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XI. ¹Έστιν δὲ πίστις έλπιζομένων ὑπόστασις, πραγμάτων ἔλεγχος οὐ βλεπομένων· ²ἐv ταύτῃ γὰρ

1 ὑπόστασω D₂*. Βλεπ.: Βοθλομένων A.

ii. The past triumphs of Faith (c. xi. 1-40).

The reference to Faith, as the characteristic of the true people of God, leads the writer of the Epistle to develop at length the lesson of Faith given in the records of the Old Covenant. From the first the divine revelation has called out Faith. The elementary presuppositions of religion, the existence and moral attributes of God and the creation of the world, rest on Faith. Hence if is to be expected that Faith should still find its appropriate trial. Thus the appeal to the past experience of the readers, and to the general law of God's dealings, is confirmed in detail by the manifold experience of the saints.

The development of the work of Faith appears to follow an intelligible and natural plan. The writer first marks the characteristics of Faith generally (v. 1) and its application to the elementary conceptions of religion (v. 3; comp. v. 6). He then shews that the spiritual history of the world is a history of the victories of Faith. This is indicated by the fragmentary records of the old world (4-7), and more particularly by the records of the growth of the Divine Society (ἡ ἐκκλησία). This was founded in the Faith of obedience and patience of the patriarchs (8—16); and built up in the Faith of sacrifice, sustained against natural judgment (17—22); and carried to victory by the Faith of conquest (23—31). The later action of Faith in the work of the people of God Is indicated up to the last national conflict under the Maccabees (32—38); and it is then declared that all these preliminary victories of Faith await thεir consummation from the Faith of Christians (39, 40).

The contents of the chapter may therefore be thus arranged:

(1) vv. 1—2. Preliminary view of the characteristics and work of Faith.

(2) vv. 3—7. Faith as seen in the prophetic records of the old world.

(3) vv. 8—22. The Faith of the Patriarchs:

(a) The Faith of Obedience and Patience.

(b) The Faith of Sacrifice.

(4) vv. 23—31. The Faith of Conflict and Conquest.

(5) vv. 32—38. Faith active in national life.

(6) vv. 39, 40. Conclusion.

(1) 1—2. General view of the characteristics and work of Faith.

The reality, the sphere, and the power of Faith are affirmed (v. 1); and the religious history of mankind is appealed to generally in support of its claims (v. 2).

¹Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the test of things (objects) not seen; ²for herein the elders had witness borne to them.

(1). ἔ. δὲ π. ἐλπ....οὐ βλεπ.] Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the test of objects not seen. Vulg. est autem fides sperandorum substantia, rerum argumentum non parentum (Later texts give sperandorum and apparentium): Aug. sperantium substantia, convictio rerum quae non videntur.

The order (ἔστιν δὲ πίστις) shews that the object of the writer is not to give a formal definition of Faith but to bring out characteristics of Faith which bear upon his argument. It seems to suggest the affirmation of the reality of faith as well as the nature of faith, as if it were 'Now 350 faith is, and it is this....' This fulness of meaning explains the γὰρ which follows.

The copula stands similarly at the beginning of the sentence: Lk. viii. 11; 2 Cor. xi. 10; 1 Tim. vi. 6; 1 John i. 5. (Dan. iii. 17; Wisd. xv. 9.)

The noun (πίστις) has no article as indicating faith in its abstract conception, and not specially the Christian faith. Comp. Rom. i. 5; iii. 28 (Moulton-Winer, p. 149).

In the characterisation of Faith which is given we have to consider (α) its object and (β) its office. Its Object is ἐλπιζόμενα and πράγματα οὐ βλεπόμενα: its office is to be the ὑπόστασις of the former, the ἔλεγχος of the latter.

(α) The object of Faith is distinctly intelligible. Faith essentially deals with the future and with the unseen, the regions not entered by direct physical experience. The statement is perfectly general ('things hoped for,' 'objects not seen'), and not specific in regard to the contents of the revelation given by God. Faith deals with everything which comes under these two categories. By Faith we attach the idea of permanence to the law which represents the results of past observation. By Faith we discern the love which is offered to our notice by outward signs.

In considering things 'future' and 'unseen' it will be felt that hope has a wider range than sight. Hope includes that which is internal as well as that which is external. Hence ἐλπιζόμενα is left indefinite as extending to the whole field of mental and spiritual activity, while πράγματα oὐ βλεπόμενα suggest a definite order of objects and events outside the believer, which are conceived of as realities which may fall under man's senses. Under another aspect 'things hoped for' are more limited than 'objects not seen,' for the latter embrace all that belongs to the requital and purification of the guilty, and the present government of God.

(β) In regard to the office of Faith it may be laid down that the interpretations of the two words ύπόστασις...ἔλεγχος... must be coordinate; that they must describe Faith under the same general aspect. Now, as far as the description of Faith here is concerned, it may be presented to us in regard to what it is, as a particular frame of mind, or in regard to what it does, as producing particular results. Senses have been given to ὑπόστασις and ἔλεγχος which correspond with both views. Thus ὑπόστασις has been translated 'assurance,' a meaning which it has in c. iii. 14. And again 'essence' (substance), that is, that which gives real existence to a thing, a sense closely akin to the sense in i. 3. So too ἔλεγχος has been translated 'conviction,' that is, the feeling of certainty, and 'proof,' that is, the means by which certainty is gained.

The two senses of ὑπόστασις are well established; but it is difficult to suppose that ἔλεγχος can express a state.

If then ἔλεγχος must be understood of the 'proof,' the 'test,' by which the reality of the unseen is established; it seems to follow necessarily that the parallel meaning must be given to ὑπόστασις, 'that which gives true existence' to an object.

This meaning is that which is uniformly followed by the Greek Fathers in commenting on the passage: ἐπειδὴ τὰ ἐν ἐλπίδε ἀνυπόστατα εἶναι δοκεῖ, ἡ πίστις ὑπόστασιν αὐτοῖς χαπίζεται· μᾶλλον dὲ οὐ χαρίζεται αλλ' αὐτό ἐστιν οὐσία αὐτῶν· οἷον ἡ ἀνάστασις οὐ παραγέγονεν οὐδὲ ἐστιν ἐν ὑποστάσει, άλλ' ἡ ἐλπὶς ὑφίστησιν αὐτὴν ἐν τῇ ἡμετέρᾳ ψυχῇ (Chrys.). So Theophylact: oὐσίωσίς ἐστι τῶν μήπω ὄντων καὶ ὑπόστασις τῶν μὴ ὑφεστώτων; and Theodoret: πρὸς τὴν τῶν ἐλπιζομένων θεωρίαν ὀφθαλμὸς ἡμῖν γίνεται, καὶ δεἰκνυσιν ὡς ὑφεστῶτα τὰ μηδέπω γεγενημένα.


ἐμαρτυρήθησαν οἱ πρεσβύτεροι. ³Πίστει νοοῦμεν κατηρτίσθαι

The Latin renderings also follow this interpretation without variation (substantia), though they present many differences in other parts of the sentence; and the Latin Fathers reproduce the ideas already quoted from the Greek Fathers.

Nor is it a valid objection that ὑπόστασις is not in this case strictly 'essence' as applied to the several objects of hope, but (generally) that which gives reality to them. For it is in virtue of Faith that things hoped for are now, so that Faith is their essence in regard to the actual experience of the believer.

Thus the general scope of the statement is to show that the future and the unseen can be made real for men by Faith.

Things which in the succession of time are still 'hoped for' as future have a true existence in the eternal order; and this existence Faith brings home to the believer as a real fact. So also things unseen are not mere arbitrary fancies: Faith tries them, tests them, brings conviction as to their being.

For ὑπόστασις compare i. 3 note; iii. 14 note (2 Cor. ix. 4; xi. 17); and Philo de migr. Abr. § 9 (i. 442 M.); and for τὰ ἐλπιζόμενα compare 1 Pet. i. 13; 1 Cor. xv. 19; Rom. viiι. 24 f.; 1 Tim. iv. 10.

The word ἔλεγχος is found here only in N. T. (in 2 Tim. iii. 16 1. ἐλεγμόν). The verb ἐλέγχειν is not unfrequent (c. xii. 5). Compare especially John xvi. 8 note.

The sense of 'proof' is found in classical writers from Euripides downwards. In the lxx. ἔλεγχος is frequent in the sense of 'reproof.' (Job xxiii. 4, 7 do not seem to form exceptions.)

For πραγμάτων compare vi. 18 note; x. 1; and for οὐ βλεπομένων Rom. viii. 24.

Primasius gives a good illustration of the thought: Quae apparent jam fidem non habent..sed agnitionem. Dum ergo vidit Thomas dum palpavit, cur ei dicitur Quia vidisti me credidisti? — Sed aliud vidit, aliud credidit. A mortali enim homine divinitas videri non potest. Videndo ergo credidit, qui considerando hominem verum Deum, quem videre non poterat, exclamavit.

(2). ἐv ταύτῃ γάρ...'] for herein, as living and acting in this atmosphere of Faith, of Faith by which the future is realised and the unseen apprehended, the elders had witness borne to them. The religious history of man is taken as the proof of the power which Faith possesses to test and realise the unseen.

With ἐv ταύτῃ ἐμαρτ. compare vv. 4 δε' ἧς ἐμαρτ., 39 μαρτυρηθέντες διὰ τῆς π.; and for the thought Ign. ad Philad. 11; ad Ephes. 12; Just. M. Dial. 29 s. f. οἱ τοσοῦτοι δίκαιοι...μεμαρτύρηνται ὑπὸ τοῦ θεοῦ αὐτοῦ. Μαρτυρεῖσθας is used absolutely in the passages of Ignatius just quoted and in Clem. 1 ad Cor. 17, 18 f. &c.

Faith is indeed the characteristic of all the Jewish heroes, though Faith, as such, is very little noticed in the Ο. T. The witness is borne to the life which was inspired by Faith.

οἱ πρεσβύτεροι] Comp. c. i. 1 οἱ πατέρες.

(2) 3—7. Faith as seen in the prophetic records of the old world.

Tho first view of Faith is taken from the brief records of the old world given in Gen. i.—ix. It is first laid down that our fundamental view of the origin (and so of the course) of the world rests on Faith (v. 3); and then in Abel, Enoch, Noah, the writer considers three types of Faith under different circumstances, as answering to man's constitution, to the development of life, to special revelation. Abel recognised the natural obligations of man to God generally, and


τοὺς αἰῶνας ῥήματι θεοῦ, εἰς τὸ μὴ έκ φαινομένων

fulfilled them unto death, through which he still lives (v. 4). Enoch realised fellowship with God in action till it was crowned in an eternal fellowship (5 f.). Noah obeyed a specific direction of God and was saved through suffering (7). Theophylact comparing the examples of Abel and Enoch says well: ὅρα δὲ πῶς διὰ μὲν τοῦ Ἄωελ ἔδειξεν ὁ θεὸς τὴν ἀπόφασιν τὴν περὶ τοῦ θανάτου ἀληθῆ, διὰ δὲ τοῦ Ἐνὼχ πώλιν ἔδειξεν ὅτι πρὸσκαιρος ἡ ἀπόφασις καὶ ἀναιρεθήσεται. And it may be added that, as in Abel and Enoch there were revelations of death and life, so in Noah there was a revelation of judgment.

³By faith we perceive that the world hath been framed by God's word, to the end that that which is seen be known to have arisen not from things which appear.

By faith Abel offered to God a more abundant sacrifice than Cain, through which he had witness borne to him that he was righteous, God bearing witness on occasion of his gifts; and through it he being dead yet speaketh.

By faith Enoch was translated so as not to see death; and he was not found, because God translated him; for before his translation the witness is recorded that he had been well-pleasing to God; ⁶and without faith it is impossible to be well-pleasing to Him; for he that cometh to God must have faith (believe) that He is, and that He shews Himself a rewarder to them that diligently seek Him.

By faith Noah being warned by God concerning the things not yet seen, moved with pious care, prepared an ark for the saving of his house, through which he condemned the world and became heir of the righteousness which is according to faith.

(3). The belief in creation—the belief in a divine will manifested in the existence of the world—is the necessary foundation for the life of faith in all its manifestations. Hence this primary action of faith is declared first. By faith we attain to the assurance that the world—history—is not the result of blind fate but answers to an expression of the will of God; and so we can attain to fresh victories corresponding to our position, even as in the past the heroes of faith triumphed.

The verse presents two distinct thoughts. It declares the fundamental act of faith by which we apprehend the fact of creation, and then points out the consequence which ought to follow from it in our view of the world, as it lies before us. The conception of creation by God's word rightly leads to a present belief in the power of God as Preserver and Governor of that which He created.

πίστει...ῥήμ. θεοῦ] By faith we perceive that the world hath been framed by God's word...Vulg. Fide intellegimus aptata esse saecula verbo Dei...The conclusion, which we are so constituted as to form, is an interpretation of the external phenomena which are presented to us made by the highest rational faculty in man (νοῦς), to which Faith gives validity.

For νοοῦμεν compare Rom. i. 20; Wisd. xiii. 4. It expresses a mental as distinguished from a sensuous perception (Mk. viii. 17). The term νοῦς, which is not found in this Epistle, is characteristic of St Paul: 1 Cor. ii. 16; Rom. xii. 2; Col. ii. 18; 1 Tim. v. 5.

Κατηρτίσθαι expresses the manifoldness and the unity of all creation; and by the tense marks that the original lesson of creation remains for abiding use and application. Comp. Herm. Mand. i. 1. For καταρτίζειν compare c. x. 5; xiii. 21; 1 Thess. iii.


τὸ βλεοόμενον γεγονέναι. ⁴Πίστει πλείονα θυσίαν

3 τὸ βλεοόμενον אAD₂ me: τὰ -να S vg syrr.

10; Gal. vi. 1; Ps. lxvii. (lxviii.) 10; lxxiii. (lxxiv.) 16; lxxxviii. (lxxxix.) 38; xxviii. (xxix.) 9 &c.

For τοὺς αἰῶνας see c. i. 2 note; ix. 26; 1 Cor. ii. 7; 1 Tim. i. 17; Eph. iii. 21. This conception of creation as unfolded in time, the many 'ages' going to form one 'world,' is taken up into Christian literature. Thus Clem. R. i. c. 35 (ὁ δημιουργὸς καὶ πατὴρ τῶν αἰ.); 55 (θεὸς τῶν αἰ); 61 (βασιλεὺς τῶν αἰ.).

πίστει] By the direct exercise of faith, by an act of faith....The (instrumental) dative is used by St Paul: 2 Cor. i. 24; Rom. xi. 20 (τῇ π. ἑστηκένας); iii. 28 (δικαιοῦσθαι πίστες); [iv. 20]; Col. i. 23; [Tit. ii. 2] The simple dative is used throughout the chapter, except v. 33 διὰ πίστεως (comp. vi. 12) and v. 13 κατὰ πίστεν (διὰ τῆς πίσστεως v. 39 is different). With πίστει contrast τῇ πίστες c. iv. 2.

ῥήματι θεοῦ] Comp. Gen. i.; Ps. xxxiii. 6, 9 (lxx. τῷ λόγῳ). Philo de sacrif. Abel. § 18 (i. 175 Μ.): ὁ γὰρ θεὸς λέγων ἅμα ἐπολιει. The term ῥήμα retains its full meaning: a single expression of the divine will. Comp. c. vi. 5. For creation see i. 2 note.

The 'world was conceived to exist archetypally in the 'mind' of God before it was brought under the limitations of time and space. Invisibiliter mundus antequam formaretur in doi sapientia erat, qui tamon per expletionem operis factus est visibilis...(Primas.). Comp. Apoc. iv. 11 ('ἧσαν, ἐκτίσθησαν); John i. 3 f. note.

εἰς τὸ μὴ...τὸ βλεπ. γεγονέναι] to the end that that which is seen be known to have arisen not from things which appear. Vulg. ut ex invisibilibus visibilia fierent. The purpose and end of the knowledge gained by faith as to the creation of the world is the conviction that the visible order as we observe it, as a whole (τὰ βλεπ.), has not come Into being by simple material causation. We learn to recognise that there is a divine power behind. Such a conclusion is the fundamental triumph of Faith. Creation can best be conceived of by us as the limitation of that which is, and not as the addition of anything to the sum of being.

The phrase εἰς τὸ...can, according to usage, have no other sense than that of expressing the end. Comp. c. x. 7 note. It occurs eight times in the Epistle, and uniformly in this meaning.

By a not unnatural brevity of expression 'the becoming of the world' is used for 'our conception of the becoming of the world.'

The negative in the phrase μὴ ἐκ φαιν. was transposed in interpretation (as if it were ἐκ μὴ φαινομένων) from early times (from things which do not appear). Thus Chrysostom, having quoted the Greek as it stands in the text, goes on at once to say: δῆλον, φησίν, ἐστὶν ὅτι ἐξ οὐκ ὄντων τὰ ὄντα ἐπολιησεν ὁ θεός, ἐκ τῶν μὴ φαινομένων τὰ ὑφεστῶτα. So Theodoret: ἐξ ὄντων δημιουργοῦσιν οἱ ἄνθρωποι· ὁ δὲ τῶν ὅλων θεὂς ἐκ μὴ ὄντων τὰ ὄντα παρήγαγε

Such a transposition is wholly unsupported. The passage quoted from Arist. de Phys. ausc. v. 1 has, in the true text ἡ γὰρ οὐκ ἐξ ὑποκειμένου.

On the dogma of creation ἐξ οὐκ ὄντων see Herm. Vis. i. 1. 6 and Harnack's note; Hatch, Hibbert Lectures p. 197 note. The apostolic phrase expresses whatever truth is conveyed by it. No purely physical explanation of the origin of the world is possible. Things that appear cannot give an explanation of the origin of the universe which we see. So Philo speaks of ὁ ἀσώματος καὶ νοητὸς... κόομος,


Ἄβελ παρὰ Καὶν προσήνεγκεν τῷ θεῷ, δι' ἧς ἐμαρτυρήθη εἶναι δίκαιος, μαρτυροῦντος ἐπὶ τοῖς δώροις [αὐτοῦ τοῦ θεοῦ],

4 αὐτοῦ τῷ θεῷ ν. αὐτῷ τοῦ θεοῦ. See Addit. Note.

4 ἐπὶ τ. δ. αὐ. τοῦ θεοῦ S א (vg) syrr me: ἐπὶ τ. δ. αὐ. τῷ θεῷ א* AD₂*.

τὸ τοῦ φαινομένου τοῦδε ἀρχέτυπον, ἰδέαις ἀοράτοις συσταθεὶς ὥσπερ οὖτος σώμασιν ἁρατοῖς (De conf. ling § 34; i. 431 M.).

φαινομένων τὸ βλεπόμενον] The visible order, as one whole, is contrasted with the many elements which fall under the senses.

For γεγονέναι see John i. 3 note.

