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36 What? came the word of God out 38 But if any man be ignorant, let him from you? or came it unto you only? be ignorant.
37 'If any man think himself to be a pro- 39 Wherefore, brethren, covet to prophet, or spiritual, let him acknowledge that phesy, and forbid not to speak with tongues. the things that I write unto you are the 40 Let all things be done decently and commandments of the Lord.
in order Verse 8. “If the trumpet give an uncertain sound," &c.—It is well known that trumpets were exclusively employed in almost all ancient armies, for the purpose of directing the movements of the soldiers, and informing them what they were to do—as when to attack, advance, or retreat. This was the custom in even the most early Jewish armies, as the Law directed two silver trumpets to be made for the purpose (Num. x. 1, 2, 9). Of course, a distinction of tones was necessary, to express the various intimations which were in this manner conveyed; and if the trumpeter did not give the proper intonation, the soldiers could not tell how to act, or were in danger, from misconception, of acting wrongly.
16. “ He that occupieth the room of the unlearned."—Not an individual of their number representing them and acting for them, but any one among them, that is, any of them. The word rendered “unleamed ” (idwins) we have already had occasion to explain as denoting a person not professedly learned or holding any public office or character-that is, strictly, private persons; meaning, in the present text, the private members of the church, or the audience, as distinguished from the teachers.
Say Amen at thy giving of thanks.”—“Amen," or "So be it," was, among the Jews, used by the congregation at the end of a prayer or blessing, to denote their assent to, or appropriation of, that which one person had pronounced. Many instances of this practice occur in the Old Testament. From the Jewish synagogue this, with many other customs of worship, passed to the Christian church, in which it is still generally retained. Justin Martyr particularly notices the unanimous and loud “ Amen” at the conclusion of the Lord's Supper; observing, that “When the minister had finished the prayers and the thanksgiving, all the people present, with a joyful exclamation, said " Amen” (“Apol.' vol. i. p. 97). Influenced by ideas taken from existing customs, most English readers are apt to suppose that the verse refers to some such person as he whom we call “the clerk;" but there was no such officer either among the Jews or in the early Christian church. A few times in the Old Testament, and very frequently in the discourses of our Saviour, in the Gospels, the same word occurs at the beginning of a sentence, by way of asseveration, or for the sake of emphasis, in the sense of assuredly, truly, verily—by which last word it is rendered in our translation.
34.“ Let your women keep silence in the churches."— The rules of the Jewish synagogues were also remarkably strict on this subject. We have seen, on former occasions, that it was allowed to any competent person to read in the synagogues; even an intelligent lad might do so; but not, on any account, a woman. So also, any one might in the synagogue ask questions for his instruction ; but to a woman this was by no means permitted. But do the present prohibitions refer to such things as these? This is a question. There would not be much, if any, difficulty in this text if it stood alone; but we have fresh in our recollection what the apostle has said in ch. xi., suggesting and requiring that the two passages should be compared with each other. In the former, St. Paul enjoins that a woman should not * pray” or “prophesy" with her head uncovered ; which seems obviously enough to suggest that she might do so with her head covered: but here he says, that she should not speak or ask questions in the church.
The point is confessedly one of great intricacy and difficulty, on which commentators have been greatly divided in opinion. It is remarkable that the difficulty never occurred to the ancient Greek commentators. Dr. Bloomfield thinks that, if it had, they would have been inclined to anticipate the explanation of Whithy and Macknight, who think that the apostle did not, in ch. xi., prohibit the women from speaking in the church, because his sole object there was to correct the abuse of their officiating with the head uncovered, reserving his correction of the other abuse, of their officiating at all, to this place. Bloomfield, however, concurs with Doddridge and others in disputing the validity of this explanation ; and himself suggests that, in the former passage,“ praying" may be understood not of leading but of joining in prayer; and “prophesying," not of preaching or teaching, but of the recitation of certain spiritual songs, (whether in reading or extemporaneously,) or the reading of devotional and edifying compositions in prose. This certainly might not be incompatible with the prohibition of the present chapter: but these are grounds on which even this alternative has its difficulties. Another explanation is, that while here the apostle alludes to the public assemblies of the Church, in ch. xi, he refers to the smaller or more private assemblies, in which the women were permitted to exercise their gifts. Finally, the opinion most generally received, and which has the support of such prime authorities as Grotius, Locke, Doddridge, Benson, and others, is, that the women are forbidden to speak at all, except when they had a supernatural impulse or Divine revelation ; and that while the present verses refer to the general rule, the passage in ch. xi. relates to the exception.
in memory 'what I preached unto you, un
less ye have believed in vain. 3 By Christ's resurrection, 12 he proveth the neces- 3 For I delivered unto you first of all
sity of our resurrection, against all such as deny that which I also received, how that Christ the resurrection of the body. 21 The fruit, 35 and manner thereof, 51 and of the changing of died for our sins 'according to the Scripthem, that shall be found alive at the last day.
