An Interpretation of the English Bible GALATIANS, ROMANS PHILIPPIANS. PHILEMON by B. H. CARROLL

An Interpretation of the English Bible


Late President of Southwestern Baptist
Theological Seminary, Fort Worth, Texas

Edited by
J. B. Cranfill

Grand Rapids, Michigan

New and complete edition
Copyright 1948, Broadman Press
Reprinted by Baker Book House
with permission of
Broadman Press
ISBN: 0_8010_2344_0
First Printing, September 1973



I. Author’s Introduction 1
II. Paul’s Visit to Jerusalem 11
III. Justification of a Sinner Before God 20
IV. Justification of a Sinner Before God (Cont.) 29
V. Induction into Christ 39
VI. The Two Covenants 52
VII. Special Warnings and Teachings 62
VIII. The Book of Romans, Introduction 73
IX. Paul’s Salutation, Thanksgiving and Prayer 89
X. The Universal Necessity of Salvation 96
XI. The Universal Necessity of Salvation (Cont.) 104
XII. The Universal Necessity of Salvation 123
XIII. The Gospel Plan of Salvation 132
XIV. The Seminal Idea of Salvation 140
XV. Salvation in Us 149
XVI. Salvation in Us (Continued) 159
XVII. The Final Work of Salvation in Us. 168
XVIII. The Harmony of the Problem of Jewish Un_
belief with the Plan of Salvation 177
XIX. The Limitations and Merciful Purpose of God’s
Rejection of Israel 188
XX. The Doctrine of Salvation by Grace Applied to
Practical Life 193
XXI. Some Fragments of Chapters 14_16 202
XXII. The Book of Philippians, Introduction 207
XXIII. The Analysis and Exposition 219
XXIV. God’s Providence in Paul’s Life 228
XXV. The Deity of Christ 235
XXVI. Paul’s Libation and the Christian’s Growth in
Grace 244
XXVIII. The Ministry of Tears and Paul’s Recipe for
Happiness 256

Galatians 1:1_17.

The letter to the Galatians is one of the second group of
Paul’s letters. The first group consists of I and 2 Thessa_
lonians, and this group, mainly on the great controversy with
Judaizing Christians, consists of I and 2 Corinthiang, Gala_
tians, and Romans.
On the letter to the Galatians we have abundant, good and
accessible literature. The best book is by Lightfoot, and
every preacher ought to have it in his library. I also com_
mend Luther on Galatians. Galatians was the storehouse of
Luther from which he drew the weapon of the Reformation.
In short homilies he commented on this letter. His comments
make a book of considerable size. Luther’s Commentary on
Galatians is very valuable in showing the crucial point at
issue between the Protestants and the Romanists in the time
of the Reformation. Its German style makes heavy reading
to an Anglo_Saxon. John Wesley said it surprised him more
than any other book of fame. Perhaps a large part of his
surprise grew out of the fact that he and Luther were op_
posed on the doctrines of grace. The third book which I
commend is Dr. Malcolm McGregor’s Divine Authority of
Paul’s Writings. He uses the letter to the Galatiana more
than any other part of the Scriptures.
This letter was evidently written A. D. 57 or possibly 56. It
was written from Corinth or from Macedonia, with a strong
probability in favor of Corinth. The letter to the Galatians
bears the relation to the letter to the Romans that 2 Peter
does to Jude, and that Colossians does to the Ephesians.
The chief topic in Galatians and Romans is largely the
same. It is as if the letter to the Galatians were a fiery, off_
hand sermon, and after the storm of combat had passed away
the preacher had quietly and calmly prepared a masterly
treatise on the same subject, Romans being the great treatise
and Galatians the offhand discussion.
The occasion of the writing of the letter is very much the
same as that of 2 Corinthians: Paul had been challenged
as an apostle and his gospel assailed by the emissaries from.
Jerusalem. There are shades of difference between the issue
at Corinth on this subject and the issue in the churches of
Galatia and the church at Rome. But the most pronounced
form of Judaistic teaching as contrary to the gospel of Jesus
Christ is the form that he combats in this letter. He got
word that these churches had apostatized from what he con_
sidered the gospel, and had gone over root and branch to the
Here arises an Important question which in modern times
has developed considerable controversy. Does the New Testa-
ment use the word „Galatia” in its ethnological sense or in its
political sense? If it means Galatia as a place where the
Galatians proper lived, there is very little reference in Acts
to Paul’s preaching there. If it means the Roman province,
including Galatia proper and certain sections of Phrygia and
Lycaonia, then the churches in Galatia were the churches
at Lystra, Derbe, and Antioch of Pisidia. We have a full ac_
count in Acts of the establishment of these churches. Dr.
Ramsay, a very brilliant modern writer, has written a book
to show that when Paul uses the term, „Galatia,” he uses it in
the sense of the Roman province inhabited by the Galatians.
About 25 B.C. Asia Minor fell under the power of Rome, which,
disregarding the old_time ethnological boundaries relating to
nations, established provinces for purposes of government,
sometimes including three or four of these nations. Ramsay
makes a remarkably strong argument which has never been
satisfactorily answered. But he leaves unanswered some strong
internal evidences on the other side. For example: (1) It is
hard to harmonize the contents of this letter with the account
in Acts of the establishment of the churches in Antioch of
Pisidia, Lystra, and Derbe. (2) All the characteristics of
the people addressed in this letter fit better the Celtic popula_
tion of Galatia proper. Like other Celts, whether in Gaul,
Wales, or Ireland, their emotions were easily excited and
as quickly subsided. (See Conybeare and Howson’s Life and
Epistles of Paul on this point.) They were intensely emo_
tional, easily enthused, bubbling over like a mountain spring,
variable, and illogical. So we commend the research and
scholarship of Dr. Ramsay and respect his masterly argument,
yet many, in view of the counter arguments, deny that he has
fully sustained the contention. While I myself am charmed
and delighted with his book, and sometimes carried away
almost to the point of agreement with him, yet, in spite of
my prepossessions in his favor, the pendulum swings back
to the old position that Paul is writing to Galatians proper,
and not to a different people artificially enclosed in the Roman
province of Galatia. The silence in Acts concerning his es½
tablishing real Galatian churches is no more than its silence
concerning much of his work in other places.
Now we come to a matter of history. How do we account
for such a multitude of Gauls colonized in Asia Minor?
There are three words used to describe these people: Celts,
Gauls, and Galatians. The Galatians evidently came from
the territory that we now call France. Caesar tells us much
of these Gauls – a restless people, bent on changes, migrating
to broader fields. Earlier Roman history tells us that a great
wave of these people crossed the Alps, swept over Italy, and
under Brennus captured Rome itself. Later they passed into
Greece and Macedonia, and a strong band, managing to get
shipping, crossed the Bosporus into Asia Minor and settled
a strip of country northwest of Tarsus about 200 miles wide
and of considerable length. They went even farther and
fought a great battle with the king of the Syrians, but were
defeated. They were unlike the Romans, the Phrygians, or
the Greeks – they were Gauls. An Irishman is a Galatian –
quick, passionate, fickle. We have in this letter to deal with
a class of people unlike any other that the gospel has yet
reached. It is strange that Luther in his commentary makes
these Galatians Teutons, or Germans. The latter shows when
Paul first preached to them how impressible they were, sub_
ject to quick, deep emotion. It was easy to get a foothold
among them, and easy to lose it.
The occasion of Paul’s preaching among them, as we learn
from the letter itself and other sources, was providential; that
he was taken, when trying to get to another point, with a great
sickness – that thorn in the flesh – so that he was unable to
travel because of his almost total blindness and feebleness,
and that his preaching to them resulted in marvelous mani_
festations. The account harmonizes with the marvels of the
recent great revival in Wales or with what has been called
„the sanctified row” in a Methodist camp meeting. Nowhere
else in Paul’s ministry was there such enthusiasm – such
demonstrations in receiving his message. We learn in Acts
of two visits that Paul made to Galatia.
The genuineness of the book has never been questioned.
Men who are ready to deny the authenticity of other books
of the Bible all agree that this is genuinely Pauline. First and
2 Corinthians, Galatians, and Romans have never been ques_
tioned. The letter seems to be divided into the following
1. Introduction (1:1_5).
2. Historical narrative (1:6 to 2:1_21) in which he defends
his gospel and apostolic authority.
3. The doctrinal part of the epistle (3_4), relating to justi_
fication by faith without works.
4. Chapters 5_6 are devoted to exhortations based on the
Let us take up the introduction: „Paul, an apostle (not from
men, neither through man, but through Jesus Christ, and God
the Father, who raised him from the dead).” Even in the
introduction he strikes the keynote of the letter. In that
parenthesis of the first sentence he marches square up against
the opposition, the Judaizers having contended that he was
neither one of the twelve, nor commissioned by them. He
concedes the fact, but turns it in his favor. He is an apostle
though not of men, not as Matthias, who was elected, but
he received his apostleship direct from the Lord. Usually
Paul leads up to his subject by gradual approaches, but here
he abruptly leaps into the middle of things. This letter is like
dropping a coal of fire into a powder magazine.
„I marvel that ye are so quickly removing from him that
called you in the grace of Christ unto a different gospel;
which is not another gospel: only there are some that trouble
you, and would pervert the gospel of Christ.” At the outset
he recognizes that this revolt did not originate with them. It
was superinduced, imported. Nor did he believe that it was
merely human opposition. It was a matter of amazement
to him that people who had welcomed him so lovingly, heard
him so tenderly and obeyed him so joyously, should, in such
a short time, be switched off completely from the true gospel.
All through the letter we see that the wonder is in his mind,
and he evidently attributes it to some power more than hu_
man: „0 foolish Galatians, who did bewitch you, that you
should turn a somersault in theology and doctrine so quickly?”
He does not mince words: „But though we, or an angel from
heaven, should preach unto you any gospel other than that
which we preached unto you, let him be anathema.” There is
but one gospel – the gospel of grace through Jesus Christ.
Anything different is not gospel, though an angel brings it.
It is to be rejected, and the one who brings it should be
counted as accursed from God. Paul was a mild man, ex_

ceedingly courteous and patient, suffering a great many per_
sonal indignities, but when one struck at the gospel he
preached he was full of indignation and fiery wrath, because
he believed that gospel to be the only hope of the lost world:
„As we have said before, so say I now again, if any man
preacheth unto you any gospel other than that which ye re_
ceived, let him be anathema.”
The skeptic argues against the New Testament because so
much of it is devoted to issues local and transitory. But
this is to misread and misinterpret human history. The
natural man is ever ready to prefer works to grace. If he
cannot have a salvation all of works, then he insists on a
salvation partly of works and partly of grace. He will at any
time prefer rites and ceremonies to spiritual things. In me_
dieval time, the dark ages preceding and necessitating the Ref_
ormation of the sixteenth century, all Europe under Roman
Catholicism, reverted to the old covenant with its priesthood,
sacraments, types, burdensome ritual and imposing customs
and ceremonies, mixed up with compromises and borrowings
from heathendom around. Luther made this letter the banner
of the reformation for Central Europe, and we need it now as
much as when Paul wrote it or Luther used it. There are
hundreds of pulpits today that do not preach the gospel, and
even some Baptists are aping Rome.
I am reminded of the interview I had with Sam Jones
when he came to Waco. He was sick and I called on him.
The first thing he asked me was, „What do you think of me?
What do you think of my gospel?”
„I think,” I said, „you are a thousand miles from the gos_
pel. I would suggest that when you get back to that big
congregation you preach a gospel sermon for variety, just to
show what a different thing it is from what you are preach_
ing. You are preaching pretty good morality. Not only are
you not preaching the gospel, but you are creating a false

impression on the public mind, that heeding what you preach
they will be saved.”
He burst out laughing and said, „I like you. You come
to hear me when I get well and I will preach a gospel sermon.”
He did preach a really great gospel sermon on the blood of
Jesus Christ. But he stopped at that. In his next sermon
he was picking his teeth before the audience and said: „Look
here, the thing to do is to join the church and then get religion.
Join the church whether you have any more religion than a
horse.” Those were his exact words.
I turned to Dr. King, a Presbyterian, and said, „I think
we just as well leave.”
„Yes,” he said, „I think so.”
And I did not go back any more.
Paul felt just that way – that the salvation of men was a
matter too important to be trifled with, and there was only
one thing that could save men and that was the gospel of
Jesus Christ; that the church and ordinances were for the
saved, not for the unsaved; that the gospel of Christ is a dis_
tinct thing from the moral or ceremonial law of Moses; that
the preacher should preach the gospel of salvation, grace, and
freedom, and then go back to the weak and beggarly elements
of the types was to Paul a matter of amazement.
He tells us how he got his gospel: ‘Tor I make known to
you, brethren, as touching the gospel which was preached by
me, that it is not after man.” In other words, „I did not edu_
cate myself into this gospel and did not get my conception
of it from any man on earth, but by direct revelation Jesus
Christ made known to me what the gospel is.” Some men
now get their conceptions from reading Matthew, Mark, Luke,
and John. Paul did not; they were not then written. Some
men get their conceptions from hearing others who had heard
Christ. But the gospel facts were communicated directly to
Paul, and that is why I insist on saying, „Five gospels –

Matthew, Mark, Luke, John, and Paul” – and Paul’s gospel
is the most comprehensive of all. Note the beginning and the
end of each gospel: Mark commences with Christ’s public
ministry and stops at Christ’s resurrection. Matthew com_
mences at Abraham and stops with the resurrection. Luke
commences with Adam and stops with Paul in the city of
Rome. John commences in eternity before the world was and
stops with the revelation of paradise regained. Paul com_
mences where John does in eternity and goes beyond him to
the turning over of the kingdom to the Father. Paul shows
in Corinthians how he received his knowledge of the Lord’s
Supper and his gospel: „For I received of the Lord that which
also I delivered unto you, that the Lord Jesus in the night in
which he was betrayed took bread; and when he had given
thanks, he brake it, and said, This is my body, which is for
you: this do in remembrance of me. In like manner also
he took the cup, after supper, saying, This cup is the new
covenant in my blood; this do, as often as ye drink it, in
remembrance of me” (I Cor. 11:23_25). „I make known
unto you, brethren, the gospel which I preached unto you,
which also ye received, wherein also ye stand, by which also ye
are saved, if ye hold fast the word which I preached unto you,
except ye believed in vain. For I delivered unto you first of
all that which also I received: that Christ died for our sins
according to the scriptures; and that he was buried; and
that he hath been raised on the third day according to the
scriptures” (I Cor. 15:1_4). As bearing upon the history
of Paul, and as bearing upon the nature of the gospel that
he preached, the letter to the Galatians contains some his_
torical facts of incalculable importance that can be found
nowhere else.
He proceeds in the rest of chapter I to recite what had
been his attitude before his conversion; that he persecuted
the church; that he had advanced beyond others in the
Jewish religion, and was exceedingly zealous in the tradi_
tions of the fathers. In other words, these Galatians were
going back where Paul was before he was converted. He
adds that his being an apostle and in the ministry was not
an afterthought with God, as some people teach. He scouts
any such idea. He said, „God set me apart from my
mother’s womb.” He was born about the time Christ was
born. The mission of Paul was as clear to omniscience as
the mission of Christ. To him all great things root back in
eternity – in the divine purpose, in election, in predestina_
tion, in foreordination. He could not conceive of God as
being surprised by some new set of events that had acci_
dentally come to the front, necessitating a new adjustment
to fit these unexpected events. „And called me through
his grace, to reveal his Son in me, that I might preach him
among the Gentiles.” Notice the connection of the thought:
„I was set apart from my mother’s womb. When I got to
be a man he revealed his Son to me, that is, in my con_
version, and called me to preach to certain people.”
He combats one of their objections that his information
was secondhand: „Straightway I conferred not with flesh
and blood; neither went I up to Jerusalem to them that
were apostles before me; but I went away into Arabia; and
again I returned into Damascus.” There is a seeming con_
flict between Luke’s „Straightway he preached in Damas_
cus” (Acts 9:20), and Paul’s „Straightway” (Gal. 1:16).
He did commence to preach in Damascus, but he did not
confer with anyone, nor go up to Jerusalem to know if the
men there would approve of what had been done, but he
says, „I went away into Arabia,” that is, he went to Mount
Sinai, and there, on the scene of the giving of the law, which
these Jews are trying to persuade the Galatians is the way
of salvation, he received his gospel and studied out the
great problems of the meaning of the Sinaitic covenant and
its contrast with the new covenant which he discusses in
this letter in a way that we find nowhere else in the Bible.
The Galatian churches were going back to Mount Sinai to
be circumcised, to keep the whole law as a way of life, to
put themselves in bondage to a yoke that their fathers were
not able to bear – going back to a covenant that gendered
bondage and ended in death. He is compelled to say, „I
went away into Arabia.” In other words, „God sent me
there before he sent me to preach, that I should under_
stand the difference between the law and the gospel; that I
should, on the scene of the giving of the law, comprehend
the purposes of that law.”

1. What books constitute the first group of Paul’s letters, and what
books the second?
2. What three books on Galatians commended?
3. What the date of his letter?
4. Where written?
5. What relation does this letter bear to the letter to the Romana?
Give examples of such relation.
6. What wag the occasion of this letter?
7. Where was Galatia, what do we know from Acts about its people,
and what churches were in Galatia?
8. What is Dr. Ramsay’s contention, and what your reply?
9. Who were the Galatians, and what their characteristics?
10. Give an account of their migration into Asia Minor.
11. What was the occasion of Paul’s preaching to them, and what
the results?
12. Locate in Acts the account of two visits that Paul made to
13. What of the genuineness of the book?
14. Give a brief outline of the book.
15. What charge against him may be inferred from hia introduction,
and how does he reply to it?
16. How did Paul regard his gospel?
17. What is the doctrinal importance of this letter, and what the
author’s illustration?

18. What is the fifth gospel, and how does it compare with the other
four as to their beginning and end?
19. What was Paul’s attitude before his conversion, and what great
doctrine does he make the basis of his conversion and call into the
20. How does Paul answer their charge that his gospel was second_
21. Where in Acts may we insert the history in Galatians 1:16_17?
22. Why did Paul go into Arabia before he commenced to preach,
how long there, and what the bearing of these facts on Christianity?
(See author’s sermon on, „But I Went into Arabia.”)

Galatians 1:18 to 2:21.

This discussion commences at Galatians 1:18 and extends
through chapter 2, completing _the historical part of the let_
ter. It is evident that there is a relation between Paul’s visit
to Jerusalem, the headquarters of the apostles, and his inde_
pendent authority as an apostle and his special gospel. There
is a special value of this letter to the Galatians in that it
gives definite information concerning matters more briefly and
more generally given in Acts, which certainly saves us from
erroneous inferences that would necessarily be deduced from
the account in Acts alone. This is most evident in the history
of Paul’s visits to Jerusalem after his conversion, and the
intervals between the visits. Five of these visits are recorded
in Acts, as follows: First visit – Acts 9:26_.30; 22:17_21;
second visit – Acts 11:27_30; 12:25; third visit – Acts 15:1_30;
fourth visit – Acts 18:22 (this one we would not know if we
did not look closely at the Greek) ; fifth visit – Acts 21:15 to
These are the five visits, so far as Acts records them, of
Paul to Jerusalem after his conversion. I raise two additional
questions: (1) What visits had he made to Jerusalem before
his conversion? And (2) did he ever visit Jerusalem after
the history in Acts closes? The answer to which is that while
he lived at Tarsus he received his theological education at
Jerusalem; that was doubtless his first visit, at least it is the
first of which we have any account. But as he did not know
Christ personally, he evidently was not in Jerusalem during
the lifetime of Christ; therefore he must have gone back to
Tarsus. But we do find him again in Jerusalem a rabbi of
the Cilician synagogue, an opponent of Stephen, and a mem_
ber of the Sanhedrin, and the object of his second visit was
to become a member of the Sanhedrin, but that is all before
his conversion.
After the history in the book of Acts closes we have no
means of knowing that Paul ever visited Jerusalem. Indeed,
we have only scraps of information concerning what he did
after the first imprisonment at Rome. We gather some in_
formation from the letters to Timothy and Titus. Whether
that included another visit to Jerusalem we do not know.
What is the relation of his visit to Jerusalem to his special
and independent gospel and his independent apostolic au_
thority? The Roman Catholics teach that Peter was the first
pope, and that all authority was derived from Peter; there_
fore if their position be correct, Paul must have derived his
authority from Peter. This letter to the Galatians grinds to
fine powder the whole Roman Catholic theory of the pope,
and hence it was one of the books of the New Testament
that was so tremendously read in the Reformation.
Of the first and third of these visits to Jerusalem, recorded
by Luke in Acts, we find parallel accounts in this letter to
the Galatians. There was no occasion in this letter to refer
to the second visit to Jerusalem, for at that time he simply
went up to carry some alms to Jerusalem, and had no oppor_
tunity to have any conversation with the apostles. The per_
secution was raging; James was killed and Peter was in prison,
and as soon as Peter got out he left; so, that visit to Jerusa_
lem is not germane to our discussion, but the third visit is.
The fourth and fifth visits to Jerusalem cannot touch this
letter because they took place after this letter was written;
so that the thing that we are to study ‘in this chapter is the
bearing of these two visits upon Paul’s independent, apostolic
authority and his independent gospel, viz.: The first visit,
as recorded in Acts 9 and the parallel account in Galatians
1, and the third visit, as recorded in Acts 15 and paralleled

by Galatians 2.
We may best get at the additional and more definite infor_
mation in this letter by comparing the two accounts thus:
First, by reading Acts 9:17_19, then Galatians 1:15_17, then
Acts 9:20_25, then Galatians 1:18 (except last clause), then
Acts 9:26_27, then Galatians 1:18 (last clause) to 20, then
Acts 9:28_29 (except last clause), then Acts 22:17_21, then
Acts 9:29 (last clause) to 31, and then Galatians 1:21_24.
(For an arrangement of these passages in parallel columns
see „An Interpretation of the English Bible,” Acts, chap. 18.)
The following are the new and more definite particulars
that we gather from inserting the Galatian passage that way:
First, we learn from Galatians the time interval, three years,
between his conversion and his first visit to Jerusalem. That
three years after he was converted had passed before he ever
saw Jerusalem or any of the twelve apostles. Second, we
learn what he did in this interval of three years and what he
did not: (1) That his call to the apostleship was not only
directly from the Lord himself, but his acceptance of it and
obedience to it was instant, without conferring with flesh and
blood. His call was not at Jerusalem but at Damascus, not
through Peter, but through Christ directly; Christ did not
tell him to go to Peter, but the Holy Spirit selected the special
man, Ananias, and sent him to him. (2) That, as his call to
the apostleship was not dependent on the ratification of the
twelve, he was set apart from his mother’s womb. (3) That
his apostolic call had its emphasis in a different direction
from the emphasis of the call of the twelve apostles, their
mission being to preach to the Jews primarily, and his being
to preach primarily to the Gentiles. (4) That instead of hav_
ing been instructed in the gospel by the original twelve, he
went, not to Jerusalem, but to Arabia to receive his gospel
from the Lord himself by direct revelation. (5) That instead
of waiting to act on his call to preach until the twelve re_
fused it or authorized it, he commenced his preaching at
Damascus and not at Jerusalem. (6) That he had been exer_
cising his apostolic call and receiving revelations and preach_
ing for three years before he was ever seen by any of the
original twelve. (7) That when he did go to Jerusalem he
saw only one of the apostles – Peter – but he saw James,
the brother of our Lord, who was not an apostle. So we
must infer that at the time of his visit the other eleven apostles
were out on the field. He saw but one, and he was there
only fifteen days, and while there that fifteen days Jesus, in a
vision in the Temple, peremptorily ordered him to leave them,
to go to the Gentile work. See how these points are brought
out and urged by the Judaizing Christians, inasmuch as he
was not one of the twelve, and not commissioned by the
twelve, therefore he was not a true apostle. He is explaining
all this in his defense. (8) That for nine years after leaving
Jerusalem, while he was preaching and establishing churches
in Syria and Cilicia, they did not see his face. It was during
this Cilician period that he received the revelation recorded
in 2 Corinthians 12. So that not a shred of his authority as an
apostle, not a word of his gospel, is derived from the original
twelve or from any other man. Galatians says nothing about
the fact, but I will interpolate, that from Antioch he and
Barnabas went to the heathen on their first missionary tour,
not under Jerusalem direction, but under specific and direct
authority of the Holy Spirit.
The object of Paul’s second visit to Jerusalem, after he had
finished his Cilician tour, was simply to carry alms to the
poor saints in Jerusalem, because of a revelation of a famine
through a prophet. There could have been no conversation
with the apostles from the fact that the persecution by Herod
was raging, in which James was killed, and when Peter got
out of prison he immediately left. There is another matter
stated in Acts, though Galatians does not refer to it. We
lind in Acts 13_14 that when he did go out &e a foreign mis_
sionary he did not go under any authority conferred by the
twelve apostles, but that he and Barnabas were sent out par_
ticularly by the Holy Spirit, and that this first missionary tour
that we find recorded was under special, direct orders from
God and not from man.
In order to get at the account of his third visit to Jerusalem
we have to carefully read nearly all of Acts 15 and every bit
of Galatians 2. The object of this visit was (1) to find out
how these Judaizing Christians were supported, (2) to carry
out this divine injunction. (He says in the letter to the Gala_
tians that when he made those three visits to Jerusalem he
did not go because he was summoned, but by special revela_
tion, showing that he was still under divine guidance.) (3)
To show that the initiative was not taken by the Jerusalem
church, but by the church at Antioch. Certain Judaizing
Christians had a gospel similar to that of those who had
come to Antioch and taught that they could not be saved
without becoming Jews – that they would have to be circum_
cised or faith would not save them at all. Paul and Barna_
bas squarely met them, but inasmuch as the disturbance had
come on the ground of comity, they carried the question to
the church where it originated. Just as one would do if he
were the pastor of the Broadway Church in Fort Worth, and
some of the people of Dallas were to come and raise a row
in the church – a row that involved his ministerial authority –
then he ought to refer this to those Dallas people, saying,
„Do you send these men here, or do they come by your au_
thority?” So we see that in that third visit to Jerusalem he
went with a definite object in view, not in order that he might
be made an apostle, but in order to settle a great question of
salvation, and that very question was being agitated in the
Galatian church then, that is, the necessity of being a Jew in
order to be saved.
Galatians says that Paul went to that meeting to take a
test case, and the test case was Titus. Titus was converted,

had been baptized and received into the church, and he de_
termined to take Titus up there and say, „Now do you demand
that Titus shall be circumcised in order to be saved?” Then
he went up as he said, by revelation, to have the matter set_
tled forever as to whether he was an apostle to the Gentiles
or not. So we learn in Galatians that when he got there and
sprung that question upon Titus, though Titus was not circum_
cised, they lost the case. Then we learn from Galatians that
before the church met in conference Paul had met the elders
and the pastor of the church, James, and sprung this question
on them, „Do you acknowledge that this authority that I have
to go to the heathen is from God, just as your authority to
go to the circumcision is from God?” And he said that they
conceded and gave him the right hand of fellowship, he and
Barnabas only. This is a very important matter that we
learn from chapter 2, but that isn’t all that we learn. He
says that from them he received nothing; that they conceded
that he was not behind them in anything; that the pillars
of the church at Jerusalem – the apostles and the pastor –
acknowledged that they conferred nothing on him, and that
he was their equal. He did not get his gospel from them, but
this is not the cream of the case. He adds something that
we do not find anywhere else. The Holy Spirit and the apos_
tles and the church at Jerusalem united in the decision, em_
bodied it in writing upon all of these points, and sent it to
the churches where these questions were likely to come up.
We come now to a most startling fact. After this happened
Peter made a visit to Antioch, and when he first got there
he did as he did in the case of Cornelius – took a meal with
the Gentiles. Here come some people from Jerusalem, and
while they admit that a man did not have to become a Jew
to be a Christian, yet they contend that they must not violate
the old law about eating with the Gentiles. We learn from
Galatians that it shook Peter, and we have already learned
that Peter was easily shaken, and that it shook Barnabas
also. In this new question we learn that Paul alone stood up
and contended to Peter’s face and rebuked him. What a
position for a pope! He told him that he was tearing down
what he had already established; that what God at Joppa
had shown him that he had cleansed, man should not call
unclean. But Peter was dissimulating and holding back be_
cause certain of these Judaizing teachers from Jerusalem
came up there and ‘insisted that this business must stop.
What would have been the effect if Paul had not taken
the stand he did? Christianity would have been a mere sect;
it would have lost its individuality; its wings would have
been clipped; it could neither fly nor soar; ‘it could only
crawl, and it would have perished at Jerusalem but for that
fight that Paul made. What would we think if the „upper
tens” of our church would say, „I am willing to welcome these
poor people to the church, but don’t expect me to go to see
them. We can’t do that”? I have always contended that but
for Paul’s going away into Arabia and receiving his gospel
direct from the Lord Jesus Christ, instead of having it handed
down to him by somebody else, and the stand that he took
when this great controversy threatened to rend Christianity
of that day in its struggling childhood, we Gentiles would
have had no gospel, and what the Jews would have had
would not have been worth anything. It was a question of
life and death. The very essence of the gospel was involved.
It was as if they proposed to take the keystone out of the
arch, or the foundation from under the building.
There are some incidental questions on chapters 1_2 that we
had better look at a little. Paul said that when he went to
Jerusalem that first time, he saw James, our Lord’s brother.
Here come up some theories. The extreme theory held by
the Catholic Church, the middle theory held by the Church of
England, and the other theory held by Baptist, viz.: What
is meant by calling these the Lord’s brothers and sisters? The
Catholics say that they were only his cousins; that Mary
never bore but one child; that she was born a virgin, so she
remained a virgin, and they claim that her body was taken
up to heaven as was the body of Elijah – „the Assumption of
the Virgin” – and that she was immaculately conceived, as
Christ was conceived. That is what they call the doctrine
of „the Immaculate Conception.” The second theory is that
they were children of Joseph by a former marriage. But
there is not a hint of such a marriage in the Bible. The third
theory is that they were children of Joseph and Mary, the
mother of our Lord. People, who, for sentimental reasons,
believe that Mary had not a lot of children after Christ, who
believe that they were not Mary’s children, evolve that thing
out of their own consciousness. The fact is that James and
Jude who wrote books of the New Testament, and some sis_
ters were actually half brothers and sisters of our Lord, and
the children of Joseph and Mary. They were half brothers of
Jesus because they had the same mother, but their father was
not his; God was his father.
Another thing Paul says is that those churches in Judea from
whom it was alleged that he derived his authority and his
gospel, did not even know his name, but they held him in
respect and glorified God in him. I took that as my text
when I was appointed to preach the annual sermon before
the American Baptist Publication Society in Chicago – „They
Glorified God in Paul” – showing that the workman is known
by his works. They said there was a mighty revolution in
this Saul of Tarsus; that somebody did it, and glory to the
one that did ‘it. Somebody made him the mightiest power
as an evangelical force that earth has ever known. Who did
it? God. So they glorified God in Paul, and brethren will
glorify God in us as our lives are pure and as our work is
faithful, but if we live in sin as any other sinner, and if we
preach something that God did not give us to preach, if con_
viction and conversion do not follow our ministry, if our
preaching does not stir up others, then I am sure that people
will never attempt to glorify God in us. They will find noth_
ing to glorify.
1. What the special historical value of this letter to the Galatians?
2. In what particular is this most evident?
3. How many and what visits of Paul to Jerusalem recorded in
Acts, and what the scripture for each?
4. What visits had he made to Jerusalem before his conversion,
and what the proof?
6. Did Paul ever visit Jerusalem after history in book of Acts closes?
6. What is the relation of his visits to Jerusalem to his special and
independent gospel and his independent apostolic authority?
7. To which of these visits recorded in Acts do we find parallel
accounts in Galatians, and why are not the other visits to Jerusalem
referred to in Galatians?
8. Where in Acts are the sections corresponding to the two visits
to Jerusalem recorded in Galatians?
9. How may we best get at the additional and more definite in_
formation in this letter?
10. What are these new and more definite particulars that we gather
from inserting the Galatian passages in the Acts passages?
11. What was the object of Paul’s second visit to Jerusalem, and
what opportunity did this visit afford for conversation with the twelve apostles, and why?
12. What matter stated in Acts brought in here by the author?
13. What the object of Paul’s third visit to Jerusalem, what the
case at Antioch, and what two important matters were settled authoritatively on this visit?
14. What social questions sprang up at Antioch soon after this, what
its history, how settled, and what if Paul had not taken the stand that he did?
15. What the bearing of Paul’s independent gospel and apostleship,
together with Galatians 1:12 to 2:14 on the alleged primacy and su_
premacy of Peter?
16. What the three theories of our Lord’s relation to James, and which
is the true one?
17. What did Paul here say of the churches in Judea, and how may
the people glorify God in the preacher?

Galatians 3:1_14.

We commence this chapter with a great question, not how
shall a man as originally created in righteousness, knowledge,
and true holiness be justified before God, but how shall a
fallen, depraved, sinful, and condemned man be made just
before God? This is the great question that Paul discusses.
While this question is treated fragmentarily in many passages
of both the Old and New Testaments, it is discussed elaborate_
ly and logically in only two books – Galatians and Romans –
the latter speedily following the former. So far as Galatians
is concerned, the argument is confined to chapters 3_5, and
as the argument is continuous without a break, it is a pity
to have it broken up into chapter divisions. These discussions
will disregard the chapter divisions and follow the one line of
thought straight through, classifying and numbering the sev_
eral points as they are logically developed in the progress of
the argument.
So far in this book, i.e., in chapters 1_2, we have considered
the author of the letter in his apostolic call and qualifications,
and his independent gospel received by direct revelation. But
now we turn to his discussion of the great question as stated
above. The intent of the argument is to convict the Gala_
tians of their folly and sin in leaving the gospel they had
received and relapsing into Judaism, if Jews, or turning to
Judaism for salvation, if Gentiles. However, in making his
argument, Paul employs many striking antitheses, or contrasts.
A mere glance through the three chapters enables one to note
the more important of these striking antitheses, and as the
power of the argument lies most in his way of putting these

contrasts, we should carefully consider each one as it comes
up in the progress of the discussion proper or the exhortation
based thereon. These antitheses are as follows:
1. The works of the law versus the hearing of faith.
2. The Spirit, or its fruit, versus the flesh, or its fruits. In
chapter 5, putting things in contrast, he says, „The works
of the flesh are manifest, . . . But the fruit of the Spirit is
love.” He tells what they are, Just as if he had put two
trees before us. A tree is to be known by its fruits. One
tree bears blasphemy, lust, hatred, malice, and strife. This
is the tree of the flesh, and is a bad tree because its fruits are
bad. The other tree bears joy, love, peace, etc. I say his
favorite method in this letter is to argue by antitheses, put_
ting one thing over against another. To form an antithesis
is to take two theses and show how they are diametrically
opposite. „Antithesis” is one thesis against another thesis.
The first one, as we have said, ‘is the works of the law versus
the hearing of faith. The second is the Spirit, or its fruit,
versus the flesh, or its fruit. The third is the curse of the
law versus the redemption of Christ. The fourth is the law
versus the promises. Salvation does not come by law; it comes
from the Spirit. The fifth is the covenant with Abraham
versus the law covenant with Moses. If in any place in the
world these covenants are held up in contrast, we find it in
this letter. He says the covenant with Abraham was 430
years before the law, and that it was a covenant that God
made and ratified. It could not be disannulled by the covenant
made for another purpose 430 years later. Sixth, this antithe_
sis, which appears more evident in the Greek, is – The child
(pais) led by a slave, and under tutors versus the son (huios)
come to freedom and inheritance. Or to put it in another
form, the bondage of tutelage versus the freedom of the adop_
tion of sons after one comes into his inheritance. Seventh,
Mount Sinai versus Jerusalem, the allegory of the slave woman
who is a mere concubine, and bears children unto bondage.
The slave woman bearing children unto bondage versus the
free woman or lawful wife bearing children unto freedom, is
this antithesis. Eighth, born after the flesh versus born after
the Spirit. Paul says that he that was born after the flesh
was Ishmael; that Isaac was the one that was born super_
naturally, or according to promise. Ninth, the circumcision
of the flesh versus regeneration, or circumcision of the heart.
(For the expansion of this thought see Romans 2:28_29.)
Tenth, the Jew, or one nation circumcising males only, versus
the fact that in Christ there is neither Jew nor Gentile, neither
bond nor free, neither male nor female; all are baptized unto
Christ. The woman is initiated, we may say, through bap_
tism as well as the man, but the woman was counted but
little under the Mosaic covenant, as there only the male chil_
dren received the sign of the covenant. So we see that the
force of this argument lies in the way of putting these con_
trasts. We do well to study these antitheses.
Since this section deals with such a great subject and is
so greatly discussed, we will take it verse by verse. The first
point that he makes is that it was not only folly in them be_
fore whose eyes Jesus Christ was openly set forth crucified,
i.e., for a man that had believed in the crucified Christ in
order to salvation, to turn away from salvation by faith to
the works of the law, but it was folly superinduced by some
evil superhuman means: „Oh, foolish Galatians [there is the
folly], who hath bewitched you?” That is, „you are not act_
ing honestly; you could not be guilty of such folly as this
if there was not exercising on you some evil influence that
impelled you to go wrong.” The thought would have been
the same if he had said, „0, foolish Galatians, who did be_
witch you, to turn you away from Christ to the Mosaic law?”
It was the hallucination of the devil, no matter who the hu_
man instrument was. There was a Jew from Jerusalem that
did it.
His next argument is that the Spirit that they received
when they were converted came by the hearing of faith, and
not by the works of the law. See how he says it: „His only
would I learn from you: received ye the Spirit by the works
of the law, or by the hearing of faith?” This is an appeal to
their past experience, as if to say, „Let us go back to the
time you were converted, and you received the Spirit, the wit_
ness of the Spirit, or the Spirit shining into your hearts to lead
you to the knowledge of Jesus Christ. This is the greatest
thing. The question is, Did that come to you by conformity
to the Mosaic law, or did you hear the preaching of Christ
crucified and believe? Did it come by faith?” This is a
pretty searching question, going back to their conversion.
Notice the next point, „Are you so foolish? Having begun.
in the Spirit, are ye now perfected in the flesh?” In other
words, „How did your religious life start? It started in the
Spirit. Now do you want to perfect what was started in the
Spirit by going back to the flesh?” Just as the hearing of
faith stands opposite to the law, so the work of the Spirit
stands opposite to the works of the flesh. If we start in one
principle, perfection comes by following up that principle. The
teaching is that he who hath begun a good work in us, will
perfect it unto the day of Jesus Christ. The next point is,
„Did ye suffer so many things in vain, if it be indeed in vain?”
In other words, „It is for the consideration of righteousness
through faith that ye were persecuted, and because you, by
the hearing of faith, received Jesus as your Saviour, and the
Spirit as your guide, you had to suffer a great many things.
If you turn to another system, then the value of that suffer_
ing is all passed away.” Here is a nice little question of in_
terpretation, „Did ye suffer so many things in vain? If it be
indeed in vain.” What does it mean by saying, „If it be
indeed in vain”? There are two interpretations, one of which
assumes that they started right which he had hope to believe;
then the suffering that characterized that start would not be
in vain; though they might temporarily be turned aside, they
would come back. But there is another interpretation which
is probably the right one, viz.: this suffering that they re_
ceived would not be in vain from a Christian standpoint.
If they were not Christians it would have meant something
worse than in vain, i.e., even if indeed it was just in vain it
would bring to them a disaster greater than the sufferings that
they first experienced. I never saw a book in my life where
more care should be taken in the interpretation of the words.
In verse 5 he thus presents another view of the point about
their receiving the Spirit by the hearing of faith: „He there_
fore that supplieth to you the Spirit, and worketh miracles
among you, doeth he it by the works of the law or by the
hearing of faith?” In other words, „It is God that ministered
the Spirit to you, and it is God that worked the miracles among
you.” Having looked at that subjectively) let us look at it
again. „You received the Spirit certainly by the hearing of
faith. When he ministered it, did he minister it on the condi_
tion that you would keep the law of Moses, or was it on the
condition of faith?” Christ said in one place that he could
not do many mighty works because they lacked faith in the
miracle_working power. So that God who ministered to them
spoke on the condition of faith, and they received the Spirit
by the hearing of faith. God ministered the Spirit to them
on the condition that they believe in the miracle_working
power for such a purpose.
We come now to a new point that extends down to the end
of verse 17. In verses 6_7 he presents a new argument – the
parallel between Abraham’s faith and the Christian faith.
Abraham believed on God and it was imputed unto him for
righteousness. Genesis 15 shows when Abraham was con_
verted. It is the first place in which the Incarnate Word pre_
sented himself to Abraham in a vision, and it is said he
believed in Jehovah and he reckoned, or imputed it to him
for righteousness. This is the first time we find the phrase
„imputed righteousness.” He imputed Christ’s righteousness
to him through faith. Abraham believed in Jehovah; Jehovah
imputed or reckoned it unto him for righteousness. Now
Paul’s argument is this: Who is the father of the whole
Jewish people? Abraham. How did Abraham become just
before God? How was he justified? He was reckoned right_
eous. Righteousness was imputed to him; he was not right_
eous through his works, but he became just before God through
faith in another. What conclusion does he draw from that?
„Know therefore that they that are of faith, the same are
sons of Abraham.” These Jews whom these Judaizing teachers
attempted to turn to the law as a means of salvation are the
children of Abraham by faith. They are not his children
according to the flesh, but the true children of Abraham are
those who have faith in God. Abraham had faith; those are
his children who have faith. As he says, „Know therefore
that they that are of faith, the same are sons of Abraham,”
just as he argues that he is not a Jew who is one outwardly,
but who is one inwardly.
We now come to one of the strongest testimonies to the
inspiration of the Bible. „The scripture, foreseeing” – there
the scripture is personified, as having the prophetic gift. The
scripture foresaw that God would justify the Gentiles by faith
and preached the gospel beforehand unto Abraham. The
scripture saw that in the ages to come the whole world would
become the children of Abraham and preached the gospel to
him. In what expression did it preach it? Where it says, „In
thee shall all the nations be blessed.” The blessings could not
come to all the nations as children of Abraham by lineal
descent, so they are to be children by faith in Jesus Christ.
We understand that when Abraham came out of Ur of the
Chaldees God said to Abraham, „In thee shall all the
nations of the earth be blessed.” If that interpretation of
the scriptures is right, then this follows, presented in the next
verse: „So then they that are of faith are blessed with the
faithful Abraham.” „In thee shall all the nations of the earth
be blessed.” What was the blessing? Justification. They are
to be justified before God. That is what the scripture fore*
saw and therefore anyone may receive the blessing of justifi_
cation and become the child of Abraham.
In verse 10 he brings up a new witness for his argument – .
the testimony of the law itself: „You want to go back and
seek salvation from the law) but what does the law say? AB
many as are under the law are under the curse, for it is writ_
ten [written in the law] cursed is every one who continueth
not in all things that are written in the book of the law to
do them.” If they should go back to the law system of sal_
vation he tells them to listen to what the law says: „If you
ever make a break, if you turn to the right hand or to the
left hand, if you violate the law in any single instance, you
are cursed.”
In verse 11 he makes still another argument and we must
distinguish between these arguments: „Now that no man is
justified by the law before God, is evident; for, the righteous
shall live by faith.” This is from Habakkuk 2:4. That is the
testimony of the prophet. The prophet comes in now to sup_
port his general line of argument. The law says, „You shall
continue to live by continually living in perfect obedience.”
Habakkuk 2:4 says, „The just man [the man who hath justifi_
cation] continues to live by faith.” He starts by faith and
keeps on by faith. This brings us to a general question. This
passage in Habakkuk is quoted three times by Paul – in the
passage here, in Romans 1:17, and also in Hebrews 10:38.
In how many senses did Paul use that passage, „The just
shall live by faith”? For instance, it means in one place that .
the just by faith shall live, in another place that the justified
shall continue to live by faith, and then when we examine
that brief passage in Hebrews we see how the inspired apostle
keeps getting meanings out of a passage of Scripture. It is
like drawing many buckets out of a well, and still the well is
not exhausted. He goes on to say that this prophet distinctly
gays that the just shall live by faith. Then he says, „But you
know what the law says.” We have to put what the law says
over against the „by faith.” We know that the law is not
by faith, but it is by perfect obedience – „He that doeth these
things.” Moses described the righteousness of the law, saying
that they that do these things shall live by them, and then
he says, „But the righteousness which ‘is of faith speaketh on
this wise.” Thus he presents it in contrast.
Verse 13 says: „You seek to go back to the law, but when
you go back you are under the curse, for Christ redeemed
us from under the curse of the law. When you turn from
Christ to Judaism you turn from redemption to the curse it_
self.” Redemption means to buy back, and that is why Christ
died for us. He redeemed us from the curse of the law. Now,
he says, „having become a curse for us,” that is, he became
the vicarious expiation (vicarious means in place of another) ;
Christ became a curse for us, as it is written, „Cursed is every
man that hangeth on a tree.” What was the object of Christ’s
redeeming us from the curse of the law? He says in verse 14
that upon the Gentiles might come the blessings of Christ that
we might receive the promise of grace through faith.
I commend „The Bible Commentary” and Lightfoot’s com_
mentary, which as a rule are safe commentaries. „The Bible
Commentary” is safer than the „Cambridge Bible,” and ten
thousand times safer than the „Expositor’s Bible.” I also
recommend Luther’s Commentary on Galatians.

1. Where may we find an elaborate discussion of how a fallen,
depraved, sinful, and condemned man can be made just before God?
2. What is the intent of the argument thus made in Galatians?
3. How is this argument set forth?
4. Give the ten antitheses of this argument.

5. What folly does Paul charge the Galatians with committing.
Who was responsible for it primarily, and who secondarily?
6. What the argument based upon their experience?
7. What is the principle of attaining perfection, and the argument
based thereon?
8. Give the argument based on their past sufferings, and interpret
the expression, “If it be indeed in vain.”
9. Give the argument based on their reception of the miraculous
gift of the Spirit.
10. What the argument based on the parallel between Abraham’s
faith and the Christian’s faith?
11. What the testimony of the law itself on this point?
12. What the Prophet’s testimony on this point?
13. Give Paul’s three applications of Habakkuk 2_4.
14. What the argument based upon the fact that Christ redeemed
us from the curse of the law, and what the object of our redemption?
15. What books commended?

Galatians 3:15_22.