(4). πίστει πλ. θ....τῷ θεῷ] Gen. iv. 2 ff. By faith Abel offered to God a more abundant sacrifice than Cain...Vulg. Fide plurimam hostiam Abel quam Cain....

The use of πλείων in c. iii. 3; Matt. vi. 25 (ἡ ψυχὴ πλεῖόν ἐστι τῆς τροφῆς, xii. 41 πλεῖον Ἰωνᾶ, id. 42) has been supposed to justify the general sense of 'more excellent,' 'better' qualitatively only. But the narrative in Genesis suggests that the deeper gratitude of Abel found an outward expression in a more abundant offering. He brought of the 'firstlings' and did not offer like Cain at 'the end of time,' while he also brought 'of the fat' of his flock. Comp. Philo, de conf. ling. § 25 (i. 423).

It is impossible to determine certainly in what Abel's Faith consisted. The fact that he offered 'a more abundant' sacrifice shows a fuller sense of the claims of God. It has been reasonably suggested that the sacrifice of animals, which were not yet given for food, indicates a general sense that life was due to the Living One alone.

For πλείονα παρά Κ. see c. iii. 3; i. 4 note.

δι' ἧς ἐμαρτ.] i.e. θυσίας, through which sacrifice. The sacrifice was the sign of the righteousness—the true relation to God by faith—which he had inwardly. Through this the witness came, as God bore witness on occasion of his gifts. Comp. v. 7. The express title of 'righteous' is not given to Abel in the Ο. T. narrative, but to Noah first (v. 7). The character however is given to him, and the title in later times: Matt. xxiii. 35; 1 John iii. 12. For ἐπὶ see c. ix. 10 note.

There is nothing in Scripture to shew in what way the divine witness was given to Abel (lxx. ἐπεῖδεν Gen. iv. 4). A widespread legend current still among Mohammedans (Korân, v. § 30 notes), related that fire came down and consumed his sacrifice:

λέγεται πῦρ κατελθὸν ἀναλαβεῖν τὰσ θυσίας, ἀντὶ φὰρ τοῦ ἐπὶ Ἄβελ ἐπίβλεψε καὶ ἐπὶ τὰς θυσίας αὐτοῦ ὁ Κύριος [ὁ Σύρος] καὶ ἐνεπύρισεν εἶπεν (Chrys. ad loc: comp. Field Hex. ad Gen. iv. 7). So Theophylact: ἐπλεβλεπεν ἐπί τὰς θυσίας Ἄβελ ὁ Κύριος καὶ ἐνέπρησε.

In the Gelasian and Gregorian Canon the three sacrifices of Abel, Abraham and Melchizedek are placed in significant connexion: ...digneris...accepta habere sicuti accepta habere dignatus es munera pueri tui justi Abel et sacrificium patriarchae nostri Abrahae et quod tibi obtulit summus sacerdos Melchizedech sanctum sacrificium, immaculatam hostiam.

According to an Eastern tradition the ram which Abraham offered was the ram of Abel's offering which was sent down from Paradise (Sale on Korân xxxvii. 107). A similar thought finds expression in the Jewish legend (Pirke R. Eliez. 31 ap. Biesenthal p. 297 n.) that the altar of Abraham's sacrifice was that on which Adam, Abel and Noah had sacrificed (Gen. xxii. 9 HebrewOilWnp not MfP).

Gn the fitness of the reference to


καὶ δι' αὐτῆς ἀποθανὴν ἔτι λαλεῖ. ⁵Πίστει Ἐνὴχ μετετέθη τοῦ μὴ ἰδεῖν θάνατον, καὶ οὐκ ηὑρίσκετο διότι μετέθηκεν αὐτὸν ὁ θεός· πρὸ γὰρ τῆς μεταθέσεως μεμαρτύρηται

διὰ ταύτνς D₂*. λαλεῖ אΑ vg syrr me: λαλεῖται S D₂. 5 μετέθηκεν: μετετεθ. א. μεταθ. א•ΑD₂* vg me: + αύτοῦ S א (syrr).

Abel to the position of the Hebrews Primasius says (after Chrysostom): Ponit primum eum qui mala passus est et hoc a fratre, proprium illorum ponens exemplum: etenim eadem passi fuerant illi a contribulibus suis et fratribus.

δι' αὐτῆς...ἔτι λαλεῖ] through it, i.e. faith. Abel's faith was the ground of his living activity after death. Qui enim alios suo exemplo admonet ut justi sint, quomodo non loquitur? (Primas.)

Ἀνείλεν αὐτὸν ἀλλὰ οὐ συνανεῖλεν αὐτῷ τῆν δόξαν καὶ τὴν τιμήν· οὐ τέθνηκεν ἐκεῖνος, οὐκοῦν, οὐδὲ ὑμεῖς τεθνήξεσθε...ὥσπερ οὖν ὁ οὐρανὸς φαινόμενος μόνον λαλεῖ, οὕτω καὶ ἐκεῖνος μνημονευόμενος (Chrys.).

Philo argues that Cain truly died and Abel lived: ὥσθ' οὔτως ἀναγνωστἐον Ἀνέστη Κάῖν καὶ ἀπέκτεινεν ἑαυτὸν ἀλλ' οὐχ ἕτερον...ὥσθ' ὁ Ἄβελ, τὸ παραδοξότατον, ἀνῄρηταί τε καὶ ζῇ...πῶς φὰρ μηκέτ' ὦν διαλἐγεσθαι δυνατός; (quod det. pot. insid. § 14; i. 200 Μ.).

Ἔτι may refer historically to θανών, 'after death he still (in the record of Scripture Gen. iv. 10, comp. c. xii. 24) speaketh as indeed not dead.' Or it may be fully temporal and describe the present voice of the first righteous martyr. It seems most in accordance with the language of Scripture on the unseen world not to exclude the second view: Apoc. vi. 9.

δι' ἧς...δι' αὐτῆς...] through which (sacrifice or faith?)...through it (faith or sacrifice?)....The reference of the pronouns is ambiguous. Each may refer either to 'faith' or to 'the sacrifice'; and every combination has found advocates. On tho whole it appears to be most natural to see in the sacrifice the means through which the testimony was borne, and in the faith which prompted the sacrifice that whereby Abel still speaks. The decision must be made by consideration of the general thought of the passage. The words themselves admit equally all interpretations. Yet comp. v. 7 δι' ἧς.

(5). Ἑνώχ] Gen. v. 21—24. Compare Ecclus. xliv. 16; xlix. 14; Wisd. iv. 10. In Enoch the view of the true destiny of man was again revealed, fellowship with God. Side by side with advancing material civilisation the revelation of the spiritual life was also given.

μετετέθη τοῦ μὴ ἰδ. θάν.] (Enoch) was translated so as not to see death. Vulg. translatus est ne videret mortem. For the construction see c. x. 7, 9 (lxx. τοῦ ποιῆσαι) note.

The legendary interpretation in Primasius is worth noticing: translatus est in paradisum terrenum unde quondam Adam ejectus est.

οὐχ ηὑρ...διότι μετέθ. ὁ θ.] The writer follows the interpretative rendering of the lxx. while the Hebrew has simply: he was not, for God took him, a phrase which leaves the mode of Enoch's departure from life quite open. Comp. Wisd. iv. 10 f.

πρὸ γὰρ τῆς μετ.] Faith was the ground of the translation because his pleasing God is specially mentioned before this took place; and such pleasing implies faith. The circumstances under which Enoch lived gave prominence to his Faith. In a corrupt age he is said to have maintained that fellowship with God which Is identical with pleasing Him.

μεμαρτύρηται] The witness stands


εὔαρεστηκέναι τῷ θεῷ, ⁶χωρὶς δὲ πίστεως ἀδύνατον εὐαρεστῆσαι, πιστεῦσαι γὰρ δεῖ τὸν προσερχόμενον [τῷ] θεῷ ὅτι ἔστιν καὶ τοῖς ἐκζητοῦσιν αὐτόν μισθαποδότης γίνεται. ⁷Πίστει χρηματισθεῖς Νῶε περὶ τῶν μηδέπω βλεπομένων εὐλαβηθεὶς κατεσκεύασεν κιβωτόν εἰς σωτηρίαν τοῦ οἴκου αὐτοῦ, δι΄ ἧς κατέκρινεν τὸν κόσμον, καὶ τῆς κατὰ

6 τῷ θεῷ א•AD₂*: θεῷ א•.

recorded. For the use of the perfect see c. vii. 6 note.

εὐαρεστηκέναι] The lxx. use the word εὐηρέστησε to render Hebrew (walked with God Gen. v. 22; Aqu. περιεπάτει (Sym. άνεστρέφετo)...σὺν τῷ ιεῷ).

(6). The simple notice that Enoch 'pleased God' (or 'walked with God') is a sufficient proof of his Faith. For Faith is an essential condition of 'pleasing' (or of 'fellowship'). The aorists εὐαρεστῆσαι, πιστεῦσαι express the absolute idea.

πιστεῦσαι δεῖ...] The Faith which is thus declared to be necessary for everyone who approaches God as a worshipper (τὸν προσερχόμενον c. vii. 25 note), includes two elements, the belief (α) that God is, and (β) that He is morally active; in other words it is a Faith in the existence and in the moral government of God.

ὅτι ἔστιν καὶ...γίνεται] that He is—that there is One Who answers to the intuition—and that He shews Himself a rewarder... Vulg. quia est et...fit. For μισθαποδότης see c. ii. 2 note. In connexion with this statement Chrysostom asks πόθεν; οὔπω γὰρ οὐδὲ τῷ Ἄβελ ἀπέδωκεν. ὥστε ὁ λογισμὸς ἕτερα ὑπέβαλλεν ἡ δ[ε πίστις τὰ ἐναντία τῶν ὁρωμενων.

The word ἐκζητεῖν, which is common in the lxx., wherever it occurs in the Ν. T. in the sense of 'searching' suggests the notion of strenuous endeavour: c. xii. 17; Acts xv. 17 (lxx.); Rom. iii. 11 (lxx.); 1 Pet. i. 10.

(7). Nῶε] Gen. vi.

The Faith of Noah was directed to a special revelation which was made known to others also. In this respect it differed from the Faith of Abel and Enoch. Thus Chrysostom τὸ μὲν ὑπόδειγμα τοῦ Ἐνὼχ πίστεως ἧν ὑπόδειγμα μόνον, τὸ δὲ τοῦ Νῶε καὶ ἀπιστίας.

For χρηματισθείς (Vulg. responso accepto) see c. viii. 5 note. 'The things not yet seen' (not indefinitely ('things'), the judgment which was to come upon the world with all its attendant circumstances, were the subject of the divine communication. Contrast περὶ μελλ. v. 20.

εὐλαβηθεὶς κατεσκ.] moved with pious care (he) prepared...Vulg. metuens aptavit...Compare c. v. 7 (ἀπὸ τῆς εὐλαβείας); xii. 28 (μετὰ αἰδοῦς καὶ εὐλαβείας); Acts xxiii. 10.

This characteristic was at once called out by the divine warning. Χρηματισθείς and εὐλαβηθείς appear to be coincident in time.

The word κατεσκεύασεν (1 Pet. iii. 20) includes both the construction and the fitting up of the ark: comp. c. iii. 3 note.

δι' ἧς] through which ark (comp. v. 4). His Faith was visibly presented to the eyes of his contemporaries by the construction of the ark. Through this then he condemned the unbelieving world, as witnessing to the divine destruction which was to come upon them in just recompense for their deeds.

Both here and in v. 4 δι' ἧς may be referred to Faith, but in both cases


πίστιν δικαιοσύνης ἐγένετο κληρονόμος. ⁸Πίστει κάλούμενος

8 ὁ καλούμ. AD₂* vg: καλούμ. S א.

the form of the argument seems to require a reference to the outward expression of the Faith. The sacrifice of Abel and the ark of Noah were, so to speak, the Faith of each made visible. And so it can rightly be said that Noah through the ark—the embodiment of his Faith in deed—became heir of the righteousness according to Faith.

κατέκρινεν...ἐγένετο] The first verb though the form is ambiguous, is probably an imperfect and describes the constant significance of his action, comparatione scilicet melioris fidei et facti (Primas.).

τὸν κόσμον] Compare v. 38.

τῆς κατὰ πίστ. δικαιοσ. κληρ.] Noah is the first man who receives the title of 'righteous' in the Ο. T. (Gen. vi. 9 HebrewP"!Y), as was remarked by Philo, de congr. erud. gr. § 17 (i. p. 532 M.). Comp. Ezek. xiv. 14, 20; Ecclus. xliv. 17; Wisd. x. 4, 6; 2 Pet. ii. 5.

'Faith' and 'righteousness' are placed in different connexions one with the other, which will repay study.

(α) ἡ δικ. τῆς πίστεως (δικ. πίστ.) Rom. iv. 11, 13.

(β) δικ. ἡ ἐκ π. (ἡ ἐκ π. δικ.) Rom. ix. 30; x. 6.

(γ) ἡ ἐκ θεοῦ δικ. ἐπὶ τῇ π. Phil. iii. 9.

(δ) ἡ κατὰ π. δικ.

'The righteousness according to faith,' the righteousness which 'answers to,' 'corresponds with' faith, is that righteousness which God alone can give, which answers to, corresponds with, that spiritual order which faith alone enters.

For κατὰ πίστιν see v. 13 note.

κληρονόμος] The righteousness was something which came to him as having its source without, and yet according to a certain law. It was his by an unquestionable right: it corresponded with the position of a son; and this position Noah shewed by his conduct to be his. Compare c. i. 14 (κληρονομεῖν σωτηρίαν); xii. 17 (κληρ. τὴν εὐλογίαν). The righteousness was not a hope for the future but a real possession by the gift of God. Compare Addit. Note on vi. 12.

(3) 8—22. The Faith of the Patriarchs.

With the call of Abraham the records of Faith enter on a new phase. Faith is treated henceforth in relation to a society, a people of God, through whom the divine blessings were to be extended to mankind. Under this wider aspect Faith is regarded in two forms as shewn by the representative founders of the ancient people in (a) the Faith of patient Obedience which is the foundation of the Kingdom of God, and in (b) the Faith of Sacrifice which is the principle of its development.

(a) The patriarchal Faith of Obedience and Patience (8—16).

The Faith of patient Obedience is traced mainly in the life of Abraham who impressed his own character upon his descendants (8—12)(α). In him and in them it was openly shewn that the societies of earth have a spiritual archetype which is the true object of human endeavour (13—16) (β).

(α) The Faith of patient Obedience seen in the Faith of Abraham (8—12).

The Faith of the patriarchs, represented by the Faith of Abraham, is presented under three different aspects:

(i) As Abraham trusted God wholly, going forth he knew not whither (v. 8). (The Faith of self-surrender.)

(ii) As he waited on the scene of his hope looking for God's work (vv. 9 f.). (The Faith of patience.)

(iii) As he communicated his faith to Sarah, so that through them ('one flesh') the innumerable offspring


Ἀβραὰμ ὑπήκουσεν ἐξελθεῖν εἰς τόπον ὅν ἤμελλεν

εἰς τ. ἐξελ. D₂. τόπον א* AD₂*: τὼν τ. S. א*.

of faith were born (vv. 11 f.). (The Faith of influence.)

In each case Abraham cast himself upon the unseen and realised the future.

The promise was thus carried to its first typical fulfilment (vi. 15).

The Faith of Abraham is no less conspicuous in later Jewish teaching than in Christian teaching. He is said (Mechilta on Ex. xiv. 31, ap. Delitzsch l.c.) to have gained this world and the world to come by Faith. In this respect he is spoken of as a father of the Gentiles (Delitzsch, Brief an d. Römer p. 80). His experience was reflected in the experience of Israel (Beresh. R. § 40, on Gen. xii. 16). Israel also fulfilled a work for the nations.

On the trials of Abraham see Dr Taylor on Aboth, v. 4.

In this place the Faith of Abraham is not connected directly with personal righteousness, as in St Paul's Epistles, but is presented as the power through which the patriarch was enabled to work towards the fulfilment of God's counsel for the nations by his trust in the unseen.

By faith Abraham, when called, obeyed, to go forth into a place which he was to receive as an inheritance; and he went forth, while he knew not whither he was coming (going).

By faith he entered as a sojourner into the land of promise, as into a land not his own, dwelling in tents with Isaac and Jacob, the heirs with him of the same promise; ¹⁰for he looked for the city that hath the foundations, whose designer and maker is God.

¹¹By faith even Sarah herself received power to conceive seed, and that when she was past age, since she counted Him faithful who had promised. ¹²Wherefore also children were born from one, and him as good as dead, as many as the stare in heaven for multitude, and as the sand that is by the seashore that cannot be counted.

(8). (i) The Faith of self-surrender.

The beginning of the Messianic nation was a call, a separation. The founder had a promise of an inheritance. This promise he could trust though he knew not how it would be fulfilled.

πίστει καλούμ....κληρονομίαν] By faith Abraham when called obeyed, to go forth into a place which he was to receive as an inheritance. Vulg. Fide qui vocatur Abraham (ὁ καλ. Ἀβρ.) obedivit exire in locum...

The present participle (καλούμενος not κληθείς) serves to emphasise the immediate act of obedience (ὑπήκουσεν). He obeyed the call while (so to say) it was still sounding in his ears.

If the reading ὁ καλούμενος is adopted the sense will be: 'he that in a unique sense received the new name Abraham': τὸ ὁ καλούμενος Ἀβραὰμ διὰ τὴν τοῦ ὀνόματος ἐναλλαγὴν εἴρηκεν (Theod.). Fide qui vocatur nunc Abraham tunc vocabatur Abram (Primas.).

ἐξελθεῖν] The point in this 'going forth' was that Abraham gave up all in faith upon the invisible God (Gen. xii. 1; Acts vii. 3: comp. xiii. 13); and in doing this he knew not what he was to receive. The future was safe in God's counsel. In this supreme act, by which he became 'the father of the faithful,' Abraham had no example to follow. Τίνα γὰρ εἶδεν ἵνα ζηλώσῃ; ὁ πατὴρ αὐτῷ εἰδωλολάτρης ἧν, προφητῶν οὐκ ἡκουςεν. ὥστε πίστεως ἧν το ὑπακοῦσαι ὥς ἀληθεύοντι τῷ θεῷ περὶ ὧν ὑπισχνεῖτο καὶ ἀφεῖναι τὰ ἐν χερσίν (Theophlct. after Chrys.). He went forth to a place' (not 'the place') of


λαμβάνειν εἰς κληρονομίαν, καὶ ἐξῆλθεν μὴ ἐπιστάμενος ποῦ ἔρχεται. ⁹Πίστει παρῴκησεν εἰς γὴν τὴς ἐπαγγελίας ὡς ἀλλοτρίαν, ἐν σκηναῖς κατοικήσας μετὰ Ἰσαὰκ καὶ Ἰακὼβ τῶν συνκληρονόμων τῆς ἐπαγγελίας τῆς αὐτῆς·

κληρ. λαμβ. א*: εἰς κληρ. λαμβ. א*: λαμβ. εἰς κληρ. א*.

