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9. That if thou wilt confess, etc. Here is also an allusion, rather than a proper and strict quotation: for it is very probable that Moses used the word mouth, by taking a part for the whole, instead of the word face, or sight. But it was not unsuitable for the Apostle to allude to the word mouth, in this manner: — “Since the Lord sets his word before our face, no doubt he calls upon us to confess it.” For wherever the word of the Lord is, it ought to bring forth fruit; and the fruit is the confession of the mouth.
By putting confession before faith, he changes the order, which is often the case in Scripture: for the order would have been more regular if the faith of the heart had preceded, and the
confession of the mouth, which arises from it, had followed.
“He puts ‘mouth’ before ‘heart,’” says Pareus, “for he follows the order in which they are given by Moses, and for this reason, because we know not faith otherwise than by profession.”
This is one of the many instances both in the New and Old Testament, in which the most apparent act is mentioned first, and then the most hidden, or in which the deed is stated first, and then the principle from which it proceeds. See Romans 13:13; Romans 15:13. And we have here another instance of the Apostle’s style; he reverses the order in Romans 10:10, mentioning faith first, and confession last. The two verses may be thus rendered, —
9. That if thou wilt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus,
And believe in thine heart that God raised him from the dead,
Thou shalt be saved.
10. For with the heart we believe unto righteousness,
And with the mouth we confess unto salvation.
He begins and ends with confession, and in the middle clauses he mentions faith. — Ed. But he rightly confesses the Lord Jesus, who adorns him with his own power, acknowledging him to be such an one as he is given by the Father, and described in the gospel.
Express mention is made only of Christ’s resurrection; which must not be so taken, as though his death was of no moment, but because Christ, by rising again, completed the whole work of our salvation: for though redemption and satisfaction were effected by his death, through which we are reconciled to God; yet the victory over sin, death, and Satan was attained by his resurrection; and hence also came righteousness, newness of life, and the hope of a blessed immortality. And thus is resurrection alone often set before us as the assurance of our salvation, not to draw away our attention from his death, but because it bears witness to the efficacy and fruit of his death: in short, his resurrection includes his death. On this subject we have briefly touched in the sixth chapter.
It may be added, that Paul requires not merely an historical faith, but he makes the resurrection itself its end. For we must remember the purpose for which Christ rose again; — it was the Father’s design in raising him, to restore us all to life: for though Christ had power of himself to reassume his soul, yet this work is for the most part ascribed in Scripture to God the Father.