This discussion commences at Galatians 3:15, thus: „Breth_
ren, I speak after the manner of men: though it be but a
man’s covenant, yet when it hath been confirmed, no one
maketh it void, or addeth thereto.”
There. is no reference to that in either the Sinaitic covenant
or the grace covenant. Man’s law concerning a covenant be_
tween men requires that the agreement be kept according to
its terms, whether verbal or written. Nothing not expressed
can be added or substituted. A mental reservation on the
part of either of the makers of the covenant, nor any after_
thought on the part of either can be considered in human law.
So long as the covenant is tentative, i.e., under consideration,
terms of agreement may be modified, but when it is consum_
mated and ratified it must stand on the terms expressed. This
applies not only to all trades between individuals but to all
treaties between nations. Even in human judgment Paul
means to say that the character of man or nation stands
impeached when a ratified covenant is broken. Disgrace at_
taches to the covenant breaker. See in Paul’s terrible arraign_
ment of the heathen the odious place and company of
„covenant breakers” (Rom. 1:29). Here he is showing the im_
morality of the heathen life in that they have refused to have
God in their knowledge. God gave them up, „Being filled
with all unrighteousness) wickedness, covetousness, malicious_
ness ; full of envy, murder, strife, deceit, malignity; whisperers,
backbiters, hateful to God, haughty, boastful, inventors of
evil things, disobedient to parents, without understanding,
covenant breakers.” If we notice the place that covenant
breakers occupy in that, and also notice the company in which
they are placed, we get a conception of how even human
law judges a man that breaks a covenant. The brand of
infamy burned on the covenant breaker derives its odium,
not merely from the fact that all social order depends upon
the keeping of faith according to compact, but from the fact
that ratification involves an appeal to God as witness to the
compact made in his name and under oath expressed or im_
plied. See Hebrews 6:16, and compare the covenant between
Abraham and Abimelech (Gen. 21:22_32). There is a cove_
nant between two men. After clearly staling the terms of
the covenant, sacrifices are offered, and the oath to God is
taken that they will keep that covenant. Then turning to
Genesis 31:44_53, we read the covenant between Jacob and
Laban, his father_in_law. There again is an oath and a me_
morial called Mizpah: „God shall witness between thee and
me as to how we keep this covenant.” The brand of infamy
burned on the covenant breaker derives its significance from
the customs among nations of regarding a compact of that
kind as being made under witness of God and under oath to
God. It is in this light that we understand the famous scrip_
ture describing the citizen of Zion, in Psalm 15: „Lord who
shall ascend unto thy holy hill? He that hath clean hands
and a pure heart and that sweareth to his own hurt and that
changeth not,” that is, a man makes a trade with his fellow
man and afterward finds put that the trade is very disad_
vantageous to him; he must not take it back; he swore to his
own hurt but he didn’t change; he stood up to his word, that
is, having made the compact he sticks to it, no matter how
disadvantageous to him, and in this light we understand the
reproach cast upon the Carthaginians by the Romans in the
proverb, „Punic faith,” because, as they alleged, the Cartha_
ginians violated solemn treaties ratified by oath and sacrificed
to the gods. I am explaining in giving this illustration what

Paul means by saying, „I speak after the manner of men.”
Luther, in his comment on this verse, is mistaken in limiting
the meaning of the diatheke (covenant) to man’s last will
and testament. In only two verses in the New Testament
is diatheke to be rendered a ”last will and testament,” viz.:
Hebrews 9:16_17, where the author finds a resemblance on
one point between a covenant’ which becomes binding when
ratified by the blood of the sacrifice and a will which becomes
binding on the death of the testator.
But Paul’s argument here is from the lesser to the greater.
If man’s law will not permit the annulment of a covenant
ratified between men by any subsequent emergency or after
thought, how much more God’s promise to Abraham (Gen.
12:1_13) concerning all nations could not be annulled by the
Sinaitic law covenant with one nation.
The force of the argument is overwhelming as Paul de_
velops it:
1. The Sinaitic covenant was 43o years after the solemn
promise of God concerning all nations.
2. The „seed” of the promise in Abraham’s case is one;
he says, „of seed” not seeds; not many as in the law covenant;
there the seed of Abraham with which that covenant was
made is plural, about 3,000,000 of them standing there. A
covenant of one kind made with the multitude cannot annul
a promise which is given to one person.
3. The promise carried a blessing through the one seed,
Christ, to all nations, whereas the law covenant, while it was
with the fleshly seed of Abraham – lineal descendants (plural),
a great multitude – concerned one nation only.
4. The first was by promise and not by law; hence a vast.
difference in the terms or conditions of inheritance. An in_
heritance by .promise cannot be an inheritance by law, and
vice versa. It will be noticed that this section says in the next
place that this promise to Abraham was confirmed before of
God. When was it confirmed and how was it confirmed? It
was confirmed when Abraham offered up Isaac as set forth
in Genesis 22. It was given before, but it was confirmed then
and it was confirmed by an oath. Men confirm what they
say by an oath. Witnesses go into court concerning a pend_
ing murder trial, and every man and woman of them has to
swear to the evidence given. Men confirm their testimony
by an oath. In the letter to the Hebrews the author says
„For when God made promise to Abraham, since he could
swear by none greater, he sware by himself, saying, Surely
blessing I will bless thee, and multiplying I will multiply
thee. And thus, having patiently endured, he obtained the
promise. For men swear by the greater; and in every dispute
of theirs the oath is final for confirmation. Wherein God,
being minded to show more abundantly unto the heirs of .the
promise the immutability of his counsel, interposed with an
oath; that by two immutable things, in which it is impossible
for God to lie, we may have a strong encouragement, who
have fled for refuge to lay hold of the hope set before us:
which we have as an anchor of the soul, a hope both sure and
steadfast and entering into that which is within the veil;
whither as a forerunner Jesus entered for us, having become
a high priest forever after the order of Melchizedek.” Or, as
Paul expressed it in Romans 4: „For this cause it is of faith,
that it may be according to grace; to the end that the promise
may be sure to all the seed; not to that only which is of the
law, but to that also which is of the faith of Abraham, who is
the father of us all.” Mark the reason that the promise might
be sure to all seed. The law covenant could not make things
sure, it could not in its time, for it had to be repeated every
day, every week, every month, every year and so over and over
again. It could not be made sure, because if they kept the
law one day, or one year, or one hundred years and then
violated it in one particular the next year, they were out; it
could not be sure. But the inheritance by promise is abso_
lutely sure, because it is based on a promise.
Now, I will give an explanation of the last clause of verse
17 of this chapter and of verses 18_20, of which no commen_
tary known to me has ever given a satisfactory explanation.
I might cite many different explanations. In verse 17 Paul
distinguishes between the grace covenant confirmed of God
and announced to Abraham and the promise of that covenant
given to Abraham, and argues’ that the law covenant given
430 years later for quite another purpose and to different per_
sons could not disannul that promise. In the verses following,
up to verse 20, he is not contrasting the grace covenant with
the law covenant but the promise of the grace covenant with
the law covenant. Just here come the words hard to be under_
stood: „Now a mediator is not a mediator of one; but God is
one.” How are these words to be construed relevantly with
the argument? I am able to see but one way. The law was
given through a mediator because there were two distinct
parties between whom Moses should be the „go_between” or
mediator. But in the case of the promise there was only
.one party. God. who of grace freely promises. Hence, there
is no need of a mediator in the case of a promise. „God is
one,” not two. God promises of himself. In the law covenant
there were two, God and the people. His point is just this,
that the law covenant had two parties to it, and these parties
being at variance, a mediator, Moses, was employed to bring
them into agreement. In Order to have the mediator there
must be two parties, but in a promise, there is only one and
that is God, no mediator, but a promise. An inheritance by
promise cannot be inheritance by law, and vice versa.
5.The nature of the inheritance was different. The object
of the promise was to secure spiritual blessings and a heavenly
country; the object of the law was to secure earthly blessings
and an earthly Canaan.
6. In a naked promise of pure grace there is no mediator
because there ‘is only one, not two, and he, of pure grace in
himself, not from obligation of a compact with nations,
promises a blessing to all nations, but as there were two
in the law covenant there was a necessity for the mediator,
Moses, the „go_between” of the two parties. It is impossible
to interpret intelligently the last clause of verse 17 and verses
18_20, if we ignore the fact that Paul in these particular
passages is contrasting, not covenant with covenant, but prom-
ise with covenant. He does indeed in this last clause of verse
17 and throughout verses 18_20, contrast promise with cove-
nant in order to show how inheritance comes. There is nol
mediator in a promise, because there is only one party, God,
who of pure grace in himself, promises, and not of a compact
obligation. At Sinai were distinctly two parties; God, the
party of the first part, proposes a covenant to the Jewish
nation, the party of the second part, through a mediator,
Moses. .But when he promised that in Abraham’s seed, singu_
lar number, meaning Christ, all the families of nations, na_
tions of the earth, should be blessed, God, who is only one,
was indeed present, but the nations, thousands of them yet
unborn, were not present. Hence there was no compact be_
tween God and the nations, and hence no mediator was
necessary. The nations assumed no obligation. A promise
relates to the future, and this promise was not given on any
assumed condition hereafter to be performed by them. The
blessing of the promise was not in them nor conditioned on
what they would be in meeting compact terms. It was in
Christ, and on the condition of what he would do. In saying
that there is no mediator in a promise to men given freely by
one party alone, it is not said that there is no grace cove_
nant whose benefits Christ mediates to men. That covenant
does have parties to it. But man is not one of the parties,
for in a strict sense it was not made with Abraham, but only
/the promise of its blessings given to him. The parties to the
grace covenant were the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, and it
was made in eternity before the world was, and each of these
parties had stipulations to perform in behalf of men who
were to receive the blessings of the covenant, the Father to
give his only begotten Son to become the sinner’s substitute
in death and judgment, and then to give him a spiritual seed,
the Son to do the Father’s will in an assumed nature, in obe_
dience unto death on the cross, and the Spirit to apply the
vicarious sacrifice of the Son and to regenerate and sanctify
those to whom the application is made. And from this
eternal covenant, arise in eternity election and predestination,
calling, justification, and regeneration on earth, and glori-
fication in eternity after the Lord’s final advent.. I say this
covenant was not made with Abraham, but the promise of its
blessings was made to him; made to him, however, in his
one promised seed, even Christ. The law covenant was tem_
porary; it was only, as the text says, to last until the prom_
ised seed comes; it was transitory. The law covenant, because
inferior, was given through the disposition of angels. It was
subsidiary. I use the word, „subsidiary.” I will show what
I mean. Our text says that the law covenant, 430 years after
the promise, was superadded. What is meant by „super_
added”? It was added to something that went before. What
is it that went before? The grace covenant and the promise
of the grace covenant. The law covenant did not come in to
annul what preceded it, but it came in to be subsidiary to
what preceded.
We come now to one of the greatest questions in the Bible,
and Paul raises it squarely, „What then is the law?” Or as
King James Version reads, „Wherefore then serveth the law?”
If the law does not annul the grace covenant or its promise,
what is it for? A man is a theologian who can answer that
question scripturally. Here I give some scriptures to study
and which must be interpreted before one can answer the
question, „What then is the law?” I answer first negatively.
Our text says it was not given as a law by which life could
_come. If we think a moment we see why; these people were
sinners, already under condemnation. How could any attempt
on _their part to keep the law in the future bring them life?
Suppose the sinner should say, „I want to obtain life from
the law,” and the law should put on its spectacles and say
„Were you born holy, or did you start right?” That question
knocks him out at the start. If there was not anything else
he is gone. In Romans we see how Paul elaborates this. Our
case was settled before we were born. Suppose we waive this
question of starting right, can we perfectly keep this law? Let
us assume that we say, „Yes.” Now, what part of our life
is absolutely perfect? If we are guilty of one point, we are
guilty of all. If we should obey the law perfectly thirty years
and then fail on one point we are gone. „What then is the
law?” or „Why the law?” It certainly was not intended to
confer life. And it was not intended to bring us the Holy
Spirit, for I have already proved in the beginning of th”_
chapter that the Spirit was received by the hearing of faith
Take the great blessing – forgiveness of sins and justification
was the law intended as the way of justification? It was
not intended as a way of life; it was not intended to justify,
for „By the works of the law shall no flesh in thy sight be jus_
tified.” What then is the law? Here are the scriptures to
be read: Galatians 3_4; Romans 7:1_14; 5:20; 3:31; 4:15;
2 Corinthians 3:6_9. When one can expound these scriptures
he can answer the question, „What then is the law, or why:
the law?” What purpose does it serve? Paul says it was
superadded to the grace covenant and subsidiary to the prom_ .
ise. Why was it added? Because of transgressions. But
what the import of this reason?
The object of the law is not to prevent in, but to discover
sin, t is a standard of right living, but it is not a way of life.
A man is a sinner and does not seem to know it. In order
to serve a certain purpose of the grace covenant, the law must
be superadded. Let us hold this standard right up before the
man’s life, and whenever the life does not conform he is shown
to be lawless. What is the purpose? To discover sin. I am
sure we cannot ~et the man into the grace covenant, who has
not discovered sin. Again the law was given to provoke to
sin, to make sin abound, to provoke it to a development of all
its potentiality, that sin may be seen as exceedingly sinful.
So that the standard of the law not merely discovers sin, but
by provocation develops it to its utmost expression. Sin
must be made to appear exceedingly sinful. If we want to
find what is in a boy, let us pass a law that he should not
stand on top of a pole on one foot, and we shall see the boys
climbing that pole and doing that very thing. It shows the
lawless spirit that is in a child, even now. We thus see how
law is subsidiary to the grace covenant, because one must real_
ize sinfulness before we can bring him in touch with the prom_
ise of grace. Again, it is the object of the law to condemn and
not to justify. Justification is the opposite of condemnation.
If a man doesn’t feel that he is condemned, why should he
seek to be justified? A great many people are quite sure that
they are not under condemnation and therefore they do not
need to be justified by the hearing of faith. What else? The
law was added for wrath, to reveal the penalty of the sin.
The law was added to gender bondage and death, to make a
man see that he is a slave and doomed to death. The sub_
sidiary nature of the law appears again in this expression of
the context: „The law is a pedagogue unto Christ.” What is a
pedagogue? Let us get back to the etymology of the word.
The Greek word “pedagogue” originally did not mean a school-
master, but meant the slave that carried the little boy to the
school that the teacher might teach him. The law does not
teach a man the way of life, but it is the pedagogue – the
slave – in whose charge he puts his little son before that son is
grown, and the duty of that slave is to accompany that little
boy to school. Why? If there were not somebody along the
little boy might play truant and go fishing or hunting. This
slave’s business was not to teach; it was to take him to the
school where the teacher was to teach him. Now, says Paul,
the law was intended to be our pedagogue to Christ. So _we4
see the point and force of the „superadded.” The law is sub_
sidary; it does no saving itself, but it brings the sinner to one
who can do something for him. An old preacher said, „When I
find a perfectly hardened sinner that thinks he can stand on
own record I take him to Mount Sinai and turn him over
to it, smoking and thundering and let the hell_scare get him
and when that hell_scare gets him he will look out for relief.
He will know that he is a sinner.” The law is a pedagogue
I unto Christ. An old Presbyterian preacher once said that he
I sent Moses after a sinner, and by the time Moses knocked him
down a time or two he would be ready to take the Saviour.
1. Expound Galatians 3:15, „though it be but a man’s covenant’ showing (1) The requirements of a man’s covenant. (2) The extent of their application. (3) The disgrace attached to a covenant breaker. (4) From what the brand of infamy on a covenant breaker derives its odium. (5) Old Testament ex-amples of covenants so regarded. (6) The reproach cast upon the Cartha-ginians. (7) Luther’s mistake. (8) The nature Paul’s argument in this verse.
2. Give the force of Paul’s argument under the following heads; (1) The differ-ence of time. (2) The „seed” of the promise. (3) The „all nations” versus one nation. (4) The condition of inheritance. (5) The promise confirmed – when? (6) The purpose of the promise. (7) The nature of the inheritance. (8) The mediator of the covenant versus no mediator of the promise, expounding particularly verses 17_20.
3. In saying that there is no mediator in a promise to man given freely by one party alone, what is not said?
4. Who is the mediator of the grace covenant, who its parties, when made, and what the stipulations? From this covenant what great doctrines arise, (1) in eternity, (2) in time, (3) in eternity after the Lord’s advent?
5. What, then, Abraham’s relation to it?
6. What the argument based upon the fact that the law covenant
was given by the disposition of angels?
7. How long was the law covenant to last?
8. Wherefore, then, the law, under following heads: (1) What scriptures to be studied here? (2) Meaning of „superadded” – added to what? (3) Why added? (4) How does law (a) discover sin, (b) provoke to sin, (c) con-demn sin, (d) gender to bondage and death, (e) reveal wrath or penalty?
9. How is the law a pedagogue unto Christ?

Galatians 3:23 to 4:20.

While in the last discussion we anticipated somewhat by
dipping a little into Galatians 4, I commence this chapter at
3:23: „But before faith came, we were kept in ward under the
law, shut up unto the faith which should afterwards be re_
vealed.” The part of that verse that needs explanation is the
word „faith.” Faith is used in the following senses:
1. The act. or exercise, of believing in Christ. That is not
what is meant by the word here, because the Old Testament
people, looking through the types, believed in Christ and had
witness borne to their faith, as we learn from Hebrews II.
Therefore the error was radical when a Baptist preacher said
that there was no faith in Christ until after Christ came and
died, and no forgiveness of sins. And not only did I hear a
Baptist preacher say that, but I heard a Campbellite preacher
misapply it in the same way, saying there could be no remis_
sion of sins until Christ actually died, and then the sins of the
Old Testament saints were remitted. But sins were remitted
in Old Testament times on God’s acceptance of what the
Surety would do at the proper time. We must not con_
found expiation and remission. I will give a financial illus_
tration. Paul writes to Philemon: „If Onesimus oweth thee
aught, put that to mine account.” The very moment that
Philemon charged it to Paul he could no longer hold it against
Onesimus. It was remitted to Onesimus. The surety was
held, and not the original contractor of the debt. It stood
remitted against Onesimus, since it was put to Paul’s account.
The debt was not actually paid to the creditor. Only the
personal responsibility for the debt was changed. It was
paid whenever Paul should pay it later. Just so God was in
the world in Old Testament times not reckoning, or charging,
or imputing their sins to them, but was charging them to
Christ and reckoning them to Christ, and so sins were re_
mitted just as freely in the Old Testament times as in the New
Testament times, but the actual expiation was not made until
Christ died. I quote from the „Philadelphia Confession of
Faith” the following:
Art. VIII, Sec. 6: „Although the price of redemption was
not actually paid by Christ until after his incarnation, yet the
virtue, efficacy and benefit thereof was communicated to the
elect in all ages successively from the beginning of the world…
Again Art. XI, Sec. 6: „The justification, of believers under
the Old Testament, was in all these respects, one and the same
with the justification of believers under the New Testament.”
And what is more authoritative than any confession of faith
is the testimony of God’s Word in Romans 4:7 and 2 Corin_
thians 5:19. Nevertheless one should either subscribe to the
confession of his denomination on vital points or quit the
2. Faith sometimes means the body._ or system, of gospel
truths, usually preceded by the article „the.” But evidently
that cannot be the meaning here. In what sense then is
„faith” used in Galatians 3:23? Here is the reading which
supplies the modifying words: „But before the object of faith
came we were kept in ward under the law.” The object of
faith is Christ, the antitype. The simple meaning of the
whole section is, that an Old Testament believer, though his
sins were remitted and he was justified, must yet observe the
law of types until Christ came. Just as in chapter 4 it says,
„But I say that so long as the heir is a child, he differeth
nothing from a bondservant, though he is Lord of all; but is
under guardians and stewards until the day appointed of the
father.” Being shut up under the law meant that the Old
Testament saint, though his sins were remitted by faith in
the antitype, yet had to keep on fulfilling the requirements of
the law as to feasts and ceremonies and the observance of

days. He was in the position of an heir but had not yet ob-
gained his majority, but had to keep up the type until the
antitype came. We need to get that meaning clear in our
mind, because in the New Testament an argument is based
on it. We have Moses who had real faith, and David and
Enoch and Elijah, who had real faith, but they kept up the
ceremonial law. The form was symbolic in the Mosaic law,
and in the law preceding Moses. Why do we not now do as did
the early people? Because the object of faith came, and the
heirs of faith are now out from under the law. We are not.
under stewards and governors as the Old Testament people
I now explain the next verse: „So that the law has be_
come our tutor to bring us unto Christ.” The Greek word is
compound, pais, „a child.” and agogos, „a conductor.” Agogos
is from the verb agein, to lead, or conduct. To complete the
analogy we have only to refer to the heathen custom of en_
trusting the care of a child in his nonage, to a slave. This.
slave was not necessarily the teacher, in the modern sense of
pedagogue, but would lead the child to the school where the
real teacher would instruct him. So the law, a slave, leads
to Christ, the great teacher. In this sense the law evidently
waa not to annul the previous covenant of grace, but was
added to it in a subsidiary or helpful sense. But now that
the object of faith is come, we are no longer under the tutor.
In many places Paul thus argues against any lapsing into
Judaism. It was going back to the rudiments, the weak and
beggarly elements of an obsolete dispensation. The whole
book of Hebrews is written on that subject.
So a man who observes the seventh day instead of the first
day proclaims that he is still in the Old Testament.
We come now to a thought not discussed before, verse 26:
„For ye are all sons of God through faith in Christ Jesus.” The
Jews, as Jews, were not sons by faith, but sons by lineal, flesh_
ly descent. „For as many of you as were baptized into Christ
did put on Christ.” What is the force of „baptized into
I had a Campbellite brother say to me, „You Baptists have
no method of induction into Christ.”
„What is your method?” I asked.
„We baptize into Christ,” he said.
„How will you reply,” I asked, „to the Roman Catholic
when he says you Campbellites have no method of inducting
Christ into you? You ask them how they induct Christ into
men and they answer, ‘By eating the flesh and drinking the
blood of Jesus Christ in the mass.’ ”
I reply to both, for the Catholic has better ground than the
Campbellite – that each ordinance is a symbolic, pictorial in_
duction. Baptism does not really put us into Christ. On the
contrary, says Paul, „By faith we enter into this grace where_
in we stand.” Eating the bread and drinking the wine does
not really put Christ into us, for by the Spirit Christ is put
into us, or „formed in us the hope of glory.” (See also 2
Corinthians 3:18; 4:6.) Baptism does not really put us into
Christ; it is only figurative of it. Paul says, „By faith we are
all children of God.” By faith, and not by baptism, so that
the form of being baptized into Christ is not the reality of
putting us into Christ. In baptism we put on Christ, as an
enlisted soldier puts on the uniform which is the external em_
blem, or symbol, of his enlistment.
The next verse calls for some explanation. „There can be
neither Jew nor Greek, there can be neither bond nor free,
there can be no male and female; for ye all are one man in
Christ Jesus.” What are the distinctions between the two
covenants? Under the Mosaic covenant a Jew only belonging
to the nation by fleshly descent was in the covenant. But in
the new covenant it is neither Jew nor Greek. There is no
distinction of nationality. That is the first point. They all
come in just alike, as the animals went into Noah’s ark
through one door. There was just one door; the eagle had to
swoop down and go in the same door that the snail crawled
The second point of distinction is not national, but in Christ
there is no distinction between a slave and his master. Abra_
ham’s slaves were circumcised because they belonged to him.
But in the new covenant the slaves of a believer are not bap_
tized because they belong to him. Neither the relation of
children nor slaves put them in the covenant and entitles
them to the ordinances. Earthly relations do not count at all
in the new covenant. Here the individual alone counts. The
child of a preacher must himself repent and believe and must
be baptized for himself. The preacher’s wife must repent
and believe and be baptized for herself. She must take no
religious step because of her relation to her husband, such as
joining „his church” to be with him or in order to „commune
with him.” This passage means even more than that. In
the old covenant only the males received the token of the
covenant. In the new covenant there is no distinction as to
ordinances between male and female. The woman is baptized
as well as the man. If one was a slave of a Jew, the law
required that the slave should be circumcised, becoming a
member of the covenant through circumcision. Under the new
covenant, it is clearly said that there is neither bond nor
free – that a slave does not come in because he is a slave be_
longing to some one in the covenant, but comes in on his
own personal faith in Christ, just as any other sinner comes in.
I repeat that the next point of difference in that verse is one
of sex. Under the Jewish covenant only the male received the
token of the covenant. The woman’s position in the Mosaic
covenant was a very subordinate one, but in the new covenant
the woman receives the ordinance of the covenant just the
same as the man. She is a human being and comes in by her
own personal faith in Christ, and is received by baptism just
the same as if she were a man. So we see that makes a very
important distinction in the two covenants.
Verse 29 needs just a word of explanation: „And if ye are
Christ’s, then are ye Abraham’s seed, heirs according to prom_
ise,” whether a heathen, a Jew, a Scythian, Bohemian, a maa,
or a woman. If one gets into Christ by faith then he belongs
to Abraham’s seed – not his fleshly see, but his spiritual seed,
as Paul says, „He is not a Jew who is one outwardly, but he
is a Jew who is one inwardly.” The real circumcision is not
the circumcision of the flesh, but of the heart. He is repeating
what I have explained before: „But I say that so long as the
heir is a child, he differeth nothing from a bondservant though
he is lord of all; but is under guardians and stewards until
the day appointed of the father.” So the Old Testament saints
as children were held in bondage under the rudiments of the
world, that is, bound to observe those ceremonial laws of sac_
rifice and the entire sabbatic cycle. „But when the fullness of
time came, God sent forth his Son, born of a woman, born
under the law, that he might redeem them that were under
the law, that we might receive the adoption of sons.” We are
not children of God by ordinary generation. We are children
of God by regeneration. When born naturally I was not in the
kingdom, not in the church, not in anything religious, yet
some denominations teach that the church consists of be_
lievers and their children. We don’t get in because we are
the sons of some member that is in, or the slave, or the wife
of somebody that is in – we do not get in that way. We
come in by adoption. What is adoption? Adoption is that
process of law by which one, not naturally a member of the
family, is legally made a member and an heir of the family.
Naturally we do not belong to God’s family. We could not
call God Father.
Now comes a point more precious than any I have pre_
sented, 4:6: „And because ye are sons [by adoption, by re_
generation], God sent forth the Spirit of his Son into our
hearts, crying, Abba, Father.”
I remember as distinctly as I can remember anything that
ever came in my experience, the day, the place, and the hour
when ‘in my heart I could say for the first time, to God,
„Father”; when the realization of God’s fatherhood and when
the filial feeling toward God came into my soul. That was
when I accepted Christ.
There was nothing in the old covenant that gave one that
individual assurance, that inward witness. It could not, as it
came by natural descent, but here is a very precious thing in
the new covenant that to all those who by faith enter into
this covenant, there is given a witness: „God’s Spirit wit_
nesseth with our spirit that we are the children of God.” The
filial feeling comes to us. The first time I preached on that
subject I used this illustration: If I were to go to spend a night
with one of the neighbors and, not knowing his children per_
sonally, would see the children come in from school, I could
tell by watching them which ones were the children of that
home and which were the neighbor’s children, without asking
any questions. The real child of the house has perfect free_
dom. There is no form nor stilts. The little girls just run
right up to their mamma and say, „Give me this,” or „give me
that,” but the neighbor’s child is more ceremonious in making
requests and taking familiar liberties, because there is no
filial feeling. An orphan received into a home, after having
been legally adopted, will at first be shy and distant. Only
when by long usage the child begins to exercise the filial feel_
ing does he feel that be belongs there. When in such case that
filial feeling begins to appear in the child there is something
that somewhat answers to the Spirit’s witness to our spirits
that we are children of God and may say, „Father.”
As a sinner I thought of God often, that is, his holineas, his
justness and his omnipotence, and the thought was more terri_
fying than pleasant, but as a Christian there is nothing sweeter
in the heart than when I think of God as Father. It is the
sweetest thought I ever had – „our Father.” He is no longer
dreadful to me nor distant, but the filial feeling in my heart
toward God gives me a freedom of approach to him. I count
that one of the most precious blessings of the new covenant.
To continue: „So that thou art no longer a bondservant, but
a son; and if a son, then an heir through God. Howbeit at
that time, not knowing God, ye were in bondage to them that
by nature are no gods [ye were ‘idolaters]: but now that ye
have come to know God, or rather to be known by God, how
turn ye back again to the weak and beggarly rudiments,
whereunto ye desire to be in bondage over again?” We can
understand how a slave should want to step out of bondage
into the privileges of sonship and heirship, but it is more
difficult to understand that a son and heir should desire to
go back to the position of bondage.
I heard a Baptist preacher once say that repentance is
„to know God.” I told him that it was much more important
for God to know us than for us to know God; that our title to
heaven did not consist of our being sure that we knew God,
but in being sure that God knew us; that many in the last
day would say, „Lord, Lord, open unto us; we have prophesied
in thy name,” but he will say, „You claim to know me, but
I never knew you.”
A passage in Paul’s letter to Timothy is much in point
just here. The apostle is describing how some who once
claimed to know God had made shipwreck of the faith. He
rebukes the idea of our standing in God’s sight by what we
know, or claim, by describing the seal of a true Christian.
This seal bears a double inscription. Un one side the inscrip_
tion reads: „The Lord knoweth them that are his,” and on the
other side the inscription reads: „Let every one that nameth
the name of the Lord depart from iniquity.” This gives two
real tests of one’s profession: (1) Does the Lord know him
to be a Christian, as Jesus says, „I know my sheep”? (2)
Does he bear fruit? Does he depart from iniquity? In other
words, does the sheep follow the Shepherd? The passage is
2 Timothy 2:19 where he rebukes the errorists, who had over_
thrown the faith of some, by saying, „Howbeit the firm foun_
dation of God standeth, having this seal, The Lord knoweth
them that are his,” and, „Let every one that nameth the name
of the Lord depart from unrighteousness.” What a theme
that is for a sermon I
We may be mistaken in thinking we are Christians, but he
doesn’t make any mistakes. Spurgeon says, „Our title to sal_
vation does not depend on our hold on Christ, but on his hold
on us.” We may shake loose our hold on Christ, but Christ
doesn’t turn us loose. Peter turned loose and thought he
was gone, but Christ did not turn loose, so Peter was not gone.
That is why he changes that expression, „Rather to be known
of God.”
I was attending a meeting in Burleson County conducted by
our Methodist friends (and they do hold some mighty good
meetings), and a great many penitents went forward.
„Come into the altar and help those laboring souls,” a
brother said.
So I went and sat down by a man that was crying and
groaning, and I said,
„My brother, what are you crying about?” He says,
„Well, I have been converted a dozen times and I always
fall, and now I have fallen again.” I said,
„Perhaps you are mistaken on one or the other of these
„No, sir; I know I am not mistaken; I know I was con_
verted and now I have lost it.”
„Then what are you crying about?” I asked. „Tears are
quite useless in such a case.”
„What do you mean?” he asked.
„On your statement,” I replied, „your case is hopeless ac_
cording to this scripture: ‘For as touching those that were
once enlightened and tasted of the heavenly gift, and were

made partakers of the Holy Spirit, and tasted the good word of
God, and the powers of the age to come, and then fell away it
is impossible to renew them again unto repentance.’
„My friend,” I added, „You see why this is so. I can neither
help you nor comfort you in any way until you can give up
one or the other of your positive assertions. You are making
your fallible knowledge of two vital points the standard.
What have I or any other preacher to present to you? If
I present Christ as the only name whereby one can be saved,
you say you have tried him and he failed. If I present faith
as the only means of laying hold on Christ, you say you have
tried that and it failed. If I present the Holy Spirit as the
only one who can apply Christ’s blood and regenerate and
sanctify you, you say you have tried him on all these points
and he failed. I am sure I have nothing more to offer you.
The only three_ply rope that can lift you to heaven you say
has been broken in all its strands in your case; so there is
nothing left for you but to get ready for hell.”
He quit crying at once and said, „Maybe I was mistaken on
one of those points.”
„Just so,” I replied, „and the sooner you can determine on
which one the sooner I can direct you what to do. If on the
first point, then seek a salvation you never had, just as any
other sinner. If on the second point only, then seek healing as
a backslider.”
Verse 10: „Ye observe days, and months, and seasons) and
years.” That is an unmistakable reference to the sabbatical
days of the Old Testament economy – their seventh day sab_
bath, their lunar sabbath, their annual sabbaths and their
jubilee sabbath, which means that one so doing prefers the
Old Testament economy to that of the New Testament. Com_
pare his strong teaching on this point in his letter to the
Colossians (Col. 2:20_23).
Verse 11: „I am afraid of you, lest by any means I have
bestowed labor upon you in vain.” Here he questions not
himself, nor what he preached, but fears that their profession
was empty and vain. For if they had truly accepted Christ,
why should they leave the substance for the shadow, thus
practically saying that Christ had not come yet?
In verse 15 we note a question: „Where then is that gratula_
tion of yourselves?” (American Standard). „Where then
the blessedness ye spake of?” (Common Version). The point
of the question is this: They counted themselves as so great
beneficiaries of Paul in the first meeting that he to them was
an angel from heaven, and their gratitude so great they were
ready to pluck out their own eyes to give to him; it was
marvelous that all this had so rapidly passed away, and a
contrary attitude assumed toward him. It called for an
adequate explanation which must be sought on supernatural
grounds or the intervention of bewitching power. Mere fickle_
ness of mind on their part, since he hadn’t changed, could not
explain. Let the reader compare the prophet’s address to
Ephraim and Judah (Hos. 6:4), and point out the expression
in the famous hymn, „Oh, for a closer walk with God,” based
on the common version rendering of this verse.
We note another piercing question in verse 16: „Am I be_
come your enemy, by telling you the truth?”
Many years ago I read an account of two visits of Henry
Clay to Lexington, Kentucky. He was very popular in Ken_
tucky. On one occasion the whole town turned out to welcome
him. Houses were covered with banners, bands were playing
„Behold the Conquering Hero Comes.” Later he made a sec_
ond visit to that town and they greeted him with rotten eggs.
What had changed them? Clay had not changed. A very
beautiful incident occurred on that last visit. Among the crowd
that was against him on the last visit was an old mountaineer,
a hunter, with his long Kentucky rifle in his hand, who came
up and said, „Mr. Clay, it breaks my heart to tell you. I have
been standing by you all my life, but that last vote of yours
in Congress has turned me, and I have to go back on you.”
Clay looked at him and reached out and took hold of his gun
saying, „Is this a good old Kentucky rifle?” „Yes, sir; never
a better.” „Has it never happened when you were out hunting
because there was no meat ‘in the house, that you saw a big
buck in easy range, and lo! your gun snapped?” „Yes, sir;
it has happened.” „What did you do – throw away the gun,
or pick the flint and try it again?” The old hunter said, „I
see the point; I’ll pick the flint and try you again.”
In verse 17 Paul lays bare the motive of the authors of
this sudden change: „They zealously seek you in no good way;
nay, they desire to shut you out, that ye may seek them.”
Their object was to shut out their credulous victims from Paul
that they might be sought as teachers themselves.
We come to two verses that need a little explanation: „My
little children, of whom I am again in travail until Christ be
formed in you” – then he stops and never does finish the sen_
tence. There is a dash there showing that his own mind is in
doubt as to whether they were false professors or backsliders.
„But I could wish to be present with you now, and to change
my tone; for I am perplexed about you.” He did not know_
just how to treat them – whether to present a personal Christ
to them as to those never having had any real faith, or
whether to try to bring them back as backsliders. He could
not tell what was in their hearts. He could not read them.
„I am perplexed.” „If I just knew your real state, I would
know how to talk to you; if, like God, I could know whether
you are Christians or not I would know what to say to you.”
So all preachers in their experience have that perplexity of
mind when dealing with some people.

1. What is the meaning of „faith” in Galatians 3:23?
2. Give several meanings of the word „faith.”
3. Illustrate a misinterpretation of faith in this verse.

4. Give the financial illustration of how Old Testament saints were
5. Why did they keep up the ceremonial law, and why do we not
keep it?
6. Explain the law as a pedagogue unto Christ.
7. What is the force of „baptized into Christ”? Give the position
of the Campbellites, Catholics, and Baptists on this point.
8. What are the distinctions between the two covenants – (1) As to
nationality? (2) As to slaves and their masters? (3) As to sex?
9. What is adoption, and upon what is this legal process based?
10. How is the fatherhood of God realized? Give the author’s illus_
11. What is the result? (See 4:&_7.)
12. What is the difference between knowing God and being known
of God, which the more important, and why?
13. What inscriptions on the Christian’s seal?
14. What is the reference in 4:10, „Ye observe days, months, etc.,”
and what Paul’s teaching on this in Colossians 2:20_23?
15. Contrast their present attitude toward Paul with their former
attitude, and illustrate.
16. Compare the prophet’s address to Ephraim and Judah, and point
out the expression in „Oh, for a closer walk with God,” based on the common version rendering of 4:15.
17. What the motive of the authors of this sudden change?
18. What doubt is indicated by the dash in verse 19, and what the
perplexity indicated by it?

Galatians 4:21 to 5:12.

This discussion commences at Galatians 4:21, and we note
first the distinct paragraphs in what remains in this letter.
From verse 21, where we commence, to 5:1 is a distinct para_
graph. That chapter division is very unfortunate. Chapter
5 should commence at verse 2. The next paragraph is
from verses 2_6. There the most of the argument of the book
ends, though he takes up an argument after that. The next
paragraph is 5:7_12. The next paragraph is 5:13_26. The
next paragraph is 6:1_10. Then we have the closing para_
graph. It would be well if, instead of chapters and verses, the
book had been divided on the paragraph plan as I have sug_
gested, and as we would find if we were studying it in the
I call attention to some textual matters: Galatians 4:31 and
5:1 ought to be really just one verse, and it is an exceedingly
difficult matter, according to the manuscripts, to tell just how
that verse should stand as to its parts. The oldest manu_
scripts are followed in the American Standard Revision. Light_
foot insists that we should read those two verses this way:
„Wherefore, brethren, we are not children of a handmaid [or
bond woman] but of a freewoman in the liberty with which
Christ has made us free; therefore stand and be not entangled
again in the yoke of bondage.” That is the way Lightfoot
would read it. It is just a question of the manuscript about the
position of the words. The Revised Standard Version follows
the best manuscripts, making it read just as we have it here,
only it is not all one verse: „Wherefore, brethren, we are not
children of a handmaid but of the freewoman. For freedom

did Christ set us free: stand fast therefore, and be not en_
tangled again in a yoke of bondage.” I would call attention
to a great many others of that kind if we were studying the
Greek. In the Standard Revision 4:25 reads: „Now this
Hagar is Mount Sinai in Arabia, and answereth to the Jeru_
salem that now is: for she is in bondage with her children.”
Some manuscripts make that read: „Sinai is a mountain in
Arabia.” I don’t agree with those manuscripts at all. Every_
body knows that Sinai is a mountain in Arabia, and the Re_
vised Version follows the best texts in that.
We will now take up the exposition of 4:21: „Tell me, ye
that desire to be under the law, do you not hear the law?” I
call attention to the fact that what the law here says does not
occur in Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, or Deuteronomy, but it
occurs in Genesis, and the point about it is this, that the New
Testament as well as the Old Testament, calls the history in
the Pentateuch law, as well as the legislation itself. The his_
tory is the background of the statutes – the whole of it. His_
tory and legislation is called the law. If we get that clear in
our minds it will save us from the mistakes of the radical
critics. Whether it be history in Genesis or legislation on
Mount Sinai, it is called the law.
Verse 22: „It is written that Abraham had two sons.” He
says the law (which is in Genesis) tells us that there was one
by a handmaid and one by a freewoman. The next verse shows
us the distinction between the births of those children. The
son of the handmaid ‘is born after the flesh – a perfectly natural
birth. The son of the freewoman is born through promise.
The birth of Isaac was just as supernatural as any miracle
can be. There were no powers of nature in either Abraham
or Sarah to bring about the birth of Isaac. It was super_
natural. Now that is what the scripture says. Paul expounds
that scripture in order to show that the Old Testament his_
tory is itself prophetic – that it has more than a literal, his_
torical sense. It has that, but it has more. He says, „Which
things contain an allegory.” That part of the history of Gene_
sis, besides its literal meaning, contains an allegory. Here
the radical critics object to what they say is a strained inter_
pretation that Paul puts upon plain history, and they say
that he gets his allegory from Philo, an Alexandrian Jew, or
he follows the rabbis in allegorizing the history of the Jew_
ish people. Did Paul get the idea of the allegorical significance
in that history from Philo the Jew, or from the rabbis, and if
from neither, where did he get it? It is true that Philo did
allegorize, but his allegories and Paul’s are poles apart as we
see if we put them down and read them together as I have
done many times. In the second place, Paul did not get the
idea from what the rabbis had said, but he got it from the
Old Testament, and particularly, from the book of Isaiah.
The book of Isaiah consists of two parts. Chapters 1_39 relate
to one thing, and the rest of it relates to spiritual Israel, and
it is called the Old Testament Book of Comfort. And when_
ever Isaiah from chapter 40 on, speaks of Israel, he is referring
to spiritual Israel. For instance, in chapter 51 he refers to
Abraham and Sarah, and then in chapter 54 he uses the lan_
guage that Paul cites here in the context, showing that Sarah
occupied a representative and allegorical position in his mind,
and the quotation is specified here: „Sing, 0 barren, thou
that didst not bear; break forth into singing, and cry aloud,
thou that didst not travail with child: for more are the children
of the desolate than the children of the married wife.” That is
Isaiah’s use of it in which he is addressing Sarah as repre_
senting the motherhood of spiritual Israel, and she that hath
been barren is called desolate; because no children have been
born to her, she is called more desolate than Hagar. So Paul
gets his theory from the inspired people; he simply follows
the history when he says, „that scripture contains an alle_
Let us now see what the allegory contained. These women
are two covenants. As, in the dream of Pharaoh, the seven
lean kine are seven years of famine. Pharaoh uses the verb,
„are” in the sense of „represent,” is., the seven lean kine
represent seven years of famine. And, as where our Saviour
says, „this is my body,” that is, „this unleavened bread repre_
sents my body.” He is showing what the allegory represents
– that those two women represent two covenants – one from
Mount Sinai bearing children into bondage which is Hagar.
The Hagar woman represents, allegorically, the Mount Sinai
covenant. He goes on to say in the next verse that Hagar,
that is, this allegorical Hagar that he is speaking about, is
Mount Sinai in Arabia and answereth to the Jerusalem that
now is and is in bondage with her children. Sarah represents
the Jerusalem, not the Jerusalem that now is, but the Jerusa_
lem which is above that is our mother. We, the children
of the freewoman, represent the Jerusalem which is above.
It is necessary to make clear the meaning of Jerusalem above
as contradistinct from the Jerusalem on earth. In Hebrews,
12:18ff., distinguishing between the two covenants the two
regimes, this language is used: „For ye are not come unto a
mount that might be touched, and that burned with fire, and
into blackness, and darkness, and tempest, and the sound of a
trumpet, and the voice of words; which voice they that heard
entreated that no word more should be spoken unto them;
. . . and so fearful was the appearance, that Moses said, „I
exceedingly fear and quake.” In other words, „Ye Christians
are not under the Mount Sinai regime, but ye are come unto
Mount Zion, . . . the heavenly Jerusalem.” That is the Jeru_
salem above, or in the place of „heavenly” we may use
„spiritual.” We are not come to the literal mountain in Arabia,
nor are we come to the literal Jerusalem situated over yonder
in the Holy Land, but to the spiritual Jerusalem. How many
of our hymns are written with that ideal In Revelation that
thought is elaborated about the spiritual Israel, the spiritual
city, Revelation 3:12: „He that overcometh I will make him
a pillar in the temple of my God, and he shall go out hence
DO more, etc.,” and in the closing part of Revelation, „I saw
the New Jerusalem come down out of heaven.” In view of
this, I point out the folly of the crusades, preached by Peter
the Hermit and encouraged by subsequent popes. The object
of the crusades was to rescue the Holy Jerusalem from infidels
– that Jerusalem which has lost ‘its value. They were to res_
cue the empty tomb of Jesus. The crusades did an immense
amount of good, but there never wag a more profound piece
of folly than to think it was necessary to rescue the city under
the curse of God, with an empty tomb in it, as a religious
We will go on with our allegory: „For it was written.”
Here he quotes that passage in Isaiah 54, and here is his con_
clusion from the allegory in verse 28: „Now we, brethren, as
Isaac was, are children of promise” – i.e., supernaturally born,
regenerated – „but as then he that was born after the flesh
[Ishmael] persecuted him that was born after the Spirit, so
also it is now.” The literal Jerusalem and the Judaizing spirit
will persecute the spiritual Israel. Just as Ishmael did, so
will the Jews do now. Verse 30: „Howbeit what saith the
scripture?” Notice then that the scripture is again personi_
fied. The words, ta hiera grammata refer to the whole collec_
tion of scriptures; every one of those scriptures is God_inspired.
So Paul takes a part of the history in Genesis and says, „The
scripture saith.”
I am giving this to show the folly of the people who say,
„The book contains the word of God, but not all of it is the
word of God.” Well, what did the scripture say? „Cast out
the handmaid and her son: for the son of the handmaid shall
not inherit with the son of the freewoman.” Sarah used these
words to Abraham: „This bond_slave child should not inherit
with my child; cast her out and her son.” It grieved Abraham
until God spoke to him and endorsed what Sarah said, God
having in mind not only what was best for them at that time,
but having in mind the allegorical meaning of those two women.
Here is an important matter: The ablest debater that I
ever read after was the great Presbyterian, N. L. Rice, and
here let the reader note just what Rice said about the cove_
nant and how the covenant puts the infants in the church. A
certain man was once quoting Rice to me on that and he said,
„The Old Testament put the children in with the parents; and
now if it put them in, how are you going to put them out?”
I said, „Here is the passage, ‘Cast out the bondwoman and
her son.’ ” That casts the covenant out and infant member_
ship. It is true that the children come in in the new covenant;
it is true that we baptize every child in the new covenant, but
he is a regenerated child – a spiritual child – and nobody in
the world can answer that. And yet I never heard a pedo_
baptist make an argument that he did not bring in the relation
that the children bore to the old covenant, viz.: that they were
in the covenant. That is their first and, indeed, their only
respectable argument.
A certain Baptist wrote a book with this title: Baptists the
only Pedo baptists, i.e., the Baptists are the only denomi_
nation that really baptize children. They baptize every spirit_
ual child if he is only converted, and if his spiritual childhood
is only an hour old. The Baptists baptize him, and others
don’t do that; they baptize the goats – those that are not
children. He makes a very fine argument, and if we just
understand him, he is hitting the nail on the head. The Bap_
tists don’t baptize anything but children, but they belong to
spiritual Israel, and they often baptize them the very day
they are new born. They don’t wait eight days.
Let us now consider those joined verses of chapters 4_5:
„Wherefore, brethren, we are not children of a handmaid,
but of the freewoman. For freedom did Christ set us free:
stand fast therefore, and be not entangled again in a yoke of
bondage.” Where does Christ himself discuss that just as
Paul does? It is very important to see that Christ and Paul
are in agreement in that very matter. John 8:31: „Jesus
therefore said to those Jews that had believed him, if ye
abide in my word, then are ye truly_my disciples; and ye shall
know the truth, and the truth shall make you free. They
answered unto him, We are Abraham’s seed, and have never
yet been in bondage to any man: how sayest thou, Ye shall
be made free? Jesus answered them, Verily, verily, I say
unto you, Every one that committeth sin is the bondservant
of sin. And the bondservant abideth not in the house for_
ever; the Son abideth forever. If therefore the Son shall
make you free, ye shall be free indeed. I know that ye are
Abraham’s seed [that Is, the fleshly seed]; yet ye seek to kill
me, because my word hath not free course in you.” Verse
39: „They answered and said unto him, Our father is Abra_
ham. Jesus sayeth unto them, If ye were Abraham’s children,
ye would do the works of Abraham. But now ye seek to kill
me, a man that hath told you the truth, which I heard from
God; this did not Abraham. Ye do the works of your father.
They said unto him, We were not born of fornication; we
have one Father, even God.” Verse 44: „Ye are of your
father the devil, and the lusts of your father it is your will
to do.” Paul says, „For freedom did Christ set us free.” I am
showing that Christ taught precisely on the line that Paul did
here in this letter to the Galatians.
I now commence chapter 5 at verse 2. This paragraph
consists of the following thoughts (in verses 2_6 he discusses
circumcision): First, he says, „If you insist on circumsion
Christ will profit you nothing. Second, if you insist on being
circumcised, then you are a debtor to do the whole law. Third,
if you insist on being circumcised and being a Jew in order to
salvation, then you are severed from Christ; you are fallen
away from grace.”
A man once said to me, „Does the Bible teach falling from
grace?” I said, „Yes.” „Well,” he says, „I thought you didn’t
believe in apostasy.” I said, „I don’t; we mean by apostasy,
(1) that a man has to be regenerated and (2), that this re_
generated man is finally lost. This falling from grace here
does not mean that; it simply means that a man who will
turn from salvation by grace to being a Jew in order to be
saved, that that man is fallen from grace. The Bible does
not teach that he severs himself from Christ.”
The next thought presented here is that „Christians through
the Spirit by faith wait for the hope of righteousness.” What
is the hope of righteousness for which the Christian waits?
He is speaking of the doctrine of justification by faith, and
that doctrine by faith had a certain hope in it. And what
is the hope? The hope includes everything that is involved
in the final coming of the Lord to give the crowning glories
to those that are justified by faith; it has a hope that refers
to the future. That hope is, If my name is written in the
Lamb’s book of life, it not only stands secure, but it will bring
everything else that it has promised, as „whom he justified,
them he also glorified.”
The next thought is, that „in Christ neither circumcision
nor uncircumcision availeth anything.” We don’t get into
Christ because we are circumcised, and we don’t get into Christ
because we are not circumcised. We get in on an entirely
different term, as the next thought shows, „faith working by
love.” The Roman Catholics teach certain doctrines based on
this verse, „Faith worketh by love,” that is, they say that
„worketh” should be translated „wrought.” Therefore, the
Catholics have a doctrine that they call fides caritate formosa,
„Faith made by love,” that is their special doctrine based on
that verse. But the verb is not in the passive voice. It isn’t
„being worked;” it is the doing, the working. And this leads
me to another observation that when Paul talks about faith
working by love he bridges an apparent chasm between him
and James. James, in his letter, says that the faith that is
apart from energy, or work, is dead. Paul says that the faith
that justifies is the faith with energy; it works by love. As
that passage bridges the apparent chasm, there is no discrep_
ancy between Paul and James. Practically the argument
closes here, but he brings up some argument later.
The next paragraph is verses 7_12: „Ye were running well;
who hindered you?” Let us consider that as it is in the Greek’
the idea is that of a foot race. The foot race is along a pre_
scribed or prepared track. Here is a man running on that
prepared track, and suddenly he comes to a place where the
track is all broken up. The word „hindered” means a
broken_up track. „You were running well? Who broke up
the track? He who started you would not break up the track
ahead of you; if that track is broken up, the enemy did it.”
The next thought in this paragraph is that they seemed to
have said that if they had gone astray it was a small mat_
ter, and he is answering that when he said „A little leaven
leaveneth the whole lump.” „You think the wedge ‘is little, but
that wedge will split the whole log. It is a vital and funda_
mental thing.”
The next thought is the distinction which Paul makes be_
tween the Galatians and the one that side tracked them. He
says, „Now, brethren, I am confident that you will come to
my way of thinking about this. I don’t think that about the
one that is misleading you.” There he mentions him in the
singular for the first time. „Whoever broke up that road will
have to bear his penalty and will have to pay the penalty of
what he has done.”
The next thought is that he seems to reply again to an
accusation that they had made saying, „Why does he object
to our views of circumcision? I am told that he circumcised
Timothy and preached circumcision himself.” He answers
that: „If indeed I preach circumcision as you are preaching it,
i.e., if I am on a line with them, why am I persecuted?” Then
he said, „If I presented it to you as they do I would take away
the stumbling block of the cross and there would be no issue
between me and these men who are misleading you.” „The
Jews find the cross a stumbling block,” says Paul in his letter
to the Corinthians. He says here, „I would that they that
unsettle you would even go beyond circumcision.” What
does he mean by that? The thought is this: „You are in_
sisting upon the physical mutilation of the body; now why not
go to the whole length like the idolaters that were among
you?” They mutilated themselves, cut their bodies with
knives. „If you are going to insist on this use of the knife,
why not take it to that extreme?”
1. What does the law of 4:21 say, where is it found, and what bearing has this on the meaning of the word „law,” as used in the Old and
New Testaments?
2. Explain the allegory in 4:21 to 5:1 from these standpoints: (1) Where did Paul get the idea of this allegory, and what the evidence? (2) Ishmael and Isaac. (3) Hagar and Sarah. (4) Jerusalem that now is and the Jerusalem above. (5) Show the parallel in the two covenants. (6) Give the distinctions as expressed in Hebrews. (7) What the folly of the crusades? (8) What the attitude of the children of the flesh toward the children of the Spirit? (9) What argument is sometimes made for infant church_membership, and what the answer? (10) Then who the children of the handmaid and who the children of the free woman?
3. What the exhortation based upon this allegory, and where does
Christ discuss this same idea?
4. What four things does Paul show are the result of their insistence
on being circumcised? Explain particularly the last clause of 5:4.
5. What is the hope of righteousness for which the Christian waits?
6. Expound „but faith working through love.” What the Catholic
interpretation of it, and how does the true interpretation bridge the
apparent chasm between Paul and James?
7. Explain verse 7: „Ye were running well; who hindered you, etc.?”
8. What is the force of „a little leaven leaveneth the whole lump”?
9. What distinction does Paul make between the Galatians and the
one who side tracked them?
10. What accusation does Paul seem to reply to in 5:11, what the stum-bling block of the cross, and what does he mean by „beyond circumcision” in verse 12?

Galatians 5:13 to 6:18.

