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XIII. 6. But I trust that ye shall know that we are not reprobates. So as ye must needs, either acknowledge and reverence our apostleship, or yield yourselves to be reprobates: but I trust ye shall know, and be more and more convinced, that we are the chosen ministers of Christ, and not reprobates. XIII. 7. Now I pray to God that ye do no eril; not that we should appear approred, but that ye should do that which is honest, though we be as reprobates. Now I pray God so to keep you upright in his fear, that ye may do no evil; which I do not wish for our own sakes, that we might be hereby approved and graced in the success of our ministry; but chiefly, if not only, for yours, that ye may be preserved in a course of well doing, whatsoever become of us in the opinion of men. XIII. 8. For we can do nothing against the truth, but for the truth. For we cannot exercise the power of our apostleship in punishing or censuring those that live justly, truly, conscionably; but in the countenancing and encouraging of them rather, and opposing the contrary. XIII. 9. For we are glad, when we are weak, and ye are strong : and this also we wish, even your perfection. Let my detractors cast upon me the imputation of weakness, because I am not too stirring amongst you : I am glad to be held thus weak, when as my quietness is rather caused through your innocence, than my defect: that which we wish, and are ambitious of, is your perfection, though it be with our own disrace. XIII. 1 1. Be perfect, be of good comfort, be of one mind, live in peace. Labour towards perfection of holiness and obedience, &c.
THE EPISTLE OF PAUL THE APOSTLE TO THE GALATIANS.
I. 4. Who gave himself for our sins, that he might delirer us jrom this present evil world, according to the will of God and our Father.
Who gave himself to death, for the saving of us from our sins; that he might deliver us from the corruption of this present wicked world, and from the condemnation due thereunto; according to the eternal counsel and good pleasure of God, our Heavenly Father.
I. 6,7. I marrel that ye are so soon remored from him that called you into the grace of Christ unto another gospel: Which
is not another; but there be some that trouble you, and would perrert the gospel of Christ. I marvel, that ye are so soon removed from Christ your Saviour, which hath so graciously vouchsafed to call you to the profession of his Name, unto another doctrine (concerning the conjoining of the Law with Christ) which is by the teachers thereof called a Gospel: But, in truth, it is no Gospel at all; neither can there be any other Gospel besides that truth of God, which ye have received from us; howsoever there be some false teachers, that trouble and distract your hearts, and labour to pervert and adulterate the only true Gospel of Christ. I. 8. But though we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel unto you than that which we have preached unto you, let him be accursed. But, though we, or, if it could be possible, an Angel from heaven, should preach any other doctrine to you, under pretence of a Gospel, than that which ye have received already from us, let him be defied and accursed. I. 10. For do I now persuade men, or God? or do I seek to please men 2 for if I yet pleased men, I should not be the serwant of Christ. Thus confident am I of the truth of the Gospel, upon sure grounds: for do I now herein go about to be approved of men, or of God rather Surely it is not the allowance or applause of men, that I seek; for if I made this the scope and drift of my labours, to please men, I should not be the servant of Christ, but of men, rather. I. 11. Is not after man. It is no human, but a divine Gospel. I. 15. Who separated me from my mother's womb, and called me by his grace. Who had designed and destined me, even from my mother's womb, to this work of my Apostleship, and of his mere grace and mercy called me. I. 16. To reveal his Son in me, that I might preach him among the heathen; immediately I conferred not with flesh and blood. To reveal his Son Christ unto me, not for my own private good only, but, that I might declare him amongst the heathen, immediately I consulted not with any mortal man, for his information in this mystery of the Gospel. I. 19. Save James the Lord's brother. Save James, the kinsman or cousin-german of Christ.
II. 2. And I went up by revelation, and communicated unto them that gospel which I preach among the Gentiles, but pri: rately to them which were of reputation, lest by any means I should run, or had run, in vain.