9 πίστει: + καὶ' π. D₂*. γῆν אA: + τῆν' γ. S D₂*. τῆς ἐπ. τῆς αὐτῆς אA: *τὴς ἐπ. αὐτῆς א*: τῆς αὐτῆς ἐπ. א*: τῆς ἐπ. αὐτοῦ D₂*.

which all that he knew was that in the end it should be his.

κεὶ ἐξῆλθεν...ἔρχεται] and he went forth while he knew not whither he was coming (going). It was not revealed to Abraham till he had left Haran what was to be his abode: Gen. xii. 7; comp. Acts vii. 2 f. Hence Philo says truly: τὸν μέλλοντα τῇ ὑποσχέσει χρόνον προδιώρισται, εἰπὼν οὐχ ἥν δίκνυμι ἀλλ' ἥν σοι δείξω, εἰς μαρτυρίαν πίστεως ἥν ἐπίστευσεν ἡ ψυχὴ θεῷ (de migr. Abr. § 9; i. 442 M.).

The use of ἔρχεται presents the patriarch as already on his journey; and the writer seems to regard his end as the promised land in which he himself is ideally (ἔρχεται not πορεύεται).

(9), (10) (ii) The Faith of patience.

The Faith of self-surrender was submitted to a longer proof. When Abraham reached the land which was to be his, he occupied it only as a sojourner. He had to learn that the promise of God would not be fulfilled by any material possession.

(9). πίστει παρῴκησεν εἰς...] By faith he entered as a sojourner (peregrinatus est Hier.) into the land of promise...For παρῴκ. εἰς compare Acts xii. 19; and for παρῴκησεν see Luke xxiv. 18; compare Acts vii. 6, 29 (πάροικος); xiii. 17 (παροικία); Eph. ii. 19 (πάροικος); 1 Pet. ii. 11 (πάροικος); i. 17 (παροικία). The word is common in the lxx. e.g. Gen. xxi. 23; xxiii. 4.

The phrase γῆ τῆς ἐπαγγελίας (Vulg. terra repromissionum) occurs here only in the Ν. T. There is no corresponding Hebrew phrase in the O. T., nor is there any exact parallel. It describes the land which was attached to the promises; to which they pointed; which was assured to Abraham by God. Comp. Gen. xii. 7; xiii. 15 &c. For the use of ἐπαγγελίας compare Eph. i. 13. And for ἀλλοτρίαν see Acts vii. 6; Gen. xv. 13 (lxx. οὐκ ἰδίᾳ); comp. Matt. xvii. 25 f.

ἐν σκ. κατοικήσας...τῆς αὐτῆς] Abraham dwelt throughout the time of his sojourn (κατοικήσας) in tents, so declaring that that which was to be permanent was not yet attained. And Isaac and Jacob, who shared his hope, shewed the same patience of faith. The premature settlement of Lot and its disastrous issue point the lesson of Abraham's discipline.

The paradox in ἐν σκηναῖς κατοικήσας is to be noticed. On the contrast of κατοικεῖν and παροικεῖν see Philo de agric. § 14 (i. p. 310 M.); de conf. ling. § 17 (i. p. 416 M.); quis rer. div. haer. § 54 (i. p. 511 M.).

Isaac and Jacob are specially mentioned because these three, Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, cover the whole period of disciplinary sojourning in Canaan; and to these three the foundation promise was repeated (Gen. xii. 2 f.; xxvi. 3 ff.; xxviii. 13 f.; comp. Ex. vi. 3, 8). For συνκληρ. τῆς ἐπαγγ., compare vi. 12, 17.

Biesenthal quotes a striking passage from Sanh. f. iii. a in which the patient faith of the patriarchs is illustrated by the fact that while they were heirs of the land they bore without complaint the trial of gaining with difficulty what they needed there for the


¹⁰ἐξεδέχετο γὰρ τὴν τοὺς θεμελίους ἔχουσαν πόλιν, ἧς τεχνίτης καὶ δημιουργὸς ὁ θεός. ¹¹Πίστει καὶ αὐτὴ Σάρρα δύναμιν εἰς καταβολὴν σπέρματος ἔλαβεν καὶ

11 Σάρρα S אΑ: + στεῖρα D₂ vg syrr me the. ἔλ.: + εἰς τὸ τεκνῶσαι D₂* syr hl. om. καὶ' (παρά) D₂*.

simplest wants (Gen. xxiii. 4 ff.; xxvi. 17 ff.; xxxiii. 19).

(10). The ground of this patient waiting was the growing sense of the greatness of the divine purpose. Abraham felt, under the teaching of his pilgrim life, that no earthly resting-place could satisfy the wants and the powers of which he was conscious. He looked beyond the first fulfilment of the promise which was only a step in the accomplishment of the purpose of God.

ἐξεδέχετο γὰρ...ὁ θεός] for he looked for the city that hath the foundations ... For ἐξεδέχετο compare c. x. 13; James v. 7; and ἀπεκδέχομαι c. ix. 28 note. The object of his desire was social and not personal only. 'He looked for the city that hath the foundations'—the divine ideal of which every earthly institution is but a transitory image. The visible Jerusalem, the visible Temple, were farther from this spiritual archetype than the tents of the patriarch and the Tabernacle of the wilderness. They were in large measure of human design and wholly of human construction. But God Himself frames and constructs the heavenly city (v. 16) no less than the heavenly sanctuary: c. viii. 2. Comp. c. xii. 22 f.; xiii. 14; Apoc. xxi. 2; Gal iv. 26 (and Lightfoot's note); (Is. xxxiii. 20; Ps. lxxxiv.). See Additional Note.

The idea of τοὺς θεμ. ἔχ. is that of the one 'city' which has 'the eternal foundations.' To this outwardly the tents of the patriarchs offered the most striking contrast. Comp. Apoc. xxi. 14.

ἧς τεχν. καὶ δημ. ὁ θεός] whose designer and maker is God. Vulg. cujus artifex et conditor Deus. The word τεχμίτης in this connexion refers to the plan and δημιουργός to the execution of it. Τεχνίτης occurs in the more general sense of 'craftsman 'Acts xix. 24, 38; Apoc. xviii. 22: δημιουργός is not found again in Ν.T.

For τεχνίτης compare Wisd. xiii. 1; Philo Leg. Alleg. i. 7 (i. 47 Μ.) οὐ τεχνίτης μόνον ἀλλὰ καὶ πατὴρ ὥν τῶν γιγνομένων: De mut. nom. § 4 (i. 583 Μ.) ὁ γεννήσας καὶ τεχνιτεύσας πατήρ: and for δημιουργός Clem. R. i. 20, 26, 33, 35; Philo de incorr. mundi § 4 (ii. 490 M.).

(11), (12). (iii) The Faith of influence.

Abraham had to sustain yet a third trial before the promise received an initial fulfilment. The son through whom the blessing was to come was not born while his birth was naturally to be expected and according to man's reckoning possible. But Sarah, who was at first unbelieving, was at last inspired with her husband's Faith by his example and influence; and the promise found amplest accomplishment.

(11). πίστει καὶ αὐτὴ Σάρρα...] By faith even Sarah herself...though she more than doubted. Sarah is evidently regarded in the closest union with Abraham (v. 12 ἀφ' ἑνός). She was 'one with him.' Her faith was a condition for the fruitfulness of his faith. Ἐγέλασε τὸ πρῶτον οὐκ εἰδυῖα τοῦ ὑπισχνουμένου τὴν φύσιν καὶ τῆς ἀνθρωπείας φύσεως τοὺς ὅρους ἐπισταμένη...ὕστερον μέντοι μαθοῦσα τὸν ὑποσχόμενον καὶ ἐπίστευσε καὶ ἀγέννησεν ὡς ἐπίστευσε (Theodt).


παρὰ καιρὸν ἡλικίας, ἐπεὶ πιστὸν ἡγήσατο τὸν ἐπαγγειλάμενον. ¹²διὸ καὶ ἀφ' ἑνὸς ἐγεννήθησαν, καὶ ταῦτα νενεκρωμένου, καθὼς τὰ ἄστρα τοῦ οὐρανοῦ τῷ πλήθει καὶ ὡς ἡ

12 ἐγενήθησαν

ἡλικίας א* AD₂* vg me the: + ἕτεκεν S א* syrr. 12 ἐγεννήθ. א: ἐγενήθ. AD₂*. ὡς ἡ אΑ: καθὼς ἡ D₂*: ὡσεί S.

εἰς καταβ. σπ.] Vulg. in conceptionem seminis. The translation 'for the founding of a race' is altogether unnatural. The thought here extends no farther than to the direct personal issue of Sarah's Faith. She was enabled to become the mother of Abraham's son. She co-operated on her part with Abraham towards the fulfilment of the promise. The promise was to Abraham, and the work of faith was primarily his (hence εἰς κατὰ βολὴν σπ. [e.g. Chrys. Ad illum. ii. § 1 ἐν ἡμέρᾳ μιᾷ δυνατὸν ὁμοῦ καὶ σπέρματα καταβαλεῖν καὶ ἀμητὸν ποιήσασθαι] and not εἰς σύλληψιν σπ. or the like), but it was needful that Sarah should join by faith with him. Ἐνεδυναμώθη εἰς τὸ ὑποδέξασθαι καὶ κρατῆσαι τὸ καταβληθὲν εἰς αὐτὴν σπέρμα τοῦ Ἀβραάμ (Theophlct.).

καὶ παρὰ κ. ἡλ.] Even against the natural expectation of the age which she had reached, ὥστε διπλὴν εἶχε πήρωσιν, τήν τε ἀπὸ φύσεως ὅτι στεῖρα ἧν καὶ τὴν ἀπὸ τοὺ γήρως (Theophlct). Comp. Plat. Theoet. 149 C ταὶς...δι' ἡλικίαν ἀτόκοις.

For πιστὸν ἡγ. τὸν ἐπαγγ., compare c. x. 23.

(12). διὸ καὶ ἀφ' ἑνός] Wherefore also children were born through her from one, and that from one as good as dead...Though Sarah is lost, so to speak, in Abraham with whom she was united (ἀφ' ἑνός), yet her act of Faith completing his Faith is made the reason of the fulfilment of the promise (διό).

For διὸ καί see Lk. i. 35; Acts x. 29; (xiii. 35;) xxiv. 26; Rom. iv. 22 ?; xv. 22; 2 Cor. i. 20; iv. 13; v. 9; Phil. ii. 9.

Ἀφ' ἑνὸς τοῦ Ἀβραάμ. εἰ δὲ καὶ ἀμφοτέρους ἵνα νοήσαιμεν οὐχ ἁμαρτησόμεθα. ἔσονται γάρ, φησίν, οἱ δύο εἰς σάρκα μίαν (Theodt.).

The classical phrase καὶ ταῦτα is found here only in Ν. Τ.; καὶ τοῦτο occurs Rom. xiii. 11; 1 Cor. vi. 6, 8; 3 John 5. For vενεκρωμένου compare Rom. iv. 19.

καθὼς τὰ ἄστρα...] Gen. xxii. 17; xxxii. 12. At first the promise is of an heir, and then of a countless progeny. Comp. vi. 13 note.

The references in the Ο. T. to Abraham as 'the one' are significant: Mal. ii. 15; Is. li. 1 f.; Ezek. xxxiii. 24.

(β) Characteristics of the patriarchal life of faith (13—16).

The life of the patriarchs was a life of faith to the last, supported by trust in the invisible which they had realised, resting on complete surrender, directed beyond earth (13). They shewed that the true satisfaction of human powers, the 'city' which answers to man's social instincts, must be 'heavenly' (14-16).

¹³These all died in faith, not having received the promises, but having seen them and greeted them afar, and having confessed that they are strangers and sojourners on the earth. ¹⁴For they that say such things make it plain that they are seeking after a fatherland (a country of their own). ¹⁵And if indeed they had thought of that from which they went out, they would have had opportunity to return. ¹⁶But now they desire a better, that is a heavenly fatherland; wherefore God is not ashamed of them, not ashamed to be called their God;


ἄμμος ἡ παρὰ τὸ χεῖλος τῆς θαλάσσης ἡ ἀναρίθμητος. ¹³Κατὰ πίστιν ἀπέθανον οὗτοι πάντες, μὴ κομισάμενοι τὰς ἐπαγγελίας, ἀλλὰ πόρρωθεν αὐτὰς ἰδόντες καὶ ἀσπασάμενοι, καὶ ὁμολογήσαντες ὅτι ξένοι καὶ παρεπίδημοὶ εἰσιν

om. ἡ π. τ. χ. D₂*. 13 κομισάμενοι א* : λαβόντες S א* D₂: προσδεξάμενοι Α. ἰδόντες אAD₂ vg syrr me the: + καὶ πεισθέντες S. ξένοι: + καὶ πάροικοι D₂*.

for He (hath) prepared for them a city.

(13). Having described the victories of faith gained by the patriarchs the writer marks the great lessons of their death and of their life. 'These all'—the three to whom the promises were given, Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, with Sarah, the representative of faithful womanhood—'died in faith'; and in life they had realised the promises which they had not outwardly received in a threefold order of growing power. They had seen them: they had welcomed them : they had acknowledged that earth could not fulfil them.

κατὰ π. ἀπέθανον] they died in faith, literally 'according to faith' (Vulg. justa fidem), that is, under the influence and according to the spirit of Faith, inspired, sustained, guided by Faith. Faith was the rule of their lives, the measure of their growth, even to the end. They faced death as men who retained their hold on the invisible, which was offered to them in the promises of God, though earth 'gave them no pledge.' So their departure was transformed into 'a going home.' For κατὰ πίστιν compare Matt. ix. 29 κατὰ τὴν π. γενηθήτω σοι: Tit. i. 1, 4; v. 7.

By οὗτοι πάντες we must understand the first representatives of the patriarchs and not (as Primasius and others) the whole array of their descendants (v. 12).

μὴ κομ....ἀλλά] The clause does not simply state a fact (oὐ κομισ....ἀλλὰ), but gives this fact as the explanation of the assertion that the patriarchs 'died in faith': 'They died in faith inasmuch as they had not received the outward fulness of the promises—the possession of Canaan, the growth of the nation, universal blessing through their race—but had realised them while they were still unseen and future.'

For κομισάμενοι see c. x. 36 note; v. 39.

πόρρωθεν αὐ. ἰδόντες...ἀσπασάμενοι...ὁμολογήσαντες...] The three thoughts rise in a natural succession. They saw the promises in their actual fulfilment: they welcomed the vision with joy though it was far off: they confessed what must be the true end of God's counsel. For ἰδόντες compare John viii. 56. Πόρρωθεν occurs again in Ν. T. Luke xvii. 12.

On ἀπασάμενοι Chrysostom says well: ἀπὸ μεταφορᾶς εἶπε τῶν πλεόντων καὶ πόρρωθεν ὁρώντων τὰς πόλεις τὰς ποθουμένας, ἅς πρὶν ἥ εἰσελθεῖν εἰς αὐτὰς τῇ προσρήσει λαβόντες αὐτὰς οἶκειοῦνται. Compare Æn. iii. 522.

Italiam primus conclamat Achates,

Italiam laeto socii clamore salutant.

καὶ ὁμολσγήσαντες] The language of Abraham (Gen. xxiii. 4 lxx.; comp. Gen. xlvii. 9; xxiv. 37; xxviii. 4) is used as expressing the view which the patriarchs took of their life. Compare Ps. xxxix. (xxxviii.) 12; cxix. (cxviii.) 19, 54.

Philo places a similar interpretation on the 'sojourning' of the fathers: de conf. ling. § 17, i. p. 416 M. Not only was the 'land' of Palestine 'strange' to them (v. 9), but the 'earth' itself.


ἐπὶ τῆς γῆς. ¹⁴οἱ γὰρ τοιαῦτα λέγοντες ἐμφανίζουσιν ὅτι πατρίδα ἐπιζητοῦσιν. ¹⁵καὶ εἰ μὲν ἐκείνης ἐμνημόνευον ἀφ' ἧς ἐξέβησαν, εἶχον ἄν καιρὸν ἀνακάμψαι. ¹⁶νῦν δὲ

14 ἐ΄ητοῦσιν D₂*. 15 ἐμνημόνενον א* Α vg: μνημονεύουσιν א* (D₂* ?). ἐξέβησαν א* AD₂*: ἐξῆλθον S א*. om. ἄν D₂*. 16 νῦν: νυνί S.

ξένοι καὶ παρεπίδημοι] Vulg. peregrini et hospites. Things seen were not their true home, and they remained among them only for a short space. For ξένοι compare Eph. ii. 12, 19; and for παρεπίδημοι, 1 Pet. i. 1; ii. 11: (Gen. xxiii. 4); Ps. xxxix. (xxxviii.) 12: (lxx.); Lev. xxv. 23. Comp. Addit. Note on v. 10.

For the thought compare a striking passage of the Letter to Diognetus, c. 5.

14—16. These verses develop the last clause of v. 13, and define the grounds of the statement which has been made that the patriarchs 'died in Faith.' Their language shewed that they continued to the last to look for that which they had not attained. As 'strangers' they acknowledged that they were in a foreign land: as 'sojourners' that they had no permanent possession, no rights of citizenship. At the same time they kept their trust in God. Their natural fatherland had lost its hold upon them. They waited for a 'city' of God's preparing.

(14). οἱ γὰρ τοιαῦτα...] The language of the patriarchs makes clear that they sought for a country, which should be naturally and essentially their own, not simply the fruit of gift or conquest, but a true 'fatherland.' They had no fatherland on earth. The word πατρίς, which is rare in the lxx. (Jer. xlvi. 16 n$D γΊφ, is found here only in the Epistles (John iv. 41 and parallels).

For ἐμφανίζουσιν (Vulg. significant) comp. c. ix. 24 note; and for ἐπιζητοῦσιν, c. xiii. 14. Compare Is. lxii. 12 σὺ (Zion) κληθήσῃ ἐπιζητουμένη πόλις.

(15). καὶ εἰ μέν...] They spoke of a home not yet reached; and in so speaking they could not have referred to that home which they had left in Mesopotamia, the seat of primitive civilisation; for return thither was easy. Nor again could Palestine, even when occupied at last, have satisfied their hopes; this remained the Lord's land: Lev. xxv. 23.

ἐμνημόνευον] Vulg. meminissent. The verb μνημονεύω has commonly in the Ν. T., as in this Epistle c. xiii. 7, the sense of 'remember' ; but in v. 22, and perhaps in 1 Thess. i. 3, it has the second sense of 'make mention.' It seems on the whole more natural to take that sense here and to suppose that the reference is to the language just quoted rather than to a general feeling: 'and if their words, when they so spoke, had been directed to the country from which they went...' 'if they had meant that....' The imperfect is used rather than the aorist (ὁμολογήσαντες) since the words were the expression of a continuous state of mind.