This discussion commences with Galatians 5:13. Through_
out the rest of this chapter there are warnings against false
conclusions from the doctrines of justification by faith apart
from works. The first warning is that our liberty is not to be
construed or used as a license to do any kind of evil. The
liberty referred to is freedom from the law, which does not
mean freedom from the law as a standard, but it is freedom
from the law as a way of life. This same subject comes up
again for discussion in the letter to the Romans where Paul
avows that he has liberty to eat meat offered to idols since
these idols are no gods to him; that personally it would not
hurt him, but he said that we would refrain from it if it was
harmful to other people.
One of the most infamous propositions ever made was that
made by a Baptist preacher who said that when a man and
a woman were engaged they could commit a sin for which
they would not be held responsible. This is exactly what Paul
warns against: „Ye were called for freedom; only use not
your freedom for an occasion to the flesh.” The Arminians
and Romanists unite in denying the doctrine of salvation by
grace through faith and not of works, because they say it is
demoralizing in its tendencies; that a man will draw false con_
clusions from it; that he will use the liberty wherewith Christ
made him free as a license to do evil. Just at this point Paul
raises his first warning cry in the letter to the Romans. He
puts it in the form of an answer to a supposititious question.
He had affirmed that grace abounded above sin, then the
questioner says, „Shall we sin the more that grace may

abound still more? And in reply to that he said, „God for_
bid,” or as he very strongly presented it in the letter to Titus
(2:12; 3:4_8).
I once heard an Antinomian (that means, anti, „against,”
noma, „the law” – against the law) preach. He was one who
believed that a Christian is free from all law – that is he is
not even under the law to Christ. I had to follow him that
afternoon. He took as a text Titus 3:4_7: „But when the kind_
ness of God our Saviour, and his love toward man, appeared,
not by works done in righteousness, which we did ourselves,
but according to his mercy he saved us, through the washing
of regeneration and renewing of the Holy Spirit, which he
poured out upon us richly, through Jesus Christ our Saviour;
that, being justified by his grace, we might be made heirs ac_
cording to the hope of eternal life.” His theme was the grace
of God that bringeth salvation. That afternoon I took my text
from Titus 2:11_12: „For the grace of God hath appeared,
bringing salvation to all men, instructing us, to the intent that,
denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly
and righteously and godly in this present world.” He pre_
sented the grace of God, but he presented a conclusion that
the grace of God does not teach. I showed that that very
grace of God that he commended so highly taught that right
here in this present evil world we should live soberly and
righteously and godly. He stopped at verse 7, and I read on
a little: „Faithful is the saying, and concerning these things
I desire that thou affirm confidently, to the end that they who
have believed God may be careful to maintain good works.” So
I preceded his text with Titus 2:11ff., and followed it with the
next verse and caught him between the upper and nether mill_
stones and ground him to powder. Finding that he was ir_
reformable, I never did rest satisfied until that Baptist
preacher was out of the ministry.
I would not make the impression for one moment that we
are not saved by grace through faith and that not of our_
selves; it is the gift of God, and our works must not be asso_
ciated with grace in order to our justification in God’s sight
but I would teach that this doctrine of salvation by faith has
this end in view, that the justified man should perform good
works; that we are created unto good works. So those are
the first warnings. I might select another scripture: „If any
man be in Christ, he is a new creation.” There was an old
man that he derived through Adam. In Christ there was a
new man. Having shown that by the creative power of God’s
Spirit, we pass from the old man to the new man, he imme_
diately adds, „put on therefore the new man in righteousness
and holiness.” It is easy to see as a conclusion from this salva_
tion by grace, that we should render loving service to each
other. We are children of God by faith. What then? Shall
we fight? Shall we devour each other, or shall we render
to each other the service of love? Those Galatian churches
were as much noted for fighting each other as the
Irishmen at a wake are said to be – a regular „Kilkenny cat”
fight. Paul says that that is a false deduction from the doc_
trine he had been teaching. While on that point he used this
expression, „The whole law is fulfilled in one word, even in
this: Thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself.” What is
meant there by „fulfilled”? Does it mean that if I love my
neighbor that I have obeyed the commandment, „Thou shalt
love the Lord thy God with all thy heart”? If it doesn’t
mean that, what does it mean? The whole law is filled up,
filled full in this, „Thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself”
that is, this is the last part of the summary that Moses gives.
The first part is, „Love the Lord thy God, etc.,” that is, we
fill it full if we love our neighbor as ourselves. It is the com_
monest thing to hear people that want to evade duty to God
say that religion consists of being honest, paying our debts,
etc. But that is not the sense of this „fulfill.” It completes,
fills full the other half of it that had been filled before. For
instance, if it takes four pecks to make a bushel, the fourth
peck fills the measure, if the other three have been put in.
There is a remarkable passage misinterpreted by Alexander
Campbell, viz.: I Timothy 1:5 (King James Version): „But
the end of the commandment is love out of a pure heart and
a good conscience and faith unfeigned.” What is meant by
„the end of the commandment”? When we say the end we
are not denying that there is a beginning. The end of a com_
mandment is love out of a pure heart, out of a good conscience,
out of faith unfeigned. There we get the other element that
shows the ‘idea of filling up, filling full. The love that the
outsider talks about is unknown in the Bible. Here it is – a
love that springs from faith; faith brings a good con_
science and that good conscience leads to a pure heart and
a pure heart leads to love. So the end of the commandment
is love out of a pure heart, out of a good conscience, out of
faith unfeigned.
The third warning that he gives is that being justified by
faith our walk must be in the Spirit not in the flesh. We are
not justified by faith if we walk after what is fleshly and not
the spiritual, and if we have drawn from the doctrine of
justification by faith any such conclusion as that, then we have
misinterpreted the doctrine.
He presents two kinds of fruit, as follows: „Walk in the
Spirit but not in the flesh.” What is it to walk in the Spirit?
„The fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering,
kindness) goodness, faithfulness, meekness, self_control;
against such there is no law.” What is the fruit of the flesh?
„The works of the flesh are manifest, which are these: fornix_
cation, uncleanness) lasciviousness, idolatry, sorcery, enmities,
strife, jealousies, wraiths, factions, divisions, parties, envies,
drunkenness, revels, and such like.” And to cap the climax
he says that the man that does these things shall never enter
the kingdom of heaven. He is saying to them, „You must not
make the mistake that by mere intellectual perception of doc_

trial truth you have therefore exercised the faith of the gos-
We may put it down as settled that no religion is worth a
cent that does not make a man better than he was before; a
son a better son, a father a better father, a mother a better
mother, a daughter a better daughter.
If it doesn’t produce good fruits, John the Baptist tells us
that „every tree that bringeth forth not good fruit shall be
hewn down and cast into the fire.”
We now come to chapter 6, which is divided into two para_
graphs. The first paragraph is verses 1_10, and presents a
case of discipline, or a case where the man, though a Chris_
tian, has committed an offense: „Brethren, even if a man be
overtaken in any trespass, ye who are spiritual, restore such a
one in a spirit of gentleness; looking to thyself, lest thou also
be tempted.” We must not draw the conclusion that because
Paul said just before, „I forewarn you that they that practice
these things shall not inherit the kingdom of God,” he means
that to step aside once is fatal. As proof that he doesn’t mean
that, he supposes a case of a man that has been overtaken by a
I was at a church conference once and three cases were
presented, all of which claimed to be cases „overtaken in a
fault.” They asked my opinion and I said, „Brethren, there
is such a thing as being overtaken by a fault, and there is
such a thing as a man overtaking a fault; when he sees it
plainly and follows it until he overtakes it then he is not over_
taken in a fault. One of your cases is a case of ‘overtaken by a
fault,’ another case the fellow overtakes the fault, and your
third case is a mixture. It reminds me of a McClelland sad_
dle. We don’t know when we see it whether we are meeting
it or overtaking it. It is the same in the rear as in the front.”
The second thing is to harmonize verse 2 with verse 5:
„Bear ye one another’s burdens, and so fulfil the law of Christ
. . . For each man shall bear his own burden.” Is there any
contradiction in the meaning? One case is evidently different
in the meaning from the other case. What is the difference
in the meaning?
The third point that he presents is this – verse 6: „But let
him that is taught in the word communicate unto him
that teacheth in all good things.” Or I will put it in plainer
language: „Let the church member who is spiritually in_
structed contribute in money or kindness, to the one that in_
structs him.” There are some people who are so afraid of
being misunderstood – that what they preach will be assigned
to a motive that they do not have, they leave it out of their
I heard a man say once, „I just simply can’t preach on
the money question; I will be misunderstood. If the brethren
want to help me they can do it; if they don’t want to help
me, then it can go.” Paul was Just as sensitive a man as we
are, and he knew that they that preached the gospel should
live of the gospel. One of the principal things that the Gala_
tians were trying to do was to stop this collection. He says,
„See that ye abound in that grace as well as those other
graces.” I have seen Christians that could shout, „Fly abroad,
thou mighty gospel,” and when the contribution box was
passed around they shut their eyes for fear they would see the
wings with which it is to fly.
A man is sent with a message for God and the responsibility
on him is not to vary one jot or tittle on that message. He
ought to be able, as Paul said he was, to be free from the blood
of all men because he had not shunned to declare the whole
counsel of God.
They accused him of manipulating a big collection; while
he did not do it himself, they said he did it through Titus.
He knew these questions would arise because those who are
evil_minded do suspect. They would suspect the Lord or
the angels from heaven.

We cannot evade being suspected of evil. We are to take
pains to live right, and so live that we may appear to live right,
but that will not exempt us from being criticised.
I have oftentimes wondered at the goodness of this man,
that he could say upon that subject what he did concerning_
the crowd that hated him, even the church at Ephesus. See
I Timothy 6:17: „Charge them that are rich in this present
world, that they be not high_minded nor have their hope set
on the uncertainty of riches, but on God, who giveth us richly
all things to enjoy.” And he charges them, „that they be
ready to distribute, that they be willing to contribute.” It
took pluck to preach that to these people, for they were high_
minded, because they were rich, but he was to present that
to them as if putting them on their oath: „0 rich man, in the
name of Christ) I put you on your oath before God, be not
high_minded but rich in good works as well as in money. Be
ready to distribute as well as to make the money.” Plucky
The next thought is in verses 7_8: „Be not deceived.” A
point upon which we might be deceived is what follows that
doctrine. „Be not deceived; God is not mocked.” He is not
fooled. „For whatsoever a man soweth that shall he also
reap.” We can’t reverse the natural law, and we can’t reverse
the spiritual law. In both the spiritual and the natural realm
there is a crop between the sowing and the harvest. If we
sow weeds we cannot look for a barley crop. The crop is
going to be according to the seed that we put in the ground,
and let us not be deceived; we can’t fool God. He applies
that: „He that soweth unto his own flesh shall of the flesh
reap corruption; he that soweth unto the Spirit shall of the
Spirit reap eternal life.” The harvest is going to correspond
with what we sow.
He advances to another thought of incalculable importance.
We are justified by faith, and in view of that justification by

the grace of God which teaches us not only to live soberly and
righteously and godly in this present world, but also to do well,
he exhorts; „Be not weary in well doing, for in due season
we shall reap if we faint not.”
I remember once preaching from that text on an important
occasion. We had just had a great meeting; hundreds of peo_
ple had sturdily commenced to do right from a motive of love
to God. Then they began to drop off; they got tired. „Let
us not weary in well doing.”
It is that great persistence that wins, notwithstanding that it
is an uphill path; notwithstanding that we have wind and
tide against us. Anybody can float down stream, a dead fish
can do that, but it takes a live fish to go up stream. „Let
us not be weary in well doing.” He gives the reasons: first,
we shall reap; second, we shall reap in due season. We may
not reap tomorrow, or next week or next year, but at the ap_
pointed season (and every seed has its season), in due season
we shall reap.
Having expounded that section I associate it with I Corin_
thians 15:58: „Wherefore, my beloved brethren, be ye stead_
fast, unmovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord,
forasmuch as ye know that your labor is not vain in the
Lord.” Then with that I put the psalm which says, „They
that sow in tears shall reap in joy. He that goeth forth and
weepeth bearing precious seed, shall doubtless come again
with rejoicing, bringing his sheaves with him.” I comment
on that passage in Psalms. First, there is activity; the peo_
ple go forth; we must venture out. Second, they went bearing
precious seed; we must go out with the word of God, which is
the seed – „he that goeth forth bearing precious seed and
weeping.” We must go in earnest. Some people think tears
are unmanly, and some tears are, but not all. „Jesus wept.”
Did Christ o’er sinner weep,
And shall our cheeks be dry?

It was one of the most glorious testimonies of Henry of
Navarre by Macaulay:
He looked upon the foeman and his glance was stern and high;
He looked upon his comrades and a tear was in his eye.
That is his exhortation against weariness in well_doing, be_
because the labor is not in vain. We may fail in other things,
but if we take the gospel, if we take it earnestly, if we sow
in tears, the heavens may fall, but our harvest will come
without a shadow of a doubt. „Doubtless he shall return,
bringing his sheaves with him.” It is that harvest home,
when the laborer comes bringing his sheaves with him, to
which the mind of the preacher should be often turned.
Paul says to the Thessalonians, „Ye are my crown of re_
joicing in the time of Jesus Christ” – „bringing his sheaves
with him,” not coming up to heaven empty_handed. Com_
ing up he says, „Lord, this man in yonder world I led to thee;
Lord, this broken heart I healed; Lord, this orphan I com_
forted, bringing his sheaves with him.” His association with
him of every rightful tear that is shed, every good deed that
he has accomplished, is one of the most precious things in
connection with the gospel of Jesus Christ. Then he says,
„As we have opportunity, let us work that which is good
toward all men, and especially toward them that are of the
household of the faith.” „As we have opportunity.” Oppor_
tunity! Dr. Richard Fuller, in a great sermon before the
Southern Baptist Convention, gave a picture of opportunity
as with swift wing, no bird of the air flying so fast, passing
by and never coming back. „Wherefore as we have oppor_
tunity” means that we must be wide_awake.
We come now to the last paragraph, and what is the mean_
ing of it? „See with how large letters I write unto you with
mine own hand.” The King James version says, „You see
how large a letter I have written, etc.” Galatians isn’t a big
letter, but what Paul says is, „See with how large letters I
write you with mine own hand.”
I have been very much amused in contrasting the views of
Farrar and Lightfoot. Generally, Lightfoot is much better
than Farrar, but Farrar gets the best of him on the meaning
of that passage. Lightfoot says the meaning is „I am writ_
ing to you about weighty matters, and I wrote you a great
big letter.” He had to force that into it. It isn’t there. Paul’s
acute eye trouble is evident from a previous expression. He
says, „You would have taken your eyes and given them to
me, if you could.” He was writing with his own hand, and a
man that is nearly blind has to make big sprawling letters,
and there is a touching thought in it. „Do you remember
why I have to write with large letters? Don’t you remember
when I was groping in my blindness, and your sympathy was
so tender you would have given me your eyes? Now you
see with what large letters I am writing.” I think Farrar’s
explanation much more reasonable. Quickly Paul takes up
his argument! He would take up an argument in the midst of
his „amen” if he thought of something that he should have
said that he had not said. He is giving a contrast between
himself and these that insist on being circumcised. He says,
(1) that they do this to avoid Jewish persecution, (2) that
they do it that they may glory in the flesh, and (3) that they
don’t do it from love of the law, for they know that they don’t
keep the law; that circumcision obligates one to keep the
whole law.
Then he represents his glory in contrast with theirs: „But
far be it from me to glory, save in the cross of our Lord Jesus
Christ, through which the world hath been crucified unto me,
and I unto the world. For neither is circumcision anything
nor uncircumcision.” Then he adds, that they should so
walk according to this canon (canon means rule) and as they
should walk by this rule, circumcision or uncircumcision
would avail nothing, but a new creature, everything.
„Henceforth [that is, having presented this attack on me in
2 Corinthians, and in Galatians, and having made this reply 1
let no man trouble me,” as if to say, „I don’t want to go into
this matter any more.” „Now why ought not ye trouble me?”
„Because,” he says, „I bear branded on my body the marks
of Jesus.” In other words, „I am covered all over with scars;
the Roman lictors have smitten me with rods; the Jews have
scourged me and left me for dead; once I fought with wild
beasts in the arena, and I count these marks of Jesus aa
Christ’s brand of ownership.” It is a very beautiful thought.

1. What warning does Paul give against false conclusions from the
doctrine of justification by faith?
2. What is antinomianism?
3. Give several scriptures which disprove it.
4. What is meant by „fulfilled” in „The law is fulfilled in ‘Thou
shalt love thy neighbor as thyself „?
5. Explain „end of the commandment” in „The end of the command_
ment is love.”
6. Contrast the fruits of the flesh and the fruits of the Spirit.
7. Explain „overtaken in a fault.”
8. Harmonize „Bear ye one another’s burdens” and „Each man shall
bear his own burden.”
9. What the teaching here on ministerial support?
10. Give the law of sowing and reaping.
11. Take Galatians 6:9; I Corinthians 15:58; Psalm 126:5_6 and give
a brief outline of an evangelistic address.
12. What is opportunity? Illustrate it.
13. What is the meaning of „large letters” in 6:11?
14. Give three reasons for circumcision on the part of those who were
troubling the Galatians.
15. Contrast Paul’s glory with theirs.
16. What the meaning of „henceforth let no man trouble me”?


The prophet Daniel gives a forecast of the rise of five con_
secutive, great world empires: Babylonian, Persian, Greek,
Roman, and the kingdom of God as set up by our Lord. He
shows how the people of Israel came in touch with each em_
pire in turn. In this discussion we need to trace out, in his_
torical order, the salient points of contact between Israel and
Rome, Daniel’s fourth world empire. The first notable con_
tact was when the Jews were resisting the aggressions of the
Seleucids who, with Antioch in Syria as a capital and the head
of one of the four divisions of Alexander’s Greek Empire, and
who in contending with the Ptolemys of Egypt, another divi_
sion of the Greek Empire, conceived it necessary to occupy the
intervening Holy Land. Their aggression culminated in the
attempt of Antiochus Epiphanes to destroy the Jewish reli_
gion. The apocryphal book of Maccabees and Josephus give
a vivid history of this conflict. It was in this struggle be_
tween these parts of the divided Greek Empire that Rome,
rapidly rising to supreme power, intervened and became a
staunch friend to the Jews, crushed between the two. The
Romans for a long time were faithful to all treaty obligations
toward the Jews, but as the Jews developed internal parties
among themselves, one or the other, from time to time, would
appeal to Rome. In this way Rome became the umpire of
Jewish contentions, and finally the master. The whole Hero_
dian dynasty were dependents of Rome.
About 70 B.C. Pompey came into power and in 63 B.C. cap_
tured Jerusalem and led away to Rome multitudes of Jewish
captives who, though enslaved were usually kindly treated,
and many of them who were set free became Roman citi_
zens. Probably in this way Paul’s father became a Roman
citizen, so that Paul himself was a citizen free_born. In the
development of the history, a vast number of Jews were settled
in Rome, having a special Jewish quarter in the city beyond
the Tiber. The Roman classics abound with references to the
Jews at Rome: Tacitus, Suetonius, Martial, Juvenal, Horace,
Persius, Cicero, and others. It is a notable fact that 8,000
Jews at Rome protested against Archelaus being allowed to
have all the dominion of his father Herod. This led to a divi_
sion of Herod’s kingdom into four parts; hence the name
tetrarch, the ruler of a fourth part, to which we have refer_
ences in the life of our Lord. The Jewish restlessness and
turbulence led finally to the appointment of procurators, one
of whom was Pilate. Moreover, the points of Jewish contact
„with Rome multiplied as they also came in contact with the
rising fifth world empire, the spiritual kingdom of our Lord,
and culminated A.D. 70 in the destruction of Jerusalem and
the Temple by Titus, and the wider dispersion of the Jewish
people among the nations.
Our next historical question is, How was Christianity es_
tablished in the city of Rome? Doubtless many Jews from
Rome attended the annual feasts in the time of our Lord and
became, to some extent, acquainted with the issue between our
Lord’s kingdom and the ruling part of Jerusalem. It is cer_
tain that, among the great number of Jews gathered together
from various nations, Roman Jews and proselytes heard
Peter’s great sermon on the day of Pentecost, some of whom
doubtless were converted on that day. Through these con_
verts on their return the gospel may have been carried to
Rome. It is much more probable that Stephen’s ministry
may have sent converts to Rome, particularly after the disper_
sion following Saul’s persecution. We, at least, note in the
salutation of this letter certain kindred of Paul who were in
Christ before him. This very fact may account for the
bitterness and madness of Paul’s persecution of the church,

since under Stephen’s mighty power a breach had been made
into his family circle. The kindred, we know, were in Rome
at the time this letter was written. Then Paul’s acquaint_
ance and friendship with Aquila and Priscilla banished from
Rome by Claudius would increase his knowledge of the per_
sonnel of Roman Christians. Moreover, his great meetings
held in Syria, Cilicia, Asia, Macedonia, and Achaia neces_
sarily brought many Romans, both Jews and Gentiles, under
the influence of his ministry. Hence we note in this letter salu_
tations to his converts in Asia. The travel and traffic to and
from Rome along the lines of the great Roman roads, ex_
tending to the boundaries of the empire, would continually
enlarge Paul’s knowledge of the Christians at Rome, whether
Jews or Gentiles. In this natural way we account for the inti_
mate personal salutations at the close of this letter.
There was no one central church at Rome. They had no
common meeting place, but there were several churches meet_
ing in private houses. At least three, we may gather from
this letter, particularly the one in the house of Aquila and
Priscilla. Hence the letter is not addressed to the church at
Rome, but to all the faithful in Rome. In accounting for
the establishing of Christianity here we must not lose sight
of the labors of Christian women, whom he calls fellow work_
ers, so manifest in the salutation.
It is a lying tradition that makes Peter the founder of
Christianity at Rome and the first bishop of the church there.
As we see from this letter there was no central church and
there was only a possibility of Peter’s indirect influence
through his Pentecostal sermon. Stephen’s influence in this
direction is more to be credited than Peter’s, and Paul’s much
more than both of them. Aquila and Priscilla should have
the credit of establishing the first church there, and the noble
Christian women saluted by Paul share the honors with all
of them. The Romanists indeed contend that Peter went to
Rome immediately after the events recorded in Acts 12:1_18,
and remained twenty years. But this contention contradicts
the scriptures, for we find him soon thereafter at the council,
Acts 15, and still further afterwards at Antioch, Galatians
2:11, and it may be inferred from I Corinthians 9:5 that Peter
was at that time traveling as an apostle to the circumcision.
And so as late as his first letter we find him in Babylon where
were many Jews. That he was not at Rome when Paul wrote
this letter is evident from the absence of any salutation to him
among so many; nor there when Paul arrived more than two
years later as a prisoner. There is no reference to him as
being in Rome in the letters of either the first or last impris_
onment there of Paul.
It has also been contended that the household churches
cited by Paul in this letter were only worshiping and not or_
ganized bodies, but this is contrary to the meaning of the
word „church,” and also to the uniform apostolic method of
ordaining elders in every congregation and otherwise fitting
them up for housekeeping. They were not like cowmen on
the range marking, branding, and letting loose. Indeed, there
is only one passage in the New Testament that at all connects
Peter personally with Rome, and that one only by a more
than questionable interpretation, and, moreover, written long
after this letter, viz.: I Peter 5:13. The contention is that by
„She that is in Babylon” Peter means heathen Rome, mystical
Babylon, a style followed by John in Revelation. But John
writes a confessedly mystical book; not of this kind is Peter’s
first letter. Moreover, John’s mystical Babylon is not heathen
Rome, but the apostate Christian church – the woman in pur_
ple and scarlet. If Peter had been at Rome when Paul wrote
this letter, why was he not saluted by Paul, as well as so many
inferior ones? If he were there when Paul arrived as a
prisoner, the silence of Acts is unaccountable. If he were
there when Paul wrote the third group of letters during his
first imprisonment, the silence of Philippians, Philemon,
Colossians, Ephesians. and Hebrews is marvelous. If Peter
was in Rome during Paul’s second imprisonment the silence
of 2 Timothy is marvelous. Another argument against Peter’s
using Babylon in the sense of Rome, is that in his second let_
ter, presumably from the same place, he quotes Paul’s letter
to the Romans using the phrase, „hath written unto you.”
If living at Rome he could not have been writing to Rome and
quoting what Paul had written to them. The author does
believe that the traditional evidence is sufficient to prove
Peter’s martyrdom at Rome, but it is mixed with so much
incredible and evidently manufactured matter – manufac_
tured for a later purpose – that the real evidence is discounted
by its bad company. At any rate, Christianity was estab_
lished in the city of Rome before this letter was written,
though certainly not by the present personal ministry of any
apostle. Let the rank and file of the scattered disciples „who ‘
went everywhere preaching the word” have their lawful credit
here, as at Antioch and many other places. The claim that
Peter was the first bishop at Rome is in every way absurd and
unscriptural. The apostles never exercised the office of bishop,
or pastor, of a particular church, not even at Jerusalem.
Their office was general as contradistinguished from the local
office of bishop, or pastor.
We next consider the author, date, and place of the letter.
Paul’s authorship has never been seriously questioned by the
scholarship of Christendom. The letter avows it in the begin_
ning, and every internal evidence and all its relations to Gala_
tians and Corinthians support it. The date is largely
determined by its relation to Corinthians and Galatians. In 2
Corinthians and Galatians he replies to a challenge of his
apostolic authority with the internal evidence overwhelming_
ly in favor of Galatians following Corinthians. In Galatians
and Romans he discusses justification by faith, with the in_
ternal evidence overwhelmingly in favor of Romans following
Galatians, Romans being developed from Galatians. As
Ephesians, the more general discussion, follows Colossians,
so Galatians, being an offhand, fiery, impulsive letter, is fol_
lowed by Romans – a calm, deliberative enlargement. The
parallels between the two letters are very striking and abun_
dant. The reader may find in Lightfoot on Galatians, or in
the „Cambridge Bible”, a fair statement of these remarkable
parallels. So, we may say that Paul wrote this letter from the
house of Gaius at Corinth about A.D. 58. Dr. Robertson’s ar_
gument for this date in his „Student’s Chronological New
Testament” is very fine. Lightfoot’s arguments from internal
evidence on the relative order of Corinthians, Galatians, and
Romans is extraordinarily strong.
The occasion is evident from the letter itself. He is the
guest of Gaius in the city of Corinth. He has concluded his
labors in those parts, and is about to make his final visit to
Jerusalem, carrying the alms for the poor saints there which
he has gathered in the great collection in Macedonia, Achaia,
and Asia Minor. After this Jerusalem visit he purposes a
tour into Spain via Rome. To prepare the way for this forth_
coming visit to Rome, he writes this letter, having an oppor-
tunity of sending it by Phoebe, a deaconess of the church at
Cenchrea, the eastern Corinthian seaport.
But the purpose of the letter goes far beyond the occasion.
The attack on his apostolic authority, and the very heart of
his gospel by the Judaizing Christians whom he has been re_
sisting locally and in a somewhat offhand manner in his
letters to the Corinthians and Galatians, he now realizes to
be not only more than a local matter, more than a personal
attack on his authority, but an incorrigible, far_reaching,
fundamental assault on the whole plan of salvation by grace.
Impulsive, offhand, and local replies do not meet the exigencies
of the situation. There must be a calm, dispassionate, and
elaborate exposition of the whole plan of salvation sufficient
for every emergency and for all time to come. Such a dis_
cussion would likely accomplish the greater good and attain
the wider circulation if addressed to the saints at the imperial
capital, from which as a center radiated influences to all the
circumference of the world. Moreover, this very discussion,
forwarded at once to Rome, might anticipate and forestall the
Judaizing tendency steadily moving westward from Jerusa_
lem. Hence there is nothing local in his argument. The con_
cluding part, with its personal salutations, might well be left
out of copies sent abroad, as we actually find to be the case
in some later manuscripts. Hence, while it is a letter, it is
much more than a letter – it is a doctrinal treatise, a veritable
body of systematic theology. While Ephesians, developed
from the more local letter to the Colossians, is of the nature
of a general circular, and in this respect somewhat resembling
this letter, and while Hebrews bears resemblance in that it is
an elaborate discussion of the two covenants, yet addressed to
Christian Jews only, this letter is unlike anything else in the
New Testament.
It is the most fundamental, vital, logical, profound, and
systematic discussion of the whole plan of salvation in all
the literature of the world. It touches all men; it is universal
in its application; it roots, not only in man’s creation and
fall, but also in the timeless purposes and decrees of God be_
fore the world was, and fruits in the eternity after this world’s
It considers man as man and not as Jew. or Greek. It con_
siders law, not as expressed in statute on Mount Sinai, but
as antedating it and inherent in the divine purpose when man
was created in the image of God. It considers sin, not in cere_
monial defilement nor as an overt act, but as lawlessness of
spirit and nature. It considers condemnation, not as personal
to an individual offender because of many overt acts, but as a
race result from one offense of the one head of „the race.
Consequently, it considers justification, the opposite of con_
demnation, not as an impossible acquittal of a fallen sinner on
account of his many acts of righteousness but as resting on
one act of righteousness through the Second Head of the race.
It considers, not an impossible morality coming from a cor_
rupt and depraved nature, but a morality arising from re_
generation, sanctification, resurrection, and glorification. It
considers, not the divine government and providence as here
and there looking in on particular men, in special times and
given localities, but as an all_comprehensive sweep from
eternity to eternity reaching with microscopial minuteness
every detail of the nature of man, and universal in its control
of all forces, and all subsidiary to the original divine purpose.
The God of this letter is God indeed – not a partial, local
deity, not blind chance, not cold, inexorable fate, but a pur_
poseful, omniscient, omnipresent, omnipotent, infinitely holy,
and infinitely loving God.
The integrity of the book has been questioned as follows:
1. Some have thought that the book should close, as they
say, with the argument at 14:23, but chapter 15 carries on the
thought of chapter 14.
2. Others have thought more plausibly that it should close
at 15:33, with the benediction there. They think chapter 16,
with its numerous salutations, should close the letter to the
Ephesians where Paul had more personal knowledge. But
that letter is a circular letter and designedly leaves out local
references. Indeed, it would fit better to be called the letter
to the Laodiceans.
3. These contentions are somewhat supported by the fact
that later manuscript copies omit the concluding sections. But
the oldest and best authorities give us the book as it is, and
there are natural grounds, or reasons, for the omission of the
conclusion in later copies. On the very highest external au_
thority we may take the whole book as it stands. And we
have already accounted for Paul’s large acquaintance in
I must not close this introductory chapter without calling
attention to the connection between the Old Testament and
New Testament as shown by the great number of Old Testa-
ment quotations in the book. There are more than three score
of these quotations in this book, covering an unusually wide
range of books. Genesis is quoted five times; Exodus, four;
Leviticus, twice; Deuteronomy, five; I Kings, twice; Psalms,
fifteen; Proverbs, twice; Isaiah, nineteen; Ezekiel, once;
Hosea, twice; Joel, once; Nahum, once; Habakkuk, once;
Malachi, once; and there are others more indirectly used.
It is also notable that Paul sometimes quotes from the He_
brew, at other times from the Septuagint, and sometimes fol_
lows the spiritual impulse in giving the true sense in his own
We now come to the subject of analysis, better illustrated
in this book than in any other Bible book. A noted writer has
said, „Analysis presents the classification of correlated truth.”
Professor Agassiz says, „Thorough classification is but an
interpretation of the thoughts of the Creator.” Dr. H. Harvey
says, „The Bible should be studied analytically. A cursory
reading of the Scriptures does not interpret them; they must
be carefully analyzed if one would penetrate into their full
meaning.” Dr. Francis Wayland says, „(1) We must have a
knowledge of the several parts of which it is composed. But
this alone gives a very imperfect conception. (2) We must
also understand how these parts are put together. This will
greatly increase knowledge; but it will still be imperfect.
(3) It is necessary, therefore, that we should have a concep_
tion of the relation which the several parts sustain to each
other, that is, of the effect which every part was designed to
produce upon every other part. When we have arrived at
this idea, and have combined it with the other ideas just
mentioned, then, and not till then, is knowledge complete. It
is manifest that this last notion – that of the relation which
the parts sustain to each other – is frequently of more im_
portance than either of the others.” Dr. Shedd says, „All
truth is logical. It is logically connected and related, and that
mind is methodical which detects this relation and connection,
as it were, by instinct. Now, a methodizing mind is one which
by discipline and practice has reached that degree of philo_
sophic culture in which these systematizing laws work
spontaneously, by their own exceeding lawfulness) and instinc_
tively develop, in a systematic and consecutive manner, the
whole truth of a subject.”
Bearing these reflections in mind, I submit for consideration
four analyses of the letter to the Romans, three of them here,
and my own later. The first is by Albert Arnold Bennet, of
the Baptist Theological Seminary of Japan, and is by all odds
the best in many respects. In his book we have three parallel
columns, the right hand column containing the Greek text
according to Westcott and Hort, the middle column the re_
vised translation verse by verse, and the first column the
analysis itself in detail, carried entirely through the book. It
is the most remarkable specimen of analysis I have ever
known. I am very proud that a Baptist is the author of it.
Who would expect such a thing from a Baptist Theological
Seminary in Japan?

(Albert Arnold Bennet, Baptist Theological Seminary, Japan.)
1. The Gospel plan of salvation by Faith (1_8).
1. The importance of the gospel shown by the moral condition of
man, both Jew and Gentile (1_2).
2. The gospel plan of justification by faith (3_5).
3. The gospel plan of the sanctification and glorification of those justi_
fied by faith (6_8).
II. The problem of Israel’s unbelief (a reconciliation of the gospel
plan of salvation set forth in 1_8, with the seeming rejection of God’8
chosen people, 9_11.)
1. Israel’s unbelief and God’s severity (9_10).
2. Israel’s unbelief and God’s goodness (II).
III. Faith applied; or, the duties of those who have been saved by
faith (12_16).
1. (Of broadest application) Duties, individual or common, belonging
to every Christian, strong or weak (12_13).
2. (Of more limited application) Duties largely relative; especially
duties of the strong on account of the weak, 14_15.
3. (Of narrowest application) Greetings, and directions about fellow_
ship, mainly designed for the original readers only, (but suggestive, by
inference, of application on a broader scale), 16.
The next outline is by Dr. A. T. Robertson:
Introduction (1:1_17).
1. The Doctrine of a righteousness from God (1:18-11:36).
(a) Its necessity (1:18-3:20).
(b) Its nature (3:21 – 4:25).
(c) lts results(5:l – 11:36).
(1) It makes possible peace and joy (5:1_11).
(2) It is analogous to the relation of Adam to the race, 5:12_21.
(3) It should lead to greater holiness (6_8).
(4) It throws light on the salvation of Jew and Gentile (9:11).
2. General and special exhortations growing out of a righteousness
from God, 12:1 to 15:13.
3. Personal matters (15:14 to 16:23).
The closing doxology (16_25_27).
The third analysis is by my lamented and scholarly colleague. Dr.
John S. Tanner:
Introduction 1:1_17
1) 1:1_7, Salutation.
(1) l:la, Author’s name and character.
(2) l:lb, 6, His mission (apostleship).
a. l:lb. Source (divinely called).
b. 1:2_4, Nature: Gospel.
a) 1:2, Fulfillment of prophecy.
b) 1:3f, Concerning Christ.
c. 1:5a, Agency of Appointment (Christ)
d. l:5bf, Sphere: To all Gentiles, including Romana
(3) 1:7, Salutation proper.
2) 1:8_15, Paul’s deep personal interest in the Roman Christians
(1) 1:8, Thanksgiving for their faith.
(2) 1:9_15, His desire to visit them.
a. 1:9f. Had prayer to this end.
b. l:llf, Motive of the visit
c. 1:13, Had often purposed to come
d. l:14f. The desire prompted by his obligation to all classes
3) l:16f. Theme of the letter: The gospel the power of God unto
salvation universally available through righteousness of faith
I. 1:18 – 8:39, The plan of salvation.
1. 1:18 – 4:25, Method of justification.
1) 1:18 – 3:20, Not by works of law (legalism) because guilt and
condemnation are universal
(1) 1:18_32, Case of the Gentiles.
a. 1:18, The wrath of God abides upon them; because
b. 1:19_23, They refused the light given them
a) 1:19f. They had a revelation of God in nature and conscience
b) 1:21_23, But they consciously turned from him to idolatry
c. 1:24_32, The result was to plunge them into the depths of guilt
(a) 1:24_28, God withdrew his beneficent restraints
(b) 1:29_32, Their depravity was deepened
(2) 2:1 – 3:19, Case of the Jews
a. 2:1_16, Argument stated: God’8 judgment will be on the basis of
moral conduct
(a) 2:1_5, Folly of arrogant confidence ill special divine favor.
(b) 2:6_11, Judgment will have reference to moral conduct in view
of the amount of light possessed
(c) 2:12_16, It is obedience, not to the letter, but to the spirit of the
Jaw that is availing.
b. 2:17 – 3:8, Objections answered:
(a) 2:17_24. First objection: Being possessors and teachers of the
law is assurance of their acceptance. Ans. – Additional sin in teaching
what they do not practice.
(b) 2:25_29. Second objection: Circumcision is availing. Ans. Effi_
cient circumcision is not of the flesh but of the heart.
(c) 3:lf. Third objection: Then the Jew has no advantage. Ana. –
They have much advantage, particularly that they are the recipients
of divine revelation.
(d) 3:3f. Fourth objection: For a Jew to be lost would annul the
promises, Ans. – Not so.
(e) 3:5_8. Fifth objection: Unjust in God to punish sin that displays
his righteousness. Ans. – This is absurd.
c. 3:9_19. Conclusion: Jew as well as Gentile is hopelessly lost.
(a) 3:9a. The Jew has no advantage in the matter of justification;
(b) 3:9b, 18, Both alike are under sin
(c) 3:19, Purpose of the law is to convict of sin
(3) 3:20, Therefore, legalism as a method of justification is a failure.
2) 3:21 – 4:25, It is by grace through a righteousness of faith, avail_
able alike to Jews and Gentiles
(1) 3:21_26, This method stated and described
a. 3:21_24, Its character
(a) 3:21a, Apart from law
(b) 3:21b, A righteousness of God
(c) 3:21c. Witnessed by the Old Testament scriptures
(d) 3:220, Through faith in Christ
(e) 3:22b. Universal
(a) 3:226, Available to all
(b) 3:23, Needed by all
(f) 3:24, Distinctly gratuitous
b. 3:25f, Its basis: Propitiatory sacrifice of Christ
(a) 3:25n, A Propitiation provided by God
(b) 3:25bf, For the reconciliation of God’s righteousness and the sin_
ner’s justification
(2) 3:27 – 4:25, Its bearing upon Jewish conduct and faith
a. 3:27_30, Upon their conduct
(a) 3:27f, Condemns their pride
(b) 3:29f, Condemns their exclusiveness
b. 3:31 – 4:25, Upon their faith
(a) 3:31, Does not subvert but confirms the Old Testament law
(b) 4:1_25, Is not contradicted, but confirmed by the case of Abra_
(a) 4:1_8, Abraham was justified by faith and not by works
aa. 4:1_3, The scriptures so declare
bb. 4:4f, This excludes a condition of works.
cc. 4:6_8, Confirmed by the observation of David
(b) 4:9_12, Circumcision not a condition; for Abraham justified be_
fore” circumcision
(c) 4:13_22, The promise to Abraham was conditioned on faith, not
aa. 4:13, Statement of fact
bb. 4:14_17, A legal condition would annul the promise
cc. 4:18_22, The historical facts of the faith of Abraham
(d) 4:22_25, The method in Abraham’s case equally applicable to
all who believe on Christ
2. 5:1 to 8:39, The completion of salvation (sanctification), as based
upon this method of justification
(1) 5:1_21, The method of justification promises the completion of
the divine work of salvation
(1) 5:1_5, That it is by faith
a. 5:lf, Having received such a gift, we should realize our blessed
state and be confident of the consummation
b. 5:3_5, We should embrace gladly God’s trying means of discipline.
(2) .5:6_11, Christ’s sacrifice for us as rebels insures the completion of
his work of salvation in us as his children.
(3) 5:12_21, The same is further assured by the superiority of the
redemption in Christ over the loss in Adam
a. 5:12_17, (First parallel and contrast) Christ’s work more exten_
sive; efficient for the multiplied sins and sinners
b. 5:18_21, (Second parallel and contrast) Christ’s work more in_
tensive; overcomes both Adam’s sin and the sin of the individual de_
veloped through disobedience to the law
2) 6:1_23, This method of justification encourages not am but its
(1) 6:lfa, Proposition stated
(2) 6:2b_13, The change of personal relations involves a life of
righteousness with Christ and a death to sin
a. 6:2b_6, This is set forth in baptism
b. 6:7_13, As Christ’s death and resurrection were once for all, so
should be the believer’s death to sin and resurrection to righteousness.
(3) 6:14_20, That the believer has exchanged sin for grace as a
master which forbids that sin should longer dominate him.
(4) 6:21_23, The mutual antipathy of sin and grace are evident from
their opposite results, viz.: Death and eternal life
3) 7:1_25, The law a failure as an agency of sanctification.
(1) 7:1_6, The believer’s objection to the law has been annulled by
death, and he has entered into another companionship, viz.: A fruitful
one with Christ.
(2) 7:7_23, The law, though righteous in itself, is unable to produce
good works.
a. 7:7_13, In the unbeliever its effect is to manifest and aggravate
the presence and character of sin.
b. 7:14_23, In the believer likewise, it aggravates, but does not over_
come sin.
(3) 7:24f, Conclusion: Efficacy only in a personal relation to Christ.
(4) 8:1_27, The believer’s sanctification is accomplished by the guid_
ing and transforming work of the Holy Spirit.
(1) 8:1_8, He implants a disposition to holiness that freely attains
in life and conduct what was impracticable as obedience to law.
(2) 8:9_11, The resurrection of Christ is a guaranty of the renova_
tion and resurrection of those in whom the Spirit dwells.
(3) 8:12_17, The Spirit bears personal witness to the believer of
the latter’s sonship to God and joint inheritance with Christ.
(4) 8:18_27, The Spirit also prompts and guides to hopeful longing
and righteous supplication for the consummation.
(5) 8:28_30, Believers are the elect of God, PREDESTINED to be
called, justified, SANCTIFIED and GLORIFIED.
(6) 8:31_39, Triumphant peroration on the blessedness of the be_
1. 9:1 – 11:35, The apostasy and rejection of the Jews.
1) 9:1_5, Paul’s intense grief over the fact.
(2) 9:6 – 10_21, Moral responsibility for the fact.
(1) 9:6_29, God not culpable.
a. 9:6_13, His promise not broken.
(a) 9:6_8, The promise not given to all the natural seed of Abraham.
(b) 9:9_13, God’s plan of discrimination exemplified in the cases of
Isaac and Jacob.
b. 9:14_24, It could not transcend his absolute sovereign right.
(a) 9:14_18, Scripture proof that God’s acts are sovereign.
(b) 9:19_24, His right unimpeachable.
c. 9:25_29, That only a. fraction will be saved, is according to
(2) 9:30 – 10:21, The Jews themselves are to blame, for their rejection
was caused by their self_righteous unbelief.
a. 9:30 – 10:3, Their zeal for righteousness has been misdirected.
b. 10:4_13, The true way, viz., belief in Christ upon testimony of the
preached gospel, much simpler than the one they employed.
c. 10:14_21, Israel has heard and refused.
(a) 10:14f. Importance of preaching admitted.
(b) 10:16. Israel did not believe.
(c) 10:17f, Having heard the gospel.
(d) 10:19_21, And having been warned in prophecy of their apostasy.
(3) 11_1_32, Limitations of the fact.
(1) 11:1_10. It is only partial.
a. l:lfa. The salvation of Paul himself proves it.
b. ll:2b_4. The doctrine of a remnant exemplified in the experience
of Elijah.
c. 11 :5_10, God makes sure of a few by election of grace.
(2) 11:11_32, It in only temporary and conditional.
a. 11:11_24, Israel will surely be redrafted upon his native stump.
b. 11:25_32, His lopping off is only a part of the divine plan of uni_
versal mercy.
(3) 11:33_35. Exclamation over the supreme wisdom and knowledge
of God.
2. 12:1 – 15:13, Reflections and exhortations on Christian conduct.
(1) 12:1 – 13:14, On the general conduct proper for a Christian.
(1) 12: 1f, As a child of God.
(2) 12:3_21, As a member of the church.
(3) 13:1_7, As a citizen.
(4) 13:8_10, As a member of society.
(5) 13:11_14, As one who expects the judgment.
2) 14:1 – 15:13, Special directions concerning non_essentials of faith.
(1) 14:l_13a, One no right to interfere with another.
(2) 14:13b – 15:13, Obligation to self_restraint for the sake of others
on basis of love and edification.
CONCLUSION: 15:14ù16:27.
(1) 15:14_16, Paul’s apology to the Roman Christiana for his letter
to them.
(2) 15:17_22, Explanation of his past course.
(3) 15:23_29, His plan of future operations.
(4) 15:30_33, His request for their prayers.
(5) 16: If, Commendation of Phoebe.
(6) 16:3_24, Salutations.
(7) 16:25_27, Benediction.

Having these three analyses before us, and all of them good,
it may seem immodest to submit my own. But there are to
my mind overwhelming reasons arising from defects in the
others, particularly on chapters 3_8ùthe most vital in the
book. But my own analysis will appear in the body of the

1. Of what group of great letters is this a climax?
2. What prophet forecast the succession of five world empires, what
the name of each, what the Jewish touch with each, especially what the salient points of Jewish contact with the Romans in historic order, and who the most important Jewish writer of this history?
3. How may we account for the multitude of Jews in the city of
Rome, what position did they occupy there, and what Roman classical authors refer to them?
4. How was Christianity established in Rome, and what the credit
due, respectively, to Peter, Stephen, Paul, Aquila, and Priscilla, and
the women mentioned?

5. What the proof from the letter itself of at least a remote connec_
tion between the Jerusalem apostles and the planting of Christianity
in Rome?
6. What the proof from the letter that Paul’s converts were not the
only factors in planting Christianity there?
7. How may we account for Paul’s extensive personal acquaintance
with Christians there?
8. To whom was this letter written, why not addressed to the church
at Rome, and what is a better way to express it?
9. What the evidence that there were many Christiana in Rome at
this time?
10. Were these Christians there Jews or Gentiles, or both? If both,
which mainly?
11. Who was the amanuensis?
12. What the scriptural evidence pro and con for the Romanist con_
tention that Peter went to Rome and remained there twenty years
just after the incidents of Acts 12:1_18, and what the answer to the
Romanist interpretation of I Peter 5:13?
13. How was it impossible for Peter to have been the first bishop of
the church at Rome?
14. Is the traditional evidence credible that Peter was martyred at
Rome, and if so, how is it yet discounted?
15. If there was not one central church at Rome, what evidence that
the several worshiping congregations were organized bodies with officers?
16. Who the author of this letter, and what the proof from the letter
17. What the date of this letter and how obtained, and where was
it written?
18. What circumstances conditioned the writing of this letter as ex_
pressed in the relation of this letter to 1 and 2 Corinthians, and
19. What the internal proof of the relation of Romans to Galatians?
20. What the occasion of this letter?
21. What the purpose of this letter?
22. What is the nature of this letter?
23. What other books of the Bible may be classified with it as a
discussion, or treatise, on a great theme?
24. How is it unlike anything else in the New Testament?
25. What questions have been raised as to the integrity of the book?
26. How does this letter emphasize the connection between the Old
Testament and the gospel of the New Testament?
27. What the importance of an analysis? Quote the sayings of Pro_
fessor Agassiz, Dr. Harvey, Dr. Wayland, and Dr. Shedd on this subject.
28. What analyses were commended by the author?
29. Which analysis is the most remarkable in literature, and what its
30. In what two respects does Dr. Robertson’s outline excel?
31. In Dr. Robertson’s outline what is the great theme of the letter?
32. In Bennet’s outline what the theme?
33. In Tanner’s outline what the theme?
34. Are these three themes practically the same?

Romans 1:17.

The theme of this letter is found in Paul’s own words: „For
I am not ashamed of the gospel: for it is the power of God
unto salvation to every one that believeth; to the Jew first,
and also to the Greek. For therein is revealed a righteousness
of God from faith unto faith: as it is written, But the right_
eous shall live by faith.” This theme condensed is, The
Gospel Plan of Salvation. But someone asks, „Why not
‘Righteousness of God’ the theme?” Because this righteous_
ness is only the means to the great end – „salvation.”

We gather from the salutation the following things:
(1) The writer: „Paul.” (2) Those addressed: „To all that
are in Rome, beloved of God, called to be saints,” i.e., Chris_
tians. (3) The salutation itself: „Grace to you and peace
from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.”
The writer is particularly described, (1) In his status, as
a „servant of Jesus Christ.” (2) In his office, as „called
to be an apostle.” (3) In his ordination, as „Separated unto
the gospel of God.” (4) In the direct object of his work,
as „Unto obedience of faith among all nations,” including
the Romans themselves: „Among whom are ye also.” (5)
In the ultimate reason for his work, as „For his name’s
His „gospel of God” is described, (1) As „promised afore
through his prophets.” (2) As recorded „in the holy scrip_
tures.” (3) „As concerning his Son.”
That Son is described thus: (1) According to the flesh, the
Son of David. (2) According to Spirit of Holiness, declared
to be the Son of God with power by the resurrection from
the dead. (3) As our „Messiah and Lord.” (4) As the
author of grace and apostleship.

The ground of thanksgiving is thus expressed: „That your
faith is proclaimed throughout the whole world.”
This universal proclamation of the faith of the Roman
Christians may be accounted for as follows: Rome was the
world’s capital and center of governmental unity. To and
from it, over the great military roads and ship lines, were
constant tides of travel and traffic, so that a whisper there
reached the boundaries of the empire. To Paul, at least,
working along these roads or sailing over these sea courses
there came continual news of the progress of the gospel there.
There were his kindred, his converts, his acquaintances from
many lands, with whom he had constant communication.

This prayer is thus expressed: „If by any means now at
length I may be prospered by the will of God to come unto
you.” It is described, (1) As sincere: „God is my witness.”
(2) As unceasing: „How unceasingly I make mention of you,
The reasons for this prayer are, (1) To impart some spirit_
ual gift looking to their establishment. (2) For mutual com_
fort in each other’s faith. (3) That he might have some fruit
in them as in other Gentiles. (4) Because he was a debtor
to both Greeks and Barbarians, wise and foolish. (5) Because
he was ready to preach at Rome as well as elsewhere. (6) He
had been hindered in his purposes to visit them hitherto (see
also 15:22). (7) He was not ashamed of the gospel in any

The following conclusions may be drawn from this prayer:
(1) That he counted Rome in the sphere allotted to him.
(2) That on account of its central and political position as
the world’s metropolis, its strategical importance as a radiat_
ing mission base surpassed all, others. (3) That the arch_
enemy of the gospel understood this importance as well as
Paul, and so far had barred him out of the field. Hence
the necessity of this prayer. Twice in this letter he refers
to this hindering of his purpose to come to them (1:13; 15:22)
and in I Thessalonians 2:18 we find that Satan is the hinderer.
(4) We learn from Acts 23:11 that it was the Lord’s will for
him to visit Rome according to this prayer, which says, „By
the will of God.” Thus we see Satan and his emissaries op_
posing Paul’s approach to Rome, while Paul was longing and
praying to get there. God’s will overruling Satan’s will in
answer to the prayer. And he prayed „if by any means,”
leaving that also to God, and we learn that he went in bonds
(Acts 27:1; 28:20). (5) This prayer with its reasons opens
the way to a statement of the great theme of the letter.
Let us now analyze the theme of the letter (1:16_17). This
theme involves the answer to these questions: What is the
gospel, to whom addressed and on what terms, what its power,
what the salvation unto which it leads, how is it a power to
this end, what the righteousness revealed, what the meaning
of „from faith unto faith,” and what the varied uses of the
quotation from Habakkuk? The gospel is the whole story of
Christ’s mediatorial work as prophet, sacrifice, priest, king,
leader and judge, addressed to the whole human race, what_
ever the nationality, sex, or social condition, on the terms of
simple faith in Jesus as he is offered in the gospel, the power
of which is God himself, i.e., God the Holy Spirit. The salva_
tion unto which it leads consists generally in (1) What it does
for us. (2) What it does in us. (3) What it leads us unto.
We find in this letter that Paul uses salvation in the sense
of justification. Man is saved when he is justified; but in
another part of the letter we hear him talking about a sal_
vation that is to be revealed at the last day, and we hear
Peter talking about that too. Then we, in this letter, also hear
him speaking of salvation in its symbols – in its figures. When
we get to Romans 6 we have salvation in baptism and in the
Lord’s Supper – not actual salvation, but salvation pictorially
presented. Then in this letter we hear him tell about the re_
demption of the soul, the buying back of the soul; then we
hear him tell about the redemption of the earth on which man
lives. So salvation is a big thing. Let us now define it.
Salvation is the final, complete, and everlasting deliverance
of the sinner’s entire soul and body from the guilt of sin, from
the defilement of sin, from the dominion of sin, from the bond_
age of Satan, and the deliverance of mans’ habitat – this old
world – from the curse upon it.
Note now what it is unto. It is unto something as well as
from something. We have seen what it delivers from. Now
it is a deliverance unto what? Unto an everlasting inherit_
ance prepared in heaven. It can’t mean less than that. We
can’t say it is all of salvation for the soul to be justified
when the body is not saved; we can’t say the body is saved
until it is raised from the dead and glorified. And we can’t
say that we are saved unto our inheritance until we get to it.
I will state in another form what salvation is. Salvation,
in its legal aspects, is expressed by three words: First, justi_
fication. (Justification is the declaration of a competent court
that one tried before it is acquitted.) The second legal term
is redemption. (Redemption is the buying back of what had
been sold.) The third term is adoption. That is a legal term
also. We are not naturally children of God, and we get into
the family of God by adoption. He adopts us into his family.
Adoption is that legal process by which one, not naturally
a member of the family, becomes legally so. Now I say that
salvation, so far as legal aspects go, is expressed by these
three words – justification, redemption, and adoption. Paul
discusses every one of them in this letter. When I am justi_
fied before God, that delivers me from the wrath to come. I
said that it was a deliverance from the guilt of sin. Justifi_
cation does that – it delivers us from the guilt of sin.
Let us look at salvation as done in us. What are the terms?
Those terms are regeneration and sanctification. What is
regeneration? Regeneration is giving a holy disposition to the
mind. The carnal mind is enmity against God, not subject to
his law, neither could be made subject to his law. Man in his
natural state hates God, hates truth, hates light. It is not
sufficient that a man be redeemed from the curse of the law,
or the wrath of the law, and be acquitted. It is necessary
that he have a mind in harmony with God. That occurs in
us; God begins a good work in us, and continues it to the day
of Jesus Christ. And that good work in us is expressed by
regeneration and sanctification. Regeneration gives us a holy
disposition, but the remnants of the flesh are still with us.
Then sanctification commences and more and more conforms
us to the image of Jesus Christ, as we go on from strength
to strength, from glory to glory, from faith to faith. That
is what it does in us.
The legal part is accomplished fully right here on earth.
The very minute we believe, that day we are justified; that
day we are redeemed; that day we are adopted. The salva_
tion in us, referring to the soul, is consummated just as soon
as the soul gets through its discipline and is freed from the
body. On the other side we see the spirits of the just made
perfect. That is the end of the salvation as far as the soul
is concerned. But salvation takes hold of the other parts of
the man – his body that lies mouldering in the ground. God
provided in the garden of Eden for the immortality of the
body. When sin expelled the man and he had no longer ac_
cess to that tree, his body, of course, began to die. .Salvation
must save that body. That comes in the resurrection which
he discusses in this letter. In the resurrection these things all
take place: First, the body is made alive, quickened. Second,
it is raised. Third, it is glorified. And glorification means
what? What these words say, „It is sown in weakness; it is
raised in strength; it is sown in dishonor; it is raised in honor;
it is sown in corruption; it is raised in incorruption; it is sown
a mortal body; it is raised an immortal body.” It is sown a
physical body; it is raised a spiritual body. It is sown in the
image of the first Adam; it is raised in the image of the
Second Adam. That is the entire man, isn’t it? I said
it was the complete and everlasting deliverance of the en_
tire man, soul, and body. Then fourth, we must bring those
two saved parts together. So Christ brings the spirits with
him. He raises the dead, and the spirits go back into the
old house, now renovated and glorified.
We have not yet come to the end. That is what is done
for us, and what is done in us, but it isn’t the deliverance
unto that inheritance that is reserved in heaven, that the heart
of man never conceived of – the precious things that God has
in reservation for those that love him. That is Paul’s idea
of salvation as it is presented in this letter, and never less
than that.
There are a great many people that say, „I am saved from
death.” „How do you know you are saved?” I ask. „Well, I
believe in Jesus Christ and am justified.” „That is very good
as far as it goes, but when Jesus laid hands on you didn’t it
mean more than redemption, justification, and adoption?
Didn’t he do anything inside of you?” So the salvation goes
on in sanctification.
The King James version reads in verse 4: „Declared to be
the Son of God with power according to the spirit of holi_
ness.” Does that mean Christ’s personal spirit of holiness or
does it refer to the Holy Spirit? In other words, is it refer_
ring to the instrumentality of the Holy Spirit in quickening
Christ’s body, or does it mean that Christ rose from his in_
herent personal spirit of holiness? If we answer this correctly,
we also answer one of the most difficult other passages in the
Bible, to wit: I Peter 3, last clause of verse 18 and through
verse 19: „Being put to death in the flesh, but made alive
in the spirit; in which also he went and preached unto the
spirits in prison.” We have the same question in that passage.
It is easy to see how the Revised Standard answers the ques_
tion in both cases. But I say, „Does the Revised Standard
rightly interpret either?” Precisely the same question recurs
in I Timothy 3:’6, where the Standard Revision follows its
usual interpretation. Is it right in any of them? I think not.

