maintain the Doctrine of his Cross, and endea

vour to exalt its Honours wherever I came, not 3 excepting your opulent and polite City. And 3 And I was with you to this Plan. you know, I resolutely adhered, tho' in Weakness, and in Fear,

and in much Trembling. I was with you in Weakness, and in Fear, and in mucb Trembling; for I know I had Enemies about me on every Side, (Acts xvii. 6, 9.) and laboured under natural Disadvantages, (2. Cor. x. 10.).

and the Force of the Prejudice, which I had to
4 encounter was strong, And

you
well know,

4 And my Speech; and that my Speech in private, and my Preaching in pub- my Preaching was not with lick, (was] not in the persuasive Discourses of bu

Wisdom,

man2

L'Enfant thinks, he refers to his not being perfe&tly.Master of the Greek Language in all its Purity and Elegance, with which the Corinthians spoke it; but I prefer the former Sense, as most suitable to the Original.

(6) Appear to know.). In that Sense, the Word y.word, is used by Pindar, (Olymp. xiii.). and it is most natural to give it that Signification here.

(c) Among you.] There seems a peculiar Emphasis in this Expression, as if the Apostle had' faid, I did not change my usual Method at Corinth, and you know with what glorious Success.. it was attended.

(d). Even that crucified Perfon: xar 18lom.egavpwplexov:]. The Jews, and Heathens probably gave Chrif this Name by Way of Contempt ;, but St. Paul declares, that instead of concealing this as an Infamy and Scandal, it was the main Thing he infifted upon; as indeed all the most important Doctrines of the Gospel ftand in a close and natural Connection with it. And : no doubt but he took them in that Connection; for he refers in the Course of these Epifles, to several Doctrines relating to the Father, and the Holy Spirit, as what he had taught them, sha': not expressly included in the Doctrine of the.Crucifixion..

(e) Perfuafive.

that their Faith might depend on the Power of GOD.

229 Wisdom, but in Demon man Wisdom (e) Eloquence, or Philosophy, nor Sect.4. Aration of the Spirit, and with that Pomp and Sophistry of Argument, of Power ;

which the learned Men of the World are so rea- 1 Cor. II.-4. dy to affect.

But far from being contemptible
on that Account, it had other much nobler Rs-
commendations ; for it was in the Demonstration
of the Spirit and of Power, by the most convin-
cing Evidence, arising, both from the Propho-
cies of the Old Testament inspired by the Holy
Ghost, and from the miraculous Energy, which

he hath exerted in and by the Apostles, and other
5 That your Faith should Ministers of the New. And on this I laid 5.
not stand in the Wisdom of
Men, but in the Power of

the whole Stress; that your Faith fould not de-
God.

pend on the Wisdom, Reason, or Address of Mein;
but on the Power of GOD, a much surer Founda-
tion, which shews how little Reason

you

have to value yourselves on any Appearance of the for

mer.

6 How beit, we speak Nevertheless, tho' we want what is commonly 6
Wisdom among them that called human Wisdom, yet we speak the truest
are perfect : Yet not the
Wisdom of this World, nor

and most excellent Wisdom, among those who are
of the Princes of this World, perfect, and if I may lo express it, compleatly
that come to nought.. initiated into thefe Divine Mysteries; such well-

instructed and experienced Souls will bear Wit-
ness to its incomparable Excellence.

But we
speak not the Wisdom of this World, nor of the
Rulers of this World; nor that which is admired
and fought by the great Politicians of the Age,
whether Jews or Gentiles, who nevertheless Mall
foon be brought down and abolished, shall find
difficult and dreadful Scenes arising, in which all

their boasted Sagacity and Penetration will be of 7 7. But we speak the Wif- no Avail (f). But we, taught of God to dedom spise the transient Vanities which delude them,

Speak,

) Persuasive Discourses of human Wisdom.] This seems to be the just Rendering of the Expression qigovs avopwartuns copias Rogors, and so, I think, it is rendered by the celebrated Ărchbishop of Cambray.