ἀφ΄ἧς ἐξέβησαν] The word ἐκβαίνειν occurs here only in Ν. T. (βαίνειν does not occur at all). It gives a more personal colour to the act than the general word ἐξῆλθον used before. Compare v. 29 διέβησαν.

εἶχον ἄν καιρόν...] Vulg. habebant utique tempus revertendi. Comp. Acts xxiv. 25 καιρὸν μεταλαβών. Gal. vi. 10 ὡς καιρὸν ἔχομεν. For ἀνακάμψαι see Matt. ii. 12; Lk. x. 6; Acts xviii. 21.

(16). νῦν δέ...] But now, as the case is,...see 1 Cor. vii. 14; xii. 20; c. viii. 6 note.


κρείττονος ὀρέγονται, τοῦτ' ἔστιν ἐπουρανίου. διὸ οὐκ ἐπαισχύνεται αὐτοὺς ὁ θεὸς θεὸς ἐπικαλεῖσθαι αὐτῶν, ἡτοίμασεν γὰρ αὐτοῖς πόλιν. ¹⁷Πίστει προσενήνοχεν

ἐπικ. αὐ. θεὸς D₂*.

Though their expectation received no definite fulfilment, the desire remained still fresh; and all partial fulfilments led them to look forward, and to look beyond the transitory.

For ὀρέγονται (Vulg. adpetunt), which is not in the lxx., see 1 Tim. iii. i; vi. 10; and for ἐπουρανίου, see c. iii. 1 note.

διό...] wherefore..., because their thoughts were directed to spiritual realities, God, Who is spirit, acknowledged them as His own, revealing Himself as 'the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac and the God of Jacob' (Ex. iii. 6, 15 f.; Matt. xxii. 32). Compare Chrysostom: ι' τῆς οἰκουμένης θεὸς οὐκ ἐπαισχύνεται τριῶν καλεῖσθαι θεός. εἰκότως. οὐ γὰρ τῆς οἰκουμένης ἀλλὰ μυρίων τοιούτων εἰσὶν ἀντίρροποι οἱ ἅγιοι.

οὐκ ἐπαισχ. aὐτoύς...θεὸς ἐπικ....] God is not ashamed of them, not ashamed to be called their God. Vulg. non confunditur deus vocari deus eorum.

The second clause is added in explanation: 'is not ashamed of them, is not ashamed, that is, to be called'—named by a peculiar title (Acts iv. 36; x. 5, 18, 32 &c.)—'their God.'

The title 'the God of Abraham and the God of Isaac and the God of Jacob' is the characteristic name of God at the Exodus: Ex. iii. 6. For ἐπαισχ. αὐτούς see Mk. viii. 28; Rom. i. 16; 2 Tim. i. 8, 16; and for (ἐπαισχ.) ἐπικαλεῖσθαι c. ii. 11.

ἡτοίμ. γὰρ αὐ. π.] The proof of God's acceptance of the patriarchs lies in what He did for them. Their faith truly corresponded with His purpose. They entered into His design and He acknowledged their devotion and trust. He was pleased to establish a personal relation with them, and to fulfil His spiritual promise; for 'He prepared for them a city.' He made provision for their abiding continuance with Him in the fulness of human life. The statement is made in the most absolute form without any definition of time ('He had prepared,' or 'thereupon He prepared').

The fulfilment of the promise in its highest form is set before us as social and not simply as personal. God prepared for His chosen not a home but a 'city,' a Divine Commonwealth (Vulg. paravit illis civitatem). Ps. cvii. 36.

For the idea of πόλις see Additional Note on v. 10; and for ἐτοιμάζειν compare John xiv. 2; Apoc. xxi. 2.

(b) The patriarchal Faith of sacrifice (against natural judgment) (18—22).

From the general description of the life of faith in the patriarchs, to whom the promise was first committed, the writer goes on to give special illustrations of the power of faith, as the promise was seen to advance towards fulfilment through trial. Thus he notices

(α) The primary trial (vv. 17—19). That through which God works is first wholly surrendered to Him.

(β) The patriarchal blessings. The natural order reversed: Isaac, Jacob (vv. 20, 21).

(γ) The world abandoned (v. 22).

In the former paragraph the personal triumph of faith over death has been described: here faith is seen to look through death to the later issue for others.

'By faith Abraham, being tried, offered up (hath offered up) Isaac; yea, he that had gladly received the


Ἀβραὰμ τὸν Ἰσαὰκ πειραζόμενος, καὶ τὸν μονογενῆ προσέφερεν

17 τὸν Ἰ. πειρ. Ἀβρ. D₂*.

promises prepared to offer up his only son; ¹⁸he to whom it was said In Isaac shall thy seed be called; ¹⁹accounting that God is able to raise up even from the dead, whence he also in a figure received him.

²⁰By faith Isaac blessed Jacob and Esau and that concerning things to come.

²¹By faith Jacob, when he was dying, blessed each of the sons of Joseph; and he worshipped, leaning upon the top of his staff.

²²By faith Joseph, when his end was nigh, made mention of the departure of the children of Israel; and gave commandment concerning his bones.

(a) The trial of Abraham (17—19).

The references to Abraham in the 0. T. are fewer than might have been expected. There appears to be no mention of his sacrifice unless it is implied in Is. xli. 8 (Abraham that loved me). It is referred to in Ecclus. xliv. 20 ἐν πειρασμῷ εὑρέθη πιστός; and the same words are found in 1 Macc. ii. 52. Compare Wisd. x. 5; James ii. 21.

Tho trial of Abraham was not so much in the conflict of his natural affection with his obedience to God, as in the apparent inconsistency of the revelations of the will of God which were made to him.

Thus the greatness of Abraham's Faith was shown by the fact that he was ready to sacrifice his only son, though it had been before declared that the fulfilment of the promise which he had received was to come through him. His obedience therefore included the conviction of some signal and incomprehensible work of God whose promise could not fail. At the same time the nature of the trial left an opportunity for the right exercise of Faith. The specific command could be fulfilled only in one way: the promise might be fulfilled in more ways than one. So Faith triumphed.

Chrysostom calls attention to this feature in Abraham's trial as involving an apparent conflict in the divine will towards him: τὰ γὰρ τοῦ θεοῦ ἐδόκει τοῖς τοῦ θεοῦ μάχεσθαι, καὶ πίστις ἐμάχετο πίστει, καὶ πρόσταγμα ἐπαγγελίᾳ...ἐναντία ταῖς ὑποσχέσεσι προσετέτακτο ποιεῖν καὶ οὐδὲ οὕτως ἐθορυβήθη οὐδὲ ἰλεγγίασεν οὐδὲ ἠπατῆσθαι ἐνόμισεν. And so Theophylact more tersely: ἐνταῦθα οὐ μόνον φύσις ἐμάχετο ἀλλὰ καὶ λόγος θεοπυ θείῳ προστάγματι

(17). πίστει...πειραζόμενος] By faith Abraham, being tried, offered up (literally hath offered up) Isaac. The contrast between προσενήνοχεν and προσέγερεν which follows (Vulg. obtulit, offerebat, Syr. vg. offered, lifted on the altar) is easily felt, but it is difficult to represent it in translation. The first verb expresses the permanent result of the offering completed by Abraham in will: the second his actual readiness in preparing the sacrifice which was not literally carried into effect. As far as the trial went (πειραζόμενος) the work was at once completed. Comp. James ii. 21 ἐδικαιώθη ἀνενέγκας.

For the perfect προσενήνοχεν compare v. 28 πεποίηκεν, and c. vii. 6 note.

The use of the word πειραζόμενος (Gen. xxii. 1 ff.) marks the decisive severity of the trial. The tense (as distinguished from πειρασθεις (comp. c. ii. 18) marks the immediate coincidence of the act of obedience with the call for it. Comp. v. 8 καλούμενος.

On the trial Theophylact observes [ὁ θεὸς] αὐτὸς πειράζει ἵνα δοκιμωτέρους δείχῃ. Comp. James i. 12.

καὶ τὸν μορογ....ἀvαδεξάμενος] yea, he that had gladly received the promises prepared to offer up his only son. Vulg. et unigenitum offerebat qui


ὁ τὰς ἐπαγγελίας ἀναδεξάμενος, ¹⁸πρὸς ὅν ἐλαλήθη ὅτι Έν 'Icαὰκ κληθήσεταί σoι σπέρμα, ¹⁹λογισάμενος ὅτι καὶ ἐκ νεκρῶν ἐγείρειν δυνατὸς ὁ θεός. ὄθεν αὐτὸν καὶ ἐv παραβολῇ ἐκομίσατο. ²⁰Πίστει καὶ περὶ μελλόντων

18 om. ὅτι D₂*. 19 ἐγείρειν אD₂: ἐγεῖραι (-ς) Α. δυνατός אD₂* vg: δύναται A. 20 πίστει καί AD₂* vg: om. καί S א syrr me the.

susceperat repromissiones. The 'only son' is placed in significant parallelism with the 'promise.' In regard to the promise Isaac was 'the only son' of Abraham (Gen. xvii. 19). So Theophylact (and others): πῶς δὲ μονογενὴς ῇν Ἰσαὰκ ὅπουγε καὶ τὸν Ἰσμαὴλ εἶχε; ἀλλ' ὅσον κατὰ τὸν ἐπαγγελίας λόγον' μονογενής. Comp. Gen. xν. 2 f.; xvi. 15; xvii. 16 ff. The lxx. in Gen. xxii. 2 gives τὸν υἱόν σου τὸν ἀγαπητὸν ἐν ἠγάπησας, but Aquila has τὸν μονογενῆ (or μοναχόν) and Symmachus τὸν μονον σου.

Moνoγενής occurs in St Luke vii. 12; viii. 42; ix. 38. Compare John i. 14, 18, and ὁ υἱὸς ὁ μονογενής of Christ in John iii. 16, 18; 1 John iv. 9.

The word ἀναδέχεσθαι is unusual. It occurs again in Ν. T. only in Acts xxviii. 7. The idea which it suggests here seems to be that of welcoming and cherishing a divine charge which invoked a noble responsibility. The word is used frequently of undertaking that which calls out effort and endurance (e.g. πόλεμον, πολιορκίαν Polyb., Plut. Indd.). Clement says of Adam τέλειος κατὰ τὴν κατασκευὴν οὐκ ἐγένετο πρὸς δὲ τὸ ἀναδέξασθαι τὴν ἀρετὴν ἐπιτήδειος (Strom. vi. 12).

(18). πρὸς ὁν έλαλ.] he to whom it was said (i.e. Abraham). Vulg. ad quem dictum est,...not 'him in reference to whom' (Isaac)...; Luke ii. 18, 20. The latter rendering is against the structure of the sentence; though it is in itself possible: comp. i. 7, 8.

ἐν Ἰσαάκ...] Gen. xxi. 12. The words ἐν Ἰσαάκ stand emphatically first: In Isaac, and in no other, a seed shall bear thy name, shall be called thine. Comp. Rom. ix. 7.

Sedulius sums up well the elements in Abraham's act of faith: Triplex bonum fecit, quod filium, et quod unigenitum, et repromissionem in quo accepit, offerebat.

(19). The obedience of Abraham rested on his faith in the creative power of God. His conclusion was made at once and finally (λογισάμενος not λογιζόμενος) that God could raise from the dead. That this was his judgment follows of necessity from the fact that he was ready to surrender Isaac without giving up his faith in the fulfilment of the divine promise.

For λογίζομαι ὅτι compare John xi. 50; 2 Cor. x. 11; Rom. ii. 3; viii. 18.

καὶ ἐκ νεκρῶν ἐγ....] The belief is expressed quite generally that God 'is able even from the dead to raise' (Vulg. quia et a mortuis suscitare potens est Deus). The order of the sentence is telling in every word, as also is its absolute form (not ἐγ. αὐτόν); and the choice of δυνατός in place of δύναται extends the idea of the power of God beyond this particular act which would reveal it. Comp. 2 Tim. i. 12. Δυνατός is practically equivalent to δυvατεῖ (Rom. xiv. 4; 2 Cor. ix. 8: opposed to ἀσθενεί) as contrasted with δύναται.

ὅθεν...ἐκομίσατο] whence (i.e. from the dead) he also in a figure received him. Elsewhere in the Epistle (see ii. 17 n.) the word has the sense of 'wherefore'; but such a connexion of the clauses here (pro hoc etiam Aug.), 367 whether the words which follow are supposed to express the reward or the circumstances of his Faith, is altogether unnatural, and the local sense is common (Luke xi. 24, &c.).

But it is doubted whether the reference is to the birth of Isaac or to his deliverance from the altar. The latter explanation, which is adopted by the great majority of commentators from early times, and is perfectly justified by the original words, adds nothing to the thought of the passage. It seems to be pointless to complete the description of Abraham's faith by saying that something really came to pass far less than he was able to look forward to. On the other hand there is great meaning in the clause if it reveals the grounds of the patriarch's expectation. The circumstances of Isaac's birth (v. 12 νενεκρωμένου) were such as to lead him to look beyond the mere fact. It evidently contained a divine lesson and had a spiritual meaning. That giving of a son beyond nature included a larger hope. Comp. Aug. Serm. ii. § 1 Cogitavit Abraham Deum qui dedit ut ille de senibus nasceretur qui non erat posse etiam de morte reparare.

If this sense be adopted then the interpretation of ἐv παραβολῇ follows from it. Abraham received the gift of his son not literally from the dead but figuratively, in such a way that the gift suggested a further lesson. This appears to be the force of the order of the phrase (καὶ ἐν παρ. ἐκομίσατο) in which the καὶ goes with the compound verb 'ἐν παρ. ἐκομίσατο.' Thus the exact sense is not 'whence in figure he also received him' (ἐν παρ. καὶ ἐκομ.), but 'whence he also received him in figure.' The manner in which the birth took place was, so to speak, part of the divine gift. It constrained the father to see in it a type of other quickening.

If, however, ἐκομίσατο be referred to the deliverance of Isaac, then ἐν παραβολῇ will mark the significance of the sacrifice and restoration of Isaac as typical of the death and resurrection of Christ. His restoration was not only such that it might be called figuratively a resurrection, but it pointed forward.

In either case we seem to have here the explanation of St John viii. 56.

Tho patristic interpretations of ἐν παραβολῇ are various and wavering. Chrysostom is singularly obscure, if the text is correct: ἐν παραβολῇ τουτέστιν ὡς ἐν αἰνίγματε. ὧσπερ γὰρ παραβολὴ ἧν ὁ κριὸς τοῦ Ἰσαάκ. ἧ ὡς θυσία καὶ ἔσφακτο ὁ Ἰσαάκ τῇ προαιρέσει, διὰ τοῦτο αὐτὸν χαρίζεται τῷ πατριάρχῃ.

Theodoret is at least more definite: ἐν παραβολῇ τουτέστιν ὡς ἐν συμβόλῳ καὶ τύπῳ τῆς ἀναστάσεως...ἐν αὐτῷ δὲ προεγράφη καὶ τοῦ σωτηρίου πάθους ὁ τύπος (John viii. 56).

Theophylact, like Chrysostom, gives alternative explanations: ἀντὶ τοῦ ἐν τύπῳ, εἰς ἕνδειξιν μυστηρίου τοῦ κατὰ Χριστόν...ἧ ἀντὶ τοῦ ἐν τῷ κριῷ ἐκομίσατο αὐτὸν ὁ Ἀβραάμ, τουτέστιν ἐν τῇ ἀντιδόσει τοῦ κριοῦ.

Oecumenius offers confusedly several interpretations, but prefers that which represents the whole action of Abraham and Isaac as typical of the gift of the Son by the Father.

Primasius gives the sense which became current in the West, that the ram represented the manhood of Christ in which He was not only offered but slain: Occisus est Isaac quantum ad voluntatem patris pertinet Deinde redonavit illum Deus patriarchae in parabola, id est, in figura et similitudine passionis Christi...Aries significabat carnem Christi. Isaac oblatus est et non est interfectus sed aries tantum: quia Christus in passione oblatus est sed divinitas illius impassibilis mansit.

The word παραβολή occurs again c. ix. 9. Besides, it occurs only in the Synoptic Gospels.


εὐλόγησεν Ἰσαὰκ τὸν Ἰακὼβ καὶ τὸν Ἠσαῦ: ²¹Πίστει Ἰακὼβ ἀποθνήσκων ἔκαστον τῶν υἱῶν Ίωσὴφ εὐλόγησεν,

οm. Ίσαάκ א*.

(β) The patriarchal blessings: the reversal of natural expectations (20, 21).

The Faith of the patriarchs in looking towards the fulfilment of the promise was able to set aside the expectations which were based on the rules of human succession, whether, as in the case of Isaac, they accepted the divine will when it was contrary to their own purpose (v. 20), or, as in the case of Jacob, they interpreted it (v. 21).

An element beyond human calculation entered into the gradual accomplishment of the promise as into its initial foundation.

(20). The blessing of Isaac forms a crisis in the fulfilment of the divine counsel. A choice is made between those through whom the promise might equally have been fulfilled. The choice was not, as in the case of Ishmael and Isaac, between the son of the bondwoman and the son of the free, but between twin brothers. And the will of God inverted the purely human order. Both sons were blessed, but the younger had the precedence and became heir of the promise (τὸν Ίακωβ καὶ τὸ Ήσαῦ). Compare Mal. 1. 2, 3 (Rom. ix. 13); c. xii. 16.

Isaac acknowledged the overruling of his own purpose (Gen. xxvii. 33).

καὶ περὶ μελλ. εὐλόγ.] Isaac blessed Jacob and Esau and that concerning things to come (Gen. xxvii), concerning things to come as well as (καί) in regard to their immediate position. (Syr. vg. by faith in that which was to come.)

The blessing of Isaac reached beyond the immediate future which could be realised by his sons in their own life-time. His words pointed onward to a distant order (μελλόντων not τῶν μελλ.). The faith of Isaac was shewn by his acceptance of the destination of his highest blessing, 'the blessing,' to the younger son which was against his own will; and by his later blessing of Esau. In itself the supreme value attached to 'the blessing' (xii. 17) with its unseen consequences was a sign of faith.

Throughout the later history of the Ο. T. the fortunes of the children of Israel and of the children of Esau are in constant connexion and conflict.

With the indefinite μέλλοντα contrast τὰ ἐρχόμενα John xvi. 13.

(21). The blessing of Jacob, like that of Isaac, marked a fresh stage in the fulfilment of the promise. The providential office was then entrusted not to one but to a whole family the members of which had separate parts to perform. But the writer of the Epistle does not refer to the general foreshadowing of the future of the several patriarchs. He confines himself to the peculiar blessing given to Joseph through his sons, in whom the service of Egypt was, so to speak, received for divine use. Here again one point seems to be the freedom of God's choice. In this case also, as in the case of Jacob, the younger is preferred to the elder. But at the same time the practical exaltation of Joseph to the privilege of the firstborn in place of Reuben indicates the fulfilment of a righteous judgment in the providence of God.