1. What the theme of this letter in Paul’s own words?
2. What the condensed theme?
3. Why is not „The righteousness of God” the theme?
4. What do we gather from the salutation?
5. How is the writer particularly described?
6. How is his „gospel of God” described?
7. How is the Son described?
8. What the ground of thanksgiving?
9. How may we account for the universal proclamation „of the faith
of the Roman Christians?
10. What Paul’s prayer here?
11. How. is it described?
12. Why this prayer?
13. What the conclusions from this prayer?
14. Analyze the theme of this letter (1:16_17).
15. What then is the gospel?
16. To whom addressed?
17. On what terms?
18. What the power of this gospel?
19. Of what does the salvation unto which it leads consist?
20. Define this salvation, and explain fully each of the aspects of sal_
vation, defining also the terms used.
21. What the interpretation of 1:4, and what the parallel between
it and I Peter 3:18_19 and I Timothy 3:16?

Romans 1:18_32.

Having considered in the latter part of the preceding chap_
ter the meaning of salvation, we now follow the apostle’s argu_
ment in showing

The argument applies to the whole human race, to man as
man, both Jew and Gentile. In this discussion we have the
case of the Gentiles. They are guilty of ungodliness. They
are unlike God in their nature. Originally man was made in
Gods’ image and likeness:
And God said, Let us make man in our image, after our like_
ness: and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and
over the birds of the heavens, and over the cattle, and over all
the earth, and over every creeping thing that creepeth upon
the earth. And God created man in his own image, in the
image of God created he him; male and female created he
them. And God blessed them: and God said unto them. Be
fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth, and subdue it;
and have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the birds
of the heavens, and over every living thing that moveth upon
the earth. And God said, Behold, I have given you every
herb yielding seed, . . . to you it shall be for food: and to
every beast of the earth, and to every bird of the heavens, and
to everything that creepeth upon the earth, wherein there is
life, I have given every green herb for food: and it was so.
And God saw everything that he made, and, behold it was very
good.’ And there was evening, and there was morning, the sixth
day. – Genesis 1:26_31.
This original state of man shows his likeness, his dominion,
and his commission. This image and likeness being lost
through sin, they are out of harmony with the Creator.
They are guilty of unrighteousness. Their deeds are evil,
proceeding from an evil nature. Their sin of deeds consists

of both omission and commission. They have not only failed
by way of omission to exercise their dominion and execute
their commission, but they have actively done contrary to
both. The wrath of God has been revealed from heaven
against both their ein of nature and deed. This wrath is
the assessed penalty of violated law. Here we need to under_
stand the law. What is law? In its last analysis law is the
intent, or purpose, of the Creator in bringing a being into ex_
istence. That intent is set forth in the passage cited (Gen.
1:26_31). This law inheres in the very constitution of our
being, and hence as a principle antedates any particular for_
mal statute. Indeed, all statutes are but expressions of ante_
cedent, inherent, constitutional law, as the multitude of
statutes are but expressions of the law principles in the con_
stitution of nations and states.
Or, varying the definition, we may say that all law arises
from and inheres in relations. Where there is no relation
there is no obligation, as the relation of parent and child
measures the reciprocal obligations binding parent and child.
So the relation between husband and wife, citizen and the
state, the creature and the Creator, the redeemed and the re_
deemer. With each new relation there arises a new obligation
measured by the relation. Law, then, inheres in the intent of
the Creator, and is antecedent to all statutes and independent
of them, except only their fountain, or source. When he brings
a being into existence, the law of that being inheres in the
Creator, and in the relations of that being. This is law in its
last analysis as set forth by the apostle, but in this very con_
text (2:12) and many times elsewhere, he speaks of law, as
that given on Mount Sinai to the Jew, which will be noticed
more particularly later.
Sin therefore is lawlessness, or any lack of conformity with
law, whether in nature or in omission or commission of deed.
An omission of duty and commission of sin are but symptoms
or expressions of a sinful nature. As our Lord said: „But the
things which proceed out of the mouth come forth out of the
heart; and they defile the man. For out of the heart come
forth evil thoughts, murders, adulteries, fornications, thefts,
false witness, railings” (Matt. 15:18_19). As he again said:
„By their fruits ye shall know them. Do men gather grapes
of thorns, or figs of thistles? Even so every good tree bringeth
forth good fruit; but the corrupt tree bringeth forth evil fruit.
A good tree cannot bring forth evil fruit, neither can a cor_
rupt tree bring forth good fruit” (Matt. 7:16_18). „Either
make the tree good, and its fruit good; or make the tree cor_
rupt, and its fruit corrupt; for the tree is known by its fruit”
(Matt. 12:33). That preacher therefore had no adequate
conception of sin who defined it as, „The wilful transgression
of a known law.” The greatest of all sin is a sin of nature.
It is not dependent in obligation on our knowledge. Paul
says, „Though I know nothing against myself, I am not there_
by justified.” Both natural and spiritual laws bind and have
penalty notwithstanding our ignorance. The ignorance itself
is sin, or may be a result of sin. And transgression is only
one overt act of sin. It is equally sin to fall short of law
or go beyond it, or to deflect from it. Righteousness is exact
conformity with law. With this conception of law, and of
sin, the apostle speaks of its penalty, the wrath of God – a
wrath that is antecedent to its revelation. And yet this wrath
is revealed. So now we consider

God has not left them ignorant of sin’s penalty. The knowl_
edge of God, and their relation to him, is manifest both in
them and to them. There are two books of this revelation –
the book of nature in them and the book of nature outside
of them. He has planted knowledge in them. „The spirit of
man is the lamp of Jehovah, searching all his innermost parts”
(Prov. 20:27). As the natural eye is the lamp of the body, so
the spirit is Jehovah’s lamp. „If therefore the light that is in
thee be darkness, how great is the darkness!” (Matt. 6:22_
23). Or the apostle, in the context, further describes the reve_
lation in us: „For when Gentiles that have not the law do by
nature the things of the law, these, not having the law, are
the law unto themselves; in that they show the work of the
law written in their hearts, their conscience bearing witness
therewith, and their thoughts one with another accusing or
else excusing them.” Man, therefore, by the very constitu_
tion of his being, has a knowledge of God, law, sin, and
penalty. Therefore by nature he is a worshiping being. When
through sin the light in him is darkened he may and does
worship false gods, yet everywhere he ia a worshiper.
This internal light is not a faint spark, but a great light.
With every man in the world there ia an internal sense of
right and wrong. Men may differ among themselves as to
what particular thing is right or wrong, but all have the
sense of right and wrong. They are keenly alive to their
rights and keenly sensitive to their wrongs. But there can
be no right and wrong without some law to prescribe the
right and proscribe the wrong. And there can be no law
without a lawmaker. And there can be no law without penal
sanctions, otherwise it would be no more than advice. And
there can be no penalty without a judgment to declare it
and a power to execute it. But every man knows that even
and exact justice is not meted out in this world – that many
times the innocent suffer and the guilty triumph. Therefore
the conclusion comes like a conqueror, that there must be

There never was a man who has not at some time, under
a keen sense of wrong done him, appealed to this future judg_
ment and invoked upon the wrongdoer the wrath to come. It
is this knowledge or consciousness of future judgment and
wrath that makes death frightful to the evildoer. And it is
this consciousness of amenability to God’s future infallible
Judgment and inexorable wrath that restrains crime more
than the dread of all human law and judgment. So it is
demonstrated that there is in us a revelation of wrath against
But the apostle argues a revelation of wrath outside of us
and in the broad book of Nature. He says, „For the invisible
things of him since the creation of the world are clearly seen,
being perceived through the things that are made, even his
everlasting power and divinity; that they may be without
excuse” (1:20). His deity and his everlasting power are
„clearly seen” in the universe which is the work of his hands.
To the same effect speaks the psalmist:
The heavens declare the glory of God;
And the firmament showeth his handiwork,
Day unto day uttereth speech,
And night unto night showeth knowledge.
There is no speech nor language;
Their voice is not heard.
Their line is gone out through all the earth,
And their words to the end of the world.
In them hath he set a tabernacle for the sun,
Which is as a bridegroom coming out of his chamber,
And rejoiceth as a strong man to run his course.
His going forth is from the end of the heavens,
And his circuit unto the ends of it;
And there is nothing hid from the heat thereof.
– Psalm 19:1_6.
And this apostle to the Athenians:
The God that made the world and all things therein, he, being Lord of heaven and earth, dwelleth not in temples made with hands; neither is he served by men’s hands, as though he needed anything, seeing he himself giveth to all life, and breath, and all things; and he made of one every nation of men to dwell on all the face of the earth, having determined their appointed seasons, and the bounds of their habitation’

òthat they should seek God, if haply they might feel after him and find him, though he is not far from each one of us; for in him we live, and move, and have our being; as certain even of your own poets have said, For we are also his offspring. Being then the offspring of God, we ought not to think that the Godhead ia like unto gold, or silver, or stone, graven by art and device of man. The times of ignorance therefore God overlooked; but now he commandeth men that they should all everywhere repent: inasmuch as he hath appointed a day in
which he will judge the world in righteousness by the man whom he hath ordained; whereof he hath given assurance unto all men, in that he hath raised him from the dead. – Acts 17:24_31.
Yea, not only Nature, but providence in Nature, as was
said to Noah: „While the earth remaineth, seedtime and
harvest, and cold and heat, and summer and winter, and
day and night shall not cease” (Gen. 8:22). And reaffirmed
by this apostle: „And yet he left not himself without witness,
in that he did good and gave you from heaven rains and
fruitful seasons, filling your hearts with food and gladness”
(Acts 14:17). Thus all nature in us or external to us, and
God’s marvelous providence proclaim the knowledge of him.
Tom Paine, the deist, admitted all this, and expressed his ad_
miration for Addison’s paraphrase of Psalm 19:
The spacious firmament on high,
With all the blue ethereal sky,
And spangled heav’ns (a shining frame),
Their great Original proclaim:
Th’ unwearied sun, from day to day,
Doth his Creator’s power display,
And publishes to every land
The work of an Almighty hand.
Soon as the evening shades prevail,
The moon takes up the wondrous tale,
And nightly to the list’ning earth
Repeats the story of her birth:
While all the stars that round her burn,
And all the planets, in their turn,
Confirm the tidings as they roll,
And spread the truth from pole to pole.
What though in solemn silence all
Move round the dark terrestrial ball;
What though no real voice nor sound
Amid their radiant orbs be found;
In reason’s ear they all rejoice,
And utter forth a glorious voice,
Forever singing as they shine,
The hand that made us is divine.

The stoic philosopher might magnify inexorable and pitiless fate, the epicurean philosopher, or his descendants, the modern evolutionists, might glorify chance in attributing this great universe and its people to „the fortuitous concourse of atoms,” thereby proclaiming themselves brother to the fool that said in his heart, „no God.” They need to read the lesson of Nebuchadnezzar, to whom God announced this sentence:
„Let his heart be changed from man’s, and let a beast’s heart
be given unto him; and let seven times pass over him. . . . The
same hour was the thing fulfilled upon Nebuchadnezzar: and
he was driven from men, and did eat grass as oxen, and his
body was wet with the dew of heaven, till his hair was grown
like eagles’ feathers, and his nails like birds’ claws.” – Daniel
4:16, 33.
The evolutionist indeed classifies himself with beasts by
acknowledging a brute ancestry.
This revelation was sufficient to leave them without excuse
because when they thus knew him as God they were guilty
of these sins:
1. They glorified him not as God
2. Neither were thankful
3. Became vain in their reasonings
4. Darkened their senseless hearts
5. Professing to be wise, they became fools
6. Become idolaters, changing the glory of the incorrupt_
ible God for the likeness of an image of corruptible man,
birds, beasts, and creeping things. This brought on them
judicial blindness.
God gave them up to the reign of their passions. Both
women and men became shameless. As they refused to retain
the knowledge, God being put out, with what were they filled?
And even as they refused to have God in their knowledge,
God gave them up to a reprobate mind, to do those things
which are not fitting; being filled with all unrighteousness,
wickedness, covetousness, maliciousness; full of envy, murder,
strife, deceit, malignity; whisperers, backbiters, hateful to God,
insolent, haughty, boastful, inventors of evil things, disobedient
to parents, without understanding, covenant_breakers, without
natural affection, unmerciful. – Romans 1:28_31.

„Who, knowing the ordinance of God, that they that practice
such things are worthy of death, not only do the same, but
also consent with them that practice them. – Romans 1:32.

1. How does the argument for the universal necessity of salvation
apply to the whole human race?
2. What the four arguments applied to the Gentiles?
3. What is ungodliness?
4. What is unrighteousness?
6. What the consequent wrath of God?
6. What is law?
7. What its relation to formal statutes?
8. From what does all law arise?
9. What the principal relations from which all law arises?
10. What other use of the term „law” in this letter?
11. What then is sin?
12. What its penalty?
13. How is the wrath of God revealed?
14. What must follow the fact of right and wrong?
15. When and why a judgment of wrath?
16. What Paul’s argument for a revelation of wrath from the book of
nature, and what the logical conclusion with reference to the position of the Stoic and Epicurean, or the modern evolutionist?
17. Why were the Gentiles left without excuse, and of what sins were
they guilty?
18. What the consequences?
19. Since they refused to retain, the knowledge of God, with what were
they filled?
20. What the result?

Romans 2:1_16.

We have in the previous chapters shown: 1. The great
theme of the letter to be (1:16_17) God’s plan of salvation,
and we have analyzed and defined the terms of the com_
pound proposition which embodies it.
2. We have found that this plan contains a revelation of
God’s righteousness as the only ground of salvation.
3. We then in the last chapter commenced to study the
necessity for this salvation as found in a revelation of God’s
wrath, which stands over against the revelation of his right_
4. We found in part just how this revelation of wrath is
made both in us and out of us, to wit: (a) In the very con_
stitution of our being, „The spirit of a man being the lamp
of the Lord.” (b) In the operation of the conscience, either
accusing or excusing, (c) In the order of the material uni_
verse which discloses the deity and power of the Creator.
(d) In God’s continual government of the universe by his
providence evident in the recurring seasons, (e) In the ap_
peal of all men to God’s judgment for unrighted wrongs) and
the invocation of his wrath upon the wrongdoer, (f) In the
social order of men established everywhere, whatever the form
of government, through which men define and punish wrong.
(g) In the worship of all men everywhere in which by sacri_
fice in some form they seek to placate the offended deity and
appease his wrath, (h) In their very idolatries, by which
they seek to lower the deity to their own level and even be_
neath their level, and in their veiling their pollutions under
the cover of worship, they yet bear testimony to deity and
their amenability to his judgment, (i) In that their lives
showed that nature’s light, whether external, internal, or provi_
dential, has no power to regenerate or sanctify, and no power
to propitiate or justify. It could alarm and condemn, but
could not save. It was sufficient, but not efficient. Hence the
necessity of a plan that would have the power unto salvation.
Here I want to insert the contrast between the light of nature and the light of the gospel, both of them being very brilliant, but one of them sufficient and the other efficient. In Psalm 19, which has already been quoted in part, we have this language:
The heavens declare the glory of God;
And the firmament showeth his handiwork.
Day unto day uttereth speech,
And night unto night showeth knowledge.
There i.s no speech nor language;
Their voice is not heard.
Their line is gone out through all the earth,
And their words to the end of the world.
In them hath he set a tabernacle for the sun,
Which is as a bridegroom coming out of his chamber,
And rejoiceth as a strong man to run his course.
His going forth is from the end of the heavens,
And his circuit unto the ends of it;
And there is nothing hid from the heat thereof.
This is an abundance of light, and a sufficiency of light,
but notice the contrast:
The law of Jehovah is perfect, restoring the soul;
The testimony of Jehovah is sure, making wise the simple
(Nature’s light cannot help the fool).
The precepts of Jehovah are right, rejoicing the heart:
The commandment of Jehovah is pure, enlightening the eyes.
The fear of Jehovah is clean, enduring forever:
The ordinances of Jehovah are true, and righteous all together.
More to be desired are they than gold, yea, than much fine gold ;
Sweeter also than honey and the droppings of the honeycomb.
Moreover, by them is thy servant warned.
Here it is the design of the psalmist to put in contrast the light of nature and the light of God’s word. In one of them the knowledge is sufficient, in the other the light is both sufficient and efficient. As bearing upon the sufficiency of that light I wish to cite the comment of an old Puritan preacher, who says:
Now the preaching of the heavens is wonderful in three
respects: (1) As preaching all the night and all the day without
intermission (v. 2). One day telleth another, and one night
certifieth another. (2) As preaching in every kind of language
(v. 3). There is neither speech nor language, but their voices
are heard among them. (3) As preaching in every part of the
world, and in every parish of every part and in every place
of every parish (v. 4). Their sound is gone into all lands,
and their words unto the end of the world. They be diligent
pastors, as preaching at all times; learned pastors, as preaching
in all tongues; and catholic pastors, aa preaching in all towns.
Let us compare the words of this old Puritan with what
Paul says in this very letter to the Romans: In chapter 10
he quotes it and we see how he uses it, showing that if man
was not a sinner he could learn in nature the way to nature’s
God. He says, „Whosoever shall call upon the name of the
Lord shall be saved. How then shall they call on him in
whom they have not believed? And how shall they believe in
him whom they have not heard? and how shall they hear with_
out the preacher? and how shall they preach, except they be
sent? even as it is written, How beautiful are the feet of
them that bring glad tidings of good things. But they did
not all hearken to the glad tidings.” Then he quotes Isaiah
and also this very psalm:
But I say. Did they not hear? Yea, verily,
Their sound went out into all the earth,
And their words unto the ends of the world.
The last verse of chapter I affirms that there was sufficient
knowledge so that God’s ordinance made such deeds as were
enumerated worthy of death, and yet it declares that they
themselves wilfully disobeyed and consented to disobedience
in others. I ask the reader to note particularly that it is
very far from the apostle’s thought to belittle the light of na_
ture. He boldly avows its sufficiency, but in that it lacks
efficiency there is necessity for another light which is „the
power of God unto salvation.”
Our present discussion continues the argument on that
necessity as follows: Having this light, sinners are „inexcusa_
ble” because they, as individuals and as society, pass judg_
ment on others, not excusing them, therein condemning
themselves in all wrongdoing. He starts out with the declara_
tion (2:1) that whenever the individual man passes judgment
on a fellow man for alleged wrongdoing, and whenever
organized society passes judgment on a member of society,
that proves that they are inexcusable if they do wrong, since
by their judgment they have established the principle
of judgment. And in verse 2 he advances to a new thought:
„And we know that the judgment of God is according to the
truth against them that practice such things.” What is that
judgment of God that we know so confidently? How do we
know it? What is the knowledge? The knowledge there is
the knowledge that comes from nature. His argument de_
mands that from the light of nature in us and outside of us
we know that God’s judgment on such things as are enumer_
ated in chapter I is according to truth – that the things there
enumerated are wrong, and that when God punishes them
the punishment is just.
In verse 3 he asks this question: „Reckonest thou this, 0
man, who judgest them that practice such things, and doest
the same, that thou shalt escape the judgment of God?” On
what kind of reasoning shall a man who lives entirely apart
from the Bible, and yet does claim light enough to pass judg_
ment on the wrongdoer, escape the judgment of God? If the
wrong is done to him by organized society, whether tribe
or clan or nation or republic or a limited monarchy, no mat_
ter what the government is, that government holds some
things to be wrong and assesses punishment worthy of
death. „Now,” he says, „do you suppose that you will es_
cape the judgment of God? You certainly cannot.” We have
no hope from such light as is in nature, because in nature
every violation of law receives a just recompense of reward
– every one, whether we know the law of nature or not. If
a man puts his hand into the fire it will burn him. If he
takes poison it will kill him. Confining our judgment to the
law of nature, any hope that we may indulge and with which
we may solace ourselves is foolish, since we cannot escape
the judgment of God.
He advances in the argument: „Or despisest thou the riches
of his goodness and forbearance and longsuffering?” The
thought there is that God doesn’t punish every week – that
in the moral government of the world a long time sometimes
elapses between the commission of a crime and its exposure,
and in multitudes of cases exact justice is never rendered in
this world. Paul asks that question because of God’s method
of delay in his final punishment. What is the reason of the
delay? He says that it is from „the riches of his goodness and
forbearance and longsuffering.” God is good; God is patient;
God bears a long time before he strikes. „Now are you going
to despise that?” As the apostle says, „Not knowing that
the goodness of God was designed to lead thee to repentance.”
There you get at the real reason of God’s delay in punishing
in his moral government. There was no delay in the case of
Adam. When he sinned God made the inquisition. He called
him to his bar at once. Since that time why doesn’t he do
that? Because that very day grace intervened, and man was
put upon a grace probation, and the gospel was preached that
day in that the Seed of the woman should bruise the serpent’s
head. And the throne of grace was set up that day. On
the east side of the garden dwelt God with the cherubim to
keep open the way to the tree of life. This delay comes from
his goodness, his forbearance, and his longsuffering. And the
reason for that goodness, forbearance, and longsuffering was
to give the man, though guilty and worthy of instant death,
the opportunity to repent) not through anything in him, but
through grace. What Paul there says, Peter affirms. In 2
Peter 3 he answers the question, What construction shall be
put upon the long delay of God in punishing men? What is
meant by it? He says, „The Lord is not slack concerning his
promise [that is, that he will come and judge the world] as
some men count slackness; but is longsuffering to youward, not
wishing that any should perish, but that ‘all should come to
repentance.” That is his motive. The apostle asks a ques_
tion: „Is it because you see that God doesn’t strike the very
minute that the sin is committed, is it because you despise
that goodness and that forbearance, that delay, or is it ignor_
ance of the motive of that delay that his goodness in that re_
spect shall lead you to repentance – is that the reason?” We
are told in the Old Testament, „Because sentence against an
evil deed is not executed speedily, therefore the heart of the
sons of men is fully set in them to do evil” (Eccl. 8:11). They
despise the goodness, and they ignore the motive of the de_
He then in verse 5 makes this statement: „But after thy
hardness and impenitent heart treasurest up for thyself wrath
in the day of wrath.” „Thou dost treasure up wrath.” The
wrath of God is cumulative. If God waits to punish and a
man despises his waiting and ignores his motive, then he has
added to the cause of wrath, i.e., the wrath accumulates.
It is more important that we as preachers should understand
this reason of God’s delay, which is the idea of cumulative
wrath, than to know anything else in the Bible except the
very heart of the gospel itself.
I will illustrate that thought so that it may be clear. One
Puritan preacher said that man’s despising of the delay of
God’s punishment of sin reminded him of a foolish fellow
that comes into an inn because he can buy things on credit,
and ignores the fact that behind the door the innkeeper is
scoring up, charging, charging, charging, for the pay day that
will come. Another preacher has illustrated it this way: A
man comes to a tiger’s den when the old tiger is away and
picks up a little cub and marches off with it, perfectly serene
and unconscious that stealthy feet are following him, and at
a turn in the road, with a scream that frightens him, the tiger
springs upon him and rends him. Another preacher has used
this illustration: A house had been built below a huge rock
dam in a river, and a family had lived there for some time in
security, and as day after day passed their sense of security
became more confirmed and more formidable, and they were
wilfully ignoring the fact that up above the stream was rising,
that the water was increasing, that it was accumulating in
volume and accelerating in speed, massing up, and after a
while in one moment the dam split and the overwhelming
water destroyed the hapless family.
Peter presents the same thought in the passage that I cited,
but I did not conclude. In this he presents that cumulative
thought: „But the day of the Lord will come as a thief [that
is, they will not be looking for it] ; in which the heavens shall
pass away with a great noise, . . . and the earth and the
works that are therein shall be burned up. Seeing that these
things are thus, all to be dissolved, what manner of persons
ought ye to be in all holy living and godliness?” The day
is deferred, but God is not slack as men count slackness.
With him one thousand years is as one day, and one day is
as one thousand years, but the day will come, and when it
comes it will be as a thief in the night.
Take another illustration: God explained to Abraham how
his descendants could not immediately take their territory.
He says, „The measure of their iniquity is not yet full.” Once
in preaching on that I drew on a piece of canvas two vessels
of equal size, one of them, the vessel of opportunity and the
other the vessel of iniquity. As the vessel of opportunity
empties, the other one fills up. As the opportunity grows
less the iniquity measure grows larger. Whenever the vessel

of opportunity is empty and the vessel of iniquity is full, God
Another preacher has used this illustration: A man buys a
long rope and stakes out his horse. The horse prances around
and grazes about as if he were a free horse, but other horses
come by that are not staked, and he tries to go off with them,
but he can only go to the end of his tether, and that rope
measures the diameter of the circle in which he can graze. As
he keeps running about, the rope winds round the stake, and
every time he goes round, the rope gets shorter, and after a
while his head is right up to the stake.
But the most forceful illustration of this thought is a
sermon of Jonathan Edwards in New England. He took this
text: „Their feet shall slide in due time.” His discussion runs
as follows: „They are rejoicing that they have sometimes
kept their foot_hold when they walked over slippery ground
and over ice. They have a vain confidence that they can
stand, but in due time their feet will slide. The sinner’s feet
did not slip from under him last week, when he committed a
sin. He was terribly frightened that first day, and the next
day he was less frightened, and by the third day still less,
until finally he forgot it, but in due time his feet will slip;
God has appointed the time.” He is really, as Jonathan Ed_
wards pictured, walking on an incline plane as slick as glass,
and when the right time comes it isn’t necessary to push him
– his feet will slip themselves, and at the other end of that
plane are the depths of hell.
Hence judgment is, that in order for law to restrain crime
there must be a certain punishment. As long as the trans_
gressor in civil or criminal matters can think of escaping
punishment or devising some expedient by which he shall not
be punished, it has no restraining power over him, but when
it is absolutely certain that whether it be soon or late
every evil deed shall receive a just recompense of reward –
whenever he gets that conviction on his mind, that restrains
him. When God makes inquisition of faults he remembers,
and when he holds up the light of revelation to the sinner’s
heart, he will make the man remember. When this light
bores into his very soul, he will see the slime of every foul
thought, every beastly act, every vile sin. God will make him
We come now to a thought concerning this wrath that we
must not forget, viz.: that this revelation of God’s wrath is not
immediate. It is a wrath to come. There are temporary judg_
ments on man and on nations, and there are chastisements of
God’s people here on earth, but when we talk about the wrath
of this text, it is the wrath of a certain, inexorable, definite
day. It is the day of wrath. Hence Paul at Athens, while
explaining how God has delayed to punish these heathen,
and that God has overlooked the times of ignorance, i.e.,
passed over them temporarily, but now he calls upon all men
to repent, because he has appointed a day in which he will
judge the world in righteousness by that man whom he has
ordained. And isn’t it strange that when the Bible so many
times speaks of that awful day in the future – speaks of it as
a set day, and connects it indissolubly with the second advent
of Jesus Christ, that men will talk about the advent of Christ
being imminent, liable to come at any time?
It is not liable to come at any time. It can come but at one
time, and that time is not a sliding scale. It is an appointed
day, and as at his first coming he could not come till the ful_
ness of time, so his second advent, as Paul says, cannot be
until all these other things take place.
Not to make a mistake about that day, let us see what
Paul further says about it. In I Corinthians 3 he says that
this day will be revealed in fire, and that that revelation of
fire will try every man’s work, saint and sinner, and in 2
Thessalonians he expressly declares as follows:
Which is a. manifest token of the righteous judgment of God….
if so be that it is a righteous thing with God to recompense affliction to them. that afflict you, and to you that are afflicted rest with us, at the revelation of the Lord Jesus Christ from heaven with the angels of his power in flaming fire, rendering vengeance to them that know not God, and to them that obey not the gospel of our Lord Jesus: who shall suffer punishment, even eternal destruction from the face of the Lord and from the glory of his might, when he shall come to be glorified in his saints.

That shows that that day is to be revealed with fire, and the last book of the Old Testament closes with the declaration:
For, behold, the day cometh, it burneth as a furnace; and
all the proud, and ail that work wickedness, shall be stubble;
and the day that cometh shall burn them up, saith Jehovah of
hosts, that it shall leave them neither root nor branch. But
unto you that fear my name shall the sun of righteousness arise
with healing in its wings.
The next point about the judgment is that it will be uni_
versal on that day. It is not broken up into a series, the
righteous judged, and one thousand years after that the wicked
judged. Hence in Matthew 12:41 our Lord says, „The men
of Nineveh shall stand up in the judgment with this genera_
tion,” one saved and the other unsaved, and again in Mat_
thew 25:31 he says, „When the Son of man shall come in his
glory, . . . then shall he sit upon the throne of his glory.”
Then comes the separation. They are all there together, good
and bad, and hence in Revelation 20 John says, „I saw a great
white throne and he that sat on it and all the dead, great
and small, are gathered before him,” and some are judged out
of the book of life and saved; all not in the book of life were
cast into a lake of fire.
This day of wrath is here considered apart from the gospel,
for he has not come to the gospel yet. This day considered
that way is according to works. In chapter 3 he takes up
the gospel, but here he is discussing the necessity for the gos_
pel: „Who will render to every man according to his works.”
Let us look at each case: To them that by patience in well_
doing seek for glory and honor he will render eternal life. If
any man, leaving the gospel out, can show that he has been
patient in well_doing, and that he has been seeking glory
and honor and incorruption, God will render to him eternal
life. Here is the other class: Unto them that are factious, and
obey not the truth, but obey unrighteousness, shall be wrath
and indignation, tribulation and anguish (notice the words,
„wrath,” „indignation,” „tribulation,” and „anguish”) upon
all without respect to race, the Jew first, also the Greek. But
glory and honor and peace to every man that worketh good,
to the Jew first and also to the Greek, that the judgment
shall be without any respect of persons. That is the thought.
What is the extent of that judgment? Let our Lord speak.
The extent is soul and body: „Fear him that [after man is
dead] hath power to destroy both soul and body in hell,” or
as he presents it in Matthew 25: „These shall go away into
everlasting punishment.” This is the duration of the punish_
ment. The extent is soul and body, the duration „unto ever_
lasting punishment.” Or as he says in another place, „Where
the worm dieth not and the fire is not quenched.” Or as he
expresses it in yet another place: „In hell he lifted up his
eyes, being in torment, and saw a great gulf fixed, that no
man could pass over.” And his memory worked: „Son, re_
member, remember, remember.” It is without discrimination
of race. Both Jew and Gentile are included. It is also with_
out respect of persons: „For there is no respect of persons
with God.” This judgment is according to the light that a man
has. If he has not the law, he perishes without the law. If
he has the law of Moses, he perishes under the law of Moses.
The last thought is the most stupendous. I will barely
state it. When the day of wrath that nature tells about comes,
it will be a day of wrath according to the gospel. That shows
why the delay, why the punishment does not come at once.
When he goes to judge, the judgment will be according to
the gospel in order to show the heinousness of despising this
delay. Following the motive of that delay, we come to the
Judge: „according to my gospel, by Jesus Christ.” God has
committed all judgment to him. In all this argument he is
laying the foundation for bringing in the plan of salvation.
He is showing that the light of nature in us, while sufficient,
is not efficient – that it cannot save, it cannot regenerate, it
cannot sanctify, it cannot justify us.
Let us restate these thoughts with some additions. I first
explained what the wrath meant, and then the several ways
in which it is revealed. We now come to consider the part of
the text which shows where, by whom, and for what this
wrath, in the sense of a penalty, is exacted. Our text says,
„In the day when God shall judge the secrets of men, accord_
ing to my gospel, by Jesus Christ.” Let us look at that state_
ment in all of its fulness. From the day that the original
penalty due to Adam’s sin was suspended by the intervention
of the gospel of Jesus Christ under a probation of grace,
all men, whether Jew or Gentile, have been freed from the
immediate execution of that divine wrath. There have been
earthly judgments on wicked men, and chastisements on
Christian men, but the full penalty of the wrath of God has
never yet been visited upon man. When a wicked man dies,
he goes at once to hell, but if that were counted full execu_
tion of the divine penalty that man would not have to leave
hell to come and stand before the judgment of God. And if a
Christian when he dies goes immediately to heaven, that is
not to be considered the full salvation of that man. The rea_
son is that the body is not involved in either case. When
this wrath of God is visited upon man it is visited upon both
soul and body. We need to fix in our minds clearly the rea_
son of a judgment day at the end of time, instead of ten
thousand judgment days all along through time. I have given
the first point. The second reason is that in the very nature
of the suspension of the penalty under a covenant of grace,
space is given for repentance. Peter and Paul both discuss
that proposition, Paul here in the chapter where he says, „Not
knowing that the goodness of God was intended to lead thee
to repentance.” Peter discusses it in his second letter where
he says that we must construe the longsuffering of God toward
sinners to mean salvation. The third reason is that neither
a good man nor a bad man can thoroughly understand until
the judgment day the reasonableness of God’s government and
be constrained, whether condemned or saved, to admit the
righteousness of the sentence pronounced.
No man will realize the exceeding sinfulness of sin, the ex_
ceeding richness of God’s forbearance, nor the fulness of God’s
grace in fixing the final decision until that day.
We know now only in part) but then we shall know as we
are known. The wicked, as quick as a flash of lightning, will
see the exceeding sinfulness of all their past sins. In the
case of every man before his conversion he realizes that the
heart is deceitful above all things and desperately wicked,
who can know it? „I, the Lord.” He is the only one. It
is the easiest thing in the world for a man, when he looks at
his good qualities, to take a telescope and look through the
little end of it and see them more in number and larger in
bulk than they really are. But he reverses that telescope to
look at his faults, and sees them infinitesimally few and small,
and by the same strange power that he sees double in the first
group, he sees his faults blend and become fewer in number.
He sees one star with the naked eye where there are two, and
just a splash in the Milky Way where there are ten thousand
distinct worlds. By a kind_of „hocus pocus” he takes up his
little handful of evil deeds and begins to apologize for them,
and finally stands off and says, with complacency, „Now,
Lord, see my record. You can see how my good preponderates
over the evil.” Right at that time comes the flashing of the
supernal light of infinite holiness upon the scales and presto!
what a change.
These good deeds that look so mountainous and multi_
tudinous begin to diminish in size and number and shrink and
pulverize until they become like fine dust. One breath of
wrath blows them away like powder. On the other side that
little infinitesimal group of evil begins to multiply and mag_
nify and swell and tower and blacken until it is a great moun_
tain range, peak after peak, oozing with the putrid poison of
that abominable thing which God hates – sin.
So in a sense never before, will all then admit that by the
deeds of the law no man can be justified.
I am giving the reasons why that final light of judgment
is postponed to the last day of time. I want to add another
No man is competent to take account of the evil of his
deeds or the good of his deeds until he sees the end of their
influence. It is impossible for a man to do anything that termi_
nates in himself, but it will surely touch everybody connected
with him, father, mother, brother, sister, friend. Not only so,
but after it has cast its gloom over all the circle of those that
are nearest to him, by ties of consanguinity, there is that awful
power of action and reaction that carries it on till the judg_
ment day.
If we drop a little pebble into a placid lake – a stone no
larger than the end of the finger – by the power of action and
reaction the tiny ripples begin to radiate until they strike
the utmost shores of that lake. So time is the ocean into which
our deeds are dropped and the influence of our deeds in their
radiating wavelets in every direction never stops until it
strikes the shores of eternity. How then can any judgment
inflicted now make that man see? Those that are in hell
today don’t see it. Those in heaven today do not see it.
It will take the light of the judgment day to bring out the
full realization, and when that time comes there will be one
instantaneous and universal dropping upon the knees. Every
knee shall bow, all together – all the lost in hell and all the
saved in heaven, and every tongue shall confess.
When a man is just about to turn around under the „de_
part” of God’s final condemnation of soul and body and go
into hell forever, before he goes he will say, „Lord God, in my
condemnation thou art just.”
Judgment of man here upon this earth is based upon uncer_
tain proof. How many times the most notorious criminal is
compelled to be acquitted simply from the lack of legal evi_
dence! There is moral conviction in the minds of the judge
and the jury that he is guilty, but the proof did not show it in
a legal way. In that day all evidence will be in hand, and
the law construed and vindicated with even and exact justice.
There can be no suborning of testimony, no blindfolding
the eyes of the judge with a bribe, no reticence on the part
of witnesses as to what they saw or heard. The evidence
will be complete, not only to God, but, as I have said, to
man. If ever any Christian allows himself to indulge in
feelings of pride and thinks that in the partnership between
him and God his I is a capital letter and God is spelled
with a small g, it won’t be that way up there.
He will know that his salvation is not of works, but from
its incipiency in God’s election to its consummation in the
glorification of his body, that athwart the whole long extended
golden chain of salvation shall be written in the ineffaceable
letters of eternal fire, „SALVATION is OF GRACE,” and across the whole dark descending stairway to eternal hell, over every
step of it, in letters of fire, „MAN’S DAMNATION is OF HIMSELF.” God wisheth not the death of any man. God does not arbitrarily send any man to hell. The secrets of men!
There never yet has been in human breast a heart that
did not hide some skeleton secret, not only secrets because
he keeps them to himself, but secrets that he is unconscious of
through the dimness of his knowledge and callousness of his
A writer has said that in that day, in the flash of an eye,
memory will go back over all our past and bring up our sins,
not in the glamour and rose color of their commission, but in
the beastliness and ghastliness and horribleness with which
God views them.
„In the day when God shall judge.” That day is fixed.
God has appointed a day, says Paul, talking to the heathen
idolaters, in which he will judge the secrets of men by Jesus
Christ. It is strange that in view of the clear statements that
the judgment day is just as much fixed and unchangeable as
any past event, as to its time, and in view of the fact that it
is correlated with the resurrection of the just and the unjust
and with the second coming of Christ, that some men con_
ceive that that day may be this evening or tomorrow, like
the premillennial view of the second advent. Just as sure as
Christ could not come at first until the fulness of time, and
until all the preparatory steps had been taken, just so sure the
second advent will take place only when all the predictions of
coming events have been fulfilled. We don’t know the day,
but it is fixed and unalterable, and its penalties inexorable and
without remedy.
Now comes another strange thought – that judgment in the
last day will be, says Paul, „according to my gospel.” The
judgment of the heathen will be according to this gospel, and
it will be well for him, even if a lost soul, that he be judged
according to this gospel. There cannot be a case of a lost man
in which it should be better for him to be judged by somebody
else than Jesus. Here is a little baby that has never per_
sonally committed any sin. It dies one hour from its birth
without ever lisping its mother’s name. It has inherited sin_
fulness of nature. It died, in the sense of condemnation, when
Adam sinned. To put it as an extreme case, let us call it a
heathen baby. Suppose he was not judged by the gospel. He
would be forever lost. But the gospel points to another Head,
Jesus Christ the Second Adam. The death of Jesus Christ
avails for the salvation of that one whose condemnation is only
on account of Adam’s sin and only on account of inherited
depravity. If it were not for the gospel that child would
perish throughout eternity, because the law could not save
him. All the heathen children who die before they reach the
years of personal accountability are saved. Take the adult
heathen. Even if he be lost, it is better for him that he be
judged according to the gospel than merely according to the
law of nature. There is never any mercy in the law of na_
ture. In the light of grace, Paul, speaking of the heathen,
says: „The times of this ignorance God overlooks.” In Christ
he bears with the sins of the heathen in a way that the law
could not bear. Let a baby and a man stick their hands into
the fire. The fire burns the baby who is ignorant the worst
because it is most tender.
But when Jesus judges the heathen, he judges them more
kindly, because they lacked knowledge, and though the man
be lost forever, there are degrees in hell. Not every man who
goes to hell will have the same extent of suffering. It is not
like running all the sentences into one mould so that they will
all come out alike, as candles, in length and thickness, but
according to light and opportunity Jesus will judge. The
servant that knows not his master’s will and does it not, shall
be punished with few stripes. If there is one principle of
the final judgment of Jesus Christ that is transcendently above
any other principle it is this principle, that the judgment will
be rendered according to the light, the privilege, the oppor_
There will be discriminations made, based even on heredity.
Say that some little child inherited a greater thirst for liquor
than another in the same family. The sin of one who is con_
sumed by this hereditary thirst will not be held as heinous
as another’s who wilfully acquired it. Then the question of
environment enters into it. A little street Arab who was born
in a dark alley in a great city and never heard one word of
love, never the subject of one act of tenderness, never knew
a mother except through her shame, never was in a Sunday
school, not only taught but forced to steal. It is impossible
that God would visit upon that thief the same degree of pun_
ishment that he would visit upon the Sunday school superin_
tendent, whose father and mother were pious, who received a
training in the Sunday school, held office in the Sunday school
and talked continually and taught holy things, if he should
turn thief and transgress God’s holy law. His damnation
would be deeper and darker than will be the case of the other.
Hear the words of Jesus, „It shall be more endurable in the
judgment for Sodom and Gomorrah than for these cities.”
Why? Because these had great light; those little light. [That
is why it is a benefit to a lost man to be judged by Jesus
Christ. That is one of the sweetest thoughts that ever creeps
into my mind – that Jesus shall be my judge. No wonder
David, when God put the alternative before him, „Would you
rather fall into the hands of your enemies or into the hands
of the living God,” said, „Lord God, let me fall into thy hands.
Don’t leave my chastisement to be assessed by men.” I never
think of God’s judgment except with satisfaction. Even
when I am thinking about things I have done that are wrong,
I am glad that God is to be the judge.

1. By way of review what have we found: (1) As to the theme
of this letter? (2) As to the ground of salvation? (3) As to the necessity for this salvation? (4) As to how this revelation of wrath is made in us and out of us?
2. Having this light, why are sinners inexcusable? Explain, „And
we know, etc.,” (v. 2).
3. What is the force of Paul’s question (v. 3)7
4. What is God’s method of punishment (v. 4)?
5. What is the reason for the delay?
6. What is meant by cumulative wrath? Illustrate.
7. When is the „day of wrath?” Give proof.
8. How is it to be revealed? Give proof.
9. Give proof that the judgment on that day will be universal.
10. According to what?
11. What in each case?
12. What the extent of punishment?
13. What the duration? Give proof.
14. Show that it will be without discrimination of race.
15. Without respect of persons.
16. What part does the light a man has play?
17. Why a judgment at the end of the world?
18. Give proof that the judgment day is fixed.
19. How is the judgment to be by the gospel of Jesus Christ? Illustrate.
20. What the transcendent principle of the judgment?
21. What the effects of heredity at the judgment?

