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THE FIRST EPISTLE OF PAUL THE APOSTLE TO THE CORINTHIANS - Chapter 15 - Verse 8

Verse 8. And last of all. After all the other times in which he appeared to men; after he had ascended to heaven. This passage proves that the apostle Paul saw the same Lord Jesus, the same body which had been seen by the others, or else his assertion would be no proof that he was risen from the dead. It was not a fancy, therefore, that he had seen him; it was not the work of imagination; it was not even a revelation that he had risen; it was a real vision of the ascended Redeemer.

He was seen of me also. On the way to Damascus. See Ac 9:3-6,17.

As of one born out of due time. Marg., Or, an abortive. Our translation, to most readers, probably, would not convey the real meaning of this place. The expression, "as of one born out of due time," would seem to imply that Paul meant to say that there was some unfitness as to the time when he saw the Lord Jesus; or that it was too late to have as clear and satisfactory a view of him as those had who saw him before his ascension. But this is by no means the idea in the passage. The word here used (ektrwma) properly means an abortion, one born prematurely. It is found nowhere else in the New Testament; and here it means, as the following verse shows, one that was exceedingly unworthy; that was not worth regard; that was unfit to be employed in the service of the Lord Jesus; that had the same relation to that which was worthy of the apostolic office which an abortion has to a living child. The word occurs (in the Septuagint) in Job 3:16; Ec 6:3, as the translation of HEBREW, nephel, an abortion, or untimely birth. The expression seems to be proverbial, and to denote anything that is vile, offensive, loathsome, unworthy. See Nu 12:12. The word, I think, has no reference to the mode of training of the apostle, as if he had not had the same opportunity as the others had, and was, therefore, compared with their advantages, like an untimely child compared with one that had come to maturity before its birth, as Bloomfield supposes; nor does it refer to his diminutive stature, as Wetstein supposes; but it means that he felt himself vile, guilty, unworthy, abominable as a persecutor, and as unworthy to be an apostle. The verse following shows that this is the sense in which the word is used.

{a} "last of all" Ac 9:17 {1} "one born" "an abortive"

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