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ing given his general judgment on that point in v. 8, 9. He was fully justified in saying that a woman would, in such times, be happier without a husband than with one ; because, since in the case of the persecuted Christians, resistance was useless, she could derive no advantage from having a husband; but if without one she would be more obscure, and less an object of malice to the infidels. As this argument of the greater security of the unmarried state in a time of persecution applied only to women, the Apostle urged it as a dissuasive from marriage peculiar to widows, at that time.
II. .“ And I have no reason to doubt that I have the Spirit of God forewarning me of these events.”— The claim to inspiration relates in this case, as in v. 25., to the prediction of the im. pending persecution ; since inspiration was not required for delivering the opinion in question. For it must be readily perceived how in a time of persecution the more obscure condition of a widow would be preferable to that of a married woman. The truth of that prediction being admitted, the justness of the Apostle's opinion would not be questioned by any reflecting person. But as the Apostle was laying down a special rule of conduct with a view to that event, it was proper to state, again, his claim to inspiration in predicting it.
V. l. 1. “ Now as to things that have been offered in sacrifice to idols," I have before noticed that there seems to have been a reluctance on the part of the Gentiles to comply with the Apostolical decree enjoining purity of manners, and the keeping clear from idol-offerings. On the former of these points, the Corinthians were led to make in their letter to St. Paul a remark which he has made the ground of his own observations on the subject in the last chapter. (See ch. vir. 1. n. 11.) On the latter point, there appears to have been a difference of opinion, and some dissension among them, which occasioned a reference to him on the subject in that letter, and which he now proceeds to consider.
II. “A knowledge in common of their sinfulness.” This they might have from the reflections of their own minds; but at any rate from the Apostolical decree respecting idol-offerings. See Acts, ch. xv.
111. “ (Particular knowledge,” &c. Ý yuwois- The proper force of the article which is here prefixed to yewors is to distinguish it from the same word in the former clause. And if we take yrwais in that place to signify that general knowledge of the sinfulness of idol-offerings which every Christian might have derived either from reflection or from the apostolical decree, we may conclude that, here, it denotes some particular knowledge on the same subject, which is thus tacitly alluded to. This particular knowledge I take to be an opinion entertained by some of the Corinthians (and doubtless mentioned in their letter), that the eating of these offerings was not necessarily and in all cases sinful, inasmuch as it might be done without any intention of paying homage to the idol. Nor is this opinion incompatible with the Apostolical decree, though it might appear to be so from our version, where the phrase anexeobar Erowodutwy is rendered that ye abstain from meats offered to idols'. But if this be the true rendering, there could then have been no question on the subject of the lawfulness of eating idol-offerings, as this decree would in that case amount to a complete prohibition of the use of such food under any circumstances. But I apprehend that the true meaning is ' to keep yourselves from idol-offerings, or things offered in sacrifice to idols. And this it appears from the parallel passage in the speech of James (see v. 20.) was to keep themselves is from pollutions of idols,” &c. The prohibition then would appear to be a general one against incurring pollution from communicating with these things in any way. But such being the general terms of the decree, it might properly become a matter of discussion whence this infection would arise. And the distinction might naturally occur that the taint of idolatry could be caused only by the mind's participating in the idolatrous worship, and so lead to the opinion before stated. This opinion, it evidently appears from the context, St. Paul has in his mind, and designs to confirm. But, by way of caution, he first introduces in a parenthesis at this clause, and so on to . the end of v. 3., some general observations on the tendency of superior knowledge; and then, at v. 4., begins the argument under that opinion, and indirectly, by the general remarks which he makes, establishes it; and so continues to v. 7. And at that verse, having sufficiently intimated the justness of this special opinion about idolofferings, he proceeds to give them directions for their conduct.
· V.3. “God cannot but be known by him as acting from this principle of love.”) Ουτος εγνωσται υπ' αυτου----The word ούτος here refers to the immediate antecedent meos, according to the similar construction in Acts, ch. x. 36. The true meaning of the passage will be best understood by considering that the love of a Christian towards God is founded on a sense of gratitude for the mercy of redemption; “ we love him," says St. John, “ because he first loved us.” 1 John, ch. iv. 19. Hence, a Christian's love of God pre-supposes a knowledge of his benevolent designs in the Christian dispensation.