Romans 2:17 to 4:25

I revert to Romans 2:6_9, referring to judgment: „Who
will render to every man according to his works: to them that
by patience in well_doing seek glory and honor and incorrup_
tion, eternal life: but unto them that are factious, and obey
not the truth, but obey unrighteousness, shall be wrath and in_
dignation, tribulation and anguish upon every soul of man
that worketh evil.” That discussion of the judgment is the
judgment of law without gospel consideration. Otherwise it
contradicts the whole plan of salvation set forth in the letter,
for it makes patient continuance in well_doing the basis of
Another point in chapter 2 is that under the law, being a
Jew outwardly could not save a man. The real Jew is one
inwardly and has circumcision of the heart. He must be re_
generated, and the publication of the grace plan all along
ran side by side with that law plan, even in the Old Testament.
God never had but one plan of salvation from the beginning.
That leads to this question, If, being naturally a Jew and
circumcised according to the Jewish law, and keeping exter_
nally the ritual law did not save him, as chapter 3 opens –
what advantage then hath the Jew? The answer to that is that
to the Jews were committed the oracles of God, and they had
a better chance of getting acquainted with the true plan of
salvation. Then what if some of these Jews were without
faith? That does not destroy that advantage; they had the
privilege and some availed themselves of it. Does that not
make the grace of God of none effect? In other words, if
God is glorified by the condemnation of unbelievers, how then
shall the man be held responsible? His answer is, „God for_
bid,” for if that were true how could God judge the world?
That supposition destroys the character of God in his judg_
ment capacity. If God were the author of sin and constrained
men by an extraneous power to sin, he could not be a judge.
All who hold the Calvinistic interpretation of grace must give
fair weight to that statement. Whenever God does judge a
man, his judgment will be absolutely fair.
Once when a party of preachers were discussing election
and predestination I asked the question, „Do you believe in
election and predestination?” The answer was, „Yes.” „Are
you ever hindered by what you believe about election in
preaching a universal gospel? If you have any embarrass_
ment there it shows that you have in some way a wrong view
of the doctrine of election and predestination.” A young
preacher of my county went to the wall on that thing. It
made him practically quit preaching, because he said that he
had no gospel except for the sheep. I showed him how, in
emphasizing one truth according to his construction of that
truth, he was emphatically denying another truth of God.
That brings up another question: If the loss of the sinner
accrues to the glory of God, why should he be judged as a sin_
ner? A supposition is made. Under that view would it not
be well to say, „Let us do evil that good may come?” There
were some slanderous reports that such was Paul’s teaching.
He utterly disavows such teaching or that any fair construc_
tion of what he preached tended that way.
We come now to his conclusion of the necessity of the
gospel plan of salvation. He bases it upon the fact that under
the law of nature, providence, and conscience, under the law
of Sinai, under any form of law, the whole world is guilty.
There is none righteous, no, not one;
There is none that understandeth.
There is none that seeketh after God;
They have all turned aside, they are together become unprofitable.
So apart from the gospel plan of salvation there is universal
We come to his next conclusion (3:13_18) that man’s de_
pravity is total. Total refers to all the parts, and not to de_
grees. He enumerates the parts to show the totality. That
doesn’t mean that every man is as wicked in degree as he
can be, but that every part is so depraved that without the
gospel plan of salvation he cannot be saved:
Their throat is an open sepulchre;
With their tongues they have used deceit;
The poison of asps is under their lips;
Whose mouth is full of cursing and bitterness;
Their feet are swift to shed blood;
Destruction and misery are in their ways;
And the way of peace have they not known:
There is no fear of God before their eyes.
With mankind universally guilty, and every member totally
depraved, we get another conclusion – that whatever things
the law says, it says to those under the law. No matter
whether the law of conscience, the law of nature, or the moral
law of Moses, those under the law must be judged by the
law. That being so, he sums up his conclusion thus: „By
the works of the law shall no flesh be justified in his sight.”
That brings us to consider the gospel plan of salvation
(3:21 to 8:39) and covers six points – justification, redemp_
tion, adoption, regeneration, sanctification, and glorification.
For the present we will discuss that part called justification.
He commences by stating that while there is no righteousness
by the law, there is a righteousness apart from the law, and
this way of salvation apart from the law is witnessed by the
law itself and by the prophets, and that this righteousness is
presented to both Jew and Gentile without any distinction, and
that always has been the way from the beginning of the
world to the present time. If God has seemed to discriminate
in favor of the Jews, he looked toward the Gentiles through
the Jews, and if he now seems partial to the Gentiles against
the Jews, he is looking toward the restoration of the Jews.
This righteousness is presented to all men on the same terms
– faith – and this righteousness presented by faith is of grace.
Man doesn’t merit it, either Jew or Gentile – it is free.
It is the hardest thing in the world to convince a sinner that
salvation comes from no merit of his, and that faith is simply
the hand that receives. Throughout all the length of the
great chain of salvation it is presented without discrimination
of race, color, sex, or previous condition of servitude.
We come now to the ground of it. That ground is re_
demption through Christ. To redeem means to buy back.
It implies that the one was sold and lost. It must be a buying
back, and it would not be of grace if we did the buying back.
It is a redemption through Jesus Christ. He is the Redeemer
– the one who buys back. The meritorious ground consists in
his expiation reaching us through his mediation. He stands
between the sinner and God and touches both. The first part
of his mediation is the payment of that purchase price. He
could not, in paying the purchase price, stand for God unless
God set him forth as a propitiation. He could not touch man
unless he himself, in one sense, was a man, and voluntarily
took the position. The effectiveness of the propitiation de_
pends upon the faith of the one to receive Jesus. That covers
all past sins. When we accept Jesus we are acquitted forever,
never again coming into condemnation. I said that that „covers
past sins.” We must understand this. Christ’s death avails
meritoriously once for all for all the sins of a man, past, pres_
ent, and future. But in the methods of grace there is a dif_
ference in application between sins before justification and
sins after justification. The ground is one, before and after.
But the Holy Spirit applies differently. When we accept Jesus
by faith as he is offered in the gospel, we at once and for_
ever enter into justification, redemption of soul, and adoption
into God’s family, and are regenerated. We are no longer
aliens and enemies, but children and friends of God. God’s
grace therefore deals with us as .children. Our sins thereafter
are the sins of children. We reach forgiveness of them through
the intercessions of our High Priest and the pleadings of our
Advocate. (See Hebrews 9:25_26; 7:25; I John 2:1.) We
may be conscious of complete peace when justified (Rom.
5:1), but our consciences condemn us for sins after justifica_
tion, and peace comes for these offenses through confession,
through faith, through intercession, through the application
of the same cleansing blood by the Holy Spirit. So in us
regeneration is once for all) but this good work commenced in
us is continued through sanctification with its continual ap_
plication of the merits of Christ’s death. Therefore our theme
says, „From faith to faith.” Not only justified by faith, but
living by faith after justification through every step of sancti_
fication. We don’t introduce any new meritorious ground.
That is sufficient for all, but it is applied differently. Justi_
fication takes place in heaven. It is God that justifies. The
ground of the justification is the expiation of Christ. The
means by which we receive the justification is the Holy Spirit’s
part of regeneration which is called cleansing. Regeneration
consists of two elements, at least – cleansing and renewing.
But the very moment that one believes in Christ the Holy
Spirit applies the blood of Christ to his heart and he is
cleansed from the defilement of sin. At the same time the
Holy Spirit does another thing. He renews the mind. He
changes that carnal mind which is enmity toward God. Few
preachers ever explain thoroughly that passage in Ezekiel:
„Then will I sprinkle clean water upon you and you shall be
clean. I will take away your stony heart and give you a
heart of flesh.” There is the cleansing and the renewing.
Jesus says, „Born of water and Spirit.” There are no articles
in the Greek. It is one birth. In Titus we find the same idea:
He saved us „by the washing of regeneration,” the first idea’
and „the renewing of the Holy Spirit,” the second idea.
This method of justification enables God to remain just in
justifying a guilty man. If we could not find a plan by which
God’s justice would remain, then we could find no plan of
justification. How do we understand that to be done upon
this principle of substitution? J. M. Pendleton in his discus_
sion of this subject based upon a passage in the letter to
.Philemon, explains it. Paul says, „If thou hast aught against
Onesimus, put it on my account.” Now Philemon can be just
in the remission of the debt of Onesimus, because he has pro_
vided for the payment of that debt through Paul; so Christ
promised to come and pay our debt and the payment is
reckoned to the man that accepts Christ, thus showing how
remission of sins in the case of Old Testament saints precedes
the actual payment, or expiation, by Christ. God charged
Abraham’s debts to Christ, and Christ promised to pay them
when he should come into the world. Abraham was acquitted
right then. So far as God was concerned, the debt was not
expiated until Christ actually came and died. In our case,
expiation precedes the faith in it. He expiated my sins on the
cross before I was born. There came a time when the plan
of salvation by that expiation was presented to me, and I
received it, and then remission took place.
This plan of salvation by faith not only justifies God, but
absolutely excludes any boasting upon the part of the man.
If the man had paid the debt himself he could claim to be
the cause of this justification. But since he did not contribute
one iota to the payment of the debt, there is no possible ground
for him to boast. This plan brings out God’s impartial rela_
tion both to Jew and Gentile, since both are admitted upon
equal terms.
We come to an objection that has been raised. If God ac_
quits the man without his having paid the penalty of the law,
does not that make the law void? His answer is an emphatic
denial. It not only does not make the law void, but it es_
tablishes the law. How? The law is honored in that the
Substitute obeys it and dies in suffering its penalties. Further
by the fact that this plan takes this man saved by grace and
gives him, through regeneration, a mind to obey the law,
though it may be done imperfectly, and then through sancti_
fication enables him to obey the law perfectly. It fulfils all of
its penal sanctions through the one who redeems and through
the Holy Spirit’s work in the one that is redeemed. When
I get to heaven I will be a perfect keeper of the law in mind
and in act. We can easily see the distinction between a mere
pardon of human courts, which is really contrary to law, and
a pardon which magnifies and makes the law honorable. It
was on this line that I once preached a sermon on the relation
of faith to morals, showing that the only way on earth to
practice morality is through the gospel of Christ. So we see
that God can be just and the justifier of the ungodly.
Salvation that comes up to the point of justification will,
”through the same plan, be continued on to the judgment day.
In his argument to prove that God’s plan of salvation has al_
ways been the same) Paul illustrates it by the two most strik_
ing Old Testament cases that would appeal to the Jewish mind,
one of which is the case of Abraham’s conversion which is
recorded in Genesis 15. Up to that time Abraham was not a
saved man, though he was a called man and had some general
belief in God. At that time he was justified, and he was justi_
fied by faith, and righteousness was imputed to him; it was
not his own. That was before he was circumcised, and it de_
prived him of all merit, and made him the father of all who
could come after him in the spiritual line. He proves this by
the promise to Abraham and his seed, and shows that that
seed refers, not to his carnal descendants, but to the spiritual
descendant, Jesus Christ. Then he goes on to show that as
Isaac, through whom the descent flowed, was born, not in a
natural manner, but after a supernatural manner, so we are
born after a supernatural manner. He then takes up the
further idea that that was the only way in the world to make
the promises sure to all the seed.
Take the thief on the cross. He had no time to get down
and reform his life. He was a dying sinner, and some plan of
salvation must be devised which would be as quick as light_
ning in its operation. Suppose a man is on a plank in the deep
and about to be washed away into the watery depths. He
cannot go back and correct the evils that he has done and
justify himself by restitution. If salvation is to be sure to
him, it must work in a minute. That is a great characteristic
of it. David was their favorite king. His songs constituted
their ritual in the Temple of worship. He testifies precisely
the same thing: „Blessed is the man whose sin is covered,”
that is, through propitiation. Blessed is the man to whom
God imputeth no transgression. He takes these two witnesses
and establishes his case. He shows that the results of justi_
fication are present peace, joy, and glory, thus commencing,
„Being therefore justified by faith, let us have peace with

1. What Judgment is referred to in Romans 2:6, and what the proof?
2. Who was the real Jew?
3. What advantage had the Jew?
4. Did all Jews avail themselves of this advantage?
5. Does that not make the grace of God of none effect, and why?
6. Does the doctrine of election hinder the preaching of a universal
gospel, and why?
7. If the loss of the sinner accrues to the glory of God, why should
he be judged as a sinner?
8. What is Paul’s conclusion as to the necessity of the gospel plan
of salvation, and upon what does he base it?
9. What Paul’s conclusion as to man’s depravity, what is the mean_
ing of total depravity, and how is it set forth in this passage?
10. What his conclusion as to the law?
11. What then his summary of the whole matter?
12. What the theme of Romans 3:21 to 8:39, and what six phases
of the subject are thus treated?
13. Is there a righteousness by the law, what the relation of the law
to righteousness, and to whom is this righteousness offered?
14. How do you explain God’s partiality toward the Jews first and
then toward the Gentiles?
15. What the terms of this righteousness, and what its source?
16. What is this phase of salvation called, and what is the ground
of it?
17. What is redemption, and what does it imply?
18. What the meritorious ground of our justification, and upon what
does the effectiveness of it depend?
19. What the difference in the application to sins before justifica_
tion and to sins after justification?
20. What is justification, where does it take place, what accompanies
it in the sinner, how, what its elements and how illustrated in both
the Old and the New Testaments?
21. How does this method of justification by faith enable God to
remain just and at the same time justify a guilty man?
22. What J. M. Pendleton’s illustration of this principle?
23. What bearing hag this on the case of Old Testament saints?
24. How does this plan of salvation exclude boasting?
25. What objection is raised to this method of justification, and what
the answer to it?
26. How is the law honored in this method of justification?
27. What the distinction between a mere pardon of human courts and
this method of pardon?
28. How does Paul prove that the plan of salvation has always been
the same?
29. How does Paul show that that was the only way to make the
promises sure to all the seed?
30. What the testimony of David on this point, and what its special
force in this case?

Romans 5:1_21.

The first paragraph (1_11) of chapter 5 is but an elabora_
tion, or conclusion, of the line of argument in chapters 3_4.
There are two leading thoughts in this paragraph: (1) God’s
method of induction into the grace of salvation. (2) the
happy estate of the justified.

This method is expressed thus: „Being therefore justified
by faith . . . through our Lord Jesus Christ; through whom also
we have had our access by faith into this grace wherein we
stand.” A vital question is here answered – „How do we get
into Christ, in whom are all the blessings of salvation, each in
its order?” The corresponding doctrine to our getting into
Christ is getting Christ into us to complete the union with
him as expressed by himself: „I in you . . . and you in me”
(John 15:4). The names of these two doctrines are –
1. Justification through faith, or we into Christ.
2. Regeneration through faith, or Christ into us.
Elsewhere the doctrine of „Christ into us” through regenera_
tion is presented thus: „Forasmuch as ye are manifestly
declared to be the epistle of Christ, ministered by us, written
not with ink, but with the Spirit of the living God; not in
tables of stone, but in fleshly tables of the heart” (2 Corinthi_
ans 3:3). „For God who commanded the light to shine out of
darkness hath shined in our hearts, to give the light of the
knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ”
(4:6). „To whom God would make known what is the riches
of the glory of this mystery among the Gentiles, which is
Christ in you, the hope of glory” (Col. 1:27).

The proof that the method of this induction id also by faith
is given by Christ. When Nicodemus asked as to the method
of regeneration Christ answered, „And as Moses lifted up the
serpent in the wilderness, even so must the Son of man be
lifted up; that whosoever believeth may in him have eternal
life” (John 3:14_15). „Whosoever believeth that Jesus is the
Christ is begotten of God: and whosoever loveth him that
begat loveth him also that is begotten of him” (I John 5:1).
„But as many as received him, to them gave he the right
to become children of God, even to them that believe on his
name: who were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the
flesh’, nor of the will of man, but of God” (John 1:12_13).
„For ye are all the children of God, by faith in Jesus Christ”
(Gal. 3:26).
But the Campbellites’ method of induction into Christ is
by baptism, based on Galatians 3:27; the Romanist method
of induction of Christ into us is through eating the Lord’s
Supper, based by them on the words: „Take, eat, this is my
body. . . . Drink, this is my blood,” and on a misapplication
of John 6:53: „Jesus therefore said unto them, Verily, verily,
I say unto you, Except ye eat the flesh of the Son of man and
drink his blood, ye have not life in yourselves.” We may name
this double heresy, salvation by ordinances, i.e., salvation by
water and material bread. The truth of these misapplied
scriptures is that there is a double method of induction, viz.:
We into Christ by faith and Christ into us by faith, sym_
bolized in the ordinances of baptism and the Lord’s Supper.

The difference between the common and the revised ver_
sions of Romans 5:1 is a difference in the Greek of the length
of one letter in one word only, i.e., between a short o (omik_
ron) and a long o (omega), and if the text be Echomen,
the rendering of the common version is right: „We have
peace with God.” If it be Echomen, the Revision is right:
„Let us have peace with God.” The best MSS. (Alexandrian,
Vatican, and Siniatic) have the long o (Omega.)
The value of the distinction is this: The common version
would express the truth, if limited to God’s sight. The justi_
fied truly have peace legally in God’s eyes as soon as justified.
But the danger comes in extending the meaning to our real_
ization; we subjectively realize the peace. There is a time
difference between a fact and our cognition of that fact; as,
when looking at a man half a mile off on a prairie firing a
gun, the explosion precedes our perception by sight of the
smoke, or of the sound by the ear. The chickens of a mover
whose legs have been tied during the day, do not realize that
they are free as soon as they are untied. The sensation of
being tied lingers until the circulation is restored.
So one may be justified in fact sometime before he real_
izes the peace to which justification entitles, as the experi_
ence of many Christians shows. It is God’s purpose that we
should realize it, and the sooner the better. To affirm that
our subjective perception of an external act is necessarily
simultaneous with the act is to limit the existence of things
to our knowledge of things. So we may express the dif_
ference between the texts of the version by saying that one
is an affirmation: „We have peace,” while the other is an
exhortation: „Let us have peace,” i.e, justification now en_
titles to peace, but we need to lay hold of it. The fallacy of
the affirmation consists of confounding justification, which
is God’s act, with subjective peace, which is our experience.
Objective peace, legal peace, necessarily accompanies justi_
fication, but it may not be subjective. The battle of New
Orleans was fought after the treaty of peace was signed,
because Sir Edward Packenham and General Jackson did not
know it.
I will name in order all the elements of the happy estate
of the justified:
1. Peace with God.
2. Joy in hope of the glory of God.
3. Joy in tribulation, because of the series of fruits which
4. The gift of the Holy Spirit.
5. The love of God shed abroad in our hearts, by that
given Spirit.
6. The assurance that the justified shall be saved from
the wrath to come, because:
(1) If reconciled, when enemies, much more will he con_
tinue salvation to friends.
(2) If reconciled through his death much more will he
alive deliver us from future wrath.
7. Joy in God the Father, through whose Son we receive
the reconciliation.

By a new line of argument the apostle conveys assurance
of salvation to the justified, an argument based on our sem_
inal relations to the two Adams. This great doctrine is ex_
pressed thus: „Therefore, as through one man sin entered into
the world, and death through sin; and so death passed
unto all men, for that all sinned” (5:12). „So then as through
one trespass the judgment came unto all men to condem_
nation; even so through one act of righteousness the free
gift came unto all men to justification of life. For as through
the one man’s disobedience the many were made sinners,
even so through the obedience of the one shall many be made
righteous” (5:18_19). If we combine the several thoughts
into one great text we have this: By one offense of one man
condemnation came upon all men. So by one act of righteous_
ness of one man, justification unto eternal life comes upon
all men who by one exercise of faith lay hold on him who
wrought the one act of righteousness.
This text startlingly offends and confounds the reasonings
of the carnal mind which says,
1. One may not be justly condemned for the offense of some_
body else, but only for his own offense, nor justified by the
righteousness of somebody else, but by his own righteousness.
2. Condemnation must come for all offenses, not just one,
and justification must be based on all acts of righteousness,
not just one.
3. To base a man’s condemnation or justification on the act
of another destroys personal responsibility.
4. The doctrine of imputing one man’s guilt to a substitute
tends to demoralization, in that the real sinner will sin the
more, not being personally amenable to penalty.
5. The doctrine of pardoning a guilty man because another
is righteous turns loose a criminal on society.
6. The whole of it violates that ancient law of the Bible
itself: „Thou shalt justify the innocent and condemn the
If the gospel plan of salvation, fairly interpreted, does
destroy personal responsibility, does tend to demoralize so_
ciety, does encourage to sin the more, does turn criminals
loose on society, does not tend to make its subject person_
ally better, it is then the doctrine of the devil and should
be hated and resisted by all who respect justice and depre_
cate iniquity. But the seminal idea of condemnation and
justification grows out of relations to two respective heads,
and it results from varieties in creation, thus:
(1) God created a definite number of angels) just so many
at the start, never any more or less, a company, not a fam_
ily, incapable of propagation, being sexless, without ances_
try or posterity, without brother or sister or other ties of
consanguinity, each complete in himself, and hence no angel
could be condemned or justified for another’s act. The act
of every angel terminates in himself. Therefore there can
be no salvation for a sinning angel. And hence our Saviour
„took not on him the nature of angels.”
(2) But God also created a different order of beings, at
the start just one man, having potentially in himself an

entire race – a countless multitude to be developed from
him. And in propagating the race he transmitted his own
nature, and through heredity his children inherited that
nature. No act of any human being arises altogether from
himself or can possibly terminate in himself. In considering
heredity Oliver Wendell Holmes has said, „Man is an omni_
bus in which all his ancestors ride.” Moreover, man was
created to be a social being, from which fact arises the
necessity of human government whether in legislative, judi_
cial, or executive power. The mind can conceive of only
one human being whose act would terminate in himself,
and under the following conditions alone: He must be with_
out ancestry, without capacity of posterity, without kindred
in any degree, without relation to society, living alone on an
island surrounded by an ocean whose waves touched no other
shore from which society might come. How much more the
head in whom potentially and legally was the race could not
do an act that would terminate in himself.
(3) The creature cannot deny God’s sovereign right to
create this variety of moral beings, angels, and man.
(4) Nature does not exempt children from the penalty
of heredity.
(5) Human law neither exempts children from legal re_
sponsibility of parents nor acquits criminals because of
hereditary predispositions.
The context bases the condemnation of all men on the
ground that all sinned in Adam, the head, and so having
sinned in him they all died in him. The context, „And so
death passed unto all men” (even those who had not sinned
after the similitude of Adam’s transgression) is the distinct
proof of our proposition. Only one person ever sinned the
sin of Adam and that was Adam himself, the head of the
race. Now as proof that his posterity sinned in him, death
passed upon all of his posterity who had not sinned after
the similitude of his sin, that is, they sinned, not as the
head of a race, but from depravity – an inherited depravity.
Adam didn’t have that inherited depravity. God made him.
upright. Whenever I commit a sin I don’t commit that sin
from the standpoint of Adam, but I commit it on account of an
evil nature inherited from Adam, and that sin is not after
the similitude of Adam’s transgression. Moreover, if I com_
mit a sin, the race is not held responsible for my sin, because
I am not the head of the race. The race does not stand or fall
in me. Thus there are two particulars in which sins which
we commit are not after the similitude of Adam’s sin, and
yet, says the apostle, with his inexorable logic, „Though they
don’t sin after the similitude of Adam, yet death, the penalty
of sin, passed upon every one of them.” The law was executed
on every one of them; they died. Sin condemns on the ground
of the solidarity of the law, the unity of the law. See James
2:10: „For whosoever shall keep the whole law, and yet
stumble in one point, he is become guilty of all.”
Human law in this respect conforms to divine law. If a
man be law_abiding fifty years and then commits one capital
offense, his previous righteousness avails him nothing. Nor
does it avail that he was innocent of all other offenses. If
a man were before a court charged with murder he would
derive no benefit by proving that he had not committed
adultery. If he were guilty on the one point, his life is for_
feited. That is on account of the solidarity of the law. Nor
does it avail a man anything in a human court that he was
tempted from without. So Adam vainly pleaded, „The woman
tempted me and I did eat.”

1. What part of chapter S is but an elaboration, or conclusion, of
the line of argument in chapters 3_4?
2. What the two leading thoughts in this paragraph?
3. How is God’s method of induction expressed?
4. What vital question is here answered?
5. What the corresponding doctrine to our getting into Christ?
6. What the names of these two doctrines?
7. How elsewhere is the doctrine of „Christ into us” through re_
generation presented?
8. What the proof that the method of this induction is also by faith?
9. What the Campbellites’ method of induction into Christ, and on
what scripture based?
10. What the Romanist method of induction of Christ into us, and
on what scripture based?
11. How may we name this double heresy?
12. What the truth of these misapplied scriptures?
13. What (he difference between the common and the revised ver_
sions of Romans 5:1, and what the translation in each case?
14. What the value of the distinction? Illustrate.
15. What the fallacy of affirming that subjective peace is simultaneous
with justification? Illustrate.
16. What, in order, are the elements of the happy estate of the justified?
17. By what new line of argument in 5:12_21 does the apostle convey
assurance of salvation to the justified?
18. In what words is this great doctrine expressed?
19 Combine the several thoughts into one great text.
20. How does this text startlingly offend and confound the reasonings
of the carnal mind?
21. If the gospel plan of salvation, fairly interpreted, does destroy
personal responsibility, does tend to demoralize society, does not tend to make its subjects personally better, then what?
22. What the explanation of the seminal idea of condemnation and
justification growing out of the relations to the two respective heads?
23. On what ground does the context base the condemnation of all men?
24. What is the meaning of the context, „and so death passed unto
all men,” etc.?
25. On what ground does sin condemn, and what the proof?
26. How does human law in this respect conform to divine law?

Romans 5:12_21.

The one offense committed by the first Adam was his
violation of that test, or prohibition, „Thou shalt not eat
of the tree of death; thou shalt not experimentally know the
difference between good and evil.” In other words, he was an
anti_prohibitionist. The law commenced with an absolute
prohibition, and it didn’t avail Adam a thing to plead per_
sonal liberty. Race responsibility rested on Adam alone. It
could not possibly have rested on Eve, because she was a
descendant of Adam, just as much as we are. God created
just one man, and in that man was the whole human race,
including Eve. Later he took a part of the man and made a
woman, and the meaning of the word „woman” is derived
from „man.” When Adam saw her he said „Isshah,” woman,
which literally means „derived from man'”. As she got both her
soul and body from the man, being his descendant, it was
impossible that the race responsibility should rest on her.
If only Eve had sinned the race would not have perished.
She would have perished, but not the race. The race was in
Adam. God could have derived another woman from
him like that one. He had the potentiality in him of all
women as well as all men. Some error has arisen from
holding Eve responsible, such as the error of pointing the
finger at the woman and saying, „You did it!” If we have
ever committed this error, let us never do it any more. The
text says, „By one offense of one man” and not by one
offense of one woman. That Eve sinned there is no doubt;
she was in the transgression. To the contrary, history shows
that God connects salvation with the woman, and not dam_

nation. He said, „The Seed of the woman shall bruise the
serpent’s head.” There we have the promise of grace. And he
could not have said the seed of the man, for, if one be the
seed of a man, he inherits the man’s fallen nature.
This fact has a mighty bearing on the Second Adam. When
the Second Adam came, the first and virtually essential
proof was that a woman was his mother, but no man was
his father – God was his father. If a man had been his father
he would himself have been under condemnation through a
depraved nature. Mary could not understand the announce_
ment that she should become the mother of a Saviour who
would be the „Son of God,” since she had not yet married,
until the angel exclaimed: „The Holy Spirit shall come upon
thee, and the power of the most High shall overshadow thee:
wherefore also the holy thing which is begotten shall be
called the Son of God” (Luke 1:35). Hence whoever denies
our Lord’s birth of a virgin and that he was sired by the most
High denies the whole plan of salvation and is both the boss
liar of the world and antichrist. The essential deity of our
Lord and his incarnation constitute the bedrock of salvation.
It is the first, most vital, most fundamental truth. No man
who rejects it can be a Christian or should be received as a
Christian for one moment. See John 1:1, 14; I John 4:1_3;
Philippians 2:6_8; I Timothy 3:16.
But this question comes up, „Did not Jesus derive his
human nature, through heredity, from his mother, or since
she was a descendant of fallen Adam, how could her Son
escape a depraved nature?” This is a pertinent question
and a very old one. It so baffled Romanist theologians that
they invented and issued under papal infallibility the decree
of „The Immaculate Conception,” meaning not only that
Jesus was born sinless, but that Mary herself was born
sinless, which of course only pushes back the difficulty one
degree. Their invention was purely gratuitous. There is
nothing in the case to call for a sinless mother. Depravity
resides in the soul. The soul comes, not from the one who
conceives, but from the one who begets. This is the very
essence of the teaching in the passage cited from Luke..
The sinlessness of the nature of Jesus is expressly ascribed
to the Sire: „The Holy One who is begotten.” And it is the
very heart of Paul’s entire biological, or seminal, idea of
salvation, i.e., life from a seed. The seed is in the sire. The
first Adam’s seed is unholy; the Second Adam’s seed is
holy. Hence the necessity of the Spirit birth. So is our
Lord’s teaching in John 3:3_6; 8:44; I John 3:9; the parable
of the tares with its explanation in Matthews 13:24_30, 36_
43; and especially I Peter 1:23: „Having been begotten
again, not of corruptible seed, but of incorruptible.” The
propriety of salvation by the Second Adam lies in the fact
that we were lost through the first Adam. All the criticism
against substitutionary, or vicarious, salvation comes from
a disregard of this truth.
Christ met all the law requirements as follows:
1. By holiness of nature – starting holy
2. By obeying all its precepts
3. By fulfilling its types
4. By paying its penalty
The value of the first three items is that they qualified
him to do the fourth. If he had been either unholy in nature
or defective in obedience he would have been amenable to the
penalty for himself. But holiness in his own nature and his
perfect obedience exempting him from penalty on his own
account, he could be the sinner’s substitute in death and
judgment: „Him who knew no sin, God made to be sin on our
behalf; that we might become the righteousness of God in
him” (2 Cor. 5:21). „Ye were redeemed . . . with precious
blood, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot” (I
Pet. 1:18_19). If he answered not to the types, he could not
be the Messiah.

Christ’s one act of righteousness, which is the sole ground
of our justification, is his vicarious death on the cross. No
one ought to preach at all – having no gospel message – if
be does not comprehend this with absolute definiteness. If
we attribute our justification to Christ’s holiness, or to his
perceptive obedience, or to his Sermon on the Mount, or to
his miracles, or to his kingly or priestly reign in heaven where
he is now, or if we locate that one act of righteousness any_
where in the world except in one place and in one particular
deed we ought not to preach.
The one act of righteousness – the sole meritorious ground
of justification – is our Lord’s vicarious death on the cross,
suffering the death penalty of divine law against sin.
This death was a real sacrifice and propitiation Godward,
so satisfying the law’s penal sanctions in our behalf as to
make it just for God to justify the ungodly. Our Lord’s in_
carnation, with all his work antecedent to the cross, was
but preparatory to it, and all his succeeding work conse_
quential. His exaltation to the throne in heaven, his priestly
intercession, and his coming judgment flowing from his „obe_
dience unto the death of the cross” (Phil. 2:8_9).
The particular proof of this one act of righteousness from
both Testaments is as follows:
1. Proof from the Old Testament:
(1) The establishment of the throne of grace, immediately
after man’s expulsion from paradise, where God dwelt between
the cherubim, east of the garden of Eden, as a Schechinah,
or Sword flame, to keep open the way to the tree of life
(Gen. 3:24) and was there acceptably approached only
through the blood of an innocent and substitutionary sacri_
fice (Gen. 4:3_5; cf Rev. 7:14; 22:14), which mercy seat
between the cherubim was to be approached through sacri_
ficial blood, just as described in that part of the Mosaic law

prescribing the way of the sinner’s approach to God (Ex.
(2) In the four most marvelous types:
(a) The Passover lamb whose blood availed when Jeho_
vah saw it (Ex. 12:13, 23) showing that the blood propitiated
Godward. See I Corinthians 5:7.
(b) In the kid on the great day of atonement (Lev. 16)
which shows that the expiatory blood must be sprinkled on
the mercy seat between the cherubim as the basis of atone_
(c) In the red heifer, burned without the camp, and whose
ashes, liquefied with water, became a portable means of puri_
fication, Numbers 19:2_6, 9, 17_18, with Hebrews 9:13,
representing that first and cleansing element of regeneration
in which the Holy Spirit applies Christ’s blood. See Psalms
51:2, 7; Ezekiel 36:25; John 3:5 (born of water and Spirit);
Ephesians 5:26; Titus 3:5.
(d) The brazen serpent, fused in fire and then elevated
to be seen, which shows that the expiatory passion, a fiery
suffering, must be lifted up in preaching, as the object of
faith and means of healing, Numbers 21:9, explained in John
3:14_16; 12:32_33; Galatians3:l.
(3) In such striking passages as Isaiah 53:4_11. Compare
the messianic prayer: „Deliver my soul from the sword,”
Psalms 22:20, with the divine response, „Awake, 0 sword,
against my Shepherd, and against the man that is my fellow,
saith Jehovah,” Zechariah 13:7, and hear the sufferer’s out_
cry: „My God, My God, why hast thou forsaken me?” Psalms
22:1 and Matthew 27:45_46. When these passages are com_
pared with Isaiah 53:5_10, Romans 3:25, 2 Corinthians 5:21
and I Peter 2:24, it cannot be reasonably questioned that he
died under the sentence of God’s law against sin, and that this
death was propitiatory toward God and vicarious toward

man, and is the one act of righteousness through which our
justification comes.
2. Some of the New Testament passages, including sev_
eral already given, are our Lord’s own words in instituting
the Memorial Supper: „This is my body given for you. . . .
This cup is the New Covenant in my blood . . . even that
which is poured out for you . . . which is shed for many unto
remission of sins.” We need to add only Romans 3:25; I
Corinthians 1:30; 5:7; I Peter 1:18_19; 2:24; and Hebrews
The combined text, „One exercise of faith,” means that
unlike sanctification, justification is not progressive, but one
instantaneous act; God justifies, and our laying hold of it
is a simple definite transaction. One moment we are not justi_
fied; in the next moment we are justified. One look at the
brazen serpent brought healing. Zacchaeus went up the tree
lost, and came down saved. The dying thief at one moment
was lost, and the next heard the words: „Today shall thou
be with me in paradise.” At midnight the lost jailer was
trembling; just after that he was rejoicing believing in God
with all his house. There is no appreciable time element in
the transition from condemnation to justification.
Considering Christ as a gift, how long does it take to
receive him? Considering him as a promise, how long to trust?
Considering Christ as the custodian of an imperilled soul,
how long to commit it to him? Considering the union between
Christ and the sinner as an espousal (2 Cor. 11:2) how long
to say: „I take him”?
As a marriage between man and woman is a definite trans_
action, consummated when he says, „I take her to be my
lawful wife,” and when she says, „I take him to be my law_
ful husband,” so by one exercise of faith we take Christ as
our Lord. But as sanctification is progressive, we go on in that
from faith to faith. But justification through faith in a sub_

statute does not tuna loose a criminal on society. If it be
meant a criminal in deed, it is not true, because to the last
farthing the law claim has been met in the payment of the
surety. In other words, the law has been fully satisfied. If
it be meant in spirit, it is not true, for every justified man is
regenerated. A new heart to love God and man has been
given, a holy disposition imparted, loving righteousness and
hating iniquity. A spirit of obedience, new and mighty mo_
tives of gratitude and love are at work, and motive de_
termines very largely the moral quality of action. In other
words, the justified man is also a new creature.
It secures in the new creature the only basis of true moral_
ity. Morality is conformity with moral law. Immorality is
nonconformity with moral law. The first and great com_
mandment of moral law is supreme love toward God, and the
second is love to thy neighbor as thyself. ~No unregenerate
man can make a step in either direction any more than a
bad tree can produce good fruit, for „the carnal mind is enmity
against God and not subject to his law, neither indeed can
be.” The unregenerate is self_centered; the regenerate, Christ_
centered. The justified man, being regenerate, will be neces_
sarily a better man personally and practically than he was
before in every relation of life – better in the family, better
in society and better in the state. A claim to justification
without improvement in these directions is necessarily a false
The writer in 2:17 has already introduced the word, „law,”
in a special sense when discussing the case of the Jew as
contradistinguished from other nations. And this is the sense
of his word, „law,” when he says, „For until the law sin was
in the world.” Law, to a Jew, meant the Sinaitic law. But
the apostle is proving that law did not originate at Sinai, in
any sense except for one nation, as was evident from sin and
death anterior to it. First, there was primal law inhering in
God’s intent in creating moral beings, and in the very con_
stitution of their being, and in all their relations. And this
law, even to Adam in innocence, found statutory expression.
in the law of labor, the law of marriage, and in the law of
the sabbath, as well as in the particular prohibition concern_
ing the tree of death. Immediately after Adam’s fall and
expulsion from paradise came the intervention of the grace
covenant, with its law of sacrifices, symbolically showing the
way of a sinner’s approach to God through vicarious expia_
tion. There were preachers and prophets of grace before the
flood, as well as the convicting and regenerating spirit. All
these expressions of law passed over the flood with Noah,
with several express additions to the statutory law both civil
and criminal. Death proved sin, and sin proved law, before
we come to Sinai. Adam was under law. Adam sinned and
death reigned over him. Adam’s descendants down to Moses
died. Therefore they had sinned, and therefore were under
the law. But their sin was not like Adam’s in several parties
ulars: (1) They did not sin as the head of a race. (2) They
did not sin from a standpoint of innocence and holinese, but
from an inherited depravity. (3) They sinned under a grace
covenant which Adam had not in paradise. This last particular
is here emphasized, where grace in justification is contrasted
with the condemnation through Adam’s one offense.
If then the Sinaitic code did not originate law, what was
its purpose? „The law came in besides, that the trespass
might abound.” This purpose of the law will be considered
more elaborately later. Just here it is sufficient to say that
the Sinaitic code under three great departments, or heads, is
the most marvelous and elaborate expression of law known
to history. Its three heads or constituent elements, as we
learn in the Old Testament, are –
1. The decalogue, or moral law, or God and the normal
2. The law of the altar, or God and the sinner, or the
sinner’s symbolic way of approach to God, including a place
to find him, a means of propitiating him) times to approach
him, and an elaborate ritual of service.
3. The judgments, or God and the State, in every variety
of municipal, civil, and criminal law.
So broad, so deep, so high, so minute, so comprehensive
is this code, so bright is its light, that every trespass in
thought, word, and deed is not only made manifest, but is
made to abound, in order that where sin abounded grace
would abound exceedingly.

1. What was the one offense committed by the first Adam?
2. On whom did race responsibility rest, Adam or Eve, or both; why?
3. If only Eve had sinned, what would have been the result?
4. What error has since arisen from holding Eve responsible?
5. What to the contrary does history show?
6. What bearing has this fact on the Second Adam?
7. How could Jesus, being born of a depraved woman, escape a de_
praved nature?
8. What the propriety of salvation by the Second Adam?
9. How did Christ meet all the law requirements?
10. What the value of the first three items?
11. What Christ’s one act of righteousness, which is the sole ground
of our justification?
12. What particular proof of this one act of righteousness from both
13. What does the combined text mean by „one exercise of faith”?
14. How is it that justification through faith in a substitute does not
turn loose a criminal on society?
15. How then is it that it does not demoralize?
16. Explain the parenthetic statement in 5:13_17 and also 5:20_21.
17. If the Sinaitic code did not originate the law, what was its purpose?
18. What the three constituent elements of the Sinaitic law?

Romans 6:1 to 8:39.

We have considered hitherto in this letter what salvation
has done for us in redemption, justification and adoption. We
have now before us in 6:1ù8:39 what salvation does in us
in regeneration and sanctification of our souls, and in the
resurrection and glorification of our bodies.
Two questions properly introduce this section. In 3:21 he
says, „But now apart from the law a righteousness of God
hath been manifested, being witnessed by the law and the
prophets.” In view of this, in 6:1 he asks, „What shall we
say then? Shall we continue in sin, that grace may abound?”
The meaning is this: Does salvation by grace through faith
in a debt_paying substitute encourage to more sin, because
the sinner does not himself pay the penalty, and thus by more
sin give greater scope to superabounding grace? Or, does
imputation of the penalty of sin in a substitute make void the
law to the sinner personally? Or does God’s justification of
the sinner, through faith, instead of his personal obedience,
turn loose a defiled criminal on society eager to commit more
crime because his future offenses, like his past offenses, will
be charged to the substitute? These are pertinent questions
of practical importance and if, indeed, this be the legitimate
result of the gospel plan of salvation, it is worthy of rejection
by all who love justice.
While we have already considered this matter somewhat,
let us restate a reply embodying the substance of this sec_
tion. The reply is in substance as follows: Whom God
justifies them he also regenerates and sanctifies in soul and
raises and glorifies in body. In the first element of regenera_
tion – the application of the blood of Christ by the Holy Spirit
– the sinner is cleansed from the defilement of sin. See Psalm
51:2, 7; Ezekiel 36:25; Titus 3:5, first clause. „The wash_
ing of regeneration,” Ephesians 5:26; „born of water,” John
3:5, all of which is set forth in the type of the red heifer,
Hebrews 9:13, 14, an Old Testament teaching for ignorance
of which Christ condemned Nicodemus, John 3:10. See also
Revelation 7:14 and 22:14, revised version. So that the
justified man is not turned loose a defiled criminal on society.
In the second element of regeneration the justified sinner
is delivered from the love of sin by his renewed nature, Psalm
51:10; Ezekiel 36:26; John 3:3, 5_6, „born from above . . .
born of the Spirit;” Titus 3:5, second clause, „and renewing
of the Holy Spirit.” So that the regenerate man has the spirit
of obedience, Ezekiel 36:27; Tutus 2:11_14; 3:8. And while
the obedience of the regenerate is imperfect, yet through sanc_
tification, when it is consummated, the regenerate in soul is
qualified to perfect obedience, Philippians 1:6; 3:12_14; 2
Corinthians 3:17_18. And when the body is raised and glorified
then this justified sinner has become personally, in soul and
body, as holy and obedient as Jesus himself, I John 3:2;
Psalm 17:15, all of which is pictorially set forth in our bap_
tism, Romans 6:4_5; Colossians 2:12. So that faith not only
does not make void the law to us personally, but is the only
way by which we shall be made able to keep the law personal_
ly, and not only does not encourage to sin, but furnishes the
only motives by which practically we cease from sin.
The doctrine of baptism as bearing upon this point set
forth in 6:1_11 is this: A justified and regenerate man is com_
manded to be baptized. Baptism symbolizes the burial of
a dead man – dead to his old life – his cleansing from the
sins of the old life, and this resurrection to a new life. Christ
died on the cross for our sins once for all. Being dead he
was buried, raised to a new life and exalted to a royal and
priestly throne. All this, in the beginning of his public min_

istry, was prefigured in his own baptism. As he died for our
sins, paying the law penalty, so we in regeneration become
dead to law claims because we died to sin in his death. Being
dead to the old life, we should be buried. This is represented
in our baptism: „Buried in baptism.” But in regeneration
we are not only slain, but made alive, or quickened. The liv_
ing should not abide in the grave, therefore in our baptism
there is also a symbol of our resurrection. But regeneration
not only slays and makes alive, but cleanses, therefore in our
baptism we are symbolically cleansed from sin, as was said
to Paul, „Arise, and be baptized and wash away thy sins.”
So that not only both elements of regeneration, cleansing and
renewal of soul are set forth pictorially in our baptism, but
also the coming resurrection and glorification of our bodies.
In 6:7 we have this language: „For he that hath died is
justified from sin.” That means that there are two ways in
which one can satisfy the law and meet all of its claims. He
can either do it by perfectly obeying the law, or he can do
it by meeting the penalty of the law. Therefore it says, „He
that hath died is justified from sin.” It is just like an ordi_
nary debt. If one pays the debt he is justified from the claim.
If a man commits an offense and the law decision is that he
suffer the penalty of two years in the penitentiary, and he
serves the two years in the penitentiary, he is justified in the
eyes of the law. The law can’t take him up and try him
again. While the disobedience of the law is not justified in
obedience, he has paid the full penalty. Now to make the ap_
plication of that: Christ died for our sins; we died in his
death, just as we died in Adam and came under condemnation
for it. Now when we die with Christ, that death on the cross
justifies us from sin. That is what it means.
The next point is the argument from the meaning of the
declaration that he that is dead is justified from sin. That
argument is presented in verses 12_13, and the reason for it
is given in verse 14. Let us look at those verses. If we be
dead to sin we should not let sin reign in our mortal body
that we should obey the lusts thereof. Neither present our
members unto sin as instruments of unrighteousness, but pre_
sent ourselves unto God as alive from the dead, and our mem_
bers as instruments of righteousness unto God. The reason
assigned is, „For sin shall not have dominion over you; for
ye are not under law, but under grace.” In other words, „It
is true that you didn’t pay that law claim, but your substitute
paid it, and that puts you from under the law of condemna_
tion. Now if you set out to pay, you set out to pay unto
grace. The spirit of obedience in you is not of fear, but of
love to him that died for you.” That is what is called being
under grace in a matter of obedience and not under law.
What is the force of the question, „Shall we sin because we
are not under law, but under grace?” In other words, „Be_
cause my obedience is not a condition of my salvation, shall
I therefore sin?” That is the thought, and his argument
against that is this: „God forbid. Know ye not that to whom
ye present yourselves as servants unto obedience, his servants
ye are whom ye obey; whether of sin unto death, or of obe_
dience unto righteousness?” If a man presents himself unto
grace as the principle of obedience, then it is not a life and
death matter, but it is a matter of love and gratitude. It is
on a different principle entirely. And in a very elaborate way
he continues the argument down to verse 23: „For the wages
of sin is death; but the free gift of God is eternal life in
Christ Jesus our Lord.”
Let us now explain the contrast in 6:23 and give the argu_
ment. Here he contrasts two things, (1) the wages. This is a
matter of law – wages. (2) ‘Over against that stands gift –
free gift. That is not a matter of wages. The wages of sin
is death – that is the penalty – but now the free gift is eternal
life. It is impossible to put his meaning any plainer than
these words put it: „Are you expecting to be saved on the
ground of earning your salvation as wages, or are you expect_
ing to be saved through the free gift of God unto eternal
life?” That is the thought.
Let us see the force of the illustration in 7:2: „For the
woman that hath a husband is bound by law to the husband
while he liveth; but if the husband die, she is discharged
from the law of the husband. So then if, while the husband
liveth, she be joined to another man, she shall be called an
adulteress; but if the husband die, she is free from the law,
so that she is no adulteress, though she be joined to another
man.” The force of that as an illustration of the married life
is: „What God hath joined together let not man put asunder.”
The obligation of a wife to a husband, and their fidelity to
each other, is a matter of law growing out of the relation that
holds them together. So long as a husband lives and a wife
lives, neither one of them can be free to marry except in a
certain case, and that exception is discussed elsewhere. He
is just discussing the general principles here. Now apply that
illustration: „The law holds you to absolute fidelity in obe_
dience just as the law holds the woman bound to her husband,
and the husband to his wife. If you died with Christ, you
are dead to that law, and therefore you can enter into another
relation. You are espoused to Christ. The law that binds
you now is the law of that espousal to Christ, and that is the
law of freedom; not like the other, it is a matter of grace.”
That is the force of that statement.
Then in 7:7, „Is the law sin?” That is an important ques_
tion and he answers it. Some things in connection with it
have already been answered, and in answering it particularly
I will take the following position:
(1) The law is not sin. It is holy, it is just, it is good.
What, then, is the relation of the law to sin? He says here
that it gives the knowledge of sin: „I had not known sin
except through the law.” If people were living according to
different standards, every man being a judge in his own case,
what A would think to be right B would think to be wrong,
and vice versa. People would think conflicting things, and as
long as a man held himself to be Judge of what was right and
what was wrong he would not feel that he was a sinner. 80
the real standard, not a sliding scale, is put down among all
the varying ideas of right and wrong. What is the object?
It is to reveal the lack of conformity to the law: „I had not
known sin, except through the law.”
(2) The second reason is that it provokes to sin. He says,
„Sin, finding occasion, through the commandment beguiled
me, and through it slew me.” If children were forbidden to
climb telephone poles they would all desire to climb them,
and they would never think of it if they were not forbidden.
So that law was designed to show just what inherent nature
will bring out. A snake is very pretty at certain times, and
one may think that the enmity between him and the human
race is hardly justifiable, but let him give a snake the oppor_
tunity to develop just what is in him, and then he will have a
different opinion. Who would have supposed that it was in
human nature to do the things done in the French Revolution?
Man is a good sort of creature; he would not impale a body
on a bayonet; he would not burn a woman at the stake; he
would not put their fingers in a thumbscrew; he would not
put a man on the rack and torture him; but nobody knows
the evil that is in human nature until it has a chance to show
what is in it.
(3) The law brings all that out; hence, one object of the
law is to make sin appear to be sin, and to be exceeding sin_
ful – to make it seem what it is, and not just a peccadillo, or
a misdemeanor, but an exceedingly vile, ghastly, and hateful
(4) Then the object of the law is to work death: „Sin, tak_
ing occasion by the law, beguiled and slew me.” The death
there referred to is the death in one’s own mind. It means con_
viction that one is lost – that is the death he is talking about.
For he explains immediately, where he says, „I was alive
apart from the law once,” that is, he felt like he was all right,
but when the commandment came he saw that he was a dead
man – under condemnation of death. And that is one of the
works of the Holy Spirit bringing about conviction, making
a man see that he is a sinner, .making him feel that he is a
sinner, that he is exceeding sinful.
And we may distrust any kind of preaching that is dry_
eyed, that has no godly sorrow, that has no repentance. If
one thinks that he is a very little sinner, then a very little
Saviour is needed. We depreciate our Saviour just to the
extent that we extenuate our sin.
The next passage is also of real importance, (7:15_25).
There is only one important question on it: „Is the experience
there related the experience of a converted man, or of an un_
converted man?” If one wants to see how men dissent on it,
let him read his commentaries.
Let us see some of the points: „That which I do I know
not [the word „know” is used in the sense of approve]; for
not what I would, that do I practice; but what I hate, that I
do. But if what I would not, that I do, I consent unto the law
that it is good. So now it is no more I that do it, but sin
which dwelleth in me . . . For the good which I would I do
not: but the evil which I would not, that I practice. But if
what I would not, that I do, it is no more I that do it, but sin
which dwelleth in me. I find then the law, that, to me who
would do good, evil is present. For I delight in the law of
God after the inward man.” Now is that a saved or an un_
saved man? Our Methodist brethren tell us that that is the
experience of an unsaved man; that we don’t get to con_
version until we come to chapter 8. I say that there we strike
sanctification. The point is this: If the mind of the flesh –
the carnal mind – is enmity against God, if it is not subject
to the law of God, and neither indeed can be, then how can
that mind, „delight in the law of God in the inward man?”
How can he approve that which is good? From verse 16 to
the end of chapter 7 he discusses a certain imperfection at_
tending the regenerate state. The experience of every regen_
erate man will corroborate this: „I know a certain thing is
right. I am ashamed to say I didn’t do it; I know a certain
thing is wrong, and I approve the law that makes it wrong,
and I am ashamed to say I have done that very thing.” And if
there is one thing that disturbs the Christian and troubles
him, it is to find a law in his members warring against the
law of his mind. That is expressed here: „Wretched man
that I am! Who shall deliver me out of the body of this
death?” That expression of Paul’s has been (and I think
rightly) supposed to refer to an ancient penalty inflicted on a
man that had committed a certain offense. He was chained
to a dead body, and he had to carry that dead body with him
everywhere he went. He alive, that body dead, he would
want a pure atmosphere to inhale, and that body would be
exhaling the stench of corruption. It was a miserable condi_
tion: „Who will deliver me from this body of death?”
One of the great French preachers preached on that sub_
ject before Louis XIV. We find a reference to it in Strong’s
Systematic Theology. He was talking about the two l’s;
„that which I approve I do not; that which / would not do
that I do.” And the French preacher was pointing out the
two men in a man, and how they fought against each other,
and the king interrupted him in his sermon and said, „Ah, I
know those two men.” The preacher pointed at him and said,
„Sire, it is somewhat to know them, but, your majesty, one
or the other of them must die.” It isn’t enough just to know
them; one or the other of them is going ultimately to triumph.
What is the meaning of 8:4: „That the ordinance of the
law might be fulfilled in us, who walk not after the flesh, but
after the Spirit”? Here is the fulfilment in us. It is not
imputed righteousness that is being discussed here; that is
justification. But it is the object of regeneration and sanc_
tification to make a personal righteousness. The object of
regeneration and sanctification is that in us the law might
be fulfilled as well as/or us in the death of Christ. That is
the meaning of the passage, and it is one of the profoundest
gratifications to me that my salvation does not stop at justi_
fication. I am glad to think that the law has no claims on
me, but I could not be happy, being only justified and loving
sin. I not only want to be delivered from sin but from the
love of sin in regeneration, and the dominion of sin in sanc_
The apostle describes the two minds in 8:5_8: „For they
that are after the flesh mind the things of the flesh.” Here
flesh does not mean the body. The flesh does not mean the
tissues and the blood. That would constitute only a physical
man. What he means by the flesh is the carnal mind. Now
he is discussing the two. He continues: „But they that are
after the Spirit the things of the Spirit.” There are the two
minds: „For the mind of the flesh is death; but the mind of
the Spirit is life and peace: because the mind of the flesh
is not subject to the law of God, neither indeed can it be;
they that are in the flesh cannot please God.” It is just like
trying to wash away the soul’s sins in water.
We might take the sinner up and hold him under Niagara
Falls and let it pour on him for ten thousand years and we
could never wash away the soul’s sins. It was impossible
for the blood of bullocks to take away sin. It is impossible
for the water of baptism to take away sin. This carnal mind
cannot be made into a Christian. We can whitewash it, and
there are many preachers that do that sort of business. It
may be outwardly beautiful, like a tomb, but inwardly it is
full of rottenness and dead men’s bones.