The blessing itself is remarkable: Gen. xlviii. 16 The angel which redeemed me from all evil bless the lads... Compare the prophetic words to Joseph: Gen. xlix. 25.

π. Ί. ἀποθν. ἑ. τ. υἱ. Ἰ. εύλ.] By faith Jacob when he was dying blessed each of the sons of Joseph, Gen. xlviii. At the close of life (Gen. xlviii. 21 ἰδοὺ ἐγὼ ἀποθνήσκω) Jacob's faith was


καὶ προσεκύνησεν ἐπὶ τὸ ἄκρον τῆς ῥάβδου αὐτοῦ. ²²Πίστει Ἰωσὴφ

still fresh; and he blessed each of the two sons born to Joseph before he himself came to Egypt (Gen. xlviii. 5).

Such a blessing was exceptional. Joseph received in his two sons a double share of the divine Inheritance, the privilege of the firstborn. And, as it was given, the younger was again preferred to the older. But while Isaac would have followed, had he been able, the natural order of birth in assigning privilege, Jacob deliberately inverted the order. It was not however till a late date that the superiority of Ephraim was established (Num. xxvi. 34, 37).

A further point must also be noticed. In blessing the sons of Joseph, who were also the sons of Asenath, Jacob recognised that the gifts of Egypt, a fresh element, were consecrated to God. So Joseph became, as it were, head of a new line. Comp. Ps. lxxvii. 15; (lxxviii. 67). It would be interesting to inquire how far the failure of Ephraim answered to the misuse of powers corresponding to Egyptian parentage.

καὶ προσεκ....τ. ῥ. αὐ.] and he worshipped leaning upon the top of his staff. Vulg. et adoravit fastigium virgae ejus. These words are not taken from the narrative of the blessing of Joseph's sons, but from an earlier passage (Gen. xlvii. 31) in which Jacob pledged Joseph to provide for the removal of his bones to the burial-place of his fathers (comp. v. 22). The quotation is probably designed to direct thought to this act of Faith, while at the same time it stamps the closing scenes of Jacob's life with a religious character. The blessing was given in the presence of God which the patriarch distinctly recognised. The infirmity of age had not dulled his devotion.

The quotation follows the text of the lxx. which renders a different pointing of the original from that adopted by the Masoretes and by the other Greek translations (VhTHf ΠψΦΟ upon the head of his staff for Γψ$& lAcT7tf upon the head of his bed: ἐπῖ κεφαλῆν τῆς κλίνης Aqu., ἐπὶ τὸ ἄκρον τῆς κλίνης Symm.).

But at the same time the Masoretic text describes an act of adoration, and not simply a sinking back in exhaustion. A close parallel occurs in 1 K. i. 47 προσεκύνησεν ὁ βασιλεὺς ἐπὶ τὴν κοίτην. Προσκυνεῖν is to be taken absolutely, 'bowed himself in worship, i.e. to God': compare Apoc. v. 14; John iv. 20; xii. 20; Acts viii. 27; xxiv. 11.

The connexion of προκυνεῖν with ἐπὶ τὸ ἄκρον τῆς ῥάβδου αὐτοῦ as the object of the adoration (Vulg. virgae ejus, i.e. the staff of Joseph) is against usage. When προκυνεῖν is used with ἐπὶ appears to be always in a local connexion (ἐπὶ τὴν γῆν, ἐπὶ πρόσωπον, ἐπὶ τὰ δώματα, Zeph. i. 5).

Not less unnatural is the notion that Joseph was the object of this 'worship,' being so marked out as the head of the family; though this view is very commonly held by patristic writers. So Chrysostom: Ἐφραὶμ ἀνίστασθαι βασιλεὺς ἕτερος διὰ τοῦτό φησι. καὶ προσεκύνησεν ἐπὶ τὸ ἄκρον τῆς ῥάβδου αὐτοῦ. τουτέστι καὶ γέρων ὦν ἥδη προσεκύνει τῷ Ἰωσήφ, τὴν παντὸς τοῦ λαοῦ προσκύνησιν δηλῶν τὴν ἐσομένην αὐτῷ (so also Theodoret, Oecumenius, Theophylact). Primasius follows out the thought more in detail, giving at the same time an alternative interpretation: Spiritu siquidem prophetico affiatus Jacob cognovit designari per illam virgam Joseph regnum Christi, per fastigium vero, id est, summitatem virgae, potentiam et honorem Christi regni, de qua Psalmista dicit: Virga recta est virga regni tui... Quantum vero ad litteram pertinet, fortassis...adoravit virgam


τελευτῶν περὶ τῆς ἐξόδου τῶν υἱῶν Ἰσραὴλ ἐμνημόνευσεν καὶ περὶ τῶν ὀστέων αὐτοῦ ἐνετείλατοo ²³Πίστει

Joseph, quem videbat dominum esse totius regni terrae Aegypti; ea sollicet ratione Esther legitur adorasse virgam Assueri.

Such an application of the image of 'the staff' to the Messiah is found also in Rabbinic writers: Beresh, R. Gen. xxxviii. 18 with references to Is. xi. 1; Ps. cx. 2.

It may be added that Jerome distinctly condemns this use which was made of the Latin rendering: in hoc loco (Gen. xlvii. 31) quidam frustra simulant adorasse Jacob summitatem sceptri Joseph, quod videlicet honorans filium potestatem ejus adoraverit, cum in Hebraeo multo aliter legatur: et adoravit, inquit, Israel ad caput lectuli; quod scilicot postquam ei juraverat filius socurus de petitione quam rogaverat, adoraverit Deum contra caput loctuli sui, Quaest. Hebr. in Gen. ad loc. (Vulg. adoravit Israel Deum conversus ad lectuli caput).

The 'staff,' 'rod,' played an important part in Jewish tradition. It was one of the ten things created 'between the Suns,' before the first Sabbath (Aboth, v. 9 with Dr Taylor's note). It was given to Adam, and transmitted through Enoch, Noah, Shem, Abraham,...Joseph to Moses, and is still reserved for Messiah. Comp. Wetstein ad loc.

(γ) The world abandoned (23).

The death of Joseph marked a third stage in the history of the promise. He made clear in the fulness of his prosperity that those whom he had invited to Egypt were not to find there an abiding home. Neither rest nor misery was to bring forgetfulness of their destiny.

(22).π. Ἰ. τελ. περὶ τῆς ἐξ....καὶ περὶ τ. ὁ....] Gen. i. The Faith of Joseph was national at once and personal. He looked forward to the independence of his kindred; and he claimed for himself a share in their future. Hie prosperity in Egypt had not led him to forget the promise to Abraham. The personal charge was fulfilled: Ex. xiii. 19; Josh. xxiv. 32.

The word τελευτῶν (when his end was nigh) is taken from the lxx. Gen. l. 26. For ἐμνημόνευσεν (made mention οf...Gen. l. 24) see v. 15 note.

Ἔξοδος occurs again Lk. ix. 31 (of Christ); 2 Pet i. 15 (of St Peter).

The phrase oἱ υἱοὶ Ἰσραὴλ is not of frequent occurrence in the Ν. T. In addition to the places where it occurs in references to the lxx. (Matt. xxvii. 9; Acts vii. 23; Rom. ix. 27) it is found in Lk. i. 16; Acts v. 21; vii. 37; ix. 15; x. 36; 2 Cor. iii. 7, 13; Apoc. ii. 14; vii. 4; xxi. 12.

(4) 23—31. The Faith of Conflict and Conquest.

The Faith which has been hitherto regarded under the discipline of patience and sacrifice is now considered in action. Under this aspect it is traced both (a) in the great leader, Moses (23—28), and (b) in the people whom he led (29—31).

(a) The Faith of Moses the leader of Israel (23—28).

Moses 'the first Redeemer,' like Abraham 'the father of the faithful,' is treated at some length. His Faith is shewn (α) in its personal (23—26) and (β) in its public working (27, 28).

²³By faith Moses, when he was born, was hidden for three months by his parents, because they saw the child was goodly to look on; and they feared not the king's order.

²⁴By faith Moses, when he was grown up, refused to be called son of Pharaoh's daughter, ²⁵choosing rather to be evil entreated with the people of God than to have enjoyment of sin for a season, ²⁶since he counted


Μωυσῆς γεννηθεὶς ἐκρύβη τρίμηνον ὑπὸ τῶν πατέρων αὐτοῦ, διότι εἶαον ἀστεῖον τὸ παιδίον καὶ οὐκ ἐφοβήθησαν τὸ διάταγμα τοῦ βασιλέως. ²⁴Πίστει Μωυσῆς μέγας γενόμενος ἠρνήσατο λέγεσθαι υἱὸς θυγατρὸς φαραώ, ²⁵μᾶλλον ἑλόμενος συνκακουχεῖσθαι τῷ λαῷ τοῦ θεοῦ ἣ

23 διάταγμα: δόγμα Α (?). βασιλέως: + πίστι μέγας γενόμενοι Μωυσῆς ἀνίλεν τὸν Αἰγύπτιον κατανοῶν τὴν ταπίνωσιν τῶν ἀδελφῶν αὐτοῦ D₂* (latt).

the reproach of the Christ greater riches than the treasure» of Egypt; for he looked unto the recompense of reward,

²⁷By faith he left Egypt, not fearing the wrath of the king; for he endured as seeing Him who is invisible.

²⁸By faith he kept (he hath kept) the Passover and the sprinkling of the blood, that he who destroyed the firstborn should not touch them.

(a) 23—26. The Faith of Moses was prepared, as it were, by the Faith which he called out in his parents (23). When the time came his choice shewed his own Faith (24-26).

(23). π. Μ....ὑπὸ τῶν πατέρων αὐτοῦ] In Ex. ii. 2 (Hebr.) the mother of Moses only is mentioned as concealing the child; but the lxx. renders the text ἰδόντες αὐτὸ ἀστεῖον ἐσκέπασαν. There is no ground for supposing that the reference is to Kohath and Amram to the exclusion of Jochebed. The general term (Vulg. a parentibus suis) marks, so to speak, the social character of the faith; and oἱ πατέρες (like patres) is used in the same sense as oἱ γονεῖς (Lk. ii. 27, 41 ff.; John ix. 2 ff.).

διότι...τοῦ βασιλέως] Faith under two forms moved the parents of Moses to preserve him. Something in his appearance kindled hope as to his destiny; and then looking to God for the fulfilment of His promise they had no fear of the king's orders.

The word ἀστεῖος (Vulg. elegans) occurs in this connexion Ex. ii. 2 (lxx.); Acts vii. 20; (Jud. iii. 17; Judith xi. 23). Compare Philo, de vit. Mos. i. § 3 (ii. 82) γεννηθεὶς οὖν ὁ παῖς εὐθὺς ὄψιν ἐνέφηνεν ἀστειοτέραν ἥ κατ' ἰδιώτην ὡς καὶ τῶν τοῦ τυράννου κηρυγμάτων ἐφ' ὅσον οἶόν τ' ἧν τοὺς γονεῖς ἀλογῆσαι. De conf. ling. § 22 (i. p. 420 Μ.).

The word διάταγμα occurs here only in the N.T.

(24). μέγας γενόμενος] when he was grown up (Ex. ii. 11), in contrast with γεννηθείς (Vulg. grandis factus). As an infant he had quickened faith: as a man he shewed it.

ἠρνήσατο...] The tenses ἠρνήσατο...ἑλόμενος...ἡγησάμενος...point to a crisis when the choice was made, as distinct from Moses' habitual spirit (ἀπέβλεπεν).

On ἠρνήσατο (Œcumenius says, τὸ μετὰ σπουδῆς ἀλλοτριῶσαι ἑαυτὸν δηλοῖ. The use of λέγεσθαι (as distinguished from καλεῖσθαι, κληθῆωαι marks the habitual language of familiar intercourse.

υἱὸς θυγ. φαρ.] The anarthrous form is significant (not τῆς θυγ.): son of a royal princess, of one who was Pharaoh's daughter. Comp. Euseb. Præp. Ev. ix. 27.

(25). μᾶλλονἑλόμενος...ἀπόλαυσιν] choosing rather to be evil entreated... than to have enjoyment of sin for a season. Vulg. magis eligens adfligi...quam temporalis peccati habere jucunditatem. Moses was called to devote himself to his people. He knew the source of the call: to have disobeyed it therefore by seeking to


πρόσκαιρον ἔχειν ἁμαρτία ἀπόλαυσιν. ²⁶μείζονα πλοῦτον ἡγησάμενος τῶν Αἰφύπτου θησαυρῶν τὸη ὀnειαισμὸν τοῦ χριστόῦ, ἀπέβλεπεν γὰρ εἰς τὴν μισθαποδοσίαν.

26 Αἰγύπτου אD₂ syrr me: ἐν Aἰγύπτου A: ἐν Αἰγύπτῳ S.

retain his place in the Egyptian court would have been 'sin,' though such disloyalty would have given him the opportunity for a transitory enjoyment of the resources of princely state.

The word συνκακουχεῖσθαι, which is classical, is found here only in the Ν. T. Compare κακουχεῖσθαι v. 37; c. xiii. 3.

τῷ λαῷ τοῦ θεοῦ] Compare iv. 9 note. Moses was able to recognise in a host of bondsmen a divine nation. By faith he saw what they were called to be.

ἁμαρτ. ἀοόλαυσιν] enjoyment of sin, that is of that life which was sin. The gen. ἁμαρτίας is the direct object of ἀπλολαυσις, though ἀπόλαυσις may be used absolutely, and ἁμαρτίας characterise it ('sinful enjoyment'). Ἀπόλαυσις, which is not found in lxx., occurs again in 1 Tim. vi. 17. Comp. 2 Clem. x. προῃρημένοι μᾶλλον τῆν ἐν θάδε ἀπόλαυσιν ἧ τῆν μέλλουσαν ἐπαγγελίαν.

For the order πρόσκ. ἔχειν ἁμαρτ. ἀπ. compare c. vi. 5 καλὸν γευσ. θ. ῥ..; and for πρόσκαιρος see Mt. xiii. 21; 2 Cor. iv. 18.

ὅρα δὲ πῶς ἁμαρτίαν ὀνομάζει τὸ μή συγκακουχεῖσθαι τοῖς ἀδελφοῖς...εἰ δὲ οἱ μή συγκακουχούμεναι ἐκόντες τοῖς περὶ τῶν κακουχούντων καῖ κακοποιούντων; (Theophlct).

(26). μ. π. ἡγησ....τοῦ χριστοῦ] since he counted the reproach of the hrist...,Vulg. majores divitias aestimans...inproperium Christi. This clause is commonly taken as parallel with that which precedes: μᾶλλον ἐλόμενος...μείζ. πλ. ἡγησ. (choosing...accounting...), but it seems rather to give the ground of the choice: 'choosing rather...since he accounted...'

The reproach of the Christ is the reproach which belongs to the one who is the appointed envoy of God to a rebellious world. This reproach which was endured in the highest degree by Christ Jesus (Rom. xv. 3) was endured also by those who in any degree prefigured or represented Him, those, that is, in whom He partially manifested and manifests Himself, those who live in Him and in whom He lives. Comp. Bern. Ep. xcviii. § 4.

In this wider sense the people of Israel was 'an anointed one,' 'a Christ' even as Christians are 'Christs' (comp. Ps. cv. 15; 1 John ii. 20). 'The Christ' is the support and the spring of all revelation to men (1 Cor. x. 4).

For the general thought compare Ps. lxxxix. 50 f.; lxix. 9; 2 Cor. i. 5; Col. i. 24; c. xiii. 13.

Chrysostom takes the τοῦ χριστοῦ as defining the nature of the sufferings: τοῦτό ἐστιν [] ὀνειδισμὸς τοῦ Χριστοῦ, τὸ μέχρι τέλους καὶ ἐσχάτης ἀἠαπνοῆς πόσχειν κακῶς...ὅταν τις παρὰ oἰκείων, ὅταν τις παρ' ὦν εὐεργετεῖ ὀνειδίζηται...

ἀπέβέπεν γἀρ...] Vulg. aspiciebat enim in remunerationem, for he continued to look away from the things of earth unto the (divine) recompense for suffering (συρκακουχεῖσθαι) and reproach (ὀνειδισμός).

The nature of this recompense, though it is definite, is left undefined (v. 6). It must not be limited to the future occupation of Canaan by the people. The fulfilment of God's counsel includes blessings which man cannot anticipate: 1 Cor. ii. 9 (Is. lxiv. 4). 373 ²⁷Πίστει κατέλιπεν Αἴγυπτον, μὴ φοβηθεὶς τὸν θυμὸν τοῦ βασιλέως, τὸν γὰρ ἀόρατον ὡς ὁρῶν ἐκαρτέρησεν.

27 κατέλιπεν אD₂: -έλειπεν A.

For μισθαποδοσία see c. ii. 2 note.

Ἀποβλέπειν occurs here only in N. T. Compare ἀφορᾶν c. xii. 2. The word occurs in the same sense of 'looking away from one object to another' in classical writers (Plato, Xen., Dem.). Philo, de mund. opif. § 4 (i. p. 4 Μ.) ἀποβλέπων εἰς τὸ παράδειγμα (of the builder).

For the choice of Moses compare Philo de vit. Mos. i. § 7 (ii. 85 f. M.).

(β) 27, 28. The work of Moses.

(27). π. κατέλιπεν Αἵγυπτον...] It is doubtful to what event reference is made. From the order in which the fact is mentioned, and from the manner in which it is described (κατέλιπεν as contrasted with διέβησαν) it has been concluded that the reference is to the flight of Moses to Midian, which could be rightly spoken of as a 'leaving' since it involved the temporary abandonment of the work to which Moses had felt himself called. Nor is it a fatal objection to this view that in the narrative of Exodus it is said that 'Moses was afraid' (Ex. ii. 14), though the superficial contradiction has occasioned some difficulty.

If this interpretation be adopted the exact thought will be that Moses was not afraid of the anger of the king in itself. For the sake of his people he could have braved death; but, though he was so far fearless, yet the lack of faith in those whom he would have delivered (Acts vii. 23 ff.) forced him to retire: 'He left Egypt though he feared not the wrath of the king.' This he did 'by faith,' for even at the moment when he gave up his work he felt the divine presence with him. 'He endured (ἐκαρτέρησεν not ἐκαρτέρει) as seeing Him who is invisible.'

Philo gives this general interpretation of the flight to Midian: οὐ φεύγει Μωυσῆς ἀπὸ τοῦ φαραῶ, ἀνεπιστρεπτὶ γὰρ ἅν ἀπεδίδρασκεν, ἀλλὰ ἀναχωρεῖ, τουτέστιν ἀνακωχὴν ποιεῖται τοῦ πολέμου ἀθλητοῦ τρόπον διαπνέοντος καὶ συλλεγομένου τὸ πνεῦμα (Leg, Alleg. iii. § 4; i. p. 90 M.).

