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THE EPISTLE OF PAUL THE APOSTLE TO THE HEBREWS - Chapter 13 - Verse 7

Verse 7. Remember them which have the rule over you. Marg., "are the guides." The word here used means, properly, leaders, guides, directors. It is often applied to military commanders. Here it means teachers—appointed to lead or guide them to eternal life. It does not refer to them so much as rulers or governors, as teachers or guides. In Heb 13:17, however, it is used in the former sense. The duty here enjoined is that of remembering them; that is, remembering their counsel, their instructions, their example.

Who have spoken to you the word of God. Preachers; either apostles or others. Respect is to be shown to the ministerial office by whomsoever it is borne.

Whose faith follow. That is, imitate. See Barnes "Heb 6:12".

 

Considering the end of their conversation. Of their conduct; of their manner of life. The word here rendered the endekbasiv —occurs only here and in 1 Co 10:13, where it is rendered "a way of escape." It properly means, a going out, an egress, and is hence spoken of as a going out from life, or as an exit from the world— death. This is probably the meaning here. It does not mean, as our translation would seem to imply, that Jesus Christ, the same yesterday, today, and for ever, was the aim or end for which they lived—for the Greek will not bear that construction; but it means that they were attentively to contemplate the end or the issue of the conduct of those holy teachers—the close or going out of all that they did; to wit, in a peaceful death. Their faith sustained them. They were enabled to persevere in a Christian course, and did not faint or fail. There is allusion, doubtless, to those who had been their religious instructors, and who had died in the faith of the gospel, either by persecution, or by an ordinary death; and the apostle points to them as examples of that to which he would exhort those whom he addressed—of perseverance in the faith until death. Thus explained, this verse does not refer to the duty of Christians towards living teachers, but toward those who are dead. Their duty towards living teachers is enforced in Heb 13:17. The sentiment here is, that the proper remembrance of those now deceased, who were once our spiritual instructors and guides, should be allowed to have an important influence in inducing us to lead a holy life. We should remember them with affection and gratitude; we should recall the truths which they taught, and the exhortations which they addressed to us; we should cherish, with kind affection, the memory of all that they did for our welfare, and we should not forget the effect of the truths which they taught in sustaining their own souls when they died.

{1} "them which" "are the guides" {a} "faith follow" Heb 6:12 {*} "follow" "whose faith imitate"

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