(f) Politicians cf the Age, &c.] Mr. Locke insists upon it, as an Observation of great Importance, that arwy slos generally signifies the Jewish Oeconomy; and supposes, that the Apori tle here also aims a filent Stroke at the Jewish Teacher, that set himself up in Opposi. tion to him, and refers to the approaching Destruction of the Jews by the Romans. And Mr. L'Enfant agrees with this, only explaining it of the learned Rabbies of their Synagogues. But as the Jewish Magistratés, or Scribes, were not the only Princes in crucifying Ghrift; (Compare Arts iv. 27.) and as the Word aww, has sometimes undoubtedly a more extensive. Signification, (Compare Rom. xii. 2. Gal. i. 4. Eph. iii 2. Chap. vi. 12, ·

2.Tia, .

[ocr errors]

230 He had preached the bidden. Wisdom of GOD;
Se&. 4. speak what must be infinitely more worthy your, dom of God in a Mystery,

most attentive Confideration and Regard; for it is even the hidden ofdora a Cor. II. 7. the Wisdom of GOD himself in a Mystery : that the World unto our Glory:

mysterious Wisdom, which was long bidden and
entirely unknown, and now appears to contain
Wonders, which no Understanding of Man or
Angel can fully penetrate; even that Wisdom,
which '

GOD from eternal Ages (8) pre-determined
in the Secret of his own all-comprehending Mind,

for the great Purposes of our final Salvation and 8 Glory (5). A Wisdom this, which none of the

8 Which none of the Jewish Rulers of this our Age, or of the Hea- Rulers of this World knew:

For had they known it, then that were concerned in it knew; for if they they would not have crucihad indeed known [it,] they would not by any fied the Lord of Glory. Means (i) bave presumed to have crucified one so greatly their superior, as the Lord of Glory; wicked as they were, they would for their own Sakes have been afraid to attack the Son of God, his long promised Messiah, had they been tho

roughly apprized of his high Character and 9 Dignity. But [this is] as it is written, 9 But as it is written,

(k), (Isai. lxiv. 4.) when the Prophet, speak- Eye hath not seen, nor Ear ing of the Blessings of the Messiah's Kingdom, into the Heart of Man, the says, Eye bath not seen, neither bath Ear beard, Things which God hath neither bath entered into the Heart of Man, what prepared for them that love glorious Things GOD hath prepared for them that

love

2 Tim. iv. 10. Tit. -ii. 12. and even in this Epistle, Chap. iii. 18. and the next Chapter iv: 4.) and as St. Paul's Observation here may so welll be applied to Gentile, as well as Jewijs Princes; I saw no Reason for limitting the Sense; which I never chufe to do, without fome apparent Necessity. On the same Principles, I have receded from Mr. Locke's Interpretation of the next Verse.

(8) From eternal Ages.] To what I have just said of my Reasons for not interpreting this of the Time of setting the Jewish Oeconony, I must add, that it signifies little, to endeavour to bring such Expressions down to any Period of Timè. If it be granted, that they intend any Thing previous to the Existence of those to whom they refer, the fame Difficulties will fill lie in the Way ; nor is it possible to avoid them.

(h) Our final Salvation and Glory.) L'Enfant explains this, of the Glory of the Apostles; in being appointed to publish this Revelation ; but the Seuse we have given equally fuitš the Phrase, and is much more sublime and important.

(i) Not by any Means.] 8 avg is an Expresfion, which seems to have this Force. Compare Luke xxiii

. 34. (k) As it is written, &c.] The Context in Ifai. Ixiv. may well be explained to express the Churches earnest Desire of the Manifestation of the Glories of the Mefiah's Kingdom and I think it more probable, that this is a Quotation of those Words, with some little Variation, than that it refers to a Passage, said to have been found in an Apocryphal Book, ascribed to Elijah, (which probably was a Forgery of much later Date than this Time) where these Words are indeed extant, 'being perhaps transcribed' from St. Paul.

I

rij The

[ocr errors]
« AnteriorContinuar »