Theodoret gives a different explanation of μὴ φοβηθείς: τὴν μὲν Αἴγυπτον φοβηθεὶς κατέλιπε, θαρσαλέως δὲ τὸν Αἰγύπτιον κατηκόντισε. τὴν φυγὴν τοίνυν ἀντὶ τῆς αἰτίας τέθεικε τῆς φυγῆς.

It is however more likely that the words refer to the Exodus. Moses, the leader of the people, left the safe though servile shelter and support of Egypt, casting himself on the protection of the unseen God against the certain vengeance of the king in the fulfilment of his arduous and self sacrificing work. Comp. Philo, de vit. M. i. § 27 (ii. p. 104 M.). τὴν Αἰγυπτου κατέλιπεν ἡγεμονίαν, θυγατριδοῦς τοῦ τότε βασιλεύοντος ὥν... Jos. Antt. ii. 15, 2. The change of tenses, κατέλιπεν, πεποίηκεν, helps to explain the historical transposition.

τὸν γὰρ ἀόρ....ἐκαρτέρησεν] The most characteristic trait in the life of Moses is that he spoke with God face to face, Ex. xxxiii.; Num. xii. 7, 8. The 'vision of God' is that which distinguishes him from the other prophets. Compare Philo de mut. nom. § 2 (i. p. 579 M.) Μωυσῆς οὖν ὁ τῆς ἀειδοῦς φύσεως θεατὴς καὶ θεόπτης, εἰς γὰρ τὸν γνόφον (Ex. xx. 21) φασὶν αὐτὸν οἱ χρησμοὶ εἰσελθεῖν, τὴν ἀόρατον οὑσίαν αἰνεττόμενοι...; de vit. Μ. i. § 28 (ii. p. 106 Μ.).

The words ὡς ὁρῶν are in themselves ambiguous. They may mean either 'as though he saw,' or 'inasmuch as he saw.' The peculiar gift of Moses determines that the latter is the 374 ²⁸Πίστει πεποίηκεν τὸ πάσχα καὶ τὴν πρόσχυσιν τοῦ αἵματος, ἵνα μὴ ὁ ὀλοθρεύων τὰ πρωτότοκα θίγῃ αὐτῶν. ²⁹Πίστει

28 ὀλοθρεύων א: ὀλεθρεύων AD₂.

sense here. The irregular position of the ὡς is due to the emphasis laid on τὸν ἀόρατον.

For ὁ ἀόρατος compare Col. i. 15 (ὁ θεὸς ὁ ἀόρατος); 1 Tim. i. 17 (ἀόρατος μόνος θεός); 1 John iv. 20; John i. 18; 1 Tim. vi. 16.

The word καρτερεῖν occurs here only in N. T. Comp. Jos. Antt. ii. 11, 1; Ecclus. ii. 2; xii. 15.

The idea of καρτερεῖν is complementary to the ideas of ὑπομένειν (c. x. 32) and μακροθυμεῖν (c.. vi. 15). The Christian has not only to bear his burden in the conflict of life, and to wait for the fulfilment of the promise which seems to be strangely delayed: he must also bear himself valiantly and do his work with might through the Spirit (1 Cor. xvi. 13; Eph. iii. 16).

Augustine in striking words extends to the people the gift of the leader: Errabant quidem adhuc et patriam quærebant; sed duce Christo errare non potorant. Via illis fuit visio Dei (ad 1 Joh. Tract. 7).

(28). π. πεποί. τὸ π....αἵμ.] By faith he kept (he hath kept) the Passover and the sprinkling of the blood...The first celebration of the Passover was not only a single act. The Passover then instituted and kept remained as a perpetual witness of the great deliverance, For the perf. see c. vii. 6 note. The sacrifice of the lamb and the open sprinkling of the blood was a signal act of faith challenging the superstition of the Egyptians (Ex. viii. 22). Compare Midr. Shemoth R. l. c. (Wünsche, p. 132).

The phrase ποιεῖν τὸ πάσχα (Matt. xxvi. 18) is not unfrequent in the lxx. for the observance of the Passover (Ex. xii. 48; Num. ix. 2 ff.; 2 K. xxiii. 21 &c). It does not appear to be used of the institution.

The special ceremony of 'the sprinkling of the blood' (Ex. xii. 7, 22 f.) is mentioned as foreshadowing the deeper mystery involved in the deliverance from Egypt (c. ix. 22).

The word πρόσχυσις is not found in the lxx. and occurs here only in Ν. Τ. (πρ. αἵμ. ἐκάλεσε τὴν κατὰ τῶν φλιῶν τῶν θυρῶν χρίσιν Œcum.). But the verb προσχέω is commonly used in the lxx. of the sprinkling of blood upon the altar (HebrewP3J),

ἵνα μὴ ὁ ὀλ....αὐτῶν] The phrase ὁ ὀλοθρεύων (Vulg. qui vastabat [primitiva]) is used in Ex. xii. 23 by the lxx. for HebrewΠφΗ?0 according to the strict participial sense. The translators realised the action of God through a destroying angel: 1 Cor. x. 10 (ὁ ὀλοθρευτής); and this seems to be the most natural sense of the original text. Compare 1 Chron. xxi. 12, 15; 2 Chron. xxxii. 21; Ecclus. xlviii. 21; Ps. lxxviii. 49.

θίγῃ αὐτῶν] The object is naturally supplied by the reader.

Primasius sees a foreshadowing of Christian practice in the detail: Sanguine agni illinuntur Israelitarum postes ne vastator angelus audeat inferre mortem: signantur dominicæ mortis signo fideles populi in frontibus ad tutelam salutis ut ab interitu liberentur.

(b) The Faith of the people (29—31).

The great leader, like Abraham, communicated to others the Faith by which he was inspired. Just as the Faith of Abraham was united with that of his wife and of his children, so the Faith of Moses was bound up with that of Israel. By Faith they overcame difficulties of nature (29), and the force of enemies (30); and 375 διέβησαν τὴν Ἐρυθρὰν θάλασσαν ὡς διὰ ξηρᾶς γῆς, ἧς πεῖραν λαβόντες οἱ Αἰγυπτιοι κατεπ τόθησαν. ³°Πίστει τὰ τείχη Ἰερειχὼ ἔπεσαν κυκλωθέντα ἐπὶ ἑπτὰ ἡμέρας. ³¹Πίστει Ῥαὰβ ἡ πόρνη οὐ συναπώλετο τοῖς

29 διὰ ξηρᾶς γῆς אAD₂* vg syr vg me: om. γῆς S (lxx.). 30 ἔπεσαν: -en S. 31 ἡ πόρνη: ἡ ἐπιλεγομένη π. א*.

called out responsive Faith even in aliens, so that a remnant of them was saved (31).

²⁹By faith they passed over the Red Sea as by dry land, which the Egyptians essaying to do were swallowed up.

³°By faith the walls of Jericho fell, after they had been compassed for seven days.*

³¹By faith Rahab the harlot perished not with them that were disobedient, having received the spies with peace.

(29). διέβησαν] The subject has already been suggested by αὐτῶν (v. 28). The Faith of the people met the Faith of the leader. Theophylact rightly marks the importance of the transition: ἵνα μὴ λέγωσι Τί φέρεις εἰς μέσον ἀμιμήτους ἄνδρας; ἥγαγε καὶ λαὸν εἰς ὑπόδιεγμα.

Compare Ps. cvi. 9 ff.; cxiv. 5; Is. xliii. 16; li. 10.

The word διαβαίνειν found in Ν. T. also in Lk. xvi. 26; Acts xvi. 9. Ἡ ἐρ. θάλ., the lxx. rendering of HebrewfiO O! 'the sea of weed,' occurs again Acts vii. 36.

ἧς π. λαβόντες] Vulg. quod experti, which essaying to do, literally 'of which (i.e. sea) making trial.' Κατεπόθησαν Ex. xv. 12 (lxx.): Num. xvi. 30. Καταπίνω is found not unfrequently in Ν. T. in a metaphorical sense: e.g. 1 Cor. xv. 54; 1 Pet. v. 8.

(30). πίστει...ἔπεσαν] Josh. vi. The walls fell overthrown by faith which was shewn through a long trial by leader, priests and people.

The fall of the walls of Jericho is the symbol of the victory of the Church: Matt. xvi. 18.

(31). πίστει Ῥαάβ...] The record of the separation of the people of God from Egypt is closed by the incorporation of a stranger.

Rahab at once looked forward with confidence to the triumph of Israel: Josh. ii. 9. Comp. James ii. 25; Clem. R. i. 12 (διὰ πίστιν καὶ φιλοξενίαν ἐσώθη). Midr. Bemidbar R. 8 (on Num. v. 9; Wünsche, p. 136), (the ancestress of priests and prophets).

The addition of the title ή πόρνη places in a fuller light the triumph of Faith.

The list of the champions of Faith whose victories are specially noticed is closed by a woman and a gentile and an outcast. In this there is a significant foreshadowing of its essential universality. So Theodoret: θαυμάσαι δὲ ἄξιον τὴν ἀποστολικὴν σοφίαν, μᾶλλον δὲ ὑμνῆσαι προσήκει τοῦ θείου πνεύματος τὴν ἐνέργειαν, ὅτι τῷ Μωüσεῖ...καὶ τοῖς ἄλλοις ἁγίοις ἀλλόφυλονγυναῖκα καὶ πόρνην συνέταξεν ἵνα καὶ τῆς πίστεως ἐπιδείξῃ τὴν δύναμιν καὶ καταστείλῃ τῆν Ἰουδαίων ὀφρύν.

οὐ συναπ. τ. ἀπειθ.] perished not with them that were disobedient, Vulg. non periit cum incredulis. The form of expression places in relief the punishment of the disobedient; and the ground of their destruction. They too had heard of the wonders which God had wrought for His people and were not moved by them to submission.

For ἀπειθεῖν (of which the force is lost by the Latin Vulgate) see John iii. 36; Rom. ii. 8; c. iii. 18 note. 376 ἀπειθήσασιν, δεξαμένη τοὺς κατασκόπους μετ' εἰρήνης. ³²Καὶ τί ἔτι λέγω; ἐπιλείψει με γὰρ διηγούμενον ό χρόνος περὶ Γεδεών, Βαράκ, Σαμψών, Ίεφθάε, Δαυείδ τε καὶ

32 om. ἔτι D₂*. ἐπιλ. με γάρ אAD₂*: ἐπιλ. γάρ με S. περὶ δὲ Γεδεών D₂*. Βαράκ אA vg me: καὶ B.D₂* syr vg: B. τε S. Σαμψών Ἰοφθάε אA vg me: καὶ Σ. καὶ Ἰ. S. D₂ syr vg.

(5) 32—38. Faith in national life.

The entrance to Canaan and the representative victory at Jericho forms a close to a complete cycle of divine discipline. The history of Israel from the Call of Abraham to the occupation of the Promised Land offers a type of the religious history of man. So far then the writer of the Epistle has given examples of faith in detail. From this point he simply recites in a summary form the names and exploits of later heroes of Faith. In part (a) they wrought great things (32—35 a): in part (b) they suffered great thiugs (35 b—38).

The enumeration extends to the time of the Maccabees, the last decisive national struggle of the Jews before the coming of Christ.

(a) The victorious successes of Faith: the great things which it has wrought (32—35 a).

³²And what can I (why do I) say more? For the time will fail me as I tell of Gideon, Barak, Samson, Jephthah; of David and Samuel and of the prophets: ³³who through faith subdued kingdoms, wrought righteousness, obtained promises, stopped the mouths of lions, ³⁴quenched the power of fire, escaped the edge of the sword, from weakness were made strong, proved mighty in war, turned to flight armies of aliens. ³⁵Women received their dead by a resurrection.

The summary recital of these outward successes of Faith consists first (α) of two groups of names, which represent the theocracy and the kingdom (v. 32); and then (β) of a description of the chief types of victory (33—35 α).

(α) Representative heroes of the theocracy and the kingdom (32).

(32). καὶ τί...] Vulg. et quid adhuc dicam (dico d)? The verb may be conj. And what shall I more say? or indic. And why (or what) say I more? The sense seems to be 'Why do I go on farther?' 'What can I say more?' as if the writer saw already stretching before him the long record on which he is entering. The pres. indic. occurs Matt. xxvi. 65, and in John xi. 47 with τί as the object; and the pres. conj. occurs John vi. 28: the aor. conj. is common: Acts ii. 37; vi. 16 &c.

ἐπιλ. διηγ. ὁ χρ....] time will (I see) fail me as I tell of...Vulg. deficiet me tempus enarrantem....Ποῖος; ἥ ὁ πᾶς εἴρηται δὲ τοῦτο ὡς σύνηθες ἡμῖν ὑπερβολικῶς. ἥ ὁ τῇ ἐπιστολῇ σύμμετρος (Theophlct).

The phrase is common in classical literature: ἐπιλείποι δ' ἅν με πᾶς χρόνος εἰ ἐκτίθεσθαι βουληθείην τὰς σεμνὰς τῶν φιλοσόφων μέμψεις (Athenæ. v. § 63, p. 220 F): tempus hercule te citius quam oratio deficeret (Cic. pro Sext. Rosc. 32 § 89). Philo de somn. § 9 (ii. 667) ἐπιλείψει με ἡ ἡμέρα τὰς διαφορὰς τοῦ ἀντρωπείου βίου διεξιόντα. καίτοι τί δεῖ μακρηγορεῖν; τίς γὰρ αὐτῶν ἀνήκοός ἐστι;

The persons are named first, and then types of achievement. The persons fall into two groups, the representatives of the theocracy and the representatives of the monarchy.

Γεδ. Βαρ. Ζαμψ. Ἰεφθ.] These representative heroes of the theocracy are 377 Σαμουὴλ καὶ τῶν προφητῶν, ³³οἵ διὰ πίστεως κατηγωνίσαντο βασιλείας, ἠργάσαντο δικαιοσύνην, ἐπέτυχον

33 δικαιοσύνη D₂*.

not given in the order of the Book of Judges, but apparently according to their popular fame. Records of their exploits are preserved: Judg. vi.—viii. (Gideon); iv. v. (Barak); xiii.—xvi. (Samson); xi. xii. (Jephthah).

It may be noticed that they overcame different enemies, Midianites, Canaanites, Philistines, Ammonites; and in referring to them the writer passes no judgment on character: oὐ βίων ἐξέτασιν ποιεῖται ἀλλὰ πίστεως ἔνδειξιν (Theophlct).

Δαυ. τε κ. Σαμ. κ. τ. πρ.] The great king and the great statesman-prophet sum up all that was noblest in the second stage of the divine history of Israel. With them are joined the spiritual leaders of the people through whom the growing counsel of God was interpreted through apparent failure and loss. David and Samuel appear to be closely connected (τε, καί) and the prophets are added as a second element.

(β) Characteristic achievements of Faith (33-35 a).

The Judges, the Kings, and the Prophets represent adequately the chief types of believers under the theocracy and the kingdom. Having signalised these, the writer goes on to mark the characteristic manifestations of the power of Faith. Those are described with remarkable symmetry:

(i) κατηγωνίσαντο βασιλείας,

ἡργάσαντο δικαιοσύνην,

ἐπέτυχον ἐπαγγελιῶν.

(ii) ἔφραξαν στόματα λεόντων,

ἔσβεσαν δύναμιν πυρός,

ἔφυγον στόματα μαχαίρης.

(iii) ἐδυναμώθησαν ἀπὸ ἀσθενείας,

ἐγενήθησαν ἰσχυροὶ ἐν πολέμῳ,

παρεμβολὰς ἔκλιναν ἀλλοτρίων.

In each group there is a progress, and there is a progress in the succession of groups in the direction of that which is more personal.

(33). The first triplet describes the broad results which believers obtained:

Material victory.

Moral success in government.

Spiritual reward.

The second triplet notices forms of personal deliverance from:

Wild beasts.

Physical forces.

Human tyranny.

The third triplet marks the attainment of personal gifts:


The exercise of strength.

The triumph of strength (the believer against the alien).

oἱ διὰ πίστεως...] The form πίστει which has been used before is now changed. The writer speaks of the general inspiring power of faith: c. vi. 12. Compare v. 39 διὰ τῆς πίστεως.

κατηγωνίσαντο βασιλείας] For example Gideon (Midianites), Jud. vii; Barak (Canaanites), Jud. iv.; Samson (Philistines), Jud. xiv. f.; Jephthah (Ammonites), Jud. xi.; Jonathan (Philistines), 1 Sam. xiv. 6 ff.; David (Philistines), 2 Sam. v. 17; (Moabites &c.) 2 Sam. viii. 2; (Ammonites) 2 Sam. x. 12; in each case with weaker forces than their enemies.

ἡργάσαντο δικαιοσ.] The phrase is to be understood not only of purely individual virtues, but of the virtues of leaders: 1 Sam. xii. 4; 2 Sam. viii. 15; Ps. xiv. [xv.] 2; Zephan. ii. 3. Conquerors used their success for the furtherance of right. Righteousness was shewn to be the solid foundation of enduring power: Is. ix. 7; liv. 14; 1 K. x. 9.

For the phrase ἐργάζ. δικαιοσύνην 378 ἐπαγγελιῶν, ἔφραξαν στόματα λεόντων, ³⁴ἔσβεσαν δύναμιν πυρός, ἔφυγον στόματα μαχαίρης, ἐδυναμώθησαν ἀπὸ ἀσθενείας, έγενήθησαν ἰσχυροὶ ἐν πολέμῳ, παρεμβολὰς ἔκλιναν ἀλλοτρίων. ³⁵ἔλαβον γυναῖκες ἐξ

33 στόμα D₂*. 34 ἐδυναμώθησαν א* AD₂*: ἐνεδ. S א*.
35 γιναῖκες א* : γυναῖκας א* AD₂* me.

compare Acts x. 35; (James i. 20); Matt. vii. 23 (ἀνομίαν); James ii. 9 (ἁμαρτίαν).

ἐπέτυχον ἐπαγγελιῶν] Victory was gained and rightly used in just government, and so it was followed by a deeper apprehension of the will of God. The phrase ἐπιτυχεῖν ἐπαγγελιῶν has been noticed before, c. vi. 15 note.

It appears to be used here in the most general sense, which includes both the attainment of that which had been already promised, and the quickened expectation of something yet to come. Each partial fulfilment of a divine word is itself a prophecy. A promise gained is also a promise interpreted in a larger meaning. Here the truth is set out in its fulness. The many 'promises' successively realised in many parts and many fashions led up to the one 'promise' (v. 39) which is still held before the eye of faith.

(33) b, 34 a. The notice of public, general, successes is followed by the notice of personal deliverances.

