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SECOND EPISTLE OF ST. PAUL
WRITTEN FROM ROME IN THE YEAR OF OUR lord 57, of nERO III.
SAINT PAUL having writ his first epistle to the corinthians, to try, as he says himself, chap. ii. 9, what power he had still with that church, wherein there was a great faction against him, which he was attempting to break, was in pain, till he found what success it had; chap. ii. 12, 13, and vii. 5. But when he had, by Titus, received an account of their repentance, upon his former letter, of their submission to his orders, and of their good disposition of mind towards him, he takes courage, speaks of himself more freely, and justifies himself more boldly; as may be seen, chap. i. 12, and ii. 14, and vi. 10, and x. 1, and xiii. 10. And, as to his opposers, he deals more roundly and sharply with them, than he had done in his former epistle; as appears from chap. ii. 17, and iv. 2-5, and v. 12, and vi. 11-16, and xi. 11, and xii. 15.
The observation of these particulars may possibly be of use to give us some light, for the better understanding of his second epistle, especially if we add, that the main business of this, as of his former epistle, is to take off the people from the new leader they had got, who was St. Paul's opposer; and wholly to put an end to the faction and disorder, which that false apostle had caused
in the church of Corinth. He also, in this epistle, stirs them up again to a liberal contribution to the poor saints at Jerusalem.
This epistle was writ in the same year, not long after the former.
CHAP. I. 1, 2.
1 PAUL an apostle of Jesus Christ, by the will of God, and Timothy, our brother, unto the church of God, which is at Corinth, with all the saints, which are in all Achaia:
2 Grace be to you, and peace, from God our Father, and from the Lord Jesus Christ.
1 PAUL, an apostle of Jesus Christ, by the will of God, and Timothy, our brother *, to the church of God, which is in Corinth, with all the christians, that 2 are in all Achaia † : Favour and peace be to you, from God our Father, and from the Lord Jesus Christ.
1 * "Brother," i. e. either in the common faith; and so, as we have already remarked, he frequently calls all the converted, as Rom. i. 13, and in other places; or "brother" in the work of the ministry, vid. Rom. xvi. 21, 1 Cor. xvi. 12. To which we may add, that St. Paul may be supposed to have given Timothy the title of "brother," here, for dignity's sake, to give him a repu. tation above his age, amongst the corinthians, to whom he had before sent him, with some kind of authority, to rectify their disorders. Timothy was but a young man, when St. Paul writ his first epistle to him, as appears, 1 Tim. iv. 12. Which epistle, by the consent of all, was writ to Timothy, after he had been at Corinth; and in the opinion of some very learned men, not less than eight years after: and therefore his calling him "brother," here, and joining him with himself, in writing this epistle, may be to let the corinthians see, that, though he were so young, who had been sent to them, yet it was one, whom St. Paul thought fit to treat very much as an equal,
+ Achaia, the country wherein Corinth stood.