1. What has been considered in this letter hitherto?
2. What now before us in 6:1 to 8_39?
3. What two questions properly introduce this section, and what
their meaning?
4. What of the significance of these questions?
5. What the reply to them embodying the substance of this section?
6. What the doctrine of baptism bearing upon this point set forth
in 6:1_11?
7. What the meaning of 6:7: „He that hath died is justified from sin”?
8. What the argument based upon that statement?
9. What the force of the question, „Shall we sin because we are
not under law, but under grace”?
10. What the contrast and argument in 6:23?
11. What is the illustration in 7:2, and what the force of it?
12. la the law sin? If not, what its relation to sin?
13. Expound the passage, 7:15_25.
14. What is the meaning and application of 8:4?
15. How does the apostle describe the two minds, and what the

Romans 6:1 to 8:39

In this chapter we continue the discussion of salvation in us,
or regeneration, sanctification, and glorification. Regenera_
tion is a change of mind. The carnal mind cannot be made
into a Christian, hence there must be a change. Is the change
simply using the old mind, but modifying it, or is it a change
like this: A woman put her baby in the cradle at night and
the next morning there was another baby in the cradle which
she called the changeling? That was not any imitation of the
baby that was in there before. Just so we waste our time if we
try to make a Christian out of the carnal mind. We can’t do
it. That is why regeneration is called a creation, which is
to make something out of nothing – not out of a material hav_
ing already existed.
What Paul is expressing here is that we may take the fallen
nature of man which he has inherited from Adam and com_
mence an educational process in the cradle, and continue it up
to the adult stage and get a very respectable church member,
but not a saved person.
Education has no creative power at all. He may be very
proper in his behavior; he may pay the preacher; he may go
to Sunday school; he may do everything in the world that
will enable him to appear to be a Christian, and yet not be a
Christian. There must be a breaking up of the fallow ground.
As Jesus said to Nicodemus, „Except ye be born from above,
ye cannot even see the kingdom of heaven.”
The conclusion reached by the apostle in this argument is
in verse II: „If the Spirit of him that raised up Jesus from
the dead dwelleth in you, he that raised up Christ Jesus from
the dead shall give life also to your mortal bodies through
his Spirit that dwelleth in you.” Now the question, Who
shall deliver me from the body of this death, this evil mind
this evil body? It comes through Christ, but it is Christ work_
ing through the Spirit. It is the Holy Spirit that made Christ’s
body alive; it is the Holy Spirit that will make our bodies
alive at the resurrection; it is the Holy Spirit that will glorify
these bodies and when they come out they will be spiritual
bodies and not carnal bodies.
There is a test presented in verse 14: „For as many as are
led by the Spirit of God, these are sons of God.” Who are
God’s children? Those that have the Spirit – those that are
led by the Spirit. We are regenerated by the Spirit, and under
the guidance of that Spirit we turn away from sin. If we
fall we try to fall toward heaven, and get up and try again.
There is a sense of wanting to get nearer and nearer to God.
We want to know whether we are Christians. Here is the
test: We are led by the Spirit of God.
That brings us to the word „adoption.” What is adoption?
Etymologically it is that legal process by which one, not a
member of a family naturally, is legally made a member of
it and an heir. There are three kinds of adoption which the
apostle discusses in this letter: (1) National adoption, Romans
9:4: „My kinsman according to the flesh who are Israelites,
whose is the adoption.” Many times in the Old Testament
Israel is called God’s son, the nation as a nation being his
particular people.
2. The adoption of the soul of the justified man, Romans
8:15: „Ye received the spirit of adoption.”
3. The adoption of our bodies when they are redeemed from
the grave and glorified, Romans 8:23: „Waiting for our adop_
tion, to wit, the redemption of our body.”
The fact of our adoption is certified to us in Romans 8:15_
16: „For ye received not the spirit of bondage again unto fear;
but ye received the spirit of adoption, whereby we cry, Abba,
Father. The Spirit himself beareth witness with our spirit,
that we are children of God.” That is a matter of our sub_
jective experience. As in the case of justification there must
be a difference of time between the fact of our justification
and our realization of its privileges, so there must be and
indeed often is a difference in time between the fact of our
adoption and our realization in experience that we are adopted.
The cry, „Abba, Father,” means that in our experience a filial
feeling toward God comes into the heart. Antecedent to this
when we thought of God he seemed to us to be distant and
dreadful, but when through the Holy Spirit given unto us came
this conscious realization that God is a Father, it drove out all
We do not feel ourselves under bondage to law, but we have
the sense in our hearts of being God’s children, and as a little
child readily approaches a parent in expectation of either
help or comfort, we have this feeling toward our heavenly
Father. It is one of the sweetest experiences of the Christian
life. There is no distinction of meaning between the spirit of
adoption and the Spirit’s bearing witness with our spirit that
we are the children of God, or if there is a distinction it is not
appreciable in our consciousness, since it is the Spirit that
bestows that filial feeling.
As an illustration of this filial feeling in the heart I cite a
story of the west well_known to our boys. While two children,
a little boy and his sister, were playing, the boy was stolen by
the Indians and reared among them until he caught the spirit
of an Indian and gloried in the Indian life. Finally he became
chief of the tribe. In a war between his tribe and the white
people, he was captured and it was discovered that he was not
an Indian but a white man. Finally the proof accumulated
as to who were his parents, yet he refused to acknowledge
them. With the sullenness of a captured Indian he pined
away for the wigwams and the freedom of his Indian life.
Every effort to make him realize that he was a white man
failed until his sister, then a grown woman, brought the toys
with which the two were playing when the boy was stolen.
As he looked at them his memory awakened and he stretched
out his hands and claimed them as his and said, „Where is my
mother?” Now here in him was a consciousness of filial feel_
ing towards his parents from whom he had been so long
alienated. Analogous to this very impression is our ex_
perience that God is our Father.
In a vivid way the apostle represents the earth, man’s
habitat, as entering sympathetically into man’s longing for his
complete restoration to God’s favor through adoption, Ro_
mans 8:20_23: „For the creation was subjected to vanity,
not of its own will, but by reason of him who subjected it,
in hope that the creation itself also shall be delivered from the
bondage of corruption into the liberty of the glory of the
children of God. For we know that the whole creation
groaneth and travaileth in pain together until now. And not
only so, but ourselves also, who have the first fruits of the
Spirit, even we ourselves groan within ourselves, waiting for
our adoption, to wit, the redemption of our body,” the mean_
ing of which is that this earth was made for man; to him was
given dominion over it, but when he sinned the earth was
cursed. In the language of the scripture, „Cursed is the ground
for thy sake; in toil shalt thou eat of it all the days of thy
life; thorns also and thistles shall it bring forth to thee; in the
sweat of thy face shalt thou eat bread.” In Isaiah 55:12_13,
we have this vivid imagery following conversion: „The moun_
tains and the hills shall break forth before you into singing;
and all of the trees of the field shall clap their hands. Instead
of the thorn shall come up the fir tree; and instead of the
brier shall come up the myrtle tree; and it shall be to Jehovah
for a name, for an everlasting sign that shall not be cut off.”
In other words, the joy that is in the heart of the Christian
constitutes a medium of rose color through which all creation
seems to him more beautiful than it was before. The birds
sing sweeter, the flowers exhale a sweeter perfume, the stars
shine brighter, all of which is a sign, or forecast, of the re_
demption of the earth from the curse when man’s redemption
is complete. This curse as originally pronounced upon the
earth was not through any fault of creation, as our text says:
„Subjected to vanity, not of its own will, but by reason of
him who had subjected it in hope.” And very impressive and
vivid is the imagery that the groaning of the earth is as travail,
waiting to be redeemed from the defilement and scars and
crimson stains that have been put upon it through man’s
inhumanity to man on account of sin.
Other scriptures very clearly show that this redemption of
the earth accompanies the redemption of man. As the earth
was cleansed from defilement of sin practiced by the ante_
diluvians through the flood, so at the coming of our Lord and
the resurrection of our bodies it will be purged by fire. The
language of the apostle Peter upon this subject is very im_
pressive: „For this they wilfully forget that there were heavens
from of old, and an earth compacted out of water and amidst
water, by the word of God; by which means the world that
then was, being overflowed with water, perished; but the
heavens that now are and the earth, by the same word have
been stored up for fire, being reserved against the day of judg_
ment and destruction of ungodly men. . . . But the day of the
Lord will come as a thief: in the which the heavens shall pass
away with a great noise, and the elements shall be dissolved
with fervent heat, and the earth and the works that are there_
in shall be burned up. Seeing that these things are thus all
to be dissolved, what manner of persons ought ye to be in all
holy living and godliness, looking for and earnestly desiring
the coming of the day of God, by reason of which the heavens
being on fire shall be dissolved, and the elements shall melt
with fervent heat? But according to his promise, we look for
new heavens and a new earth, wherein dwelleth righteousness”
(2 Peter 3:5_7, 10_13). In John’s apocalypse, referring to
the restitution of all things after the judgment, he says, „I saw
a new heaven and a new earth; for the first heaven and the
first earth are passed away; and the sea is no more” (Rev.
21:1). This is the day of fire referred to in Malachi 4:1_3:
„For, behold, the day cometh, it burneth as a furnace; and
all the proud, and all that work wickedness, shall be stubble;
and the day that cometh shall burn them up, saith Jehovah
of hosts, that it shall leave them neither root nor branch.
But unto you that fear my name shall the sun of righteousness
arise with healing in his wings; and ye shall go forth, and
gambol as calves of the stall. And ye shall tread down the
wicked; for they shall be ashes under soles of your feet in the
day that I make, saith Jehovah of hosts.” This is the day
of fire which the apostle Paul says shall try every man’s
work: „But if any man buildeth on the foundation gold, silver,
costly stones, wood, hay, stubble; each man’s work shall be
made manifest; for the day shall declare it, because it is re_
vealed in fire; and the fire itself shall prove each man’s work
of what sort it is. If any man’s work shall abide which he
built thereon, he shall receive a reward. If any man’s work
shall be burned, he shall suffer loss; but he himself shall be
saved; yet so as through fire” (I Cor. 3:12_15).
In continuation of the theme of this section the apostle fur-ther shows the power of the work of salvation in us through the Holy Spirit – the Paraclete. But the Greek word Paraclete needs to be defined. While our Lord was on the earth he was the para-clete, to whom as the paraclete the disciples said, „Lord, teach us to pray,” and in many examples of his own praying and in many special lessons on prayer he taught the disciples, and they were sad at heart when at the last supper he announced his speedy going away from them, but comforted them with the assurance that he would pray the Father to send them another paraclete – the Holy Spirit, who would teach them to pray acceptably. Prayers not according to the will of God are not answered. We may ask for things, being in doubt as to whether it is God’s will that such things should be granted, but the Holy Spirit is not in doubt. He knows what is according to the will of God, and hence when he moves us intensely to offer prayers those prayers will always be according to God’s will, and so will be answered. Thus while Jesus in heaven makes intercession for us before the mercy seat, the other Paraclete – the Holy Spirit – here on earth makes intercession in us. We are not to understand that the Holy Spirit directly prays for the Christian, but his method of intercession is to prompt us to make the right intercession, and it is in that way that he makes intercession for us. He teaches us how to pray, and what to pray for. That is why great revivals of religion are in connection with these spiritual prayers offered by God’s people. Hence the prophet says, „Thorns and briers shall come up on the land of my people till the Spirit is poured out from on high.”
The most vivid illustration of the thought is found in the prophecy Zechariah in connection with an event yet in the future, to wit, the salvation of the Jewish nation. The language is,
And I will pour upon the house of David, and upon the in_
habitants of Jerusalem, the spirit of grace and of supplication;
and they shall look unto me whom they have pierced; and
they shall mourn for him, as one mourneth for his only son,
and shall be in bitterness for him, as one that is in. bitterness
for his first_born. In that day shall there by a great mourning
in Jerusalem, as the mourning of Hadadrimmon in the valley
of Meggidon. And the land shall mourn, every family apart;
the family of the houses of David apart, and their wives
apart; the family of the house of Nathan apart, and their
wives apart; the family of the house of Levi apart, and their
wives apart; the family of the Shimeites apart, and their wives
apart; all the families that remain, every family apart, and their
wives apart. In that day there shall be a fountain opened to
the house of David and to the inhabitants of Jerusalem, for
sin and for uncleanness. – Zechariah 12:10 to 13:1.
It is on account of the Spirit’s intercession in us that back_
sliders are ever reclaimed. As we wander away from God we
lose the spirit of prayer, and while we go through with the
forms of prayer we are conscious that our prayers do not rise,
do not take hold of the throne of God, but when the Spirit
comes upon the backslider then his hard heart is melted, the
fountain of his tears is unsealed, the spirit of grace and suppli_
cation comes upon him, and he is conscious that he is taking
hold of the throne of mercy in his prayers.
Aa an illustration, many Texans have experienced the hard_
ships of a long_continued drouth, when the heavens seem to
be brass and the earth seems to be iron. When vegetation
dies, when dust chokes the traveler on the thoroughfare, and
thirst consumes him, suddenly he comes to a well and in it
is an old_fashioned pump. He leaps down from his horse,
rushes to the pump, but in moving its handle he causes only
a dry rattle. The reason is that through very long disuse
and heat the valves of the pump have shrunk and hence can_
not make suction to draw up the water. In such case water
must be poured down the pump until the valves are swollen,
and then as the pump handle is worked, suction draws the
water as freely as at first. As that pouring the water from
above down the dry pump is to its efficacy in bringing water
up, so is the Spirit’s intercession in us, causing us to pray suc_
cessfully and according to the will of God. In that way the
two elements of the gospel plan of salvation co_operate to
the everlasting security of the believer. At the heaven end of
the line Jesus, the first Advocate, or Paraclete, makes inter_
cession for us as High Priest, pleading what his expiation
has done for us, while the Holy Spirit, the second Advocate,
or Paraclete, works in us an intercession for us here on earth.
So that both ends of the line are secure in heaven above and
on earth beneath. No backslider has ever been able to work
himself into the true spirit of prayerfulness any more than a
dry pump can be made to bring up water by working the
handle. Whenever he does pray prevailingly, it is when the
Spirit works in him the grace of supplication.

1. What is regeneration? negatively and positively?
2. What the real import of what Paul says about it?
3. What the conclusion reached by Paul in. this argument?
4. What is the test presented in 8:147
5. What is adoption?
6. What the three kinds of adoption which the apostle discusses in
this letter?
7. How is the fact of our adoption certified to us?
8. What is the meaning of the soul’s cry, „Abba, Father”?
9. Is there any distinction between the spirit of adoption and the
Spirit’s bearing witness with our spirit that we are the children of
God? If so, what?
10. Illustrate the filial feeling that comes to us when we are saved.
11. In what vivid way does Paul represent the earth, man’s habitat,
as entering sympathetically into man’s longing for his complete restoration to God’s favor through adoption?
12. What other scriptures very clearly show this redemption of the
earth accompanying the redemption of man?
13. In continuation of the theme of this section, how does the apostle
further show the power of the work of salvation in us?
14. Expound and illustrate this passage.

Romans 6:1 to 8:39

The final work of salvation in us is expressed in Romans
8:23 – the redemption of our body concerning which he adds:
„For in hope were we saved: but hope that is seen is not
hope: for who hopeth for that which he seeth? But if we
hope for that which we see not, then do we with patience wait
for it.” The body is an essential part of the normal man, who
was made dual in nature, and even in paradise God had pro_
vided for the elimination of the mortality of man’s body,
through the continued eating of the tree of life. But the
immortality of the body in sin would have been an unspeak_
able curse to man, and hence God, in expelling man from
the garden, said, „Lest he put forth his hand and take of
the tree of life and live forever.” But when our souls are re_
generated the hope enters the heart that the body also will
be saved, and we wait patiently for that part of our salva_
tion. While the meaning of a passage in Job is somewhat dis_
putable, the author believes that the common version is
correct. It expresses the idea of Job in these words:
Oh, that my words wee now written)
Oh, that they were inscribed in a book I
That with an iron pen and lead
They were graven in the rock forever!
But as for me, I know that my redeemer liveth,
And that he shall stand in the latter day upon the earth:
And though after my skin worms destory this body,
Yet in my flesh shall I see God.
Whom I shall see for myself, and mine eyes shall behold,
And not another: though my reins be consumed within me.
– Job 19:23_27.
And the passage is akin to the expression in Psalm 17: „I
will be satisfied when I awake in thy likeness.” This harmo_
nizes with another very striking passage in Job:

For there is hope of a tree,
If it be cut down, that it will sprout again,
And that the tender branch thereof will not cease.
Though the root thereof wax old ill the earth,
And the stock thereof die in the ground;
Yet through the scent of water it will bud,
And put forth boughs like a plant.
But a man dieth, and is laid low:
Yea, mail giveth up the ghost, and where is he?
As the waters fail from the sea,
And the river wasteth and drieth up;
So man lieth down and riseth not:
Till the heavens be no more, they shall not awake,
Nor be roused out of their sleep.
Oh, that thou wouldst hide me in Sheol,
That thou wouldst keep me secret, until thy wrath be past,
That thou wouldst appoint me a set time, and remember met
If a man die, shall he live again?
All the days of my warfare would I wait,
Till my release should come.
Thou wouldst call, and I would answer thee:
Thou wouldst have a desire to the work of thy hands.
– Job 14:7_15.
Here Job is deeply impressed with the hope of a tree cut
down reviving. There is a resurrection for it, but he Bays,
„When a man dies, where is he [that is, as to his soul] and
if a man die shall he [as to his body] live again?” Inasmuch
as the body was the work of God’s hands and originally
intended to be immortal, he expresses the hope that God
would hide him in the grave and appoint a set time to re_
member him there and then desire the work of his hands and
call him forth from his long sleep.
The fulness of the salvation in us is the regeneration of
the soul, its ultimate sanctification, and the resurrection and
glorification of the body. It has ever been impossible to sat_
isfy the cravings of a human heart with the hope of soul
salvation only. It is ingrained in the very constitution of our
being that we long for the revivification of the body. A bird
escaping from its shell to fly with a new life in the air cares
nothing for the cast_off shell. A butterfly emerging from the
chrysalis state cares nothing for the shell that is left behind.
But from the beginning of time, through this ingrained hope
of immortality for the body, man has cared for the body shell
after the spirit has escaped. It is evidenced in the care for
the dead body characteristic of all nations. It is evidenced in
the names given to graveyards. They are called cemeteries,
that is, sleeping places. It is evident in the sculpture on the
tombstones and in the inscriptions thereon, all tending to
show that man desires an answer to the question, „If I die,
shall I live again?” And the thought being, not with refer_
ence to the continuity of existence in his spiritual nature,
but in his body. Hence the resurrection of the dead is made
in the Christian system, a pivotal doctrine, as we learn from
the letter to the Corinthians: that our faith is vain, our
preaching is vain, we are yet in our sins, our fathers have
perished and God’s apostles are false witnesses, if the dead
rise not. That is the conclusion of the doctrine of salvation
in us. All the rest of chapter 8 is devoted to a new theme.

The argument extends from verse 26 to the end of the
chapter, and it is perhaps the most remarkable paragraph
in inspired literature. It should be memorized by every Chris_
tian. Every thought in it has been the theme of consolatory
and encouraging preaching.
Let us now consider item by item this argument on the
security of the believer:
1. He takes the latitudinal view, from top to bottom. Down
here he finds a Christian. Up yonder at the other end of the
line is the Advocate. But there is an Advocate here, too. And
these Advocates, one here on earth in the depths, and the
other yonder in the heights of heaven, are going to see to
it that that Christian gets there all right through prayer
and faith. If a Christian sins, he must confess it and ask God
to forgive him. Sometimes he has not the spirit of prayer and
does not feel like asking. But God provides an advocate, the
Holy Spirit, that puts into his heart the spirit of grace and
supplication. And the Holy Spirit not only shows him what
to pray for, but how to pray. That makes things secure at
this end of the line. Up yonder the advocate in heaven, Jesus
Christ the righteous, takes these petitions that the Spirit
inspired on earth and goes before the Father, and pointing
to the sufficiency of his shed blood in his death on the cross,
secures this salvation from depth to height.
2. The unbroken sweep of the providence of God: „To
them that love God all things work together for good, even
to them that are called according to his purpose.”
With Christ on the mediatorial throne in heaven holding
in his hand the scepter of universal dominion, constraining
everything – beings in heaven above and on the earth be_
neath and in hell below – to work, not tangentially, but to_
gether for good – not evil – to them that love God, in the sweep
of this providence all elements and forces of the material world
and the spiritual world, are laid under tribute – fire, earth, air,
storms and earthquakes, pestilences, good angels and bad, the
passions of men, the revolutions in human government – all
are made, under the directing power of Jesus our King, to
conspire to our good. Fortune and misfortune, good report
and evil report, sickness or health, life or death, prosperity or
adversity, it is all one – the power of God is over them all.
Satan is not permitted to put even the weight of a little finger
upon the Christian to worry him except in the direction that
God will permit, and that will be overruled for his good.
3. This sweep of providential government under our media_
torial King accords with a linked chain of correlative doc_
trines reaching from eternity before time to eternity after
time. The links of this chain are thus expressed in verses 29_

30: „For whom he foreknew, he also foreordained to be con_
formed to the image of his Son, that he might be the first
born among many brethren: and whom he foreordained, them
he also called; and whom he called, them he also justified:
and whom he justified, them he also glorified.” Before there
was any world, a covenant of grace and mercy was entered
into between Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, the evidences of
which covenant are abundant in the New Testament, and
the parts to be performed by each person of the God_head
are clearly expressed, viz.: The Father’s grace and love in
agreeing to send the Son, his covenant obligation to give the
Son a seed, his foreknowledge of this seed, his predestination
concerning this seed, his justification and adoption of them
here in time.
Then the Son’s covenant was the obligation to assume
human nature in his incarnation, voluntarily renouncing the
glory that he had with the Father before the world was, and
in this incarnation of humility to become obedient unto the
death of the cross. The consideration held out before him, as
a hope set before him, inducing him to endure the shame of
the cross, and the reward bestowed upon him because of that
obedience, was his resurrection, his glorification, his exaltation
to the royal priestly throne and his investment with the right
of judgment. And then the Spirit’s covenant_obligations were
to apply this work of redemption in calling, convicting, re_
generating, sanctifying and raising from the dead the seed
promised to the Son, the whole of it showing that the plan
of salvation was not an afterthought; that the roots of it
in election and predestination are both in eternity before the
world was, and the fruits of it are in eternity after the judg_
ment. The believer is asked to consider this chain, test each
link, shake it and hear it rattle, connected from eternity to
Every one that God chose in Christ is drawn by the Spirit
to Christ. Every one predestinated is called by the Spirit in
time, and justified in time, and will be glorified when the
Lord comes.
4. It is impossible for finite beings to say anything against
the grounds of this security, because „If God is for us, who
can be against us?” Because, „He that spared not his own
Son, to deliver him up for us all, how shall he not also with
him freely give us all things?” Then the challenge is sent to
the universe to find anyone who can lay any charge against
God’s elect – who in heaven, who among the angels, good or
bad, who on the earth? No charge can be brought against a
believer because it is God, the Supreme Judge, who has justi_
fied him. Justification is the verdict, or declaration, of the
supreme court of heaven that in Christ the sinner is acquitted.
This decision is rendered once for all, is inexorable and irre_
versible. It is registered in the book of life, and in the great
judgment day that book will be the test book on the throne
of the judgment. Whatever may be brought out from all the
books that are opened, none of them are decisive and ultimate
but one – the book of life – and it is not a docket of cases
to be tried on that day, but is a register of judicial decisions
already rendered; „and it shall come to pass that whosoever
is not found already written in that book shall be cast into
the lake of fire.” Therefore the thrill excited in the heart by
that song which our congregations so often used to sing:
When Thou my righteous Judge shall come,
To take thy ransomed people home
Shall I among them stand?
Shall I, who sometimes am afraid to die
Be found at thy right hand?
0, can I bear the piercing thought,
What if my name should be left out!
5. The ground of this salvation is what Christ does.
Spurgeon calls 8:34 the four pillars upon which rests the
whole superstructure of salvation. They are: (a) The death
of Christ, (b) The resurrection of Christ, (c) The exaltation
of Christ to the kingly throne, (d) His intercession as our
great High Priest. These four doctrines are strictly correla_
tive – they fit into one another. The soul of the Christian does
not at the beginning realize the strength of his salvation.
Many a one has simply believed on Christ as a Saviour with_
out ever anaylzing in his own mind, or separating from each
other in thought, the several things done by Christ in order
to his salvation. But as he grows in knowledge of these things,
he grows in grace and assurance. It was some time after my
own soul was saved before I ever understood fully the power
of Christ’s exaltation, or kingly throne, and still longer before
I understood the power of his intercession. I got to the com_
fort of this last thought one day in reading a passage in
Hebrews. „Wherefore also he is able to save to the uttermost
them that draw near unto God through him, seeing be ever
liveth to make intercession for them” (Heb. 7:25). I had never
before seen the difference between salvation in justification
and salvation to the uttermost. In the same way we may not
realize in our joy of regeneration the power of his continuing
that good work in us until the day of Jesus Christ, and the
great value of the Spirit’s work in taking the things of Christ
and showing them to us. And as we learn each office of Christ,
and just what he does in that office, the greater our sense of
security. He is prophet, sacrifice, king, priest, leader, and
6. The final argument underlying the security of the
believer is presented in verses 35_37, that none can separate
us from the love of Christ after our union is established with.
him. The words here are, „Who shall separate us from the
love of Christ? Shall tribulation, or anguish, or persecution,
or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword? In all these things
we are more than conquerors.” The argument is in full accord
with the statement of our Lord, John 10:29: „My Father,
who hath given them unto me, is greater than all; and no one
is able to snatch them out of the Father’s hand.” It is further
expressed in another passage by the apostle when he says, „I
know him whom I have believed, and I am persuaded that
he is able to guard that which I have committed unto him
against that day.” And it is further expressed in the seal of
the Holy Spirit. We are sealed „unto the day of redemption.”
When I was a schoolboy I was wonderfully stirred by an
eloquent sermon preached by J. R. Graves in which he
pointed out that fact that by faith we commit our lives to
Jesus; that life is hid with Christ in God; that life is sealed
with the impression of the Holy Spirit until the day of re_
demption, and then he asked, „Who can pluck that life out
of the hands of God?” drawing this vivid picture: „If hell
should open her yawning mouth and all of the demons of the
pit should issue forth like huge vampires darkening water
and land, could they break that seal of God? Could they soar
to the heights of heaven? Could they scale its battlements?
Could they beat back the angels that guard its walls? Could
they penetrate into the presence of the Holy One On his eternal
throne, and reach out their demon_claws and pluck our life
from the bosom of God where it is hid with Christ in God?”
The pages of religious persecution are very bloody; rack,
thumbscrews and fagot have been employed. Confiscation
of property, expatriation from country, and bounding pur_
suit of the exile in foreign lands, exposedness to famine and
nakedness and sword and other perils, and yet never has this
persecution been able to effect a separation of the believer
from his Lord. Roman emperors tried it, Julian the apostate
tried it, Ferdinand and Isabella, Charles V, their son, and
Philip II, his son, all tried it in their time. The inquisition held
its secret court; war, conflagration, and famine wrought their
ruin, but the truth prevailed.
All this illustrates the truth that the blood of the martyrs
is the seed of the church. The Genevan, the German, the Eng_
lish State churches have tried, in emulation of the Romanist
union of church and state, to crush out the true spirit” of
Christianity. They have been able merely to scatter the fires,
to make them burn over a wider territory as it is expressed
concemmg the decree to scatter the ashes of Wycliffe in the
Now upon these arguments, the two intercessors, the sweep
of God’s providence, the link chain reaching from eternity to
eternity, the impossibility of any being laying a charge against
one whom God has justified, the four pillars, the inability of
man or devil to separate from Christ – upon these, the apostle
reaches this persuasion:
„For I am persuaded that neither death, nor life, nor angels,
nor principalities, nor things present, nor things to come, nor
powers, nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall
be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ
Jesus our Lord.”
1. What the final work of salvation in us?
2. What provision did God first make for the immortality of man’s body?
3. What defeated that plan, and how is this immortality finally accomplished?
4. What Job’s testimony to this hope; What the interpretation of the passage?
5. How is this hope in man evidenced in a singular way?
6. How does Paul elsewhere make the resurrection a pivotal doctrine in the Christian system?
7. Name the six arguments for the security of those who are justified by faith as taught in Romans 8.
8. Explain the argument based on the two intercessors.
9. What the providential argument, and what does it include?
10. What is the link chain argument, and how many and what links in the chain?
11. In the covenant of grace, what the parts to be performed by the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, respectively?
12. What the nonchargeable elect argument, and what the book of life cited in this connection?
13. Recite the stanza from the old song given in this connection.
14. What the ground of this salvation, and what the four_pillar argument?
15. Show how one may not comprehend all this when first’ converted,
and how he may afterwards get great strength from ft.
16. What the nonseparation argument, what J. R. Graves’, illustration of it, and how do the persecutions inflicted upon God’s people illustrate a great scripture truth?
17. In view of these arguments, what Paul’s persuasion?

Romans 9:1 to 10:21.

Paul’s statement of the plan of salvation closes with chap_
ter 8, so we now take up the problem of Jewish unbelief, its
effect on Paul, and the occasion and extent of his concern:
So far as this letter goes we find the discussion in 9:1_5,
and in 10:1_2, but this concern is equally evident in Luke’s
history of his labors, addresses and sermons in Acts, and in
several other letters written by Paul. One of the deepest pas-
sions of his soul was excited and stirred by this problem of
Jewish unbelief. The grounds of his concern are the follow_
1. These people were his kindred according to the flesh.
2. It was his nation and country, and he had an intense
3. They were God’s adopted people.
4. They had all of the marvelous privileges of that adop_
tion, and these privileges are thus enumerated by him in
chapter 9, first paragraph:
(1) „Whose is the adoption and the glory.” This glory was
the cloud, symbolizing the Divine Presence.
(2) They had the covenants, the covenant of grace with
Abraham in Genesis 12, and the covenant of circumcision as
expressed in Genesis 17.
(3) Then they had the giving of the law on Mount Sinai
– such a law as cannot be paralleled in the later world. The
circumstances under which it was given were more impos_
ing and impressive than the giving of any other code in the
annals of time. They had that.
(4) Then they had the promises – the promise to Abraham,
the promise to Isaac, the promise to Jacob, the promise to
the nation, the promise to Moses, and so on. They had all
the promises.
(5) Then they had the fathers, the patriarchs. It was an
illustrious heritage. No other nation had such a list of fathers
– Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, and the twelve patriarchs, the great
leaders all through their history.
(6) Then they had the services, that is, the imposing ritual
of worship set forth in the book of Exodus from chapter 38
to the end, and in all of the book of Leviticus, and a great
part of the book of Numbers. That service showed the place
to meet God, the time to meet God, the sacrificial .means of
hearings before God, the mediator through whom they could
approach God. They had that service. No other nation has
ever had anything like it. All the churches of the present
time have not improved that ritual, including the Romans,
the Greeks, the Catholics, the Epicureans, and some Bap_
tists who wear robes in the pulpit and intone their services.
(7) The last and greatest of the privileges was, that of
them came Christ according to the flesh, the line running
through Seth, Heber, Peleg, Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, Judah,
David, and on down until we come to Christ himself. They
had Christ according to the flesh. That was the ground and
the occasion of his interest. So the problem is, that Christ
was rejected by his own people. More than once an infidel
has said to me, „If the proof and the merits of Christ be so
obvious, why is it that his own people did not take him?”
We now come to the extent of Paul’s concern for this re_
jection of Christ. (1) He says in chapter 10, which is a part
of this section, „I bear my people witness that they have a
zeal toward God, but not according to knowledge. (2) I sin_
cerely desire the salvation of my people. (3) Their rejection
of Christ gives me continual sorrow and pain of heart. (4)
Finally, I could wish myself accursed from Christ for my

brethren’s sake.” There is only one similar expression in the
history of men, and that is where Moses, when all Israel had
sinned and God said, „I will blot them out,” stood in the
breach and said, „If thou wilt not forgive these people, blot
my name out of thy book.” That disposition on the part of
Moses and Paul not merely to suffer temporal death but
severance from Christ if it would save the nation, approaches
the feeling that was in the heart of the redeemer when he
came to die the spiritual death for the salvation of men. Two
others had the experience that is here illustrated, for instance,
when Abraham offered up his only begotten son, and passed
through the anguish of a father’s heart in giving up his son.
He is the only man in the world whose experience approxi_
mated the experience of God the Father, when he gave up his
only begotten Son. And Isaac, in consenting to be so sacri_
ficed, approximated the experience of the Son in voluntarily
coming at the Father’s bidding to die for the world. Higher
than all the mountain peaks of time, stands these four names:
Abraham, representing the sacrifice of the Father; Isaac,
representing the sacrifice of the Son; Moses and Paul, rep_
resenting the Spirit that prompted Jesus to be forsaken of
God in order to the salvation of men.
We come now to the key_sentence of these three chapters,
in verse 6: „But it is not as though the word of God hath
come to naught.” The object of the plan of salvation as pre_
sented in chapter 8 has this objection against it: Since the
Jewish people did not believe it, how can we harmonize with
that plan the problem of the unbelief of the Jews themselves?
He starts off to argue that question by the affirmation that
this Jewish rejection of Christ does not militate against the
plan of salvation as set forth. That is his proposition, and the
first argument that he makes is that all of Abraham’s chil_
dren – all of Abraham’s lineal descendants – were never in_
cluded in that national adoption. Abraham had two sons
Isaac and Ishmael. Ishmael and his descendants, the Ishma_
elites, are not included. Keturah, Abraham’s second wife, had
a pretty large family, and these Midianites, descendants of
Keturah, were not included. Then the next one after Abraham,
Isaac, had two children, Jacob and Esau. Esau and the
Edomites descended from him, though lineal descendants,
were not included. He then presents a case of divine sover_
eignty concerning these two children of Isaac. He says that
the selection of the one to be the people of God in the adopted
sense and the rejection of the other, was not based upon any
work, and good to be done by the one or evil to be done by
the other. It was not according to the wish of the parents of
those children. The selection was made before the children
were born – before either one of them knew good from evil.
So that it was not of Isaac that willed Esau to be the heir, nor
of Esau that ran to get the venison in order that he might
obtain the blessing of the heir, nor of the plotting of Rebekah
and Jacob. Their plotting did not have anything to do with
it. It was not of him that runneth, nor him that plotteth; it
was the act of divine sovereignty.
Whatever is meant by this adoption of a nation, it was not
based upon any merit in that nation, or in the particular in_
dividuals through whom this adoption came. Jerusalem when
it was first established was no better than any other city; it
was of God’s sovereignty just as the raising up of Pharaoh.
„For this purpose did I raise thee up, that I might show in thee
my power.” Right on the reels of that comes the question from
the objector, „Why doth he still find fault? For who with_
standeth his will?” Paul is not disposed to answer that ques_
tion in this connection. We will find the answer before we get
through with these three chapters, but here he waives it aside
with a counterquestion: „Hath not the potter power over
his clay to take one part of the lump and make a beautiful
vessel for the parlor, and to take another part and make a
very inferior vessel for the kitchen? And shall either one of
the vessels object to the potter?” He waives it for the time
being by merely denying the power of the Christian to intrude
into the power of the divine sovereignty. His purpose is to
show that the word of God touching salvation has not come
to be ineffectual because the Jews rejected it.
That is the argument he is on now, and he then advances
in it, and says, „Not even all the lineal descendants of Abra_
ham in the select line according to the plan of salvation were
to be saved; not all of them could see these two covenants
side by side; one was a national covenant, with its seal of
circumcision, and promising the earthly Canaan, and the other
was the grace covenant that looked to a spiritual seed.” Or,
as he puts it in another place, „He is not a Jew (in the spirit_
ual sense) who is just one outwardly, but he is a Jew who
is one inwardly. The circumcision is not the circumcision of
the flesh, but the circumcision of the heart – regeneration.”
In the exercise of the sovereign purpose of God, there is
nothing that the finite man can do concerning him. It is an
ocean too deep for our line to fathom. We would have to be
infinite to understand it, but we do know that in all human
history, without any explanation to us, God’s purpose is work_
ing. God bad a purpose in having this continent discovered
just when it was. He had a purpose in the success of the
American Revolution. He had a purpose in the redemption of
Texas in the battle of San Jacinto.
High above human thought, beyond the scope of human
sight, of the human mind, the Omnipotence and Omniscience
is ruling, and his rule is supreme, and yet nobody is taken
by the hair and dragged into hell, and nobody is taken by
the hair and dragged into heaven, as he will show more par_
ticularly later.
Let us explain and give the application of the vessels of
wrath and mercy. In chapter 9 is a passage, from verse 22
to the end of the chapter, about the vessels of wrath and the
vessels of mercy. Those that were vessels of wrath, those
who voluntarily stand against God, God patiently endured a
long time, and his forbearance signified that he was giving
them opportunity for repentance. Those vessels of mercy, they
also had opportunity for salvation, whether they were Jews
or Greeks. He shows that God is no respecter of persona in
selecting the Jewish nation. But why did he select that na_
tion? If he had selected the Jewish nation, every one of them
to be saved in heaven, and rejected every other nation, then
the objection would have been sustained, but it had a differ_
ent purpose. The election of the Jewish nation looked to the
salvation of the Jews and Gentiles that received the message
of God, also the covenants, and the coming of Christ from
them according to the flesh. That election looked through
them to others and, so far as salvation in heaven is concerned,
the Jews that believed were saved, and so far as other nations
were concerned he quotes certain parts in Hosea and the Old
Testament, the paragraph referring to the ingathering of the
Gentiles: „I will call them my people which were not my
In objecting to God’s selecting one nation and calling that
nation „my people” he says, „I will call them my people which
were not my people,” and in a place where it is said, „They
are not my people, there shall they be called sons of the
living God,” if they believe on Jesus Christ. He then quotes
from Isaiah who distinguishes between the holy stock of
Israel and the natural stock of Israel as if he had said, „If
the number of Israel had been as abundant as the sands of
the sea, it is only the remnant that are saved” – those that
by faith accept Christ. We see he is laying the predicate for
that olive tree illustration that he will introduce later in the
discussion. Isaiah then goes on to say that if the grace of
God had not been revealed, and the Lord God of hosts had
not left a seed, the whole of them would have been as Sodom
and Gomorrah. Nothing but divine grace saves those that
were saved – not their ritual, not their law. He then reaches
this conclusion, „What shall we say then?” The Gentiles who
followed not after righteousness, that is, the Jewish way,
attained to righteousness because they sought it in a different
way. The Jew following the law had not arrived at righteous_
ness. Wherefore? Because they sought it not by faith, but by
works; they stumbled at that stumbling stone.
Next he shows that the rejection of the Jews was not total,
He commences chapter 10 by slating that as far as he is per_’
sonally concerned his heart’s desire and prayer for Israel is
that they would be saved, and he is willing to acknowledge
that they had a zeal, but not the zeal of knowledge. They
busied themselves to establish their own plan of righteous_
ness, and he puts it in such a way that we can’t mistake the
law righteousness and leave the faith righteousness as they
did. We must not forget that the law says, „Do to live,” but
faith says „Live to do.” In other words, doing the will of
God comes out of having been made alive to God. Life must
come first; make the tree good, and then the fruit will be
good. One of them makes doing the means of life, and the
other puts life as a means of doing. Then he shows that while
Moses had handed down this law and set before them its re_
quirements that if one would have kept its requirements in
strict obedience he would have been saved, but the law re_
quired him to start right in his nature and then to continue
to do everything that is contained in the law. He goes on to
quote from Moses. Paul quotes from the Hebrew and not
from the Septuagint which runs thus: „The righteousness
which is of faith saith thus, Say not in thy heart, Who shall
ascend unto heaven (that is, to bring the Saviour down, or
to bring salvation down) or, Who shall descend from heaven
(that is, to bring Christ up from the grave.)” This is the
Septuagint idea. The Hebrew idea is not that a man tries to
go to heaven as the ancient Titan tried to do – by piling Pela
on Ossa to make a stairway. Nor that he tries to go directly
into the depths, down into the abyss, and wrench salvation
from the depths. The Hebrew represents him, not as going
down, but as going across, saying that man does not go to
the other side of the sea to find salvation to bring it back.
Paul changes this a little and makes it correspond better than
does Moses. Instead of going across the sea, he has the man
going down into the depths of the sea, and he goes on, still
quoting Moses, that the real salvation does not come from
afar. Paul puts this explanation on it, that it was the word
that he preached: „It is the word of faith which we preach.”
The plan of salvation is not making tedious pilgrimages;
it is not wearing a hairy undershirt to irritate; it is not
wearing bracelets that have thorns on them, and to keep on
doing penance; it is the word of faith.
Thus he says, „You may be sure that if from the heart
you believe in Jesus Christ, and if with your lips you make
confession of that faith, you shall be saved.” It is not an
intellectual faith – it is heart faith. But a good many people
misunderstand the import of confession. It doesn’t mean to
confess sins to your brother, nor to a priest, nor even to God
– that is not the confession he is talking about, but it is a
public confession of Christ as Saviour. If we have not faith
enough to confess the Christ that we say we believe in, we
have not faith enough to be saved. Confession implies that
whoever makes it must have a great deal of courage. In this
time of peace it doesn’t cost much to confess Christ, and even
now sometimes shame prevents confession by young people.
The young lady going into a city is told not to .join a church
because that will deprive her of all social functions. „Who_
ever shall be ashamed of me before this generation, of him
shall I be ashamed before my father and the holy angels. And
whosoever shall deny me, him will I deny.” And if we are
afraid or ashamed to come out in public, and say, „I take
Christ as my Saviour,” then the Father will be ashamed of us.
This law has no distinction as to nationality; there was
only one door to Noah’s ark. The elephant went in at the
same door as the snail, and the eagle sweeped down through
the same door that a little wren hopped in at. And there is
not a side door for a woman to go in. We all go to Christ
through the same door. While it is true that God called Israel
out of Egypt, the same Bible says that he called the Philistines
out of Caphtor, and he is the Lord of all nations, and the uni_
versality of the plan of salvation is expressed in „Whoever
shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.” Then
comes up the question, How can any one call on God who
has not believed in God, and how can be believe in a God
of whom he has never heard? How can he hear unless some_
body tells him – unless there be a preacher – and how can
there be a preacher except he be sent? The sending there
means Godsent. What a marvelous theme for a missionary
Having stated that, he raises another question, „Have they
not heard? Didn’t they have preachers?” Has not the word
gone to them? From Genesis we learn that the antediluvians
had light enough to be saved, and Paul is here quoting a
psalm: „Their sound went out through all the earth.” Jesus
Christ is the true light that lights every man that comes into
the world. There has been light enough if the people had been
willing to walk in the light.
I once heard a Methodist preacher state to a congregation
that the heathen that did the best they could would be saved.
But he didn’t produce any heathen who had done their
best. And where is the man that has done his best?
The plan by which men are to be saved is the plan to
make the promise sure to all. It is as quick as lightning in
its application. It is a fine thing for a man to quit his mean_
ness; it is a fine thing for a man to do the best he can, but
certainly it is not the way of salvation; we don’t secure salva_
tion by that. „With a nation void of understanding will I
anger you.” In other words, „If you will have no God, you
adopted people, I will provoke you to jealousy by them that
are no people,” as Isaiah said, „I was found of them that
sought me not; I was made manifest unto them. But to Israel
he said, I have stretched out my hands unto this disobedient
and gainsaying people.” Their whole record is) no matter who
called, who was sent, who preached, they rejected. Having
shown them that God was not unjust in rejecting them, and
that he did not violate the gospel plan of salvation, Paul says,
„I am one of them; not all the Jews were lost; I am one of
them.” Neither in its totality nor in its perpetuity were the
Jews rejected. Elijah supposed once that he stood by himself,
and that he was the only one left. God says, „I have pre_
served 7000 that have not bowed the knee to Baal.”
Having shown from chapters 9_10 that the rejection of the
Jews was not total, we will show from chapter II that it was
not perpetual.

1. What the problem of Romans 9:1 to 11:36?
2. How did it affect Paul?
3. What the grounds of his concern?
4. What the marvelous privileges of the Jews’ adoption?
5. What the infidel argument on this point?
6. What the items which indicate the extent of Paul’s concern for
his people?
7. What Paul’s meaning here, and what Old Testament examples of
this experience and spirit?
8. What the key sentence of chapters 9_11, and what its meaning?
9. What is Paul’s first argument on this point?
10. What the case of divine sovereignty concerning Jacob and Esau?
11. How is this principle illustrated in the selection of Jerusalem?
12. What illustration of this point from the history of Pharaoh?
13. What question from the objector here introduced, and how does
Paul dispose of it?
14. What is Paul’s purpose in thus disposing of this question?
15. What advance did he then make in his argument, and how does
he illustrate it elsewhere?
16. What illustrations of the sovereign purpose of God cited by the_
17. What the explanation of the vessels of wrath and the vessels of
mercy in Romans 9:22ff?
18. How does Paul show that God was no respecter of persons in
selecting the Jewish nation?
19. How does he prove this from the prophets?
20. What the conclusion of all this, then, as stated in the closing part
of chapter 9?
21. What the argument of chapter 10?
22. What concession, does he make in favor of the Jews in. the first
part of chapter 10, and what his objection raised?
23. What the difference between the law righteousness and the faith
24. Why could not any one be saved by the law righteousness?
25, What the difference in the idea expressed in the Hebrew and that
of the Septuagint?
26. What construction does Paul put on it, and what the application?
27. What is the meaning of the confession mentioned in this con_
nection, and what its relation to salvation?
28. How does Paul show here that God makes no distinction between
peoples of different nationalities, and what the author’s illustration?
29. What the great missionary text in this connection?
30. What Paul’s answer to the question, „Have they not heard?”
and what the necessity of missionary operations?
31. With what reproof of the Jewish people does Paul close chapter 10?

Romans 11:1_86.

Israel’s rejection was neither total nor perpetual. The elect,
or spiritual Israel, were never cast off. From Abraham to
Paul every Israelite who looked through the types and by faith
laid hold of the Antitype, was saved. In this sense there were
no lost tribes, but out of every tribe the elect, manifested in
the circumcision of the heart, not of the flesh, were saved.
For example:
1. The apostle cites his own case. That he himself was an
Israelite is abundantly shown here, and even more particularly
elsewhere, (Phil. 3:4_6; Acts 22:3_15) and yet he was saved
after Israel according to the flesh was cast off and the king_
dom transferred to the Gentiles, as were all the Jews from
Pentecost to Paul. The number of elect Jews thus saved was
always greater than appeared to human sight, as evidenced
in Elijah’s time.
2. Elijah in his panic supposed himself to be alone, but Je_
hovah showed him that through grace there were seven
thousand who had not bowed the knee to Baal.
3. So it continued to be in Paul’s time; there was a rem_
nant spared according to grace.
But the apostle is careful to show that this elect remnant,
never cast off, every one of them, was saved by grace, and
not one of them by the works of law. Then he explains this
finding of salvation by the elect Jews, and the casting off
of the non_elect Jews by the two essentially different methods
of seeking salvation. The elect sought it by faith and ob_
tained it; the rest because they persistently sought righteous_

ness by works of the law, rejecting God’s righteousness, were
judicially blinded as shown: (1) By the law itself (Deut.
29:4); (2) by the prophets (Isa. 29:10); (3) by the Psalms
(Psalm 69:22).
Having shown the casting off was never total, and why, he
then shows that it was not intended to be perpetual by prov_
ing the ultimate restoration of all Israel as a nation, when_
ever it should turn to the grace method of salvation, _the
scriptural proof of which is as follows:
1. In the law itself, which denounces their casting off, is
the promise of an expiation through grace (Deut. 32:43).
2. In the prayer of Solomon at the dedication of the tem_
ple it is suggested (I Kings 8:46_53).
3. In the prophets it is clearly foretold, and all the method
of it (Isa. 66:8; Ezek. 36:22 to 37:28; Zech. 12:9 to 13:1).
The element of mercy dominant in the election of Israel as
a nation is that they were chosen that through them all the
nations might be blessed. The element of mercy in their
rejection is that through their downfall life might come to
other nations. The element of mercy toward the Jews in the
call of the Gentiles was that cast_off Israel might be provoked
to return to God. In saving Gentiles there was an aim at the
salvation of his cast_off people. This is proved in his argu_
ment thus: „By their fall salvation is come to the Gentiles to
provoke them to jealousy,” and then he magnified his own
office as an apostle to the Gentiles to provoke the jealousy
of his own people in order that he might save some. He fore_
sees a wonderful effect on the Gentiles in the restoration of
the Jews. It will be even more beneficial than their downfall:
„Now if their fall is the riches of the world, and their loss the
riches of the Gentiles; how much more their fulness? . . . For
if the casting away of them is the reconciling of the world,
what shall the receiving of them be, but life from the_dead?”
(11:12, 15). Then our concern, prayer, and labor for that
great future event – the restoration of God’s ancient people – is
a concern for other nations who never will be thoroughly
aroused until moved by redeemed Israel.
A passage from Peter shows the relation of the conversion
of the Jews to our Lord’s final advent, and a declaration of
our Lord shows the time of this general salvation of the Jews.
Peter says, „Repent ye therefore, and turn again, that your
sins may be blotted out, that so there may come seasons of re_
freshing from the presence of the Lord; and that he may send
the Christ who hath been appointed for you, even Jesus:
whom the heavens must receive until the times of restoration
of all things, whereof God spoke by the mouth of his holy
prophets that have been from of old” (Acts 3:19_21). Our
Lord says, „And they shall fall by the edge of the sword, and
shall be led captive unto all the nations; and Jerusalem shall
be trodden down of the Gentiles, until the times of the Gen_
tiles be fulfilled” (Luke 21:24). Then according to Isaiah,
Ezekiel, and Zechariah, the means and methods of this great
salvation of the Jews are as follows:
1. It will be preceded by a gathering together of Israel out
of all nations.
2. Christ whom they pierced will be lifted up in Gentile
3. The Holy Spirit in convicting and converting power will
be poured out on them, whereby they shall mourn and pray
and see the Lord as their Saviour.
4. The nation shall be born of God in a day.
The apostle bases this marvelous work of God upon the
principle that „if the first fruit is holy, so is the lump: and
if the root is holy, so are the branches. . . . And this is my
covenant unto them, When I shall take away their sins . . .
For the gifts and the calling of God are not repented of”
(11:16, 27, 29). Then follows his illustration of the olive
tree, the explanation of which is as follows:
1. Christ is the root.
2. The holy stock is the spiritual elect, Israel.
3. The branches broken off are the unbelieving Jews.
4. The branches grafted in are the believing Gentiles.
5. The principle is vital and spiritual connection with
Christ, through faith, without respect to Jew or Gentile.
6. The unbelieving children of Abraham are like branches
merely tied on the stock externally; there is no communica_
tion of the fatness of the sap into the veins of the branches
tied on externally.
7. So a Gentile tied on externally, without this vital con_
nection, will be broken off.
The divine purpose in shutting up both Gentile and Jew
unto disobedience as shown in the argument (3:9_20) is ex_
pressed thus: „For God hath shut up all unto disobedience,
that he might have mercy upon all” (11:32).
We will conclude this discussion with an analysis of the
doxology which is the climax of his argument:
1. An exclamation of the profundity of the riches of both
God’s wisdom and knowledge.
2. The incomprehensibility to the finite mind of his judg_
ments and ways.
3. No finite being knew his mind or advised his actions.
4. No beneficiary of his goodness ever first gave to God as
a meritorious ground of the benefaction.
5. Because he is the source of all good, and the medium
of salvation from its initiation to its consummation, all the
glory belongs to God.

1. What the limits of Israel’s rejection?
2. Wherein was it not total? Illustrate.
3. What is the apostle careful to show about this elect remnant
never cast off?
4 How does he explain this finding of salvation by the elect Jews,
and the casting off of the non_elect Jews?
5. How is the judicial blindness of the non_elect Jews shown?
6. How does he next show that the casting off was not intended to
be perpetual?
7. What the scriptural proof of this ultimate restoration of Israel?
8. What element of mercy was dominant in the election of Israel
as a nation?
9. What element of mercy in their rejection?
10. What element of mercy toward Jews in the call of the Gentiles?
11. How is this proved in his argument?
12. What effect on the Gentiles does Paul foresee in the restoration
of the Jews?
13. What then our concern, prayer, and labor for that great future
event, the restoration of God’s ancient people?
14. Quote a passage from Peter showing the relation of the conversion
of the Jews to our Lord’s final advent.
15. Quote a passage from our Lord showing the time of this general
salvation of the Jews.
16. According to Isaiah, Ezekiel, and Zechariah, what the means and
methods of this great salvation of the Jews?
17. Upon what principle does the apostle base this marvelous work
of God?
18. In the olive tree illustration what the root, the holy stock, the
branches broken off, the branches grafted in, the principle, the condition of the unbelieving children of Abraham, and what of the Gentile tied on externally?
19. What then the divine purpose in shutting up both Gentile and
Jew unto disobedience?
20. Give an analysis of the doxology.

Romans 12:1 to 16:27.

The prevalent characteristic of all Paul’s teachings concern_
ing the gospel is the unfailing observance of the order and
relation of doctrine and morals. He never „puts the cart be_
fore the horse,” and never drives the horse without the cart
attached and following after. He was neither able to con_
ceive of morals not based on antecedent doctrine, nor to
conceive of doctrine not fruiting in holy living. He rigidly
adhered to the Christ_idea, „First make the tree good, and
then the fruit will be good.” His clear mind never confounded
cause and effect. To his logical and philosophical mind it was
a reversal of all natural and spiritual law to expect good
trees as a result of good fruit, but rather good fruit evidencing
a good tree. So he conceived of justification through faith,
and regeneration through the Spirit as obligating to holy
living. If he fired up his doctrinal engine it was not to exhaust
its steam in whistling, but in sawing logs, or grinding grist,
or drawing trains.
The modern cry, „Give us morals and away with dogma,”
would have been to him a philosophical absurdity, just as
the antinomian cry, „faith makes void the law – let us sin
the more that grace may abound,” was abhorrent and blas_
phemous to him.
A justification of a sinner through grace that delivered
from the guilt of sin was unthinkable to him if unaccompanied
by a regeneration that delivered from the love of sin, and a
sanctification that delivered from the dominion of sin.
He expected no good works from the dead, but insisted
that those made alive were created unto good works. His
philosophy of salvation, in the order and relation of doctrine
and morals, is expressed thus in his letter to Titus: „For the
grace of God hath appeared, bringing salvation to all men
instructing us to the intent that denying ungodliness and
worldly lusts, we should live soberly and righteously and godly_
in this present world; looking for that blessed hope and ap_
pearing of the glory of the great God and our Saviour Jesus
Christ, who gave himself for us, that he might redeem us from
all iniquity, and purify unto himself a people for his own
possession, zealous of good works.” „But when the kindness
of God our Saviour, and his love toward man appeared, not
by works done in righteousness, which we did ourselves, but
according to his mercy he saved us, through the washing of
regeneration and renewing of the Holy Spirit, which he poured
out upon us richly, through Jesus Christ our Saviour; that,
being justified by his grace, we might be made heirs accord_
ing to the hope of eternal life. Faithful is the saying, and
concerning these things I desire that thou affirm confidently,
to the end that they who have believed God may be careful
to maintain good works. These things are good and profitable
unto men” (Titus 2:11_15; 3:4_8).
So in every letter there is first the doctrinal foundation, and
then the application to morals. But as in this letter we have
the most complete and systematic statement of the doctrines
of grace as a foundation (9_11) so in this, the following
section (12_15), we have the moat elaborate superstructure
of morals.
The analysis and order of thought in this great section are –
1. Salvation by grace through faith obligates the observance
of all duties toward God the Father on account of what he
does for us in the gift of his Son, in election, predestination,
justification, and adoption (12:1).
2. It obligates the observance of all duties toward God the
Holy Spirit for what he does in us in regeneration and sancti_
fication (12:2).