I went up, not of mine own head, but by the appointment and revelation of God: and because there was a seeming difference betwixt the course that I took in my preaching and planting the Gospel, and theirs; they permitting circumcision where they preached, I not permitting it; I was willing to communicate unto them the course which I held among the Gentiles; but not in open hearing, but privately, to those which were in chief account; viz. Peter, James, and John; lest by any means I should have been thought to have gone a wrong way to work in my ministry. II. 3. But neither Titus, who was with me, being a Greek, was compelled to be circumcised: But so ordered I the matter, that not so much as Titus, who was with me in that journey, being a Gentile and a Grecian, was compelled, notwithstanding the importunity of some, to be circumcised: II. 4. And that because of false brethren unawares brought in, who came in privily to spy out our liberty which we have in Christ Jesus, that &c. And that chiefly, because of some false brethren of my nation, the Jews, who were secretly and underhand brought in, and set as spies, to pry into that liberty which we have in Christ Jesus, whereby we do justly hold ourselves freed from these legal ceremonies and observances; and laboured, by their enforcement, to draw us unto that bondage of the Mosaical Law, from which we were delivered by Christ: II. 5. To whom we gave place by subjection, no, not for an Jour; that the truth of the gospel might continue with you. To whom we yielded not an inch, nor gave subjection for so much as an hour, but opposed them effectually; that ye might well find, that it was no other than the truth of the Gospel, which we had delivered to you, and that ye might resolve to persist therein. II. 6. But of these who seemed to be somewhat, whatsoever they were, it maketh no matter to me: God accepteth no man's person: for &c. But of these great apostles, who carried much sway in the Church, and seemed persons of eminence, whatsoever they were, all is one to me: God doth not accept of any man's person; as more regarding him, because he is great, learned, well spoken: even the best of them in conference added nothing to me, nor taught me any thing that I knew not. II. 7. But contrariwise, when they saw that the gospel of the uncircumcision was committed unto me, &c. But, contrariwise, when they saw that I was made the Apostle of the Gentiles, as Peter was of the Jews &c. So verse 8. II. 9. And when James, Cephas, and John, who seemed to
be pillars, perceived the grace that was given unto me, they gave to me and Barnabas the right hands of fellowship; &c. And when Peter, James, and John, who were justly accounted to be the Pillars of the Church, perceived that great measure of grace and mercy, which God had vouchsafed unto me, in so miraculous a call to my Apostleship, they did willingly admit me and Barnabas, into the society and partnership of this great work; consenting, that we should go to convert the heathen, and they the Jews. II. 11. But when Peter was come to Antioch, I withstood him to the face, because he was to be blamed. Thus we went about our great and holy task: but when Peter was come to Antioch, where I was, I withstood him openly and professedly; because indeed he was worthy of blame and opposition. II. 12. For before that certain came from James, he did eat with the Gentiles: but when they were come, he withdrew and separated himself, fearing them which were of the circumcision. For, before that certain Jews came thither from James, he did familiarly converse at meals, and upon all other occasions, with the Gentiles; as making no difference betwixt them and Jews: but, when those Jews were come to him from James, he withdrew and separated himself from the Gentiles, as if they had been unclean and unfit to be conversed with ; belike fearing the offence of those Jews, which were newly come unto him. II. 13. And the other Jews dissembled likewise with him; insomuch that Barnabas also &c. And the other Jews, which were with him before, following his example, dissembled also with him, and withdrew themselves from the Gentiles; insomuch as Barnabas also, my companion, began to be drawn away with them. II. 14. But when I saw that they walked not uprightly according to the truth of the gospel, I said unto Peter before them all, If thou, being a Jew, livest after the manner of Gentiles, and not as do the Jews, why compellest thou the Gentiles to live as do the Jews 2 But when I saw that they halted thus, and went not sincerely on, according to the truth of the Gospel (wherein we have learned, that the partition-wall is broken down, and that in Christ there is neither Jew nor Gentile,) I said boldly unto Peter before them all, If thou, being naturally born a Jew, livest in a free fashion, after the manner of the Gentiles, without any regard of the strict observation of the Jewish rites, why dost thou compel those, which are born Gentiles, to live according to the rules of the Jewish strictness? II. 15, 16. We who are Jews by nature, and not sinners qf the Gentiles, Knowing that a man is not justified by the works of the law, but by the faith of Jesus Christ, eren we hare beliered in Jesus Christ. We, who are Jews by nature, and therefore, as it might seem, peculiarly chosen and privileged by God, and not Gentiles, who have been heretofore censured and rejected for inure and unclean persons: Even we, well knowing that a man is not justified by the Works of the Law, but by Faith in Jesus Christ, have believed in Jesus. II. 17. But if, while we seek to be justified by Christ, tre ourselves also are found sinners, is therefore Christ the minister of sin o God forbid. Thus I said to Peter, and that justly and truly, How is it then 2 if we, leaving our confidence to be justified by the Works of the Law, and seeking to be justified by Christ, be yet found to be sinners; shall we therefore say that Christ came to strip us of that righteousness which we might have hoped for in the Law, and to leave us as sinful and polluted men under the state of sin and death 2 God forbid, that we should teach such doctrine. II. 18. For if I build again the things which I destroyed, I make myself a transgressor. For, as for me, I have always hitherto preached the death and abolition of sin, by the power of Christ's death; and, if I should now preach the power and prevalence of sin over the soul, notwithstanding that death of Christ, I should build up that which I have formerly destroyed, and make myself justly censurable. II. 19. For I through the law am dead to the law, that I might lire unto God. it is not the Justice of Christ, that voids the Law, or disables it from justifying us: no ; it is the Law itself, that kills her followers alone: I myself, by the power and rigour of the Law, am a dead man to the Law; insomuch as it condemns me for not keeping it, and puts me out of all hope and confidence in myself or it; that I might seek unto God, for that life of Faith, which is only to be found in and by Christ. II. 20. I am crucified with Christ: merertheless I lice; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me : and the life which I now lire in the flesh, I live by the faith of the Son of God. As my Saviour was crucified, so am I crucified with him; and, by the power of his death, am dead to my sins and corruptions: but, though I be dead, one way, yet I live another: yet I know not whether I may properly say, that I live, or rather that Christ lives in me; for as my soul animates my body, so Christ animates, as it were, my soul, and moves and works in me: and the life, which I now live, is not a carnal, but a spiritual life; not the life of nature, but of grace, wrought in me by the power of Faith in the Son of God.