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Verse 5. Likewise, ye younger. All younger persons of either sex.

Submit yourselves unto the elder. That is, with the respect due to their age, and to the offices which they sustain. There is here, probably, a particular reference to those who sustained the office of elders or teachers, as the same word is used here which occurs in 1 Pe 5:1. As there was an allusion in that verse, by the use of the word, to age, so there is in this verse to the fact that they sustained an office in the church. The general duty, however, is here implied, as it is everywhere in the Bible, that all suitable respect is to be shown to the aged. Comp. Le 19:32; 1 Ti 5:1; Ac 23:4; 2 Pe 2:9.


Yea, all of you be subject one to another. In your proper ranks and relations. You are not to attempt to lord it over one another, but are to treat each other with deference and respect. See Barnes "Eph 5:21"; See Barnes "Php 2:3".


And be clothed with humility. The word here rendered be clothed (egkomboomai) occurs nowhere else in the New Testament. It is derived from kombov—a strip, string, or loop to fasten a garment; and then the word refers to a garment that was fastened with strings. The word egkombwma (egkomboma) refers particularly to a long white apron, or outer garment, that was commonly worn by slaves. See Rob. Lex. Passow Lex. There is, therefore, peculiar force in the use of this word here, as denoting an humble mind. They were to be willing to take any place, and to perform any office, however humble, in order to serve and benefit others. They were not to assume a style and dignity of state and authority, as if they would lord it over others, or as if they were better than others; but they were to be willing to occupy any station, however humble, by which they might honour God. It is known that not a few of the early Christians actually sold themselves as slaves, in order that they might preach the gospel to those who were in bondage. The sense here is, they were to put on humility as a garment bound fast to them, as a servant bound fast to him the apron that was significant of his station. Comp. Col 3:13. It is not unusual in the Scriptures, as well as in other writings, to compare the virtues with articles of apparel; as that with which we are clothed, or in which we are seen by others. Comp. Isa 11:5; 59:17.

For God resisteth the proud, etc. This passage is quoted from the Greek translation in Pr 3:34. See it explained in the See Barnes "Jas 4:6, where it is also quoted.

{g} "all of you" Eph 5:21 {h} "God" Jas 4:6

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