3. It obligates the observance of all duties toward the
church, with its diversity of gifts in unity of body (12:3_13).
4. It obligates the observance of all duties toward the indi_
vidual neighbor in the outside world (12:14_21).
5. It obligates the observance of all duties to the neighbors,
organized as society or state (13:1_13).
6. It obligates the observance of all duties arising from
the Christian’s individual relation to Christ the Saviour (13:
14; 14:7_12).
7. It obligates the observance of all duties toward the
individual brother in Christ (14:1 to 15:7).
8. The last obligation holds regardless of the race distinc_
tions, Jew and Gentile (15:8_24), and includes the welcome of
the apostle to the Gentiles, prayer for the welcome and suc_
cess of his service toward the Jewish Christians in their need
(15:25_29) and prayer for his deliverance from unbelieving
Jews (15:30_33).
As to the sum of these obligations –
1. They cover the whole scope of morals, whether in the
decalogue, as given to the Jews, or the enlarged Christian
code arising from grace.
2. They conform to relative proportions, making first and
paramount morals toward God, whether Father, Son, or Holy
Spirit, not counting morals at all which leave out God
in either his unity of nature, or trinity of persons, and making
that second, subordinate and correlative which is morals
toward men.
The duty toward God the Father, in view of what he has
done for us in grace and mercy, is to present our bodies a
living sacrifice, holy, and acceptable to God (12:1) and re_
spect his prerogative (12:19) which is illustrated by Paul
elsewhere. He says, „I die daily,” meaning that though alive
his members were on the rack of death all the time. He says,
„I mortify my members,” and, „I keep my body under,” i.e.,
he kept his redeemed soul on top, dominating his body. He
made his body as „Prometheus bound” on the cold rock of
Caucasus, vultures devouring his vitals every day as they
were renewed every night, a living death.
Our duty toward God, the Holy Spirit, in view of what he
graciously does in us is found in 12:2: Negatively – Let not
the regenerate soul be conformed with the spirit and course of
this evil world, whether in the lust of the eye or pride of
life. Positively – Be transformed in continual sanctification
in the renewing of the mind. That is, working out the salva_
tion which the Spirit works in us, as he, having commenced a
good work in us (regeneration) continues it (through sancti_
fication) until the day of Jesus Christ. Or, as this apostle
says elsewhere, Christ, having been formed in us the hope of
glory, we are changed into that image from glory to glory as
by the Spirit of the Lord.
The duties toward the church are found in 12:3_13:
1. Not to think more highly of one’s self in view of _the
other members of the church. Here are a lot of people in one
church; now let not one member put himself too high in view
of the other members of that church.
2. To think only according to the proportion of faith given
to him for the performance of some duty. If I am going to
put an estimate upon myself in the relation to my church
members, a standard or estimate should be, What is the pro_
portion of faith given to me? Say A has so much, C has so
much, D has so much, and E has least of all; then E ought
not to think himself the biggest of all. The standard of judg_
ment is the proportion of faith given to each member.
3. He must respect the unity of the church as a body. In
that illustration used the church is compared to a body
having many members. The hand must not say, „I am every_
thing,” and the eye of the body must not say, „I am every_
thing,” nor the ear, „I am everything,” nor the foot, „I am
everything.” In estimating we have to estimate the function
of each part, the proportion of power given to that part and it
is always not as a sole thing, but in its relation to every other
part – that is a duty that a church member must perform.
Sometimes a man easily forgets that he is just one of many
in the organism.
4. He must respect its diversity of gifts. That is one part
of it that I comply with. If there is anything that rejoices
my heart, it is the diversity of gifts that God puts in the
church. I never saw a Christian in my life that could not do
some things better than anybody else in the world. I would feel
meaner than a dog if I didn’t rejoice in the special gifts of any
other member in the church. What a pity it would be if we
had just one kind of a mold, and everybody was run through
like tallow so as to make every candle alike. The duty of
the church is to respect the unity of the body, and its di_
versity of gifts.
5. Each gift is to be exercised with its appropriate corre_
sponding limitation.
The duties to the individual neighbor of the outside world,
even though hostile to us, are found in 12:14_21:
1. To bless him when he persecutes.
2. To be sympathetic toward him, rejoicing in his joy) and
weeping in his sorrow.
3. Several Christians should not be of different mind toward
him. The expression in the text is to be like_minded. What
is the point of that? We are dealing now with individuals
outside. Here is A, a Christian; B, a Christian; G, a Chris_
tian; and the outsider is watching. A makes one impression
on his mind, B makes a different one, and G makes still a
different one. The influence from these several Christians
does not harmonize; it is not like_minded; but if he says that
A, B, G, all in different measures perhaps, be every one of the
same mind, then he sees that there is a unifying power in
Christians. How often do we hear it said, „If every Chris_
tian were like you, I would want to be one, but look yonder
at that deacon, or at that sister.” We should be like_minded to
those outside so that every Christian that comes in may make
a similar impression for Christ’s sake.
4. We should not, in dealing with him, respect big out_
siders only, but condescend to the lowly – to men of low_es_
tate. Some of them are very rich, some of them are influen_
tial socially, some of them are what we call poor, country
folk. We should not be highminded in our dealings with
these sinners, but condescend to men of low estate. Let them
feel that we are willing to go and help them.
5. We should not let our wisdom toward him be self_con_
ceit, i.e., let it not seem to him that way.
6. When he does evil to us, we should not repay in kind.
7. We should let him see that we are honest men. Ah me,
how many outsiders are repelled because all Christians do not
provide things honest in the sight of the outside world!
8. So far as it lieth in us we should be peaceable with him.
That means that it is absolutely impossible to be peaceable
with a man that has no peace in him. He wants to fuss
anyhow, and goes around with a chip on his shoulder. He
goes around snarling and showing his teeth. There are some_
people that are not peaceable, but so far as our life is COB*
cerned, we should be peaceable with them.
9. We should not avenge on him wrongs done us by him.
Vengeance belongs to God; we should give place to God’s
10. We should feed him if hungry, and give him drink if
11. We should not allow ourselves to be overcome of evil,
but overcome evil with good. We should not get off when
we come in contact with evil people, but just hang on and
overcome evil with good.
The duties to the state are as follows:
1. Be subject to higher powers, and da not resist them, for
(1) God ordained them. (2) Makes them a terror to evil

works. (3) God’s minister for good. (4) And for conscience
sake we must respect the state.
2. Pay our taxes.
3. Whatever is due to each office: „Render honor to whom
honor is due.”
4. Keep out of debt: „Owe no man anything but good will.”
5. Keep the moral code: „Do not steal; do not commit
adultery; do not covet anything that is thy neighbor’s, and
thus love thy neighbor.”
6. Avoid the world’s excesses, revels, and such like.
The duties toward God the Son, in view of what he has
done for us and in view of our vital union with him, are set
forth in 14:7_12:
1. Negatively: Live not unto self.
2. Positively: Live unto Jesus, respecting his preroga_
tives and servants.
Let us now look at the duties to individual Christians. We
have considered the Christians as a body. What are the
duties to individual Christians? Romans 14: I to 15:7 con_
tains the duty to individual Christians. Let us enumerate
these duties somewhat:
1. Receive the weak in faith. We have a duty to every
weak brother; receive him, but not to doubtful disputations.
If we must have our abstract, metaphysical, hair_splitting
distinctions, let us not spring them on the poor Christian that
is Just alive.
2. We should not judge him censoriously, instituting a
comparison between us and him; we should not say to him,
„Just look at me.”
3. We should not hurt him by doing things, though law_
ful to us, that will cause him to stumble. The explanation
there is in reference to a heathen custom. The heathen offered
sacrifices to their gods, and after the sacrifice they would
hang up the parts not consumed and sell as any other butch_
ered meat. Could we stand up like Paul and say, „It won’t
hurt me to eat that meat, but there is a poor fellow just born
into the kingdom, and he is weak in the faith. He sees me
eating this meat that has been offered in sacrifice to idols,
and he stumbles, therefore I will not eat meat”? He draws
the conclusion that if a big fellow can do that he can too, and
he goes and worships the idols. The strong) through the exer_
cise of his liberty that he could have done without, caused his
fall into idolatry. That is what he meant when he wrote, „Do
not hurt him; do not cause him to stumble.” He gives two
reasons why we must not cause him to stumble on account
of a. little meat. He says, (a) „Because the kingdom of God
is not meat and drink, but peace, and joy in the Holy Spirit.
(b) If we consider this weak brother, our consideration will
be acceptable to Christ, and approved of men, but if we
trample on the poor fellow that is weak in the faith, Christ
won’t approve of it, and men won’t approve of it.”
4. Follow the things that make for peace. It is individual
Christians that we are talking about, and we come in con_
tact with them where we have A, B, G, D, and E, and the
first thing we know a little root of bitterness springs up
among them and stirs up a disagreement. The point is that
we should follow the things that make for peace, just as far
as we can, and sometimes that will take us a good ways. He
gives this illustration where he says, „If my eating meat
offered to idols causes my brother to stumble, then I am will_
ing to take a total abstinence pledge.” Then he extends it:
„Nor drink wine, nor do anything whereby my brother is
caused to stumble.” There is meat other than that which is
offered to idols.
5. Bear his infirmities. One man said, „There is much of
human nature in the mule, but more of the mule in human
nature.” The best man I ever knew had some infirmities,
and I can see some of mine with my eyes shut, and I believe
better with them shut than with them open. We all have in_
firmities in some direction or another,
6. We should seek to please him rather than to please our_
selves. We are not to sacrifice a principle, but if we can please
him without sacrificing a principle, rather than please our_
selves, why not do it? Let us make him feel good if we can.
This is the duty to the individual Christian.
The duties of Christian Jews to Gentile neighbors are found
in 15:8_24. There they are all elaborated. Even in the Jew’s
Bible, all through its parts, it is shown that God intended to
save the Gentiles. The duty of Gentile Christians to the Jews
is found in 15:27, showing that there is a debt and that it
ought to be paid.

1. What the prevalent characteristics of all Paul’s teachings concerning the gospel? Illustrate.
2. What Paul’s attitude toward the modern cry, „Give us morals and
away with dogma,” and how does he express his conviction on this
subject elsewhere?
3. How is this thought especially emphasized in this letter?
4. What the analysis and order of thought in. this letter in chapters 12_15?
5. What may we say as to the sum of these obligations?
6. What the duty toward God the Father, in view of what he
has done for us in grace and mercy?
7. What the meaning of „living sacrifice”? Illustrate.
8. What our duty toward God the Holy Spirit, in view of what he
graciously does in us?
9. What our duties toward the church?
10. What our duties to the individual neighbor of the outside world,
even though hostile to us?
11. What our duties to the state?
12. What our duties toward God the Son, in view of what he has
done for us and in view of our vital union with him?
13. What the duties to individual Christians?
14. What the duties of Christian Jews to Gentile neighbors?


These scriptures have been covered generally in the dis_
cussion already. So in this chapter it is our purpose only to
gather up the fragments that nothing may be lost. Then let
us commence by expounding 14:9:
1. The revised version here is better than the common
2. The death of Christ was on the cross; the living after
death is his resurrection – life in glory. (Compare Revelation
3. The end of Christ’s dying and reviving is said to be that
he might be Lord of both the dead and the living, the dead
meaning those sleeping in the grave to be raised from the
grave at his coming.
The latter clause of 14:14 does not make our thought of
what is sin the standard of sin, but God’s law alone deter_
mines that. It means that when a man violates his own
conception of law he is in spirit a sinner, seeing that he goes
contrary to his standard.
The doctrine of 14:20_21 is that what is not sin per se may
become sin under certain conditions arising from our relations
to others. For example:
1. Eating meat offered to idols is lawful per se, (Rom.
14:14; I Cor. 8:4).
2. But if it cause a weak brother to worship idols, then
charity may justify a total abstinence pledge, (14:21; I Cor.
3. This thing lawful per se, but hurtful in its associations
and effects on the weak, may be also the object of church_
prohibition, the Holy Spirit concurring, (Acts 15:29),

4. And a church refusing to enforce the prohibition becomes
the object of Christ’s censure and may forfeit its office or
lampstand (Rev. 2:14_16).
In this whole chapter (14), particularly in the paragraph,
verses 22_23, (1) what is the meaning of the word „faith,”
(2) does the closing paragraph make all accountability de_
pendent on subjective moral conviction, and (3) does it teach
that the virtues of unbelievers are sins?
1. Faith, in this chapter throughout, does not so much refer
to the personal acceptance of Christ as to the liberty in prac_
tice to which that acceptance entitles. So that, „weak in
faith,” verse I, does not imply that some strongly accept
Christ and others lightly. But the matter under discussion
is, What liberty in practice does faith allow with reference to
certain specified things, the lawfulness or expediency of which
may be a matter of scruple in the sensitive but uninformed
conscience of some? One may have faith in Christ to receive
him though in his ignorance he may not go as far as another
in the conception of the liberty to which this faith entitles
him as to what foods are clean or unclean, what days are holy
or common and as to partaking in feasts of meats which have
been offered to idols.
2. The „whatsoever” of verse 23 is neither absolute nor
universal in its application. It is limited, first, to the specified
things or their kind; and second, to believers, having no
reference to outsiders making no profession of faith.
3. Subjective moral conviction is not a fixed and ultimate
standard of right and wrong, which would be a mere sliding
scale, but it is God’s law; yet this chapter, and particularly
its closing paragraph, seems to indicate that the willful viola_
tion of conscience contains within itself a seed of destruction
as has been intimated in 2:14_16.
4. If this whole chapter was not an elaboration of the duties
of a Christian toward his fellow Christian, both presumed
to be members of one body, the particular church, it might
plausibly be made to appear that „faith” in this chapter
means belief of what is right and wrong.
The theme of chapter 16 is the courteous recognition of the
Christian merits and labors of all workers for Christ, each in
his own or her own sphere. The great lessons of this chapter
are –
1. As we have in this letter the most complete and sys_
tematic statement of Christian doctrine, and the most
systematic and elaborate application of morals based on the
doctrine, so appropriately its conclusion is the most elaborate
and the most courteous recognition of the Christian merits
and labors of all classes of kingdom workers in their respec_
tive spheres.
2. With the letter to Philemon it is the highest known ex_
pression of delicate and exquisite courtesy.
3. It is a revelation of the variety and value of woman’s
work in the apostolic churches, and in all her fitting spheres
of activity.
4. It is a revelation of the value of great and consecrated
laymen in the work of the kingdom.
5. It is a revelation of the fellowship of apostolic Chris_
tians and their self_sacrificing devotion to each other.
6. It magnifies the graces of hospitality.
7. It magnifies the power of family religion whether of
husband and wife, brother and sister, more distant kindred,
or master and servant.
8. It digs up by the roots a much later contention and
heresy of one big metropolitan church in a city, with a domi_
nant bishop, exercising authority over smaller churches and
„inferior clergy” in that it clearly shows that there was not
in centra] Rome one big church, with a nascent pope, lording
it over suburban and village churches. There was no hero, no
„church of Rome,” but several distinct churches in Rome
whose individuality and equality are distinctly recognized.

9. It shows the fellowship of churches, however remote from
each other) and their comity and co_operation in kingdom
10. It shows in a remarkable way how imperial Rome with
its worldwide authority, its military roads and shiplines, its
traffic to and fro from center to each point of the circum_
ference of world territory and its amalgamation of nations,
was a providential preparation for the propagation of a uni_
versal religion.
11. The case of Phoebe (16:1) in connection with hints here
and elsewhere, particularly I Timothy 3:11, sandwiched be_
tween verses 10 and 12, seems to prove the office of deaconess
in the apostolic churches, of the propriety and apparent neces_
sity of which there can be no question.
12. The various names of those saluted and saluting, about
thirty_five in all, indicating various nationalities, not only
show that the middle wall of partition between Jews and Gen_
tiles is broken down in the churches, but that in the kingdom
„there cannot be Greek and Jew, circumcision and uncircum_
cision, barbarian, Scythian, bondman, freeman, but Christ is
all and in all.”
13. But the lesson seems greatest in its mercy and privileges
conferred on women and slaves.
14. The homiletic value, in pulpit themes suggested, from
these various names, labors and conditions, which Spurgeon
seems to have recognized most of all preachers.
Let us now expound the entreaty in verses 17_18, contain_
ing the following points:
1. We need to distinguish between those „causing the di_
visions” and those „causing occasions of stumbling.” The
„divisions” would most likely come from a bigoted and nar_
row Jew insisting on following Moses in order to become a
Christian, as in the churches of Galatia, Corinth, and else_
where, but those „causing occasions of stumbling” (as in
14:14_22) would likely be Gentiles insisting on the extreme
of liberty in the eating of meats offered to idols, and like
2. While both classes are in the church, and not outsiders,
as many teach, yet neither class possesses the spiritual_
mindedness and charity of a true Christian, but under the
cloak of religion they serve their own passions for bigotry in
one direction or license in another direction, utterly misappre_
hending the spiritual character of the kingdom of God.
3. Both classes are to be avoided as enemies of the cross
of Christ. Compare Philippians 3:18; Galatians 5:19_23.
In verse 20 there are three points:
1. There is an allusion to the promise in (Gen. 3:15) that
the seed of the woman shall bruise the serpent’s head.
2. This was fulfilled by Christ’s triumph on the cross over
Satan (Col. 2:15).
3. And will be fulfilled in all Christ’s seed at the final ad_

1. What three things noted on Romans 14:9?
2. Does the latter clause of 14:14 make our thought of what is sin
the standard of sin? If not, what does it mean?
3. What the doctrine of 14:20_21? Give examples.
4. In the whole of chapter 14, particularly in verses 22_23, (1) What
is the meaning of the word „faith”? (2) Does the closing paragraph
make all accountability dependent on subjective moral conviction?
(3) Does it teach that the actions of unbelievers are sins?
5. What the great lessons of chapter 16?
6. What preacher seems to have most recognized the homiletic value
of this chapter?
7. Expound the entreaty in 16:17_18.
8. What the three points of 16:20?


We come now to the third group of Paul’s letters, i.e., the
letters of his first imprisonment at Rome. These letters, in
chronological order, are Philippians, Philemon, Colossians,
Ephesians, and Hebrews.
It would be well at this point to name several books, most
of which have already been given, as general helps on the
whole group: Conybeare & Howson’s Life and Epistles of
Paul; Farrar’s, Life and Letters of Paul; Stalker’s Life of
Paul; Horae Paulinae; by Wm. Paley, Robertson’s, Syllabus
of New Testament Study; St. Paul; by Adolphe Monod.
Meyer’s translation, Malcolm McGregor, Divine Authority of
Paul’s Writings. The author’s sermon before the Southern
Convention at Hot Springs, Arkansas, 1908, on The Nature,
Person and Offices of Our Lord and His Relations to the
Father, the Universe and the Church; Wilkinson’s Epic of
Saul, and Epic of Paul.
The special helps on this book are as follows:
For Exposition – Lightfoot on Philippians (the best for
exposition and criticism; American Commentary; Pidge on
Philippians; Cambridge Bible; Moule on Philippians; Ex_
positors’ Bible; Rainey on Philippians; Speakers’ or Bible
Commentary; Jamieson, Fausset & Brown, brief and critical.
For Homiletics as well as Exposition – The Pulpit Com_
mentary on Philippians; Robert Hall’s Expository Sermons on
Philippians; Johnston’s, Expository Lectures.
For Devotion – Hoyt’s Gleams from the Prison of Paul.
For Geographical and Historical Setting – Both Conybeare
& Howson and Farrar cited in the general helps for the group
of letters, to which we may add Ramsay on Paul the Traveler;
and .Forbes, Footsteps of Paul.
Expository, Practical and Devotional – Matthew Henry, or
better, The Comprehensive Commentary, edited by Jenkins.

1. The time order of Philippians given above has been
questioned on plausible grounds, by able scholars, but the
author believes that the stronger arguments support the order
2. The assignment of the authorship of Hebrews to Paul
and its collocation above have both been confidently chal_
lenged by able modern scholars, whose arguments will receive
most respectful consideration in the introductory chapters to
that book. The author will chaim for his own views on both
points no more value than the weight of his reasons warrants.
The importance of this group of letters has never been ques_
tioned. In them is a distinct advance –
1. In the amplification of the plan of salvation.
2. In clearness and volume of doctrine concerning the na_
ture, person, and offices of our Lord, in order to meet new
heresies developed in the churches.
3. In the idea, purpose, and mission of the church.
4. In the relations of the Old Covenant to the New Cove_
nant, and the supersession of the Old by the New.
These very great advances in New Testament teaching
invest these letters with a value for all people of all time.
Their importance appears also from the relations of the group
to other New Testament books before and after:
1. We find in Philippians 3 the connecting link with the
controversies of the preceding group of letters, and in 2:5_11
an introduction to Colossians and Ephesians.
2. We find not only additions to the history of Paul which
was abruptly closed in Acts, and light on the prison life in

Rome, but we see that the word of God cannot be bound,
nor the outgoings of a great Christian heart imprisoned.
3. We will be prepared to understand better all the suc_
ceeding letters of Paul, with their hints of additional history.
4. We find that other New Testament authors, far remote
from each other, are constrained to write to the same people
addressed by this group of letters) mainly on the same lines
of thought, and with a view to correcting the same dangerous
heresies. To one province of Asia Minor the eyes of Paul in
Rome, Peter in Babylon, John in Ephesus or an exile in Pat_
mos, Jude in Jerusalem, are all turned in deepest concern.
To become systematic theologians on the plan of salvation;
to have full conceptions of the nature, person, offices and re_
lations of our Lord; to have a rounded conception of the idea,
purpose, and mission of the church; to know the relations
between the covenants, the abrogation of the one in order to
its supersession by the other, every way superior, we must
master this group of letters. We should lay hold on all avail_
able help and give honest, hard, painstaking and prayerful
study to the letters. There is no room here for the idler.
Mental and heart laziness should have no place here.
We should not only acquire the needful knowledge, paying
whatever necessary cost, but assimilate it in our lives that
in wisdom we may apply it to life’s emergencies. It is not
sufficient that we be good ministers, but able ministers also,
of our Lord. While it is the business of our Seminaries to
give edge to the ax and point to the sword, it is the student’s
business to turn the grindstone. Nor will mere equipment
serve the purpose. We must learn how to use the sharpened
tools to the best advantage. Not what we eat, but what we
digest becomes a part of ourselves.
As we take up each letter of the group these questions at
least must be answered: Who wrote it? When? From what
place and under what conditions? To whom addressed, and
their condition? What the occasion? What the purpose?
What the matter? What the character and style? What its
relation to other books? What its place in the canon? What
its contribution to the sum total of Bible truth? What its
great pulpit themes? What its influence on later times? More_
over, the geographical and historical setting should be as
familiar as our front yard.
Let us now consider the first book of the group. The author
of this letter, beyond all reasonable question) is Paul. The
letter avows it; the character, style, circumstances and context
demonstrate it; abundant historical evidence establishes it.
When, whence, and under what circumstances the letter was
written go together in this case. The date determines the
place, and vice versa, and the two determine the circumstances.
Some, without due warrant, have contended for Caesarea as
the place, which would affect both date and circumstances.
The contention rests on such insufficient grounds that it is not
worth our while to waste time on it. The place was Rome.
The circumstances are those of the author’s first imprisonment
in the imperial city, as briefly set forth by Luke in Acts 28:
14_31, and supplemented by allusions in all the letters of the
group. See particularly Philippians 1:12_25; 2:17; 4:10_18;
Philemon verses 1, 10, 22_23; Colossians 4:3, 18; Ephesians
3:1; Hebrews 13:3, 18_19, 23_24. The circumstances, in the
main, were these:
1. Though a prisoner be was not closely confined, but al_
lowed to live in his own hired house, using it as a preaching
house, and for the reception of his many visitors as well as a
center of wide correspondence.
2. The restraint on his movements _consisted in his being
chained to a soldier of the Praetorian Guard, changed from
time to time.
3. The chaining to so many of these soldiers in succession
enabled him to leaven the whole division of the emperor’s
guard with the gospel.
4. The fact of the restraint on his personal movements
stirred up his friends to preach the gospel more earnestly and
effectually, and also gave opportunity to his Jewish enemies
in the Roman churches to greater activity in preaching.
5. The imprisonment, in checking his travels and limiting
his personal preaching, necessitated a resort to writing, which,
as embodied in these letters, bequeathed a legacy to all suc_
ceeding ages incomparably richer than could have been derived
from all his viva voce sermons, so his bonds tended to the
furtherance of the gospel. The word of God was not bound.
Through these letters and through the labors of his friends –
Luke, Timothy, Tychicus, Epaphroditus, Epaphras, and many
others – he reached the heart of the world and superintended
the work of two continents.
6. The beastly and bloody Nero was the reigning Caesar,
but not yet were his hate and fury turned against the Chris_
tians. Paul had not yet been brought to trial – so long the
law’s delay – but felt confident of acquittal, and was assured
in heart that he would again resume his missionary activities.
This hope of release finds expression in all the letters of this
group. He held himself ready, however, for life or death.
7. His support, in the meantime, was a serious question,
as we have no passage to show that he was permitted to work
at his trade. Philippi, at least, sent contributions to him,
but we have no knowledge that any other church did, and in
his expression of thanks for this help, he lets us know how
extreme was his want at times (Phil. 4:11_13).
The exact date of the letter is not so clear, nor the order
of place in the group. It is evident that the letter was not
written in the beginning of his two years’ imprisonment at
Rome, but this is equally evident concerning the other letters
of the group. All of them belong to the second year, so that
there was time enough for all necessarily antecedent events in
the case of any of them. Within a year two or more trips
either way could easily have been made from Rome to Phil_
ippi, Colossae and Ephesus, and back again to Rome.
The letters to Philemon, the Colossians, and the Ephesians
were all sent at one time. The internal evidence is strong
that Philippians preceded them, and that Hebrews was the
latest of all.
Philippians 3 (with 1:15) is a distinct echo of the great
controversies in the letters of the preceding group, particularly
Galatians and Romans, and is both the connecting link and
surviving wave of that controversy. The issue in Hebrews is
quite distinct, ana relates to an utter break between Chris_
tianity and Judaism – a later development. Colossians and
Ephesians contend against a heresy unknown to Romans and
Thus, while Philippians connects back with the preceding
group, it is equally evident that 2:6_11 on the nature, person,
and office work of our Lord is a fitting introduction to the
enlarged discussion on the same point in Colossians and
Ephesians. The time order of the group given in the begin_
ning of this chapter is most philosophical and is better sus_
tained by the evidence, The date, therefore, is A.D. 62.
The occasion of the letter is clear from the context (2:25_30;
1. The church at Philippi, having learned of Paul’s arrival
at Rome, his imprisonment there and consequent privation,
generously (and for the fourth time since he established the
church) made up a contribution in his behalf, sending it by
Epaphroditus, one of their elders.
2. Epaphroditus, stirred in heart by what he learned at
Rome, entered the work there so vigorously that he brought
on an almost fatal sickness.
3. The concern of his home church for him in this illness,
of which they had heard, filled him with longing to return to
4. So when able to travel he is sent to bear this letter.
To whom addressed? The first verse tells us: „To all the
saints in Christ Jesus that are at Philippi, with the bishops
and deacons. The history of the establishment of this church
is found in Acts 16, and is elaborately considered in the inter_
pretation of that book. Its subsequent history up to the writ_
ing of this letter may be gathered from allusions in Acts
20:1_6, in the letters of the preceding group, and in this letter.
Something of this important history needs restatement here,
as it is not merely thrilling in interest and teeming with profit_
able lessons, but because it is necessary to the proper inter_
pretation of the letter itself:
1. Philippi was the first church established by Paul in
Europe. Only the churches in Rome, established by others,
preceded it in Europe.
2. The marks of a special providence leading to its estab_
lishment are exceptionally clear and convincing. It was not
in Paul’s mind to pass over into Europe at this time, but quite
otherwise. His mind turned to proconsular Asia, but the
Holy Spirit forbade him at this time (Acts 16:6), opening
later, when matters were riper, a great and effectual door in
that province (Acts 19, and I Cor. 16:8_9). Barred from
Asia, he attempted to go into Bithynia, but the Spirit of Jesus
suffered him not (Acts 16:7), and so he was led to Troas on
the Aegaean Sea, which separated Asia from Europe, and there,
at his wits’ end, a vision directed him to Macedonia. The
lessons of this providential guidance are valuable for all time,
to wit:
(a) Jesus selects the preacher’s field of labor, as well as
the preacher himself.
(b) It is not his method to require the conversion of every_
body in one field, whether country or city, before carrying the
gospel elsewhere, but to establish here and there centers of
radiating light.
(c) The Holy Spirit is the guide of both preacher and
church, and his mind may be assuredly gathered from inward
monition, outward circumstances, and Providence.
Philippi was a Roman Colony, with Roman citizenship,
Roman law and magistrates, to which facts there is abundant
incidental allusion in both the history and the letter. At no
other place of his labors, so far, were there relatively so few
Jews – not even one synagogue. There was only a prayer
chapel, and here first does he meet pure Gentile persecution.
All persecutions of both our Lord and his church, so far, were
either altogether Jewish or instigated by Jews, and so will it
be for years to follow, Ephesus being a later exception, till
Nero’s fiery hate and Domitian’s cold_blooded tyranny make
Gentile persecution the rule. Hence the Philippian church is
unique in its history until it drops out of history altogether,
leaving scarcely a memorial behind.
It surpassed all the other apostolic churches in liberality and
in fidelity to the simplicity of gospel doctrine, and these char_
acteristics abide for all the years it remains in historic light.
So Ignatius found it on his way to Roman martyrdom, and
Polycarp in his letter to the Philippians could only imitate
this letter of Paul. It was in this church, followed by other
churches among the Greeks, that the Christian woman comes
into a prominence hardly possible where the Jewish element
predominated, and the only rebuke in the letter, and that a
very gentle one, seeks the reconciliation of two prominent
The characteristics of the letter are:
1. Pre_eminently it is a letter of joy. „I rejoice – ye re_
joice,” echoing the beatitude of our Lord, „Rejoice and be
exceeding glad.” Moreover, it is joy in sorrow, affliction, and
persecutions, as when the writer, while with them „sang praises
at midnight,” notwithstanding stripes, bonds, dungeons, and
threatened death. Yet again, like the Sermon on the Mount,
it gives a sovereign specific for happiness (4:6_9) whatever
the outward circumstance.
2. It is interpenetrated with doctrines, not in formal state_
ment as in Galatians, Romans, and Hebrews, but in incidental
allusion for practical ends. To the author it is an amazing
thing that commentators should characterize it as the letter
without doctrine. It goes far beyond Romans and Galatians
in the sweep of its doctrinal teaching. It will surprise any
student who attempts to make a list of its doctrines and
compare them with the sum of. the doctrines in other letters.
The author surprised himself in that way, and after filling a
page of legal cap, one doctrine to the line, he gave up the job,
for his list would equal the sentences of the letter itself, and
yet only four doctrines are stated elaborately – the doctrine
of our Lord (2:6_11); the doctrine of justification by faith
‘(3:1_10); the doctrine of perfection in soul and body (3:
11_14) ; the recipe for happiness (4:6_8).
3. Because of its abundant and correlative doctrines, all
applied practically, it has ever been a rich field for homiletics.
It was this characteristic that led Robert Hall (with others)
to select that whole letter for a series of expository sermons
delighting himself and his audience. In preaching from Ro_
mans, Galatians, and Hebrews one cannot escape topical dis_
cussion, so perfect the system of truth, so closely connected
and graded the argument, and so single the climax. But from
Philippians we may cull a hundred fine and distinct themes
for textual preaching, sometimes several in a single sentence.
On this account also it is easy to give an analysis of Romans,
Galatians, and Hebrews, but quite difficult to give a satis_
factory analysis of Philippians.
It is evident from many allusions that this church kept in
closer touch with Paul than any other established by him.
After leaving Ephesus Paul returned to Macedonia (Acts
20:1; 2 Cor. 2:12_13; 8:5_6). Still later, on leaving Corinth
he returned to Philippi and there kept the passover (Acts
20:6). And it is every way probable that once at least after
his release at Rome he visited this church. (See Phil 1 _24_25
and I Tim. 1:3.) On the other hand, this church sent. contri_
butions to him twice while at Thessalonica, once at least
while at Corinth (2 Cor. 11:9), then here at Rome.
On the authenticity of this letter there is no room for
reasonable doubt. The early historic testimony is abundant
and clear. All the ancient versions contain it. Early in the
second century Ignatius and Polycarp quote it and imitate
it. Late in the second century Clement of Alexandria and
Irenaeus quote it, and somewhat later Tertullian bears direct
testimony to it. Apart from all external evidence, the letter
itself in spirit, style, and genius attests itself.
But there is a proof in our day more satisfying to the
individual soul than any of these. That proof is experimental.
Whoever reads the letter as God’s word and follows its direc_
tion finds in himself a verification; all its faith, joy, hope,
and love abide in him. The author has found by application of
its doctrines and promises to his own heart demonstrations
that it is God’s book.
Of the postapostolic history of this church only two nota_
ble incidents are known, and both of these occurred but a
few years after the death of John. The one was the great
reception given by the church to Ignatius, the prisoner, on
his way to martyrdom at Rome; the other was Polycarp’s
letter to the Philippians in reply to their request. Both were
notable events, deeply impressing the hearts of the Philip_
pians and long remembered. The letter of Polycarp, John’s
disciple, we find, somewhat abridged – in the „Cambridge
Bible.” There are many quotations in it from our Lord and
Paul. Apart from the quotations we find allusions, more or
less direct) to New Testament writings in almost every sen_
We may perhaps infer one important lesson from the
silence of history henceforward concerning this most faith_
ful of the apostolic churches – a lesson embodied in the prov_
erb: „Blessed is the land that has no history.” The point of
the proverb lies in the fact that history is devoted mainly to
great changes, convulsions, revolutions, and crimes. The peaceful, happy life has no records. That church or man
becomes most notorious that does unusual things and devel_
ops the most startling heresies. On this account the church
historian finds it easier to trace departures from gospel order
and life than conformity with them. The Roman apostasy
leaves a broader and more sharply defined historic trail than
all the faithful churches put together. The harlot is in the city
clothed in purple and scarlet, while the true woman is nour_
ished in the wilderness (Rev. 12:6; 17:1_8).

1. Of what group of Paul’s letters is Philippians a part?
2. Name the letters in chronological order.
3. What general helps on the whole group?
4. What special helps on this book commended?
5. What two special remarks on this group?
6. What the importance of the group in distinct advance on pre_
ceding parts of New Testament?
7. What the importance, in view of the relations of these letters
to both preceding and subsequent New Testament books?
8. What the importance of mastering this group of Paul’s letters’
9. What is necessary in acquiring knowledge? Illustrate.
10. What questions must be answered relative to each book of this
11. Who the author, and what the proof?
12. Where written, and what the proof?
13. What the circumstances of the writer, and what their effect or
the spread of the gospel?
14. What can you say of the date and the order in the group?
15. What the occasion?
16. To whom addressed?
17. Where do we find the history of the establishment of this church
and its development up to the writing of this letter?
18. Restate the salient points of this history.
19. What the valuable lessons of the history?
20. What the peculiarities of this city and church. (1) as to civil
government, (2) as to Jewish population, and (3) as to persecutions
21. Wherein did it surpass other apostolic churches?
22. What the position of women in this and other Greek churches?
23. What the great characteristics of this letter?
24, Why is it more difficult to give an analysis of Philippians than in
Galatians and Romans?
25. Show from the history how Paul and this church kept in better
touch with each other than was the case of most other churches.
26. What the evidence of the authenticity of this letter?
27. What two notable events only characterize the postapostolic his_
tory of this church?
28. What the historic value of Polycarp’s letter?
29. What important lesson may be inferred from the silence of sub_
sequent history concerning this church? Illustrate by example.

Philippians I: I_30.

1. The opening salutation (1:1_2). Note: „Bishops and
deacons” and the bearing on the doctrine of church officers,
comparing I Timothy 3:1_13.
2. The thanksgiving (1:3_7). In this Thanksgiving, note:
(a) What constitutes „fellowship in the furtherance of the
gospel,” and how it makes the helpers „partakers of the
grace.” (b) The meaning of „The day of Jesus Christ.”
(c) The meaning of „The good work begun in us,” and con_
trast with the work done for us. (d) God’s perfecting the
work begun in us until that day, and compare I Thessalonians
3. The prayer (1:8_11).
4. The account of his state in prison (1:12_30). In this
account, note: (1) The word of God is not bound. The chains
on Paul are wings to his gospel, (a) Many soldiers of the
Praetorian Guard to whom, in turn, Paul was chained thus
hear and are saved, who never otherwise would have heard
(4:22). (b) Each saved soldier tells the news to his comrades.
(c) His friends, who left the work to Paul free, take up
the work for Paul bound, (d) Some Judaizing Christians,
stirred by the opportunity of his bonds to press their view of
the gospel, preach through strife some truth of Christ. (2)
The meaning of these expressions: (1) „Set for the defense
of the gospel.” (2) „Christ magnified by life or death.” (3)
„The supply of the Spirit of Christ.” (4) „To live is Christ
– to die is gain.” (5) „The strait betwixt two,” (6) „I know
that I shall abide” – how?
5. Exhortation – part 1 (1:27 to 2:4), Note the expres_
sions: (1) „In nothing affrighted by the adversaries.” (2)
The double „token” in 1:28, comparing 2 Thessalonians 1:5.
(3) „Granted to suffer.”
6. The great example of our Lord, and the doctrines in_
volved concerning his deity, original glory, voluntary renun_
ciation, humiliation, sacrifice, exaltation and restoration to
glory, 2:5_11. Note: (a) Meaning of „form of God.” (b)
Meaning of „counted not equality with God a thing to be
grasped.” (c) Meaning of „emptied himself.”
7. Exhortation – part II (2:12_18). Note: (1) The salva_
tion in us compared with the salvation out of us, or regenera_
tion and sanctification over against expiation and justifica_
tion. (2) Concerning the internal salvation that we work out
what God works in, but concerning the external salvation we
put on what Christ worked out (3:12, 14). (3) „Lights in
the world.” (4) „Holding forth the word of life.” (5) „The
libation on the sacrifice” (v. 27).
8. Concerning Timothy (2:19_24).
9. Concerning Epaphroditus (2:25_30).
10. Exhortation – concluded (2:1).
11. Concision of the flesh vs. circumcision of the spirit, or
the enemies of the cross of Christ (3:2, 18_19). See John
3:6_7; Galatians 4:22_31; 5:6_24; Romans 7:5_15; Colossians
12. The doctrine of justification, negatively and positively
(3:4_9). ‘Note: „The excellency of the knowledge of Christ
Jesus my Lord.”
13. The doctrine of sanctification and how attained (3:10_
14; 2:12_13). Note: (1) The meaning of „attain unto the
resurrection from the dead.” (2) The meaning of „laying hold
on all for which Christ laid hold on me.” (3) „Forgetting
things behind and stretching forward to things before.” (4)
“The high calling” (5) “The goal.” (6) “The prize.”

14. The doctrine of the glorification of the body (3:21).
See I John 3:2 and I Corinthians 15:35_49, for the dead, and
I Corinthians 15:50_54, for the living.
15. Citizenship in heaven as contrasted with the Philip_
pian citizenship in Rome (3:20) and compare Ephesians
2:19 as contrasted with citizenship in Jerusalem.
16. Paul’s joy and crown (4:1). See I Thessalonians 2:19_
17. Women to the front for strife or work (4:2_3).
18. The Yoke_fellow (4:3).
19. The book of life (4:3).
20. „Rejoice always – rejoice” (4:4).
21. „The Lord is at hand.” What does it mean? (4:4) and
compare James 5:8_9.
22. The great recipe for happiness (4:6_9).
23. A great Christian sacrifice and its effect (4:10_18).
24. Benediction and closing salutation (4:20_23). Note:
Caesar’s household.

Address and opening salutation (1:1_2) – Paul associates
Timothy with himself in addressing this letter, because Tim_
othy, having been associated with him in the establishment
of the church, had their welfare at heart, as they had good
reason to know, and because he purposes to send him as a
forerunner of his own coming (2:19_23). There is here no
assertion of his apostolic claims, as in some other letters,
because at Philippi these had never been questioned, but he
assumes for himself and Timothy only the title of „bond_
servants of Jesus Christ.” The letter is addressed to all the
saints in the city, and only inclusively to the „bishops and
deacons.” It is significant that in no other letter are the church
officers included in the address. As the centuries pass church
officers grow in importance and the church declines. This text
has always been regarded as a proof that in apostolic churches
there were only two officers – bishop and deacon – particularly
when reinforced by the stronger proof in I Timothy 3:1_13
where in the most formal way the qualifications of church
officers are set forth. We contort, therefore, in this address
four doctrines of ecclesiology, namely:
1. The particular church is more important than the officers,
including them, and retaining jurisdiction over them, and
indeed capable of existence without them.
2. While apostles, prophets, and evangelists are set in the
church, for kingdom purposes, the only officers charged with
local duties in a particular church are two.
3. There are no grades in the ministry notwithstanding
the later innovations of the Roman, Greek, and English hier_
archies. Note: The reader should study Lightfoot’s argu_
ment on this point in his „Commentary on Philippians.”
4. There was here, as in other churches, a plurality of
bishops the meaning of which deserves special consideration.
All of these doctrines are important, and ecclesiastical his_
tory clearly shows how most harmful innovations gradually
destroyed the simplicity of the New Testament teaching on the
church. Baptists and Presbyterians unite in contesting
the Romanist, Greek, English, and the Methodist orders in the
ministry, and then differ from each other on the distinc_
tion between teaching and ruling elders. Just here the author
would commend to the reader the Doctrine of the Church,
as set forth in his discussion of „Distinctive Baptist Princi_
But briefly now note that in Acts 20:17, 28 „the elders of
the church” at Ephesus are also called „bishops.” They are
not distinct offices or grades in the ministry. A preacher may
be called a kerux, „herald,” on account of his business to
proclaim the gospel. He may be called presbuteros, „elder,”
to indicate his official position in the church. He may be
called episcopos, „bishop,” to note his overseeing or ruling the
work of the church. He may be called “pastor” or “shepherd,”
to denote his duties of leading, feeding and defending the
flock. He may be called „ambassador” (though this term
more particularly refers to apostles) to denote that he repre_
sents Christ, in declaring the terms of reconciliation with
God. It is certain that these terms do not teach different
orders in the ministry.
On the plurality of elders or bishops in a single church we
may note these passages: (1) In the Jerusalem church (Acts
11:30; 15:6, 22_23; 21:18). (2) In the Ephesus church
(Acts 20:17 and I Tim. 5:17, 19). (3) In the Philippian
church (Phil. 1:1). (4) In other churches (Acts 14:23). Sev_
eral questions here arise:
1. What is the office of elder? Is he a preacher? The answer
is clear that he is a preacher. The Presbyterians, relying on
I Timothy 5:17, make a distinction between „teach_
ing elders” who are preachers and „ruling elders” who con_
stitute a „governing board” in every church. And on the
term, „elder” (Greek presbuteros), they base their whole
system of federal government. The passage in Timothy must
be put to hard service to warrant such vast conclusions.
Paul has been discussing the pensioning of certain aged
widows whose services had been signal for the cause, and
then adds that elders who had been good bishops (rulers)
should receive double compensation, particularly if they had
been equally serviceable in teaching and preaching. In other
words, he is discussing the duty of the church to care for
its superannuated workers, whether widows or preachers,
according to the value of their past public services. It is an
undue straining of his words to interpret two distinct classes
of elders. We fairly meet all the meaning of all the passages
when we say that wherever a church was organized, all who
had the recognized call to preach were ordained, whether one
or a score. Of course some one of these preachers would be
selected as pastor of the congregation, but all the preachers
in the church would help in the work, each according to his
gifts, in teaching, preaching, and overseeing the work of the
Many Baptist churches of today, particularly in cities,
have in their membership a plurality of these elders. Of
course only one can be officially pastor. Mr. Spurgeon, how_
ever, had an „official board of elders” in his church. And
others have thought that such ought to be the rule in our
churches, if for no other reason, to sidetrack a ruling board
of deacons, who ought to be restricted to their care of the
temporalities of the church.
The Thanksgiving (1:3_7) – This thanksgiving is remark_
able for its use of the terms, „all,” „always,” and „every,”
and bears very high testimony to this exceptional church.
He thanks God upon „all” his remembrance of them, being
able to recall nothing bad about them, and „always” in
„every prayer” for them – every prayer being one of joy, on
account of one thing.
We do well to consider that ground of exceptional thanks_
giving. It was „their fellowship with him in the furtherance
of the gospel” by which they „became partakers of the grace.”
He refers to their continuous help toward him ever since he
led them to Christ. Other churches might be ungrateful – they
never were. Others might fail to see that whoever helped the
preacher had an investment in all his work of which they
could not be robbed. They preached through Paul, and shared
his glory and reward. What a lesson here to those who are
not preachers. The idea came from our Lord himself: „Who_
ever receiveth a prophet shall have a prophet’s reward,” and
is thus admirably expressed by John in regard to Gaius:
„Beloved, thou doest a faithful work in whatsoever thou doest
toward them that are brethren and strangers withal; who
bare witness to thy love before the church: whom thou wilt
do well to set forward on their journey worthily of God:
because that for the sake of the Name they went forth, taking
nothing of the Gentiles. We therefore ought to welcome such,
that we may be fellowworkers for the truth.” Gaius and Diot_
rephes represent the missionary and the antimissionary of
apostolic times.
In this glorious way all members of the church may be_
come missionary preachers. See for other examples the women
who helped our Lord, and those who helped Paul (Romans
16:1_4). See Paul’s extension of this thanksgiving thought in
4:10, 14_18. The next thought in the thanksgiving is the time
when these fellow helpers partake of the apostolic grace and
reap the fruition of their sacrifices. He says, „In the day of
Jesus Christ.” This is the day of his final advent when he
rewards all his saints for their good works. See I Corinthians
3:11_15; Revelation 22:12; Luke 6:23; Mark 9:41.
This good work of the Philippians originated in God’s
grace, who not only began it in them, but will perfect it
by fruition of reward in the day of Christ. Note the mean_
ing of „began a good work in you.” I regret that this ex_
position of the passage robs me of one of my early sermons,
and it may so rob you. The idea is not that what he begins
he will continue to the end, but what he originates that will he
crown with perfection in the reward of the judgment. While
the primary reference here is that God whose grace began this
good work of helping the missionary will put the crown of
perfection on it when he rewards his people, yet it may be
applied to any other work of grace in the heart. It will not
be a broken unfinished column – a stream lost in the desert.
What God commences he completes. Let us particularly note
the preposition, „until.” It should be rendered „at” as in
I Thessalonians 5:23. The idea is not of continuing until a
given time, but perfecting and crowning at a given time, i.e.,
the day of Jesus Christ.
We will now look at his prayer. In chapter 1:8_11, we get
a real continuance. He now prays that all these graces in their
hearts may be continued and bound. That is what he prays
for, that their love may become more fervent. We pray the
right thing for a Christian when we pray for his growth in
grace; when we pray for an expansion of his love; when we
pray for an enlargement of his horizons. If he lives low down
in the valley, let us take him on the wings of our prayer to
the top of the mountain and let him see what a big world it.
is, and keep himself from narrow thoughts and a narrow life.
That is the substance of his prayer.
The fourth point of the analysis is the account of his state
in prison. He tells them, first of all, and it is a glorious thing,
that men may put a chain on Paul, but they can’t chain his
love and his faith and his hope. They may bind him and con_
fine him, but they can’t put chains on the gospel. The shackles
become wings to the gospel. It tends to the furtherance of
the gospel, just as the blood of the martyr becomes the seed
of the church.
This was accomplished in this way: The emperor’s guard,
called the Praetorian Guard, had charge of the state prison_
ers, and one sentinel every day (and perhaps two) was
chained to Paul – Paul’s right hand to the sentinal’s left
hand. Where Paul walked he walked; whatever Paul said
he heard; whomsoever Paul received he saw, and to what_
ever was said he was a listener. I have sometimes thought
that it would be a good thing if there was some way of
chaining up some other people I know to make them hear
the word of God. They never will come any other way.
Some of these soldiers were saved, and they told their com_
rades. Then his friends, looking at him, the great missionary
to the Gentiles, held in bondage, unable to go about, think_
ing of Spain and other ends of the world and of revisiting
the churches that he had established – these, friends of his
who left the work for him to do when free – are now stirred
up to take hold themselves when Paul is bound.
Then there were some enemies of his – Christians too,
Judaizing members of these Roman churches – stirred by the
opportunity of his bonds, who now press their views of the
gospel. As if _they said, „When Paul was free we had no
chance to give our views, but Paul is tied now, and this is
our chance to present our side of it,” and they did present
their side of it, preaching some truth. We had the most signal
example that ever came before the world, I think, here in
Texas. We remember the strife that was stirred up, and I
am quite sure that these people are doing harder work now
than they ever did when they were in Convention. They feel
a responsibility on them to make good their claim, and I
rejoice, for most of them are good people, strangely misled
on some points, but as Paul said, „I rejoice that Christ is

1. Give an analysis of the letter.
2. Why does Paul associate Timothy with him in the address?
3. What four doctrines of ecclesiology are involved in the address?
4. Prove that „elder” and „bishop” are not two distinct offices, but
express different ideas of the one office.
5. Give three examples of New Testament churches having a plurality of elders or bishops, and one general passage expressing the custom.
6. Cite several names applied to the preacher expressing, not different orders in the ministry, but different ideas of one office.
7. Upon what issue do Baptists and Presbyterians unite against
Romanist, Greek, English, and Methodist denominations?
8. On what passage do Presbyterians rely to prove a distinction
between „teaching elders” and „ruling elders,” and how do you expound the passage so as to rebut their contention?
9. What noted Baptist preacher had in his church a board of „ruling elders”?
10. When the apostles „ordained elders in every church” how do you
prove that these were all preachers, and not a board of ruling laymen?
11. What other denominations besides the Presbyterians have boards
of „ruling elders” who are not preachers?
12. What the one great ground of Paul’s thanksgiving in this letter?
13. What do you understand the passage to mean? Cite a parallel
passage from John.
14. What is meant by „partakers of the grace”? Cite a parallel pas_
sage from our Lord.
15. When is this partaking realized, and what is meant by „the day
of Jesus Christ”?
16. Rob yourselves of a big sermon by expounding „He who began
a good work in you will perfect it at the day of Jesus Christ,” and
cite a parallel passage to prove that „until” should be „at,” and other
scriptures to prove that rewards of Christians are bestowed at that time.
17. In giving an account of his prison state, show how the apostle
proves that his bonds gave wings to the gospel.

Philippians 1:2 to 2:5.