4 And that he was buried, and that he Moreover, brethren, I declare unto you the rose again the third day 'according to the Gospel which I preached unto you, which Scriptures: also ye have received, and wherein ye stand; 5*'And that he was seen of Cephas, then 2 By which also ye are saved, if ye 'kcep | of the twelve: 101, hold fast * Gr. by what speech. 9 Isa 53, 5, 6, &c.
• Psal. 16 10.
John 20. 19.
6 After that, he was seen of above five 26 The last enemy that shall be destroyed hundred brethren at once; of whom the is death. greater part remain unto this present, but 27 For he "hath put all things under his some are fallen asleep.
feet. But when he saith, All things are put 7 After that, he was seen of James; then under him, it is manifest that he is excepted, of all the apostles.
which did put all things under him. 8 And last of all he was seen of me also, 28 And when all things shall be subdued as of 'one born out of due time.
unto him, then shall the Son also himself be 9 For I am the least of the apostles, that subject unto him that put all things under am not meet to be called an apostle, because him, that God may be all in all. I persecuted the Church of God.
29 Else what shall they do which are 10 But by the grace of God I am what baptized for the dead, if the dead rise not I am: and his grace which was bestowed at all? why are they then baptized for the upon me was not in vain; but I laboured dead? more abundantly than they all: yet not I, 30 And why stand we in jeopardy every but the grace of God which was with me.
hour? 11 Therefore whether it were I or they, 31 I protest by 'your rejoicing which I so we preach, and so ye believed.
have in Christ Jesus our Lord, I die daily. 12 Now if Christ be preached that he 32 If 8after the manner of men I have rose from the dead, how say some among fought with beasts at Ephesus, what advanyou that there is no resurrection of the tageth it me, if the dead rise not? "let us dead?
eat and drink; for to morrow we die. 13 But if there be no resurrection of the 33 Be not deceived: evil communications dead, then is Christ not risen:
corrupt good manners. 14 And if Christ be not risen, then is 34 Awake to righteousness, and sin not; our preaching vain, and your faith is also for some have not the knowledge of God: I vain.
speak this to your shame. 15 Yea, and we are found false witnesses 35 But some man will say, How are the of God; because we have testified of God dead raised up? and with what body do that he raised up Christ: whom he raised they come? not up, if so be that the dead rise not.
36 Thou fool, that which thou sowest is 16 For if the dead rise not, then is not not quickened, except it die: Christ raised :
37 And that which thou sowest, thou 17 And if Christ be not raised, your faith sowest not that body that shall be, but bare is vain; ye are yet in your sins.
grain, it may chance of wheat, or of some 18 Then they also which are fallen asleep other grain : in Christ are perished.
38 But God giveth it a body as it hath 19 If in this life only we have hope in pleased him, and to every seed his own Christ, we are of all men most miserable.
body. 20 But now is Christ risen from the dead, 39 All flesh is not the same flesh: but and become the 'firstfruits of them that there is one kind of flesh of men, another slept.
flesh of beasts, another of fishes, and an21 For since by man came death, by man other of birds. came also the resurrection of the dead.
40 There are also celestial bodies, and 22 For as in Adam all die, even so in bodies terrestrial : but the glory of the ceChrist shall all be made alive.
lestial is one, and the glory of the terrestrial 23 But 'every man in his own order: is another. Christ the firstfruits; afterward they that 41 There is one glory of the sun, and anare Christ's at his coming.
other glory of the moon, and another glory 24 Then cometh the end, when he shall of the stars : for one star differeth from anhave delivered up the kingdom to God, even other star in glory. the Father; when he shall have put down 42 So also
is the resurrection of the dead. all rule and all authority and power. It is sown in corruption; it is raised in in
25 For he must reign, 'till he hath put corruption : all enemies under his feet.
43 It is sown in dishonour; it is raised 6 Acts 9. 4. Chap. 9. 1.
10 Psal. 110. 1. 11 Psal. 8. 6. 13 Or, to speak after the manner of men, 1184 22. 13.
7 Or, an abortivo. 12 Some read uur.
8 Col. 1. 18. Rev. 1.5.
91 Thes, 4. 15.
in glory: it is sown in weakness; it is raised 52 In a moment, in the twinkling of an
eye, at the last 16trump: for the trumpet 44 It is sown a natural body; it is raised shall sound, and the dead shall be raised a spiritual body. There is a natural body, incorruptible, and we shall be changed. and there is a spiritual body.
53 For this corruptible must put on in45 And so it is written, The first man corruption, and this mortal must put on Adam "was made a living soul; the last immortality. Adam was made a quickening spirit.
54 So when this corruptible shall have 46 Howbeit that was not first which is put on incorruption, and this mortal shall spiritual, but that which is natural; and have put on immortality, then shall be afterward that which is spiritual.
brought to pass the saying that is written, 47 The first man is of the earth, earthy: Death is swallowed up
in victory. the second man is the Lord from heaven. 55 O death, where is thy sting? O 'grave,
48 As is the earthy, such are they also where is thy victory? that are earthy: and as is the heavenly, 56 The sting of death is sin; and the such are they also that are heavenly. strength of sin is the law.