ἔφραξαν στ. λ.] Dan. vi. 22 ἐνέφραξε τὰ στόματα τῶν λεόντων Theod. (Daniel); 1 Macc. ii. 60. There may also be a reference to Jud. xiv. 6 (Samson); 1 Sam. xvii. 34 (David).

ἔσβεσαν δύν. π.] Dan. iii.; 1 Macc. ii. 59. The natural force of the elements was overpowered (comp. Wisd. xix. 6). οὐκ εἶπεν ἔσβεσαν πῦρ. ἀλλὰ Δύναμιν πυρός, ὁ καὶ μεῖζον (Theophlct).

ἔφυγον στ. μαχ.] Ex. xviii. 4 (Moses), 1 Sam. xviii. 11; xix. 10 ff.; xxi. 10; Ps. cxliv. 10 (David); 1 K. xix. 1 ff. (Elijah); 2 K. vi. (Elisha).

The phrase ἐν στόματι μαχαίρας (ῥομφαίας, ξίφους) (HebrewΡΧΓΡΪ) is not uncommon in the lxx. (Gen. xxxiv. 26). The plural (στόματα), which does not appear to occur elsewhere, expresses the many assaults of human violence answering in part to στόματα λεόντων.

(34) b. Examples of deliverance from external perils are followed by examples of personal strengthening.

ἐδυναμ. ἀπὸ ἀσθ.] This general phrase may be interpreted of various forms of physical weakness as in the case of Samson (Jud. xvi. 28 ff.); Hezekiah (Is. xxxviii.); and of moral distress (Ps. vi. 3, 8; Ps. xxii. 21 f.). For ἀπὸ ἀσθενείας compare Luke v. 15; viii. 2; and contrast 2 Cor. xiii. 4 ἐξ ἀσθενείας.

ἐγεν. ἰσχ. ἐν π.] waxed mighty in war, not only in the moment of battle, but in the whole conduct of the conflict. Ps. xviii. 34 ff.; cxliv. 1 f. For ἰσχυροί compare Luke xi. 21 f.

παρεμβ. ἔκλ. ἀλλ.] The addition of ἀλλοτρίων distinguishes this clause from κατηγωνίσαντο βασιλείας and fixes the thought here on the religious contrast between the children of the kingdom and strangers (Matt. xvii. 25 f.). This sense of κλίνειν (*inclinare aciem), which is found in classical Greek from Homer downwards, does not occur elsewhere in the Ν. T. or lxx.

The word παρεμβολή (like HebrewnjQQ, which it represents in the lxx.) is used for an armed force as well as for a camp, the position which it occupies: Jud. iv. 16; viii. 10; Ezek. i. 24 (A); 1 Macc. v. 28.

(35) a. The triple triplet of victorious faith is followed by a single, abrupt 379 ἀναστάσεως τοὺς νεκροὺς αὐτῶν. ἄλλοι δὲ ἐτυμπανίσθησαν,

ἀπετυνπ. D₂*.

clause which presents the highest conquest of faith, 'women received from resurrection their dead.' In this case faith appears under a twofold aspect. There is a silent, waiting, passive faith of love, which works with the active faith. Women, in whom the instinct of natural affection is strongest, cooperated with the prophets through whom the restoration was effected. They received their dead. The word λαβεῖν occurs in the narrative of the Shunamite: 2 K. iv. 36.

It cannot be without significance that the recorded raisings from the dead are predominantly for women: 1 K. xvii. 17 ff.; 2 K. iv. 17 ff.; Luke vii 11 ff.; John xi.; Acts ix. 36 ff.

In the phrase ἐξ ἀναστάσεως the Resurrection, which is the transition from death to life, is that out of which the departed were received.

(b) The victorious sufferings of Faith: the great things which it has borne (35b—38).

The record of the open triumphs of Faith is followed by the record of its inward victories in unconquered and outwardly unrewarded endurance. Theophylact remarks on the contrast: ὅρα πῶς οἱ μὲν ἀπὸ πίστεως στόματα μαχαίρας ἔφυγον οἱ δὲ ἐν φόνῳ μαχαίρας ἀπέθανον. τοιτῦτον γὰρ ἡ πίστις καὶ ἀνύει μεγάλα καὶ πάσχει μεγάλα καὶ οὐδὲν οἴεται πάσχειν.

And others were tortured to death, not accepting their deliverance, that they might obtain a better resurrection; ³⁶and others had trial of mockings and scourgings, yea moreover of bonds and imprisonment: ³⁷they were stoned, they were sawn asunder, they were tempted, they were slain with the sword: they went about in sheepskins, in goatskins; being destitute, afflicted, evil-entreated, ³⁸men of whom the world was not worthy, wandering in deserts and mountains and caves and the holes of the earth.

The order of arrangement is not obvious. The enumeration appears to consist of two great groups (35b, 36, and 37, 38) each consisting of two members, the first of suffering to death, the second of sufferings short of death. It is difficult to define the relation in which the two main groups stand to each other.

Perhaps the first group describes constancy in the face of release offered in the moment of trial, on the supposition that οὐ προσδεξάμενοι τὴν ἀπολ. extends in idea to ἕτεροι, while the second group gives generally forms of suffering.

(35) b. ἄλλοι δέ...] But others in a new class triumphed 'in that they seemed to fail.' The restoration from death, the highest victory of active faith, is surpassed by a nobler triumph, the victory over death.

ἐτυμπανίσθησαν) Vulg. distenti sunt. The reference is to the martyrdom of the seven brethren related in 2 Macc. vi. 18 ff.; vii.

The word τυμπανίζειν is used very vaguely of the infliction of heavy blows; and the Greek commentators were at a loss as to its exact meaning. Chrysostom says: ἀποτυμπανισμὸς λέγεται ὁ ἀποκεφαλισμός, referring to John the Baptist and St James. So also Theophylact: τουτέστιν ἀπετμήθήσαν...τινὲς δὲ τὸ τυμπανισθῆναι ῥοπάλοις τυφθῆναι εἶρον. Œcumenius adds: ἄλλοι δὲ τὸ τυμπανίζεσθαι τὸ ἐκδέρεσθαι φασίν. Hesychius gives ἐτυμπ. ἀσφαιρίσθησαν, i.e. beaten with leaded scourges. It appears to describe a punishment like breaking on the wheel. The extremities of the sufferer were fastened to a frame, and his limbs then broken by heavy clubs. The original reading of D₂ 380 οὐ προσδεξάμενοι τὴν ἀπολύτρωσιν, ἵνα κρείττονος ἀναστάσεως τύχωσιν. ³⁶ἕτεροι δὲ ἐμπαιγμῶν καὶ μαστίγών πεῖραν ἔλαβον, ἔτι δὲ δεσμῶν καὶ φυλακῆς. ³⁷ἐΚιθάσθησαν, ἐπειράσθησαν, ἐπρίσθησαν, ἐv φόνῳ μαχαίρης ἀπέθανον,

37 ἐπρίσθησαν, ἐπειράσθησαν

36 ἐμπ.: ἐνπεγμάτων D₂*. 37 ἐπειράσθησαν ἐπρίσθησαν Μ: ἐπρίσθ. ἐπειρ. S A vg me: ἐπιράσθησαν ἐπιράσθῃσαν D₂*: om. ἐπειρ. syr vg.

(ἀπετυμπανίσθησαν) expresses more distinctly 'beaten to death.'

Philo speaks of the spectacles of the early part of festival days as consisting in Ἰουδαῖοι μαστιγοίμενοι, κρεμάμενοι, τροχιζόμενοι, καταδικαζόμενοι, διὰ μέσης τῆς ὀρχήστρας ἀπαγόμενοι τὴν ἐπὶ θανάτῳ (in Flacc. § 10, ii. p. 529).

The whole description which he gives of the sufferings of the Jews should be compared with this passage (l. c., cc. 10, 20).

οὐ προσδεξ. τὴν ἀπολ.] when they did not in fact accept the deliverance which was placed within their reach: 2 Macc. vi. 21; vii. 27. For προσδέξασθαι see c. x. 34 note.

ἵνα κρείττ. ἀναστ. τύχ.] a resurrection better than the mere restoration to the remnant of an earthly life gained by the acceptance of the offered deliverance. Comp. vii. 19. For ἀv. τύχ. see Lk. xx. 35.

The comparison between the resurrection to eternal life and the resurrection to an earthly life, though it is not made directly, lies implicitly in κρείττονος, as interpreted by the Maccabean history: 2 Macc. vii. 9, 14. The patristic commentators generally dwell on this: κρείττονος, oὐ τοιαύτης οἵας τὰ παιδία τῶν γυναικῶν, ἥ κρείττονος παρὰ τὴν τῶν λοιπῶν ἀνθρώπων (ἐξανάστάσις Phil. iii. 11)...καὶ ἅλλως ὅτι εἰς τὴν αἰώνιον (Theophlct).

(36). ἕτεροι δέ] The apostle goes on to notice a second class among those (ἅλλοι) who shewed their faith not in conquering but in bearing. Some endured death, some endured afflictions less in immediate extent, yet no less terrible as trials of endurance.

For ἅλλοι, ἕτεροι see 1 Cor. xii. 8 ff.; Gal. i. 6 f. with Lightfoot's note.

πεῖραν ἔλαβον] v. 29. They experienced sufferings which were sharp and direct (ἐμπ. καὶ μάστ....2 Macc. vii. 7, 1), strokes on soul and body; and sufferings also which were dull and long (δεσμ. καὶ φυλ.): 1 Κ. xxii. 27; Jerem. xxxvii.; xxix. 26; 1 Macc. xiii. 12; 2 Macc. vii. 7, 10. The ἕτι δέ marks a climax (Acts ii. 26 [Luke xiv. 26, ἕτι τε]). The sharp, short trial is easier to bear.

The phrase πεῖρ. ἔλαβεν occurs in lxx. Deut. xxviii. 56 (Aqu. ἐπείρασεν).

(37), (38). A fresh summary is given of sufferings to death (if ἐπειράσθησαν be corrupt) (v. 37); and of sufferings short of death (v. 38).

ἐλιθάσθησαν] Stoning was a characteristic Jewish punishment: 2 Chron. xxiv. 20 f. (Zechariah son of Jehoiada); (Lk. xi. 51); Matt. xxi. 35; xxiii. 37.

Ut Naboth; Jeremias in Ægypto a reliquiis transmigratorum (comp. Tertull. Scorp. i. 8); Ezechiel in Babylone; aliique quamplures in Novo Testamento (Primus.).

ἐπειράσθησαν] This word seems to be foreign to the context. The reference to Job (Primas., Œcum.) is not satisfactory. Of the many conjectures which have boon suggested the most plausible are, ἐπρήσθησαν or ἐνεπρήσθησαν (Philo ad Flacc. § 20; ii p. 542 Μ., ζῶντες oἱ μὲv ἐνεπρήσθησαν οἱ δὲ διὰ μέσης κατεσύρησαν ἀγορᾱς ἕως ὅλα τὰ σώματα αὐτῶν ἐδπανήθη). 381 περιῆλθον ἐν μηλωταῖς, ἐν αἰγίοις δέρμασιν, ὑστερούμενοι, θλιβόμενοι, κακουχούμενοι, ³⁸ὧν οὐκ ἧν ἄξιος ὁ κόσμος ἐπὶ ἐρημίαις πλανώμενοι καὶ σπηλαίοις καὶ ταῖς ὀπαὶς τῆς γῆς. ³⁹Kαὶ οὗτοι πάντες μαρτυρηθέντες

38 ἑν

38 ἐπὶ ἐρ. אΑ: ἐν ἐρ. S D₂*. 39 πάντ. μαρτ. οὕτοι D₂.

ἐπρίσθησαν] Sο Isaiah suffered according to tradition: Just. M. Dial. 120; Orig. Ep. ad Afric. § 9, and Wetstein's note.

For the punishment itself see 2 Sam. xii. 31; 1 Chron. xx. 3; Amos i. 3 (lxx.).

ἐν φόν. μ. ἀπέθ.] Comp. 1 K. xix. 10 τοὺς προφήτας σου ἀπέκτειναν ἐν ῥομφαίᾳ. Jerem. xxvi. (xxxiii.) 23 (Urijah).

The exact phrase ἐν φόνῳ μαχαίρας occurs in the lxx. as a rendering of Hebrew3ΤΠ Ex. xvii. 13 &c.

The enumeration of sufferings of death is followed by references to sufferings in life.

περιῆλθον ἐν μηλ....] They went about from place to place with no sure abode. Compare Clem. R. i. 17. (Clem. Alex. Strom. iv. 17 § 107 ὁ ἀπόστολος κλήμης.) Μηλωτή is used in the lxx. for HebrewΓΠΊΚ, the characteristic prophet's dress: 1 K. xix. 13, 19; 2 K. ii. 8, 13, 14. This was of sheep (or goat) skin (compare HebrewT$? n^tf Zech. xiii. 4; Gen. xxv. 25); and was afterwards adopted as a monastic dress. See Suicer s. v.

ὑστ. θλιω. κακουχ.] in want of the ordinary means of life (Ecclus. xi. 11; Luke xv. 14; Phil. iv. 12; 2 Cor. xi. 9), afflicted by pressure (Vulg. angustiati) from without (2 Thess. i. 6 f.), in evil plight generally (xiii. 3; v. 25).

(38). ὧν οὐκ ἧν ἄξ. ὁ. κ.] They were men worth more than the whole world, and they lacked all. This appears to be the meaning, and not that 'the world in all its beauty was not fit to be their home.' Comp. Prov. viii. 11 κρείσσων γὰρ σοφία λίθων πολυτελῶν, πᾶν δὲ τίμιον οὐκ ἄξιον αὐτῆς ἐστί.

Εἰ πᾶς ὁ κόσμος, Theophylact asks, οὐκ ἔστιν ἄξιος ἑνὸς ἁγίου, τί μέρος ζητεῖς;

From this thought the last clause follows naturally. The best thing men can give is the sympathy of fellowship: the last thing which they withdraw is simple intercourse. But the prophets had no place among their fellow-men; and 'even the deserts offered them no safe resting-place' (Theophlct).

ἐπὶ ἐρημίαις πλανώμ....] Compare 1 Κ. xviii. 4, 13 (ἐν σπηλαίῳ); xix. 9 (εἰς τὸ σπήλαιον); 1 Macc. ii. 31; 2 Macc. v. 27; vi. 11; x. 6.

The clause ταῖς ὀπαῖς τῆς γῆς—the holes of the land—seems to be a quotation from some familiar description. The word ὀπή occurs again James iii. 11 with a reference to another feature of the limestone rocks of Palestine.

(6) 39, 40. General conclusion.

The whole record of past divine history shews us that the trial of faith depended on the will of God, who looked forward to the end. Here then lies our patience.

³⁹And these all, having had witness borne to them through their faith, received not the promise, ⁴°God having foreseen some better thing in our case, that they, apart from us, should not be made perfect.

(39). oὗτοι πάντες] These all from the beginning of human discipline to the fulfilment of man's destiny in Christ.

μαρτυρηθέντες διὰ τῆς π....] Latt. 382 διὰ τὴς πίστεως οὐκ ἐκομίσαντο τὴν ἐπαγγελίαν, ⁴°τοῦ θεοῦ περὶ ἡμῶν κρεῖττόν τι προβλεψαμένου, ἵνα μὴ χωρὶς ἡμῶν τελειωθῶσιν.

τὴν ἐπαγγ. אD₂: τὰς ἐπαγγ. Α. 40 κρ. τι π. ἡμ. D₂*.

testimonio fidei probati.... These old heroes, though they received the witness of divine approval given in what they were enabled to do and to suffer through their faith, died before the end was reached to which they looked from first to last.

διὰ τῆς πίστεως] through their faith. The faith by which they welcomed the divine promises became the power through which the fellowship of God with them was made evident. For διά compare v. 33 διὰ πίστεως.

With οὐκ ἐκομίσ. τὴν ἐπαγγ. compare v. 13 μὴ κομισ. τὰς ἐπαγγ. c. x. 36; 1 Pet. i. 9; v. 4; and for the relation of ἡ ἐπαγγ. and αἱ ἐπαγγ. see v. 33

(40). The reason of this failure of the fathers to 'receive the promise,' which men might think strange, lay in the far-reaching Providence—Foresight—of God. It was His purpose that the final consummation should be for all together, as indeed it is of all, in Christ; so that no one part of the Body can, if we realise the meaning of the figure, gain its fulfilment independently. The consummation of all the Saints therefore followed upon the completion of Christ's work, the accomplishment by Him of the destiny of man, though fallen. So far then God foresaw in the order of His great counsel in our case (περὶ ἡμῶν) something better than the fathers experienced: for we have actually seen in part that towards which they strained: Matt. xiii. 17; 1 Pet. i. 12. The fathers with a true faith looked for a fulfilment of the promises which was not granted to them. To us the fulfilment has been granted, without the trial of deferred hope, if only we regard the essence of things. Christ has already opened the way to the Divine Presence on which we can enter, and He offers to us now a kingdom which cannot be shaken (xii. 28). At the same time there is the thought that God has looked further, even beyond our age of trial, to the end.

κρεῖττόντι] Hoc melius est, premissæ salutis revelatio clarior, confirmatio testatior, expectatio propier, per Christum exhibitum, et tandem ipsa salus et gloria (Bengel). Chrysostom has some striking words on this prospect of the consummation: ἐννοήσατε καὶ ὑμεῖς τί ἐστι καὶ ὅσον ἐστὶ τὸν Ἀβραὰμ καθῆσθαι καὶ τὸν ἀπόστολον Παῦλον περιμένοντας πότε σὺ τελειωθῇς ἵνα δυνηθῶσι τότε λαβεῖν τὸν μισθόν...εἰ σῶμα ἐν οἱ πάντες ἐσμέν, μείζων γίνεται τῷ σώματι τούτῳ ἡ ἡδονὴ ὅταν κοινῇ στεφανῶται καὶ μὴ κατὰ μέρος. καὶ γὰρ οἱ δίκαιοι καὶ ἐν τούτῳ εἰσὶ θαυμαστοὶ ὅτι χαίρουσιν ὡς ἐπὶ οἰκείοις ἀγαθοῖς τοῖς τῶν ἀδελφῶν.

The perfection (τελείωσις) of the individual Christian must in its fullest sense involve the perfection of the Christian society. The 'perfection' which Christ has gained for humanity in His Person (ii. 10; v. 9; vii. 28; x. 1, 14) must be appropriated by every member of Christ. In part this end has been reached by the old saints in some degree, in virtue of Christ's exaltation (c. xii. 23), but in part it waits for the final triumph of the Saviour, when all that we sum up in confessing the truth of 'the resurrection of the body' is fulfilled.

