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THE SECOND EPISTLE OF PAUL THE APOSTLE TO THE CORINTHIANS - Chapter 8 - Verse 23

Verse 23. Whether any do enquire of Titus. It is to be observed that the words "any do inquire" are not in the original; nor is it clear that these are the most proper words to be introduced here. The Greek may mean either "if any do inquire about Titus," or it may mean "if anything is to be said about Titus." The sense of the passage may either be, that some of the faction at Corinth might be disposed to inquire about the authority of Titus to engage in this work, or that Paul having said, so much in commendation of the persons who went with Titus, it seemed proper to say something in his favour also. The idea is, "If any inquiry is made from any quarter about him, or if it is necessary from any cause to say anything about him, I would say he is my partner," etc.

He is my partner, etc. He partakes with me in preaching the gospel, and in establishing and organizing churches. Comp. Tit 1:5. To the Corinthians this fact would be a sufficient commendation of Titus.

Or our brethren be enquired of. That is, the brethren who accompanied Titus. If any inquiry was made about their character, or if it was necessary to say anything in regard to them.

They are the messengers of the churches. They have the entire confidence of the churches, having been selected and appointed by them to a work of labour and responsibility. Comp. Php 2:25. The words here rendered "messengers of the churches," are in the original "apostles of the churches," (apostoloi ekklhsiwn.) The word apostles here is used evidently in its proper sense, to denote one who is sent out to transact any business for others, or as an agent or legate. These persons were not apostles in the technical sense: and this is an instance where the word is applied in the New Testament to those who had no claim to the apostolic office. It is also applied in a similar way to Apollos and Barnabas, though neither, strictly speaking, was an apostle.

And the glory of Christ. That is, they have a character so well known and established for piety, they are so eminent Christians, and do such honour to the Christian name and calling, that they may be Called the glory of Christ. It is an honour to Christ that he has called such persons into his church, and that he has so richly endowed them. Every Christian should so live as that it would appear to all the world that it was an honour and glory to the Redeemer that he had such followers; an honour to his gospel that it had converted such and brought them into his kingdom. It is sufficient honour, moreover, to any man to say that he is "the glory of Christ." Such a character should be, and will be, as it was ere, a recommendation sufficient for any to secure them the confidence of others.

{a} "messengers" Php 2:25

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