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6. Doing Good to All

1Brethren, even if a man be overtaken in any trespass, ye who are spiritual, restore such a one in a spirit of gentleness; looking to thyself, lest thou also be tempted. 2Bear ye one another's burdens, and so fulfil the law of Christ. 3For if a man thinketh himself to be something when he is nothing, he deceiveth himself. 4But let each man prove his own work, and then shall he have his glorying in regard of himself alone, and not of his neighbor. 5For each man shall bear his own burden. 6But let him that is taught in the word communicate unto him that teacheth in all good things. 7Be not deceived; God is not mocked: for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap. 8For he that soweth unto his own flesh shall of the flesh reap corruption; but he that soweth unto the Spirit shall of the Spirit reap eternal life. 9And let us not be weary in well-doing: for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not. 10So then, as we have opportunity, let us work that which is good toward all men, and especially toward them that are of the household of the faith. 11See with how large letters I write unto you with mine own hand. 12As many as desire to make a fair show in the flesh, they compel you to be circumcised; only that they may not be persecuted for the cross of Christ. 13For not even they who receive circumcision do themselves keep the law; but they desire to have you circumcised, that they may glory in your flesh. 14But far be it from me to glory, save in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, through which the world hath been crucified unto me, and I unto the world. 15For neither is circumcision anything, nor uncircumcision, but a new creature. 16And as many as shall walk by this rule, peace be upon them, and mercy, and upon the Israel of God. 17Henceforth, let no man trouble me; for I bear branded on my body the marks of Jesus. 18The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with your spirit, brethren. Amen.

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17. Let no man trouble me. He now speaks with the voice of authority for restraining his adversaries, and employs language which his high rank fully authorized. “Let them cease to throw hinderances in the course of my preaching.” He was prepared, for the sake of the church, to encounter difficulties, but does not choose to be interrupted by contradiction. Let no man trouble me. Let no man make opposition to obstruct the progress of my work.

As to everything else, (τοῦ λοιποῦ,) that is, as to everything besides the new creature. “This one thing is enough for me. Other matters are of no importance, and give me no concern. Let no man question me about them.” He thus places himself above all men, and allows to none the power of attacking his ministry. Literally, the phrase signifies, as to the rest or the remainder, which Erasmus, in my opinion, has improperly applied to time.

For I bear 102102     Οὐκ εἴπε δὲ ἔχω ἀλλὰ βαστάζω ὣσπερ τι τρόπαιον ἢ σημεῖον βασιλικὸν καὶ τούτοις ἐναβρύνομαι. “He does not say, I have, but, I bear, as some trophy or royal symbol; and I deck myself with them.” — Theophylact in my body the marks of the Lord Jesus. This accounts for his bold, authoritative language. And what were those marks? Imprisonment, chains, scourging, blows, stoning, and every kind of injurious treatment which he had incurred in bearing testimony to the gospel. Earthly warfare has its honors, in conferring which a general holds out to public view the bravery of a soldier. So Christ our leader has his own marks, of which he makes abundant use, for conferring on some of his followers a high distinction. These marks, however, differ from the other in one important respect, that they partake of the nature of the cross, and in the sight of the world are disgraceful. This is suggested by the word translated marks, (στίγματα,) for it literally denotes the marks with which barbarian slaves, or fugitives, or malefactors, were usually branded. Paul, therefore, can hardly be said to use a figure, when he boasts of shining in those marks with which Christ is accustomed to honor his most distinguished soldiers, 103103     “There is no warlike weapon, οὖγε οὐκ ἴχνη ἐν ἐμαυτῷ φέρω, of which I do not bear the marks upon me.” — Arrian. which in the eye of the world were attended by shame and disgrace, but which before God and the angels surpass all the honors of the world. 104104     “So far am I from being liable to be torn away from the truth of the gospel, by any reproaches or afflictions, that the disgrace inflicted on me for Christ’s sake, and the imprisonment, and scourging, and bonds, and stonings, and other distresses which I have endured for the name of Christ, shall be carried about with me, in my body, wherever I go, as marks and tokens of my Lord Jesus Christ. I will exhibit them as so many trophies, and will reckon it to be my glory, that I am counted worthy to imitate, in any manner, the cross of Christ which I preach.”-Erasmus’s Paraphrase.




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