49 And as we have borne the image of 57 But thanks be to God, which giveth the earthy, we shall also bear the image of us the victory through our Lord Jesus the heavenly.
Christ. 50 Now this I say, brethren, that flesh and 58 Therefore, my beloved brethren, be
ye blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God; stedfast, unmoveable, always abounding in neither doth corruption inherit incorruption. the work of the Lord, forasmuch as ye
51 Behold, I shew you a mystery; We shall know that your labour is not in vain in the not all sleep, but we shall all be changed, Lord.
Verse 5. " He was seen of Cephus."-As the authority of Peter and James was very high among, at least, the Judaizing Christians at Corinth, St. Paul refers to them particularly and by name. To Peter here, and to James below.
“ Then of the twelve."-- Judas was dead, and Thomas was absent, so there were but ten; but according to a very common practice, they are called the twelve, since that was the number of their body at its original institution. Thus a council or tribunal denominated from the number of its members--as of Ten, Forty, Twenty-three, or Seventy-retains its name even though some of its members may be absent.
6. “ Seen of above five hundred brethren at once.”—This is not recorded in the Gospels; and we should therefore not have known it had it not been mentioned here. Indeed we should not have known that our Lord had so many disciples, as only 120 are mentioned as being assembled at Jerusalem when Matthias was chosen to the apostleship. This appearance probably took place in Galilee, where our Saviour appears to have had a much greater number of disciples than in any other part of the country.
7. “After that, he was seen of James."— Tradition states that this was James the Less, the “ brother," or near relative, of our Lord. The separate appearance to him is not recorded by the Evangelists.
29. “ Baptized for the dead.”—There is perhaps no passage of Scripture which has been so variously interpreted as this. We cannot therefore undertake to state even the principal of the explanations which have been given: but shall not withhold the expression of our own concurrence in the view taken by Chrysostom and other Greek fathers, as well as by Hammond, Wetstein, Bloomfield, and others. This interpretation gives to the passage the sense of " · Baptized in the confidence and expectation of a resurrection from the dead." Under this view, it is thought by Chrysostom and others, that there is also an allusion to the ancient mode of baptism by immersion, in which the immersion represented the state of death, and the rising again, the resurrection from the dead. Compare Col. ii. 12, " Buried with him (Christ) in baptism, wherein also ye are risen with him.” And also, Rom. vi. 3—5.
32. “If after the manner of men I have fought with beasts at Ephesus."— It has been questioned whether St. Paul here refers to an actual conflict with wild beasts at Ephesus, or alludes figuratively to a contest with brutal men. A very respectable body of commentators advocate the former opinion, and certainly produce some strong arguments against the latter. But on attentively considering the question, their objections do not appear unanswerable, and it seems much the safest course to assign the passage a literal interpretation, which has received the support of the great body of commentators, ancient and modern. But even were it not so, it would still be allowed that the allusion is derived from the conflicts with wild beasts to which men were often in this age exposed. Some slight notice of this practice may therefore be very suitably introduced.
To view wild beasts fight with each other, in the amphitheatre, or men combating with them, or even men exposed unarmed to be devoured by them, after abortive attempts to evade their savage fury, were among those barbarous spectacles in which the Romans delighted, and which they introduced in the principal cities of their wide-spread dominion. In most countries of the East, and even of Europe, there are, or have been, more or less, practices of this sort, such as bear and bull-baiting in this country ; bull-fighting in Spain; or single combats of men with forest beasts, or of such beasts with one another, in the East: but all these things are of small note and of trifling consequence compared with the doings of the Romans; for we frequently read of three or four hundred beasts being, in one way or another, slain in one show, for the amusement of the most sanguinary people that ever breathed. All sorts of animals from all parts of the world were employed on such occasions; and even water was sometimes introduced into the amphitheatre to enable the sea monsters and the inmates of the forest to combat together. Such fights of animals with one another do not however apply to the illustration of the present text.
The men who fought with wild beasts in the amphitheatre, were of different classes. First there were persons codemned to death, and who were exposed to the wild beasts with some weapon in their hands which they might use as best they could against the assailant. But very often such persons were exposed unarmed to be literally devoured by wild animals : in which case the spectators seem to have found their amusement in the feats of activity and provess which even unarmed men often displayed in such desperate circumstances. We know from early ecclesiastical history, that under the Roman persecutions, Christians were very commonly sentenced to be given to the beasts, which sentence means either armed or unarmed exposure, though the latter seems in the end to have become its most usual meaning, as applied to condemned Christians, probably because it was found that they were disposed to submit passively to their doom, and would not afford amusement either by their resistance to the assailing beast, or by their activity in erading his assaults.
There was another class of combatants, who afforded more amusement. These were the persons regularly trained to such combats, and who bore the title of bestiarii. Sometimes free men, of desperate circumstances, sought a precarious subsistance by hazarding their lives in this profession; but it was chiefly exercised by slaves and prisoners of war, whom their masters or conquerors devoted to it; or by condemned persons, to whom was thus afforded an uncertain prolongation of existence, dependent upon their own prowess, activity, or skill.