V.5. “ And since then," &c. xai yap T he inference and conclusion given in the paraphrase are understood and intimated by the use of the conjunction xao before jag, and are left to be made out by reflection. If this be not so, the assertion and oux Ev TQOIN ji yrwois in v. 7. would be contradictory to ordajev in v. 4.; since that, as well as juev and nuels, in v. 6. certainly relates to Christians in general. And indeed there is nothing openly stated in v. 4 7. but what every Christian may naturally be supposed to know. But though every Christian might know that an idol is merely an imaginary representation of God, yet every one might not be at the pains to reflect upon the circumstance, and draw the conclusion which
at once settles the question about eating idol-offerings. By this interpretation 1 yewors has the same meaning both in v. 1. and v. 7.
V. 6. “ And we for the purpose of communion with him," your juers els autor _literally, and we unto him. We must distinguish the phrase Eis autov in this place from the same one in Rom. ch. xi. 36., because since Christians are spoken of separately, something more seems to be signified than that they exist for the glory of God (which is its meaning in that passage), for that all things and persons do, both good and bad, infidels as well as Christians. Our translators by rendering the phrase " in him" seem to have understood it as it is given in the paraphrase.
V.7.“ Believing in their consciences that honour can be done to an idol by eating a thing that has been offered in sacrifice to it,” in OUVEIDROEI TOU Eldwou— literally, with a conscience, or rather, a judgment of conscience from the idol ; that is, so far believing in the reality of an idol as to think that there may arise from it a question of conscience as to the honour paid to it. This it appears from the preceding verses could not be the case with Christians in general, since they consider an idol to be merely a fiction ; and they therefore could have no object in their minds to whom they could suppose the worship to be paid. I think that the sentence is elliptical, and might be thus completed, Tives dɛ (OYTES) an OUVELÒNGEL TOU Elowhou Ews agtı us EsdWROQUtov so blouot (eldwaedutor) %. 7. 2; and then it might be rendered - But some being to this day in the exercise of a judgment of conscience from an idol, eat an idol-sacrifice as an idol-sacrifice, and their conscientious judgment on their conduct being expressive of a doubt of its lawfulness, is thereby tainted with a sense of guilt.'
7.9. 1. “ But this being the case, and it being,” &c. These inferences are implied in the context.
II.“ This it will naturally be in the case of your eating them in
an idolatrous temple." It appears from the next verse that the view in which St. Paul considers the unlawfulness of eating idol-offerings, is that of eating them in an idolatrous temple. This, indeed, is the only one he takes of it; and the sin and danger of so doing he proves by a variety of arguments and considerations from that verse to ch. X. 24. inclusively.
1. 10. 1. “Who have, professedly, superior knowledge” TOY EXOVTA Yuwoiv, literally, the one having knowledge. Though yuwois is without the article, it is clear that it means the same as yuwors in v. 1. and 7. Strictly speaking, the expression would denote a comparison, not between one degree of knowledge and another, but between knowledge and ignorance. But, perhaps, the Apostle intended by it to convey a tacit reproof to those who thought so highly of their own knowledge on the subject as entirely to disregard that of others, and to intimate that they seemed to consider their own opinion, as compared to those of others, in that light. .
II. “ Partaking of the sacrifice in the idol's temple,”— That it was customary with the heathens to feast on the remains of the sacrifice in their temples, is evident from several passages of scripture. See Num. ch. XXII. 40. Job, ch. xxv. 2. Judges, ch. ix. 27. Amos, ch. 11. 8. &c. See also many profane writers, Josephus, cont. Apion. II. 13. &c.
V. 11. “ For whose sake Christ died” diy Xplotos anedavey.
The placing of this clause at the end of the sentence, gives to it a peculiar eloquence. It will be right to observe for the use of the English reader that the note of interrogation is, according to the original, improperly placed at the end of this verse. It should be at the end of v. 10; and this should end with a period.
. V. 12. “ Force their doubtful consciences,” TUTTOVTES. AUTWY TYN OUVELSYOW ao levouoav, In the English version, this is rendered " wound their weak conscience,” which relates to the injury which