Primasius interprets the gift of the 'white robe' in Apoc. vi. 11 (ad loc.) of that endowment of love whereby 383 the waiting souls gladly accept the postponement of their own consummation: acceperunt singuli stolas albas, id est, ut per caritatis perfectionem, quae per Spiritum Sanctum infunditur in corda credentium, hac consolatione contenti ipsi mallent pro ceterorum numero fratrum supplendo differri...And Herveius notes in remarkable words the unity of the resurrection-life: Propter hoc etiam mysterium illud in ultimum diem dilati judicii custoditur, quia unum corpus est quod justificari expectatur, unum corpus est quod resurgere in judicium dicitur.

ἵνα μὴ χ. ἡ.] that they apart from us should not be perfected....The words seem to depend directly on οὐκ ἐκομ. τὴν ἐπαγγ., though the parenthesis which comes between makes the connexion more intelligible.

For χωρίς see John xv. 5 note.


*Additional Note on the reading of* xi. 4.

The division of authorities and the strange reading of the most ancient Greek MSS. suggest the existence of a primitive corruption in the clause μαρτυροῦντος ἐπὶ τοῖς δώποις αὐτοῦ τοῦ θεοῦ (τῷ θεῷ). In such a case the loss of Β is keenly felt. The best attested reading (μαρτ. ἐπὶ τ. δ. αὐτοῦ τῷ θεῷ) gives a sense which, though it is at first sight foreign to the argument, becomes intelligible if we suppose that a parallel is suggested between the witness of God to Abel and the witness of Abel to God: he had witness borne to him that he was righteous, while he on his part, on occasion of his gifts, by the faith which inspired them, bore witness to God. But such a parallel seems to be artificial, and it is more natural to suppose that the character of the divine witness to the righteousness of Abel should be more distinctly defined. Thus the sense given by the later Greek MSS. is satisfactory; but that reading leaves τῷ θεῷ unexplained. Clement of Alexandria (Strom. ii. 4, p. 434) quotes the clause, in a continuous citation, in the form μαρτ. ἐπὶ τοῖς δώροις αὐτῷ τοῦ θεοῦ. If this was the original text a mechanical change would account for both the current readings. It may be added that Clement also omits τῷ θεῷ after προσήνεγκε.

*Additional Note on* xi. 10. *On the social imagery in the Epistle*.

No words are more liable to be misunderstood than those which describe forms of social organisation. They survive the state of things to which they were originally applied, and are transferred to a new order, more or less analogous to the past yet widely distinguished from it. For this reason the language which is used in the Ν. T. to describe the Christian Society is exposed to many difficulties of interpretation. Believers are represented in the apostolic writings as united in a 'congregation' (ἐκκλησία), a 'state,' or 'city' (πὀλις), a 'kingdom,' and it is important to endeavour to realise the thoughts associated with these terms in the first age, if we wish to realise the primitive conception of Christianity as a social power. In this connexion the teaching of the Epistle to the Hebrews is of the greatest moment. It offers a view of the organisation of the Gospel in most respects singularly comprehensive; and it is not unlikely that the imminent overthrow of the Jewish state gave occasion for dwelling upon this aspect of the Gospel. There is however one striking omission. The Epistle is almost silent as to ecclesiastical organisation. No one of the words which have come to represent the main ideas of Church government is used in it with its limited technical sense. The title 'Apostle' is used only of Christ Himself (iii. 1 τὸν άπόστολον καὶ ἀρχιερία τῆς ὁμολογίας ἡμῶν Ίησοῦν). The verb ἐπισκοπεῖν, in the one place where it occurs, suggests no thought of official oversight (xii. 15). 'The elders' are simply the heroes of the Old 385 Dispensation (xi. 2). The word διάκονος is not found in the book; nor is the term ἐκκλησία used in the sense of 'a particular church' or of 'the universal church' (ii. 12 ἐν μέσῳ ἐκκλησίας lxx.; xii. 23 ἐκκλησίᾳ πρωτοτόκων). The single term which indicates the existence of ordered discipline in the body is the most general, 'those that have rule,' 'that lead' (οἱ ἡγούμενοι, xiii. 7, 17, 24).

With this exception the view given in the Epistle of the social embodiment of the Gospel is most varied. Eight passages present it under five distinct aspects:

(1). ii. 5 ἡ οἶκουμένη ἡ μέλλουσα. The Divine Order in its fullest extent and realisation.

(2). iii. 2 f.; x. 21 ὁ οἶκος τοῦ θεοῦ. The relation of the Order to God, as its Head and Indweller.

(3). xi. 10, 16; xiii. 14 ἡ τοὺς θεμελίους ἔχουσα πόλις, ἡ μέλλουσα (πόλις). Comp. viii. 11. The social constitution of the Order.

(4). xii. 22 ff. The vision of the fulness of the Order.

(5). xii. 28 βασιλεία ἀσάλευτος. Comp. Col. i. 13. A present kingdom.

Each of these aspects of the Christian Society must be considered separately.

(1). The Christian Society as the Society of the 'age to come' (ii. 5).

The far-reaching phrase ἡ οῑκουμένη "μέλλουσα, which is inadequately rendered by 'the world to come,' suggests the thought of the Order towards which the earlier discipline of the world had been directed. It has been all along foreseen. It is the true fulfilment of the destiny of humanity: the initial stage of the consummation which answers to creation. It is essentially comprehensive. It includes men as men, and places them in their due connexion with Nature. This inherent universality of the Order, as contemplated under this aspect, explains the silence of the Epistle on the call of the Gentiles. Old divisions, which had their place in the times of preparation, could not continue when man was seen to have reached the divine end in Christ. Henceforth 'the people' and 'the nations' were united in a larger fellowship. The spiritual Order was revealed in Him, of which Greek civilisation and Roman government were partial types.

(2). The Christian Society at the House of God (iii. 2 ff.; x. 21).

Under the image of 'the House of God' the Christian Society is regarded in a different light. It is the organised system in which God dwells, and of which He is the Master. The sense of the dwelling-place, which is dominant, passes into that of the family, and then the dwelling-place consists of human hearts. The image is derived directly from Num. xii. 7. The earliest and simplest expression of the thought of 'the House of God' is in Gen. xxviii. 17. The phrase is rarely applied to the Tabernacle: Ex. xxiii. 19; xxxiv. 26; Josh. vi. 24; Judg. xviii. 31. It is used of the Temple in 2 Sam. vii. 5; 1 K. viii. 17 and later writings.

The passage from the thought of a material to that of a spiritual 'House' is natural: Jer. vii. 4; John ii. 16, 19 (comp. Matt. xxiii. 38). 386 In its widest meaning the 'House' includes Nature no less than Humanity; but it is through man that all other things reach their end. Hence while Christ is 'a great Priest over the House of God' (x. 21), Christians are in a peculiar sense 'His House' (iii. 6). As St Paul writes to the Ephesians: Each several building—each chamber in the whole fabric of the universe-*fitly framed together, groweth into a holy sanctuary in the Lord; in Whom ye also are builded together for a habitation of God in the Spirit (Eph. ii. 21 f.). Compare 1 Tim. iii. 15; 1 Pet. ii. 5; iv. 17.

(3). The Christian Society as the abiding City (xi. 10, 16; xiii. 14).

It is however under the idea of the 'city,' the 'state' (πόλις), that the Christian Society enters most fully upon the inheritance of earlier life. Three distinct elements contribute to the fulness of the conception of the Christian πόλις, (a) the Jewish, (b) the Greek, and (c) the Stoic.

(a) The Jewish idea of the πόλις is centred in the thought of a divine sovereignty, of privileges answering to complete devotion to a Heavenly King. From the first the blessings which were assured to a chosen family were held to be capable of extension to those who accepted the obligations of the Covenant. The natural principle of birth was recognised, but it was subordinated to the principle of a common faith. Stated gatherings of the whole race were enjoined, but they were designed to keep fresh the vigour of institutions which were fixed once for all.

'The city of the Great King' (Ps. xlviii. 2; comp. Matt. v. 35) was ideally the home of every member of the commonwealth of Israel, and by the necessity of the case it tended to create a sense of spiritual fellowship offering the hope of an indefinite enlargement (Ps. lxxxvii.). If slavery found a modified acceptance, it was treated as a transitory condition, and not allowed to destroy the spiritual rights of the slave.

The prophets looked forward to a time when Zion should be the seat of a holy kingdom, of which the Davidic kingdom was a symbol; when the restoration of 'the people' should be the prelude to the gathering of 'the nations' to the mountain of the Lord; when the Redeemer of Israel should be 'the God of the whole earth': when Jerusalem should become a universal centre of worship (Joel iii.; Amos ix. 11 ff.; Is. liv.; lxvi. 20 [lxx.]; Ezek. xl ff.; Zech. xii. xiv.). In this larger view of the divine πόλις nothing was lost of the original conception of a community of worshippers, ideally citizen-priests; but it was recognised that the privileges which belonged to Israel corresponded with the destiny of humanity and must therefore be at last presented in a form which was able to bring them within the reach of all men (comp. Tob. xiii. 9 ff.).

(b) The πόλις of Judaism was in its conception the most comprehensive in the old world. So far from the Jews deserving the reproach of illiberal narrowness, as long as they remained true to their Scriptures, they offered a unique example of a nation most definite in its organisation, which admitted freely the incorporation of new members and looked forward to a world-wide religious communion in one faith. The Greek conception of the πόλις was sharply contrasted with the Jewish. The Jewish was essentially universal because it was the embodiment of the One Divine 387 will: the Greek was limited, because it was the affirmation of personal rights. It was designed to realise as fully as possible the powers of man in the best and not in all. It rested on a community of blood, religion, law. It assumed the inherent superiority of the Greek race, and was founded upon slavery (Arist. Pol. iii. 5). It tended to develop in the privileged few the immediate sense of privilege, of responsibility, of individual freedom, in the highest degree; but it excluded the possibility of wide extension. Each citizen exercised bis power directly. The power therefore could not be extended to more than might be supposed to be able to meet for counsel. Thus while it has been maintained that the πόλις was anterior to the citizen, it was also maintained that the πόλις could be no greater than sufficed for the fullest development of the citizen. In the face of facts Plato admitted that the end of civic life was not reached in existing states, but he added in remarkable words: ἐν οὐρανῷ ἴσως παράδειγμα ἀνάκειται τῷ βουλομένῳ ὁρᾶν, καὶ ὁπῶντι ἑαυτὸν κατοικίζειν (Resp. ix. s.f. p. 592).

(c) The Greek conception of the πόλις emphasised as strongly as possible the rights and the duties of the citizen, the privileged man; but his position of advantage was purchased at a high price. It required for its attainment the subjection of all others. Those who looked at the capacities of men as men could not rest In such a state of things. The great Stoic leaders, who came at many points into contact with Jewish teaching, proclaimed a universal πόλις, a city co-extensive with the world. 'What is man' Epictetus asks. 'A member of a state' (μέρος πόλεως, comp. Sen. Ep. xcv. 52) he replies, 'of that primarily which consists of Gods and men (comp. Cic. de fin. iii. 19, 64; Sen. de otio iv. 1), and next of that which bears the name and is most near to us, a state which is a small copy of the universal state' (Dissert. ii. 5, 26; comp. iii. 22, 4; 85; 24, 10). 'Man,' Marcus Aurelius says, 'is a citizen of that sublimest state of which all other states are (as it were) houses' (Medit. iii. 11). 'The end of a rational being is to follow the principle and law of the state and constitution which is anterior to all beside' (id. ii. 16; comp. iv. 4; 23; vi. 44).

This conception was adopted by Philo. 'The supreme state (ἡ μεγαλόπολις),' he writes, 'is this world, and it obeys one constitution and one law' (de Jos. § 6; ii. 46 M.). 'The soul of the wise accounts in very truth heaven as its fatherland, and earth as a strange country' (de agric. § 14; i. 310 M.). Such souls after a time 'go back again thither whence they first started, holding that the heavenly region, in which they live their true life (ἐν ὧ πολετεύονται), is their fatherland, and the earthly, in which they sojourn, a strange place' (de conf. ling. § 17; i. 416 M.)

These three distinct conceptions of the πόλις, which were widely influential in the Apostolic age, are combined in the conception of the Christian commonwealth. It is the seat of a Divine Presence which carries with it the promise of the fulfilment of a divine counsel in the fellowship of man with God. It is a community in which each citizen is endowed with the completest privileges and charged with the fullest responsibility for the general welfare. It is a world-wide organisation embracing in a communion of the largest hope 'all thinking things, all objects of all thought' 388 In the Apocalypse the Jewish conception finds its most striking application. In the Epistles of St Paul the Greek conception is dominant. But in each case the idea of universality raises the particular conception to its loftiest form. The real significance of the imagery of the Apocalypse is liable to be mistaken. This is largely derived from Ezekiel. 'The holy city, new Jerusalem' (xxi. 2), is in fact not a city, made up of human dwellings, but one building, a Temple, a House of God (comp. Ezek. xl. 2), which has hitherto been in heaven (cc. iv. v; xi. 19; xiv. 15, 17; viii. 3; xvi. 7; comp. Hebr. viii. 5). It is a perfect cube (xxi. 16), 'four-square to all the elements,' of absolute symmetry and strength. Angel-watches guard its gates (xxi. 12). A single 'street,' as in the earthly Temple, gives an approach to that manifestation of God which takes the place of the Sanctuary (xxi. 21 ff.). The people live in a Paradise around it, and have free access to the divine throne (xxii. 1 ff.; 14, 19); and at the same time, under another aspect, some at least among them are themselves part of the spiritual Sanctuary (iii. 12). 'The name of God, and the name of the city of God, and the new name of Christ' is the signature of believers (id.). The revelation of this new Society, no less than the revelation of God Himself; in other words, gives to the Christian his abiding character. As a citizen of this new city, a priest doing service (xxii. 3) to a present Lord, a servant and yet a king (xxii. 5), he reaches the goal of his creation. Meanwhile a wider work is accomplished. The leaves of 'the tree' by 'the river of the water of life' are 'for the healing of the nations' (xxii. 2). So it is that 'the nations shall walk amidst the light' of the city—which is 'the glory of God'—and 'the kings of the earth do bring their glory into it' (xxi. 24).

In such a vision, given as the consummation of the work of the Incarnate Lord, the most far-reaching words of the prophets find their accomplishment. The new πόλις is seen to be a Temple. The centre, the light, the law, of its constitution is the revelation of God through the Lamb (xxi. 23, ὁ λύχνος); and those who first enter upon its privileges are allowed to see the extension of their own privileges to 'the nations,' and to fulfil a work for these later fellow-citizens.

St Paul recognised this spiritual city, 'the Jerusalem which is above,' which is 'free and our mother' (Gal. iv. 26); but he dwelt more upon the individual privileges which belong to its citizens (comp. 2 Cor. v. 1 f.) than upon their social fellowship. As one who knew and used the rights of Roman citizenship, he felt keenly how those who enjoyed a divine citizenship were raised above all who were not spiritually enfranchised. The Christian 'citizenship' or 'commonwealth' (Phil. iii. 20, πολίτευμα) was for him a great and present reality, the full power of which would be shewn in due time (Phil. iii. 21). Those who before were 'alienated from the commonwealth (πολετείας) of Israel and strangers to the covenants of the promise' were 'made near in the blood of Christ' (Eph. ii. 12 f.). The boundary wall (Hebrew) which had hindered their approach to the Sanctuary was broken down (Eph. ii. 14). They were therefore 'no longer strangers (ξένοι without any civic rights) or sojourners (πάροικοι licensed dwellers, 389 enjoying a defined status), but fellow-citizens with the Saints and of the household of God' (Eph. ii. 19). Their life was necessarily an endeavour to realise under the conditions of earth the privileges of the new State of which the Gospel of Christ was the charter (Phil. i. 27 ἀξίως τοῦ εὐαγγελίου τοῦ Χριστοῦ πολιτεύεσθε), even as the true Jew had enjoyed the rights and duties of the commonwealth of Israel (Acts xxiii. 1)11   Comp. E. L. Hicks, Classical Review, i. pp. 4 ff.; 41 ff..

In the Epistle to the Hebrews the idea of the Christian πόλις is connected with the whole course of Revelation. The Call of Abraham pointed to this abiding issue of the counsel of God. The patriarch recognised that he was but a 'sojourner' in the land of promise: for 'he waited for the city that hath the foundations' (c. xi. 10), the one definite organisation of the people of God, already existing in the divine idea. For if men, for the fulfilment of preparatory discipline, 'waited,' God had already provided that towards which they reached forth: 'He had prepared them a city' (c. xi. 16). On His side all has been eternally ready, but even now Christians, conscious of the transitoriness of the things amidst which they move, 'seek after the city which is to come' (c. xiii. 14 τὴν μέλλουσαν [πόλιν] ἐπιζητοπυμεν). This city has not still to be founded: it is, and the believer as he is able uses the high prerogatives which belong to its members22   * In contrast with the πολίτης stands the πάποικος (Hebr. xi. 9; 1 Pet. i. 17; ii. 11) who has a defined position as a recognised sojourner, the παρεπίδημος (Hebr. xi. 13; 1 Pet. i. 1; ii. 11) who resides in the city but has no status, the ξένος (Hebr. xi. 13) who is simply a foreigner..

The thought of the Christian πόλις, πολιτεία, which must be regarded on the one side as opposed to all earthly states and institutions, and on the other as absorbing and transforming them, finds frequent expression in early writers: Clem, ad Cor. i. 2, 54; Polyc. 5; Herm. Sim. i. 1; Ep. ad Diogn. 5; Clem. Al. Strom. iv. 174.

(4). The vision of the fulness of the Christian Society (xii. 22 f.).

The full realisation of the Christian πόλις lies still in the future, but meanwhile the believer is allowed to contemplate its glories in contrast with the terrors of the legislation from Sinai. See notes on the passage.

(5). The Christian Society as a present kingdom (xii. 28).

One further image is used of the Christian Society, which is not derived from Greek or Roman thought, but from the monarchies of the East. Believers receive from the hands of God 'a kingdom which cannot be shaken' (xii. 28). The figure appears to include a twofold idea. They are under a sovereignty of infinite wisdom, and they are also themselves kings. (comp. Rev. i. 6; v. 10 βασιλείαν). The Society which is established has an office towards the nations. The kingdom of Christ is a kingdom of kings, who in turn ruling in His name, bring all people under His sway.

The thought lies in the first proclamation of the Gospel (Matt. iii. 2; iv. 17). It was the topic of the teaching of the Risen Lord (Acts i. 3); and it forms the substance of the latest apostolic teaching recorded in the Acts 390 (Acts xxviii. 31). Its present symbol is the Cross (John xii. 32), which points to the way of true dominion, when the single ruler gives himself for his people and does not use his people for selfish ends. 'He who bears the reproach of his country shall be called the lord of the land, and he who bears the calamities of his country shall be called the king of the world11   Lao-tsu, § lxxviii. (Chalmers' translation)..' The unconscious prophecy of the Chinese teacher has found its fulfilment; and the truth is committed to Christians that it may be embodied.

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