In the account of his prison condition (1:12_30) there are
some expressions that need explanation. He says, „They,
knowing that I am set for the defense of the gospel . . .” –
and he was. Whoever touched the fringe of the doctrine of
the gospel of Jesus Christ to destroy it or to make light of
it had Paul to fight. All over the world the spirit of Paul as
a stalwart soldier stood between the pure, simple gospel of
Jesus Christ and a Judaizing tendency that would have made
Christianity merely a Jewish sect, and in the same way he
stood against every other error. He loved the gospel. Every
promise of it was dear to him and every doctrine was sacred.
He would not yield the width of a hair on a principle. „Set
for the defense of the gospel.” I know some who are set, but
they are not set for the defense of the gospel. They are set
in favor of every loose view of doctrine and polity.
Then his assurance of escaping death at this time: „For
I know that this shall turn out to my salvation . . . And
having this confidence, I know that I shall abide, yea, and
abide with you all.” This is not hope nor conjecture, but
positive knowledge through inward assurance of the Holy
Spirit as in Acts 20:23: „The Holy Spirit testifieth unto
me in every city, saying that bonds and afflictions abide me.”
See another case of the reception of positive spiritual knowl_
edge in Acts 27:22_25. Indeed, he expressly says that the
means of his preservation are their prayers and the supply
of the Spirit of Jesus Christ.
The context here seems to demand that „salvation,”

(Greek, soteria) as in some other instances, (see the Greek
of Acts 27:34) means bodily preservation or salvation from
physical death. The „supply of the Spirit” means that over_
ruling power exercised by the Spirit which wards off impend_
iny peril as in Acts 18:9_10;. 2 Corinthians 1:9_10. Mark
that here the Holy Spirit is called the „Spirit of Christ”
because he is Christ’s alter ego – other self – as in John 14:
18: „I will not leave you orphans; I will come unto you,”
and yet this coming was in the Holy Spirit, whom Jesus, as
well as the Father, sent as his vicar when he ascended to
heaven. See John 15:26.
This case of the efficacy of the Philippian prayers, instru_
mentally averting Paul’s death at this time, should sink
deep into our hearts. They prayed that Paul might escape
death. The supply of the Spirit comes as the means through
which deliverance is effected. Seneca and Burrus, Nero’s
advisers and delegates in examining State prisoners, are un_
conscious of supernatural interposition, and yet in his own
strange way, the Holy Spirit brings it about that Paul is
acquitted at this time.
Not that Paul’s death at that time would have frustrated
the glory of his Lord, for he himself testified that Christ
would be magnified by either his life or death, nor that
extension of life to Paul would be a favor, for to him per_
sonally death would be a gain and life a continued cruci_
fixion, but that his life just yet would be for the progress
of the gospel and the confirmation of the saints.
Looking at the alternatives – „To live is Christ, to die is
gain” – Paul personally was in „a strait betwixt the two,
having a desire to depart, and to be with Christ, which is
far better for me: nevertheless to abide in the flesh is more
needful for you.” His own desire for rest and glory was to
find gratification in death, which was but a door opening into
heaven and the presence of the Lord, whereas to live was
to go on suffering like his Lord. But when he saw that his
living meant good to the cause, he unselfishly renounced the
pleasure of death.
This is not the first time in his history of his suffering
that for the sake of others he welcomed the pain of living.
In the second letter to the Corinthians he says, „For we
know that if the earthly house of our tabernacle be dis_
solved, we have a building from God, a house not made with
hands, eternal, in the heavens. For verily in this we groan,
longing to be clothed upon with our habitation which is
from heaven. . . . For indeed we that are in this tabernacle
do groan, being burdened; not for that we would be un_
clothed, but that we would be clothed upon, that what is
mortal may be swallowed up of life. . . . Being therefore
always of good courage, and knowing that, whilst we are
at home in the body, we are absent from the Lord (for we
walk by faith, not by sight); we are of good courage, I say,
and are willing rather to be absent from the body, and be
at home with the Lord” (2 Corinthians 5:1_2, 4, 6_9).
Exhortation, part I, (1:27 to 2:4). – This first part of the
exhortation is directed to one great end: „Only let your
manner of life be worthy of the gospel of Christ.” The com_
mon version renders it „conversation” instead of „manner of
life.” The author greatly prefers a more literal rendering
than either: „Live your citizen life,” otherwise we miss the
delicate allusion to the Roman citizenship enjoyed by the
Philippian colony, and the higher allusion to Christian citi_
zenship in the New Jerusalem. This harmonizes the passage
with the context (3:20): „For our citizenship is in heaven,
etc.,” and puts it in line with the great passage in Ephesians
2:11_19, which treats of the „fellowcitizens with the saints.”
It is related of S. S. Prentiss that just after he had elec_
trified the nation by his great speech before Congress in
the contest for his seat in that body, in which he emphasized
the thought that to deny him his seat was to disfranchise
Mississippi and rob it of its most glorious heritage, he was
invited by ardent admirers to deliver an address in New
York City, on which occasion his only theme was his first
words – „Fellow Citizens.” Earth never heard a greater ora_
tion, and every man in the audience was lifted to a con_
ception of American citizenship high as the shining stars.
The sonorous roll of his magical voice in the mere prolonged
pronunciation of the oft repeated word „Fellow Citizens”
was compared to the archangel’s trumpet. He was greater
than Cicero against Verres, who declared that earth’s high_
est honor was to be able to say, „I am a Roman citizen”
and earth’s meanest tyrant and greatest robber was one
who arbitrarily stripped an accused man of that privilege.
In Acts we see Paul himself, at this very Philippi, and
again at Jerusalem (Acts 16:37_38; 22:25), terrify his per_
secutors by his claim of Roman citizenship. All this goes to
emphasize his one great exhortation: „Live your citizen life
worthy of the gospel, whether I come to see you or be absent.”
He then shows just how the exhortation may be carried out:
1. „Stand fast in one Spirit, with one mind striving together
for the faith of [i.e., the truth of] the gospel.” This is an
exhortation to unity so marvelously elaborated in Ephesians
4:1_6: „I therefore, the prisoner in the Lord beseech you to
walk worthily of the calling wherewith ye were called, with
all lowliness and meekness, with long_suffering, forbearing
one another in love; giving diligence to keep the unity of
the Spirit in the bond of peace. There is one body, and one
Spirit, even as also ye were called in one hope of your calling;
one Lord, one faith, one baptism, one God and father of all,
who is over all, and through all, and in all.”
2. „In nothing terrified by your adversaries.” The exhorta_
tion is most timely because the Philippian Christians were
persecuted at this time as Paul had been when with them.
Indeed, they commenced their Christian life in a fiery furnace
which had never cooled. We see Paul’s glorious tribute to
them in a previous letter: „Moreover, brethren, we make
known to you the grace of God which hath been given in the
churches of Macedonia; how that in much proof of affliction
the abundance of their joy, and their deep poverty abounded
unto the riches of their liberality. For according to their
power, I bear witness, yea, and beyond their power, they
gave of their own accord, beseeching us with much entreaty
in regard of this grace and the fellowship in the ministering
to the saints: and this, not as we had hoped) but first they
gave their own selves to the Lord, and to us through the will
of God” (2 Cor. 8:1_5). To encourage them to follow the
exhortation he assigns three reasons:
1. The infliction of the persecution was a token of the
damnation of their persecutors.
2. Their endurance of the persecution was a God_given
token of their salvation, echoing the beatitudes of our Lord:
„Blessed are they that have been persecuted for righteous_
ness’ sake: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. Blessed are
ye when men shall reproach you, and persecute you, and
say all manner of evil against you falsely for my sake.
Rejoice and be exceeding glad: for great is your reward in
heaven: for so persecuted they the prophets that were before
you” (Matt. 5:10_12).
3. This suffering therefore in behalf of Christ was a spe_
cial privilege granted to favored saints. They had seen Paul
endure the same conflict, and elsewhere he thus enumerates
and glories in his afflictions: „Are they ministers of Christ?
(I speak as one beside himself) I more; in labors more
abundantly, in prisons more abundantly in stripes above meas_
ure, in deaths oft. Of the Jews five times received I forty
stripes save one. Thrice was I beaten with rods, once was
I stoned, thrice I suffered shipwreck, a night and a day have
I been in the deep; in journeyings often, in perils of rivers,
in perils of robbers, in perils from my countrymen, in perils
from the Gentiles, in perils in the city, in perils in the wilder_
ness, in perils in the sea, in perils among false brethren; in
labor and travail, in watchings often, in hunger and thirst,
in fastings often, in cold and nakedness. Besides those things
that are without, there is that which presseth upon me daily,
anxiety for all the churches. Who is weak, and I am not
weak? who is caused to stumble, and I burn not? If I must
needs glory, I will glory of the things that concern my weak_
ness” (2 Cor. 11:23_30); and, „And he hath said unto me,
My grace is sufficient for thee: for my power is made perfect
in weakness. Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my
weaknesses, that the power of Christ may rest upon me.
Wherefore I take pleasure in weaknesses, in injuries, in neces_
sities, in persecutions, in distresses, for Christ’s sake: for when
I am weak, then am I strong” (2 Cor. 12:9_10).
He then clinches the exhortation to unity and unselfish_
ness by five other mighty considerations: (1) „If there be
any comfort in Christ, (2) if there be any consolation of love,
(3) if there be any fellowship of the Spirit, (4) if there be
any tender mercies and compassions, (5) if you wish to ful_
fil my Joy, then seek after this unity, without faction, or
vainglory, and in lowliness of mind.” This method of hypo_
thetical statement has all the force of positive affirmation
having no suggestion of doubt.
He then advances to a sixth reason grander than all the
others – the example of our Lord: „Let this mind be in
you which was also in our Lord Jesus Christ.” Indeed, „If
any man have not the Spirit of the Lord he is none of his.”

1. Explain „set for the defense of the gospel.”
2. How did Paul know that he would escape death as a result of his first Roman imprisonment, and what other examples of this knowledge?
3. What is the meaning of „salvation” (Greek, Soteria) in this pas_
sage, and what other example of similar use of this word?
4. What is meant by „the supply of the Spirit” through which he
would escape, and what other instances?
5. Why is the Holy Spirit called „the Spirit of Christ”?
6. To what, instrumentally, is this supply of the Spirit granted, and
what the value of the lesson?
7. Who at this time were Nero’s advisers and delegates in examining prisoners of state?
8. Were they conscious of supernatural intervention in their acquittal of Paul?
9. Why would not Paul’s death at this time frustrate the glory of
Christ, why was not the extension of his life a personal favor to him, and why then was he spared at this time?
10. Explain Paul’s „strait betwixt two,” why was the decision to live
unselfish on his part, and what other instance of his life similar to this?
11. What the one great end of his exhortation in 1:27 to 2:4?
12. Give the rendering of the passage in both common and revised
versions, and why is the author’s suggestion a better rendering?
13. Cite a passage of similar meaning in Ephesians.
14. Relate the incident of S. S. Prentiss and of Cicero, illustrating.
15. In what two incidents is Paul an illustration?
16. How does he suggest the carrying out of his exhortation?
17. Show the timeliness of the exhortation.
18. Show from another letter Paul’s tribute to their endurance of
afflictions, and where do we find his statement of his own case illustrating what he here enjoins?
19. What three encouragements does he give to enforce his exhortation?
20. In what other letter does he similarly use the word „token”?
21. How does he clinch his exhortation?
22. What a sixth and greater reason?

Philippians 2._5_11.

Attention was called, at the close of the preceding chapter,
to that highest of all motives to unity, humility and self_
renunciation – the example of our Lord Jesus Christ in his
voluntarily divesting himself of the glory and prerogatives of
his heavenly estate, and his assumption of a human nature
in order to secure our salvation and the highest glory of the
Father. We may here, if anywhere, pause to reflect on Paul’s
uniform method of preaching doctrine, never as a mere theory,
but always with a practical end in view. His exhortations to
obedience and morality and unselfish love are all based on a
solid foundation and doctrine. The senseless modern cry, „Let
us have more humanity, more morality, and less dogma,” was
to him as unthinkable as a house without foundation, or a
stream without a source. On the other hand, mere abstract
dogma, or theoretic theology, without reforming power on
the life, was but as sounding brass or tinkling cymbal. Be_
tween his dogmatic theology and a holy life was an essential
and indissoluable relation.
The doctrines involved in Philippians 2:5_11. This is by
far the greatest and most instructive passage in the letter,
and the second most important in the whole Bible, especially
if it be considered, as it must be, with the parallel passages
(John 1:1_5, 9, 14; Col. 1:15_20; Heb. 1:2_13) because it
expresses the love of the Son for sinful man, and his honor
toward the Father. Only one other outranks it (John 3:16)
which expresses the Father’s love toward sinful man, and
only one other comes next to it (Rom. 15:30) „The love of
the spirit” expressed in the deeds of John 14_16. The three
embody the love of the trinity, Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.
Strangely enough, Aryans and Socinians rely on this pas_
sage to make good their denial of our Lord’s essential deity,
saying, „He counted not equality with God a thing to be
grasped, and his exaltation was an achievement and not
inherent,” and one party of the Gnostics cite it in denial of
his real humanity, saying, „He had only the form, or like_
ness, of a man,” and the destructive critics quote it to support
their undervaluation of our Lord’s testimony to the integrity
and inspiration of the Old Testament, saying, „He emptied
himself, and hence his views of the Old Testament have no
more authority than the views of any other pious Jew of
his time.”
There are some real difficulties in the passage, but none
that affect its incalculable value as revealing our Lord’s
Father, his real humanity, his great work of redemption on
the cross, his consequent exaltation to universal sovereignty,
and his restoration to original glory. It is my purpose here
to state briefly the main points of the teaching of the passage,
referring somewhat to the differences of interpretation. While
I bear in mind that this is a study in New Testament English
and so must not encroach on the domain of New Testament
Greek, yet, without pedantry, I must refer to certain Greek
words which underlie all the various English renderings. So
essential deity and humanity, and his great work of human
redemption. The definements and subtilities of scholarly
critics in handling this passage, and their infinitesimal de_
tails of divergence, constituting a vast and tedious litera_
ture, accentuate the proverb: „The more I know of expert
scholarship the more I like common sense.” And yet (I state
it for the reader’s satisfaction), the best of them and the
bulk of them of all ages, nations, and denominations, coincide
in their conclusion that the passage does teach what the
average mind gathers in a moment, the existence of our Lord
prior to his incarnation, his equality in nature with the

touching this phase lightly, I name the crucial Greek words
of the text, which are as follows:
1. Morphe, translated „form,” e.g., „existing m the form
of God, taking the form of a man” (v. 6_7).
2. Huparchon, rendered „existing,” „subsisting,” or better
still, „originally subsisting” (v. 6).
3. Harpagmon, rendered „robbery” in common version;
„prize” in the Canterbury Revision; „a thing to be grasped”
in the American Standard Revision; „something to be clung
to,” in the Twentieth Century (v. 6).
4. Ekenosen, rendered „emptied” himself.
5. Homoiomati, rendered „likeness of men” (v. 7).
6. Schemati, rendered „fashion of men.”
The Twentieth Century translation thus renders the whole
passage: „Let the Spirit of Jesus be yours also. Though from
the beginning he had the divine nature, yet he did not look
upon equality with God as something to be clung to, but
impoverished himself by taking the nature of a servant, and
becoming like other men. Then he appeared among us as a
man, and still further humbled himself by submitting him_
self even to death, yes, death on the cross! And this is why
God raised him to the very highest place and gave him the
name which ranks above all others, so that in honor of the
name of Jesus every knee should bend, in heaven, on earth,
and under the earth, and that every tongue should acknowl_
edge Jesus Christ as Lord, to the glory of God the Father.”
Observe three merits of this Twentieth Century rendering:
1. It alone brings out the true meaning of huparchon,
namely, „From the beginning.” The word certainly means
„originally existing, or subsisting,” like John’s „In the be_
ginning was the Word, and the Word was with God and
the Word was God.”
2. Its „impoverished himself” instead of „emptied him_
self” brings the passage in line with a previous statement of

the same general fact by Paul: „For ye know the grace of our
Lord Jesus Christ, that, though he was rich, yet for your
sakes he became poor, that ye through his poverty, might
become rich” (2Cor.8:9).
3. The rendering is in smooth running, everyday English.
Observe also that the only difference between the common
version and the revised version on the one hand, and the
American Standard, Bible Union (edited), and the Twentieth
Century on the other hand in rendering the noun harpagmon,
does not affect the deity of our Lord, for all teach that, but
only the time when the „emptying” commences, for if the
American Standard be right, then the emptying commenced
in the thought of the Son when he counted not equality with
God a thing to be grasped, the emptying merely resulting
from the thought.
The author believes that the common version more closely
follows the grammatical construction, for harpagmon has
the active sense, while the rendering, „a thing to be grasped,”
being passive, would call for another form of the noun,
In other words, the American Standard derives its ren_
dering, not from the form of the noun, but from what it
regards as a contextual demand. The only other use of the
word in Greek literature, sacred or profane, is its employ_
ment by Plutarch „On the education of boys” where it has
the active sense. Hence the earlier scholars and versions, and
the most conservative modem scholars, sustain the common
version. But all these renderings agree in attributing essential
deity to our Lord) if not by positive affirmation, at least by
the strongest implication. The idea of the expression „form
of God” may be gathered from a comparison with other
Pauline expressions, „The express image of his person,” „the
effulgence of his glory,” and with the Logos of John.
From the author’s sermon before the Southern Baptist
Convention, 1908, this passage is cited:
„These relations are expressed in the words image, efful_
gence, form, Logos, Son. When our text says, ‘Who is the
image of the invisible God,’_ and another passage says, ‘The
very image of his substance,’ it cannot mean less than that
he is the visible of the invisible God.
„To illustrate: Philip said, ‘Lord, show us the Father and
it sufficeth us.’ He replied, ‘When thou hast seen me thou
hast seen the Father.’ And when it is said, ‘Who being the
effulgence of God’s glory,’ is not that, at least, the saying
forth, the outshining of the divine glory which must be
another way of saying, ‘He is the visible of the invisible’?
„Of kindred meaning is the expression, ‘Existing in the
form of God.’ Form is the apparent, the phenomenal. So
Logos, or the Word, is the revelation of the Father’s mind,
heart, and will, the unveiling of the hidden. Of like purport
is the declaration: In him dwelleth all the fulness of the
Godhead bodily.’
„But we must hark continually back to his nature – the
Word was God,’ – lest by the weakness of the terms image,
effulgence, form, and Logos, we account him only a mani_
We may rest assured that Paul’s teaching here concerning
our Lord must be construed in harmony with his teachings
in Colossians and Ephesians written such a short time later.
It is needful to give a word of caution against interpreting
too much or too little into the Kenosis, „He emptied him_
self” (A.V.), „Made himself of no reputation.” There is no
room for dogmatism in a matter necessarily so mysterious,
but –
1. It is certain that he did not divest himself of his deity,
for then he would not be the God_man, nor could it be said,
„In him dwelleth all the fulness of the Godhead bodily.”
2. We know that he laid aside his heavenly glory, for
he prays: „And now, Father, glorify thou me with thine own
self with the glory which I had with thee before the world
was” (John 17:5).
3. We know that he laid aside the riches of that heavenly
estate, as Paul says, „For ye know the grace of our Lord
Jesus Christ, that, though he was rich, yet for your sakes
he became poor, that ye through his poverty might be made
rich” (2 Cor. 8:9).
4. We know that he laid aside his equality with the Father,
completely subordinating his own will to the will of the Father:
„Not my will but thine be done,” „I came to do the will of
him that sent me,” and became a bond servant.
5. We know that he did not resort to his inherent omnip_
otence to work miracles in his own behalf, or to avert dis_
aster from himself, or to relieve himself from the perplexities
and burdens of a real humanity. Indeed, all his miracles
were wrought by the power of the Holy Spirit.
6. In the same way he relied on the Holy Spirit, whom he
received without measure at his baptism, for his superhuman
knowledge. The inspiration of all the prophets was less than
his. „He knew what was in man,” and spoke by infallible
authority of all the Old Testament books. So that the radical
critics but advertise their own folly and infidelity in under_
valuation of his testimony concerning Old Testament books
and their meaning. No matter how far he emptied himself of
his own inherent omniscience, that in no way affects the testi_
mony of one who received the Spirit without measure. All
the resources of Deity were at his command, through the
Spirit, so far as they bore upon his mission.
The key passage, in interpreting his original status, and
the emptying himself, is the preceding verse: „Not looking
each of you to his own things, but each of you also to the
things of others. Have this mind in you which was also in.
Christ Jesus.” Christ did not look to his own things, i.e., his
equality with the Father, and the riches and glory of his
heavenly state, but „emptied himself, etc.” Here again we
must be cautious of putting too much stress on the word,
„emptied,” for it is Paul himself who only a little later affirms:
„In him dwelleth all the fulness of the Godhead bodily.”
The „emptying” is not absolute, but only a temporary and
voluntary suspension of exercise, a holding in abeyance for
the time being. It was doubtless this consideration that in_
fluenced the conservative translators of the common version
thus to render the passage. „Made himself of no reputation.”
His humiliation consisted:
1. In his incarnation, i.e., taking „the form of a bond_
servant,” and rendering absolute obedience to the will of the
2. An obedience even unto death.
3. Yea, the death of the cross.
In this obedience he not only magnified the law in its
precepts, demonstrating that it was holy, just, and good, but
also magnified its penal sanctions by „bearing in his own
body the sin of the world.”
His exaltation consisted:
1. In his resurrection, thereby demonstrating all his high
claims asserted in his lifetime, and demanding that angels
who had worshiped him in his original glory and in his in_
carnation should now worship his glorified humanity (Heb.
2. His ascension and reception into heaven.
3. His enthronement there as King of kings and Lord of
lords, and his anointing with the oil of gladness above his
4. His session there until all his enemies are made his
footstool (Psalm 110:1) and until he comes as final judge
at the last and great and general judgment.
5. At which time every knee bends to him, and every
tongue confesses that he is Lord.

Two things in this exaltation call for further explanation:
1. The name that is above every name, what is it? Is it
the name, Jesus, or the name of Jesus, a new name bestowed
on Jesus? Two reasons oppose the former, namely:
(1) His name „Jesus” was given at his incarnation, but
this is a name at his exaltation, and expressive of it.
(2) If the writer meant the name „Jesus,” then it would
seem that this word should have been in the dative, but
„Jesus” is in the genitive and the expression is „in the name
of Jesus.” The author thinks that the name given to Jesus
is, as expressed in Revelation 19:16, „King of kings and
Lord of lords,” which is expressive of his exaltation.
2. What is meant by „every knee” and „every tongue”?
When does this take place? The expression in its context,
calls for the highest degree of universality, and can mean
no less than every human being, good and bad, and every
angel, good and fallen) without exception in either case. It
means that all of them will recognize and confess his universal
sovereignty. All this will occur at his final advent when he
shall sit on the white throne of the general judgment and shall
fix the final status of all moral intelligences. This is indeed
an achievement, not by the Son as originally subsisting, but
by the Son veiled in humanity and obedient unto death.

1. What Paul’s method of presenting doctrine?
2. How would he have regarded the modern cry, „Give us more
humanity and morality and less dogma,” and the custom of some to
present theology as an abstract system?
3. What can you say of the rank of the passage, Philippians 2:5_11,
and what two others may be classed with it, and why?
4. What three heresies are strangely drawn from this passage?
5. What the crucial Greek words of the passage, and how rendered
in American Standard Revision?
6. What three excellencies in the „Twentieth Century” rendering?

7. What two examples of usage only in Greek literature of harpag_
mon, and what its form in both active and passive, what the render_
ings in the English versions cited, which the most grammatical, and
8. What the only practical difference between these renderings, and
their effect on the teachings of the passage as to Christ’s original deity?
9. What the idea of the various terms „form,” „image,” „effulgence”
and Logos?
10. What caution given in interpreting „He emptied himself”?
11. Was this emptying absolute, and if not, what?
12. Cite six particulars as expressive of the „emptying,” negative and
13. What the key passage in interpreting this paragraph?
14. In what did his humiliation consist?
15. In what did his exaltation consist?
16. What the name above every name, and why?
17. What the meaning of „every knee” and „every tongue”?
18. When this „bending of every knee” and „confession of every

Philippians 2:12 to 8:14.

Salvation in us (Phil. 2:12_18). This paragraph, like the
foregoing one, is a part of the exhortation commencing: „Live
your citizen life” (1:27). Take it all in all, it is the highest
model of exhortation in all literature. An aged Baptist can_
not read it without a sigh of regret over our pulpit decadance
in the power of exhortation – a power like an electric storm
bringing into rapid play all the elemental forces of land and
sky, a spiritual storm that buried doctrines as thunderbolts
on the head while seismic upheavals shook the foundations
under the feet. When we recall the rugged and doctrinal
forcefulness of our less cultivated fathers, our own tame, mild,
and polite exhortations are as the cooing of a fledgling dove
compared with the roaring of a Numidian lion. Alas! The
exhorter has left us! This mighty special gift of the Spirit
(Rom. 12:8) is no more coveted and honored among us.
It would pay us to swap off a lot of our weak preachers
for a few old_time exhorting deacons. Teaching appeals to
the head; exhortation to the heart. Teaching instructs; ex_
hortation applies. Teaching illumines; exhortation awakens
and stirs; it rings alarm bells, kindles beacon flames on the
mountains, fires signal guns, blows trumpets, unfurls war_
flags and beats the bass drum. But exhortation is only harm_
less thunder without the lightning bolt of doctrine. We must
not mistake „hollerin,” for exhortation, nor perspiration for
inspiration. 0 that this generation could have heard J. W. D.
Creath, Micajah Cole, Deacon Pruitt, and Judge A. S. Broadus
exhort in great revival meetings, while strong men wept, en_

emies became reconciled, and love illumined and beautified
rugged, homely faces! Then as Christian fire attained a
white heat, the lost soul, pierced through and through by fiery
arrows of conviction, cried out’ „God be merciful to me the
sinner,” or, „Sirs, what must I do to be saved?”
And Heaven came down our souls to greet,
And glory crowned the Mercy Seat.
It must be understood that this exhortation from first to
last is addressed to Christians – to citizens of the heavenly
Jerusalem. It is not an exhortation to sinners to flee from
the wrath to come – not an appeal to the lost to accept by
simple faith, without works, the salvation done for us in
expiation and justification, but to Christians to work out the
salvation of sanctification, God’s prevenient grace working
in us, both to will and to work, for his good pleasure.
This letter, more than any other, sharply distinguishes be_
tween the external and the internal salvation. The external
salvation is complete expiation of sin by the Son alone, eternal
and irreversible justification by the Father alone, and the
internal salvation is regeneration, sanctification, and glori_
fication by the Holy Spirit alone. The Spirit gives life to
the sou] in regeneration; that life is developed and perfected
in sanctification. Our working out salvation is in co_operat_
ing with the Spirit in developing and perfecting the life
commenced in regeneration. As a means or merit towards
justification our works are an offense toward God and a blas_
phemous attempt to usurp the office of our Lord Jesus Christ.
See Romans 2:27_28. Furthermore, as a means or merit
toward regeneration, works on our part are an offense toward
God, as Paul testifies later (Eph. 2:4_10; Titus 3:4_5). Re_
generation is a creation unto good works. The salvation that
we are exhorted to work out is sanctification, and even in
sanctification the prevenient grace of God works in us, both
to will the work and to do it. All the exhortations in this

letter are towards sanctification, a cultivating and developing
of the Christian life.
There are several special points in the exhortation (2:
1. „Don’t depend on Paul – he is absent – you, yourselves,
work out your own salvation. It is your salvation, not his.”
2. „Depend on God – he is always present to enable you
both to will and to perform.”
3. The manner of the obedience is „without murmurings
and questionings,” an evident allusion to Israel’s misconduct
in the wilderness, more elaborately treated in I Corinthians 10.
4. The end of the working out: (1) As to themselves was
blameless – harmless – without blemish. See Ephesians 5:27;
I Thessalonians 5:23. (2) As to the world was that they might
be seen as lights, holding forth the Word of Life. (3) As to
Paul was that he might have whereof to glory in the day of
Christ, proving that he had not run in vain nor labored in
vain. (4) As to both Paul and themselves, in case he suffered
martyrdom at that time was that he would be a libation
poured out on the sacrifice and service of their faith, to their
mutual joy.
On this reference to the drink offering, which was the liquid
part, i.e., the wine, of the meal offering, observe:
1. It was not itself a bloody or an atoning sacrifice, but
an act of worship following propitiation, expressive of de_
pendence on the divine favor for all the blessings of tem_
poral prosperity and of appreciation thereof.
2. A part of the offering was burned with incense, the in_
cense representing their prayers to or worship of God, the
burning representing God’s acceptance of their sacrifice, but
the wine was poured on or around the altar. (See first recorded
instance of the drink offering poured on the altar, Genesis
3. The Philippian contribution to God, in the person of
his apostle, is the New Testament fulfilment of the old typical
meal_offering – a spiritual sacrifice of the new regime. See
the thought elaborated at the close of the letter: „I am filled,
having received from Epaphroditus the things that came from
you, an odor of a sweet smell, a sacrifice acceptable, well_
pleasing to God” (4:18_19) and a similar reference in 2 Co_
rinthians 9:10_15.
All this leads to the explanation of the apostle’s meaning
when he says, „Yea, and if I am poured out upon the sac_
rifice and service of your faith,” which means that in case
of his martyrdom at that time his blood would represent the
outpoured wine, or drink_offering, completing their spiritual
meal_offering. The sacrifice would then be a joint one, their
part representing the meal, oil, and incense, and his part the
libation of wine; hence the consequent mutual joy.
I have been thus particular in this explanation to save you
from adopting two errors of many commentators, to wit:
1. That Paul follows the idea of the heathen sacrifice
rather than the idea of the ritual of Old Testament law.
2. That the thought of the passage is that Paul is acting as
the priest in presenting the Philippian sacrifice, and while so
acting is slain, pouring out his blood on their sacrifices, as
Pilate mingled the blood of the Galileans with their sacrifices.
Both of these are grave errors and utterly untenable. The
New Testament spiritual sacrifices never fulfil heathen types,
and particularly in the New Testament economy the kingdom
officers are never the priests of the people. Every citizen of
Christ’s kingdom is a priest unto God, and without a human
„go_between” directly offers to God his own spiritual sacrifices
through Jesus Christ himself, the only mediator between God
and man.
It is one of the deadliest errors of the Papacy that Chris_
tians require a human priest to mediate their offerings. Neither
apostle, pastor, evangelist, nor any of the saints, nor the Virgin
Mary exercise such functions. It is blasphemy against Christ
and subversive of the priesthood of each individual saint.
The New Testament knocks out the middleman. We want
not the shadow of a human priest to fall on our cradle, our
absolution, our Bible, our marriages, our Christian offerings,
our observance of the Lord’s Supper, our death, the sepulture
of our bones, our disembodied souls.
There can be no more beautiful thought than Paul’s con_
ception; his pouring out the wine of life was his libation.
What he speaks of here as only a possibility, he later, at
the end of his second imprisonment, speaks of as a certainty,
yea, already taking place: ” I am already being poured out,
and the time of my exodus is come” ( 2 Tim. 4:6). Ah! what
a libation!
Here we recall the words of Tom Moore in Paradise and
Oh I if there be one boon, one offering,
That Heaven holds dear,
‘Tis the last libation that Liberty draws
From the heart that bleeds and breaks in her cause.
But the drop of patriot blood did not open the gates of
paradise to the exiled Peri. The libation of Christian martyr_
dom far outranks the libation of a dying patriot, but paradise
must already be opened by holier and atoning blood before
either can be acceptable to God as a Christian sacrifice.
Epaphroditus – Timothy – Paul. „I have sent Epaphro_
ditus,” „I send Timothy forthwith,” „I trust in the Lord
that I, myself, shall come shortly.” How deep his concern
for these Philippians, and how tenderly sympathetic his heart
toward them in all their anxieties, their sufferings and spiritual
needs! How appreciative of the merits of his co_laborers, and
how complete his testimony to their fidelity! No wonder the
brightest and most gifted young preachers delighted to serve
under his leadership!
We may count it a settled thing that no man can be a
great leader of men who has no power to draw a following.
And no man can long hold the following he draws whose
selfishness does not allow him to recognize and appreciate the
merits of his followers. He must testify to the value of their
service, not in the insincere compliments of a politician, but
in the spontaneous expressions of truth and love. It is Paul’s
testimony that paints in fadeless word colors the portraits of
Timothy and Epaphroditus, and confers immortality on them
by hanging their portraits in the gallery of Christian heroes,
ever seen as if living, and held in everlasting remembrance.
So as stars in the constellation of Paul, they shine forever.
The third chapter of Philippians 3, rightly commencing
with verse 2, is in every way remarkable. Its solemn, urgent
caution is not called out by any condition already existing
at Philippi, but an anticipated condition. There were few
Jews at Philippi and few Jewish Christians. The apostle
knew well, however, the persistence, both of Jewish hostility
to the doctrine of the cross, and also the persistence of that
element of Jewish converts that with tireless propagandism
sought to make Christianity a mere sect of Judaism. He
writes as if some disturbing incident at Rome or new message
brought from abroad had interrupted his letter, indicating
an imminent danger to the faith of the Philippians, and hence
the abruptness of his change of topic: „Beware of the dogs,
beware of the evil workers, beware of the concision.”
It is quite probable that the fires were already kindled under
the Jewish pot – A.D. 62 – that would make it boil over in
revolution against Roman authority, and precipitate the de_
struction of Jerusalem in A.D. 70. As these fires grew hotter
it would be necessary later to write the letter to the Hebrew
Christians of Asia that would make a complete and final
break between Judaism and Christianity, and that would turn
all Jewish Asia against Paul as he so sadly notes in his last
letter (2 Tim. 1:15).
In a time of intense fanatical patriotism the letter to the
Hebrews, so clearly showing the abrogation of the Jewish
polity and the complete supersession of the Old Covenant,
would incense all Jews against the writer. Midway between
Philippians 3 and the letter to the Hebrews would appear
Colossians 2:8_23, showing progress toward the final break.
Paul’s prescience discerned the signs of the times, and the
desperate intolerance that would be awakened in the misled
patriot party of Jews. On this account we have Paul’s ad_
There is here, as elsewhere, a play on the words „dogs,”
„workers,” and „concision.” The Pharisees counted Gentiles
as dogs and stressed ritualistic observance and external works
and fleshly circumcision as a means to salvation, indeed
counted themselves as free, never in bondage, because of
lineal descent from Abraham and of the circumcision. Paul
retorts: „They are the real dogs; their works are evil and
unavailing; their circumcision is a mere mutilation of the
flesh.” Regeneration is the spiritual circumcision and the
source of good works. The issue was vital and fundamental,
as announced by our Lord to Nicodemus.

Paul illustrates by his own example. He was of the stock
of Israel, of the tribe of Benjamin, circumcised the eighth
day (therefore not a proselyte), a Hebrew of the Hebrews,
of the sect of the Pharisees, touching the law blameless, zealous
to persecution, so if any man might have confidence in the
flesh, he more. But all these things he counted as refuse in
comparison with the excellency of the knowledge of Christ
Jesus, through whom comes the true righteousness grasped by
simple faith. So far the passage is in line with Galatians and
Romans on justification by faith, apart from natural birth
and works of the law. He then passes on like Romans 8 to
sanctification, and like I Corinthians 15 to glorification.
Commencing with „That I may gain [or win] Christ” (last
clause of 3:8 to the end of 3:14) is the remarkable part of
the chapter which calls for special explanation. Adopting
the logical rather than the consecutive order of the words we
notice first:

Paul’s calling (Acts 9:3_6; 22:6_10; 26:12_19) was special
and effectual. It was a high calling, not only as coming from
on high, but because it was toward high things of both duty
and glory. It was calling of God in Christ Jesus. Like a
foot race, it had a goal where the judge awarded a prize. The
race is not run until the goal is reached, nor won until the
prize is awarded.
What, then, is the goal? It is the state of the resurrection
from the dead, and includes both complete sanctification of
the spirit and glorification of the body. Paul had not yet at_
tained either one. What is the prize? It is that which is to
be won: „That I may win, or gain, Christ, and be found in
him at the great judgment day.” Here the „winning of Christ,”
or the prize, is not merely Justification by faith, when one
first believes, but getting to him where he now is, and being
completely like him in both soul and body. It is that state in
which the final judgment finds us. „Attaining unto the resur_
rection from the dead” means attaining to the state of the
resurrection from the dead, and not merely the act of being
raised. It is quite important that we know when the salva_
tion of the soul is complete, and when sanctification of the
soul is perfected. It is only the other side of death that the
„spirits of the just made perfect” are seen. (Hebrews 12:
As long as life has a lesson to be learned, or a discipline
to be endured, the race of the soul is not run, nor the goal
reached. By one fact we positively know when the soul dis_
cipline is ended. It is precisely at that time when it is passing
over the line where accountability to judgment ceases. And
the final judgment takes cognizance of the deeds done in the
No soul, good or bad, is judged on account of what it does
after the death of the body, but it is judged for all deeds up
to that event.
Therefore the goal for the soul is the death of the body,
and the goal for the body is its resurrection. If it be raised
in dishonor, the prize is lost. If it be raised in honor, glorified
like the body of our Lord, the prize is won.
You can thus understand Paul’s words: „Not that I have
already obtained, or am already made perfect.” He had
„not yet laid hold on all the things for which Christ laid hold
of him.” When Christ apprehended Saul of Tarsus on the
way to Damascus, he laid hold of him for more things than
Paul had yet laid hold of. Paul wanted more than had yet
been realized. He was indeed already justified and regen_
erated, and had already made much progress, but much was
yet ahead. The race was not yet run over the whole course;
the goal and the prize were yet to be reached and won. Later,
indeed, when actually facing martyrdom be wrote: „I am
already being poured out, and the time of my exodus is come.
I have fought the good fight, I have finished the course, I have
kept the faith: henceforth [not sooner] there is laid up for
me the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous
Judge, shall give to me at that day; and not to me only [to
show that the goal is the same with all the runners] but to all
them that have loved his appearing” (2 Tim 4:6_8).
This is in line with what he wrote to the Thessalonians:
„And the Lord of peace himself shall sanctify you wholly [not
in part] ; and may your spirit and soul and body be preserved
entire, without blame, at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ
(I Thess. 5:23).
Those who claim to be sinless now, to have already attained
perfection of spirit, only advertise their guilty distance from
God and put themselves into an attitude of direct conflict
with the scriptures.

See I Kings 8:36; I John 1:8. Making such a claim in
this life shows that the one making it is in a dim light. Light
makes manifest. Job, apart from God and confronted by
man only, maintained his integrity, but when Jehovah came
in the whirlwind Job said,
Who is this that hideth counsel without knowledge?
Therefore have I uttered that which I understood not,
Things too wonderful for me, which I knew not.
Hear, I beseech thee, and I will speak;
I will demand of thee, and declare thou unto me.
I had heard of thee by the hearing of the ear;
But now mine eye seeth thee:
Wherefore I abhor myself,
And repent in dust and ashes.
– Job 42:3_6
Isaiah was the saintliest man of his generation, but in the
year that King Uzziah died he saw the Lord of hosts in the
supernal light of heaven, and heard the cherubim crying,
„Holy, Holy, Holy, is Jehovah of hosts,” then he said, „Woe
is me! for I am undone; because I am a man of unclean lips,
and I dwell in the midst of a people of unclean lips: for mine
eyes have seen the King, Jehovah of hosts.”
If, then, Paul had not yet attained and counted not him_
self already perfect what does he do? (1) Forgetting the
things behind, (2) stretching out to the things before, (3) be
presses on toward the goal.
The meaning of these words needs to be brought out in a
realistic way. We forget a defeat in the past when we do
not stay whipped in mind, but courageously try another battle,
like Robert Bruce, who failed twelve times and then won
the thirteenth time, at Bannockburn. We forget past victories
when we do not rest on our laurels but „count nothing done
while anything remains to be done.” General Gates rested
on the laurels of Saratoga and found defeat at Camden. He
fled at the beginning of the battle, ran eighty miles to Char_
lottesville, and if he had not died he would be running yet.
Dr. Burleson used to tell of a man who related such a bril-
liant experience to the church when he joined it that it evoked
unusual praise from pastor and church. So much was said
about it that he, himself, began to glory in it. He carefully
wrote it out and would read it to every visitor. He became so
complacent over it that he stopped right there – no progress –
a case of arrested development. In the lapse of time the mice
got into the drawer where he kept his precious document and
ate up his Christian experience! We need an experience that
rats cannot eat up – an experience not folded up and put in
a drawer, but one that moves forward taking „the steps of
the faith of Abraham.”

1. State the terminal points of this great exhortation, and its rank.
2. Show that exhortation is a distinct gift of the Spirit, and distin_
guish between exhortation and teaching.
3. Cite the names of some early Texas Baptist preachers or deacons
who were great in exhortation, and the effect on both Christians and sinners.
4. What mistakes may be made aa to exhortation, and what is the
real lightning of exhortation?
5. To what class, saints or sinners, is this whole exhortation ad_
dressed, and to what particular duty does all the exhortation in this
letter point?
6. Cite three special points in the exhortation, and the four ends
in view.
7. Between what phases of salvation does this letter clearly distinguish?
8. What three important observations on Paul’s allusion to the drink
offering in his possible libation?
9. What the exact meaning of his being „poured out” on the sacri_
fice of their faith and service?
10. What two grave errors of interpretation by some commentators
on this passage, and what the fearful consequences of the second?
11. Show that what is here spoken of as a possible libation is later
spoken of as a certainty.
12. Cite the illustrative passage in Tom Moore’s, Paradise and the
Peri, and what is a greater libation and why either cannot open the
gates of paradise, giving two proofs from the revised text of Revelation, which tells of paradise regained.
13. In the references to Timothy and Epaphroditus, what great
excellencies of heart does Paul exhibit, and how do these immortalize both of them?
14. Where should the third chapter commence, and what probably
calls forth this abrupt change in the direction of the exhortation, and how probably this also called forth Colossians 2:8_23 and still later the letter to the Hebrews?
15. How may this letter to the Hebrews have occasioned the „turn_
ing away of all Asia” from Paul, referred to in 2 Timothy 1:15?
16. Show the play on words in „Beware of the dogs, beware of the
evil workers, beware of the concision.”
17. What the antitype of circumcision, what the real issue here in_
volved, and what its importance?
18. How does Paul illustrate the case?
19. Where in his illustrative example does the reference to justifi_
cation by faith end, and where commences and ends the reference to sanctification of soul and glorification of body?
20. Explain the „high calling.”
21. What athletic game is used to illustrate?
22. What the „goal” for the spirit, and how do you prove it?
23. What the „goal” of the body?
24. Show that this does not make death a purifer.
25. If one makes claim of perfection of spirit now, what two things
does it prove? and illustrate by two Old Testament examples.
26. Not having yet obtained, show what three things Paul does, and
explain and illustrate the terms.
27. Relate Dr. Burieson’8 illustration.

Philippians 3:15 to 4:23.

This chapter closes the exposition of the letter to the Philip_
pians. Commencing at 3:15 we make a running comment on
the rest of the letter.
„Let us therefore, as many as are perfect.” It is somewhat
surprising that just before this Paul said that he counted not
himself to be perfect, but that is in the passive voice, to be
perfected. Now we have an active form of the same word,
only it is an adjective instead of a verb, and the question
arises, Is there a contradiction? The answer is, no. The
adjective „perfect” is frequently used in the New Testament
in the sense of full_grown, mature, as a mature Christian and
not a novice, not a babe in Christ, as in the letter to the He_
brews, where he says that „when for the time ye ought to be
teachers ye have need that one teach you again the first prin_
ciples of the oracles of God,” and then says, „Let us go on
to perfection,” that is, to maturity.
To continue: „And if in anything ye are otherwise minded,
God shall reveal even this unto you.” What kind of a reve_
lation is this? Does it mean that God will indefinitely keep
up his external revelation, so that there will be continual ad_
ditions to the Bible? It does not mean that. It is an internal
revelation by the Spirit of God. In other words, where a mat_
ter is not clear a man, if he be of the right mind and seeks the
Spirit’s guidance, then God will reveal the matter to him
by inward monition.
Verse 17: „Brethren, be ye imitators together of me, and
mark them that so walk even as ye have us for an ensample.

For many walk, of whom I told you often, and now tell you
even weeping, that they are the enemies of the cross of Christ:
whose end is perdition, whose God is the belly, and whose
glory is in their shame, who mind earthly things.”
This passage puts before us two examples, one they are
exhorted to follow, and the other they are exhorted to shun.
The first is the example of Paul himself just cited and ex_
pounded in the preceding chapter. Every preacher should
be an example to the flock, as Peter says: „Not lords over
God’s heritage, but examples to the flock.” Now Paul wishes
to be imitated just as far as he follows Christ, as he explains
it in another passage, „Follow me as I follow Christ.” The
other, the evil example, and before I expound it I raise this
question: To what kind of people is he referring that give
this evil example? Then I raise this question: Is he referring
to the Judaizing element of the Christian church, as he has
been doing in chapter 3? He is referring to Antinomians,
whether Jews or Gentiles. That is a big word and is applied
in theology to that class of people who emphasize salvation
through justification so as to deny the necessity of Christian
people’s living right, that is, opposed to the law. I do not know
any worse enemies to the cross of Christ than the Antinomians,
and I am sorry to say that we have had some of them in
Texas. They are not necessarily Jews, but people who, as
Luther did in some things, so stress justification by faith,
election, calling, and predestination that they take no account
of the kind of life that a Christian ought to live. I am ashamed
to say that I knew a Baptist preacher in Texas who, after
offering an infamous proposition to a fellow Christian – too
shameful for me to specify – said, „What harm will it do?
You and I are both Christians, and nothing that a Christian
does is charged against him.”
Paul says, „I tell you, even weeping, that these people are
enemies of the cross of Christ. Their god is their appetite –
their lust; their god is the gratification of their animal desires,
and they glory in their shame.” To me the most horrible thing in the world is for a man to profess belief in the high doctrines of grace and then live an evil life. God calls men to good works; God regenerates men, creates them unto good works, and whom he calls he not only justifies but sanctifies, and I am sure that the unsanctified man will never enter heaven.
I quote a part of that verse again: „I now tell you, even weep-ing.” Such a thing excited the deepest concern in Paul’s heart, and I recall attention to this verse in order to cite in this connec-tion Monrod’s lectures, or sermons on Paul, and particularly the one on the „Tears of Paul.” What things excited this man’s tears? There are many cases of Paul’s weeping, and in each case there was a specific cause for his tears.
Let us look at Jesus on Olivet weeping over Jerusalem.
There is no such lamentation in all history: „0 Jerusalem,
Jerusalem, thou that killest the prophets, and stonest them
which are sent unto thee, how often would I have gathered
thy children together, even as a hen gathereth her brood under
her wings, and ye would not! Behold, your house is left unto
you desolate I” On this passage is based the hymn –

Did Christ o’er sinners weep?
And shall our cheeks be dry?
Let floods of penitential grief,
Burst forth from every eye.

The psalm says, „He that goeth forth weeping, bearing
precious seed, shall doubtless come again with rejoicing, bring_
ing his sheaves with him.” Tears are an indication of earnest_
ness and sympathy. Macaulay, in that famous poem of his,
„The Battle of Ivry,” represents Henry of Navarre this way:

He looked upon the foemen and his glance was stern and high;
He looked upon his comrades and a tear was in his eve.

Verse 20: „For our citizenship is in heaven.” The citizens
of a city were enrolled. Rome enrolled her citizens, and the
Philippians were all on that roll as being a Roman colony,
but our citizenship is in the New Jerusalem, the heavenly
Jerusalem, from whence also we look for the Saviour, the
Lord Jesus Christ. Where is Jesus now? He is in heaven, at
the right hand of the Father. How long will he remain there?
Until his enemies be made his footstool. Why will he come
back to this earth? To raise the dead, the just and the unjust,
and to judge the world in righteousness. Our citizenship is
in heaven. From whence, i.e., from heaven; Peter says,
„Whom the heavens must retain until the time of the restora_
tion of all things,” and our text adds, „Who shall change our
vile bodies that they may be fashioned like unto his glorious
body according to the working whereby he is able to subdue
all things unto himself.” That subject is abundantly discussed
in I Corinthians 15, and it embodies a cardinal doctrine, vital
and fundamental. A man who does not believe in the resurrec_
tion of the dead and the glorification of the bodies of the
saints has no right to claim to be a Christian.
Keble in his „Christian Year” uses this language:
Before the judgment seat,
Though changed and glorified each face,
Not unremembered we shall meet,
For endless ages to embrace.
Chapter 4: „Therefore, my brethren beloved and longed
for, my joy and crown.” More than once I have called atten_
tion to Paul’s joy and crown. He says about the same thing
in the letter to the Thessalonians – „Ye are my crown of re_
joicing.” The psalmist says, „He shall come again with
rejoicing, bringing his sheaves with him.”
When we enter heaven it will not delight us that on earth we
were great generals, or great admirals, or great statesmen, but
it will delight us to see there those who, through our instru_
mentality, were saved. That shares the very heart of Christ.

„He will be wondered at” in the old sense of the word ad_
mired in all them that believe, and the whole ransomed
church of God will be his crown of rejoicing. „He shall see
of the travail of his soul and be satisfied.” So when we see
those of them whom we have influenced to become Christians,
or more faithful Christians, they will be our „crown of re_
When Spurgeon died a memorial service of his death was
held in Nashville, Tennessee, and I was invited to deliver the
oration; and my first volume of sermons is that oration. As
a part of the oration I drew a picture, and yet a scriptural
picture, of those who greeted Spurgeon when he entered heaven
– the aged widows whom he had sheltered and protected, the
orphans whom he had clothed and fed, the young preachers
whom he had instructed and whose expenses he had largely
met and who were supplied with libraries by his wife – these
all, passing into heaven, were standing on the battlements to
shout their welcome to the coming preacher, and he shouted
back, „Ye are my crown of rejoicing,” and it is this to which
Paul alludes when he says, „For other foundation can no man
Jay than that which is laid, which is Jesus Christ. But if any
man buildeth on the foundation gold, silver, costly stones,
wood, hay, stubble; . . . a day of fire shall declare it,” and
the bad material that he has put on shall be his loss. He,
himself who is on the foundation will be saved, but only
the good material that he has put in the building will be his
reward. „He will come with rejoicing, bringing his sheaves
with him.”
We now come to an exhortation upon which I wish to give
a few remarks. „I exhort Euodia, and I exhort Syntyche,
to be of the same mind in the Lord. Yea, I beseech thee
also, true yokefellow, help these women, for they labored
with me in the gospel, with Clement also, and the rest of my
fellow workers, whose names are in the book of life.”

The position of women in Macedonia was far superior to
many other countries, and the Macedonian women were par_
ticularly prominent and useful in the Philippian church. That,
in fact, accounted in part for the great liberality of that
church. Here were two sisters, both prominent, both great
workers, that helped Paul when he was there, and also Clem_
ent, and they helped all the rest of Paul’s fellow workers.
But they fell apart, I do not know just why. There might
have been some little talk at a quilting, but I am pretty sure
it was not at a bridge party. Or it might have been at a
Ladies’ Aid Society. How sad! Paul stands up for these
women. He gives them both a certificate of good character;
they were both noble workers, his fellow laborers. He exhorts
somebody, whoever this true yokefellow is, to help these
women to get together. It is a very sad thing when two
prominent men in a church get to pulling apart, but I think
it is a sadder thing when two prominent women get to pulling
apart. Men know better how to put things in a parentheses
than women. Whenever there is a sharp difference between
two women in a church it is much more apt to reach the
home and the children. A man can have a difference with a
man and say nothing to the wife about it, and especially to
the children, but if a woman has a difficulty everybody in the
house has to hear about it, and everybody must take sides
or get into trouble.
I am a great believer in women’s societies. A woman’s
society helped to take care of our Lord. There are a great
many Texas churches that would have gone into oblivion
long ago but for a few faithful women. They were the life
and soul of this Philippian church.
It is too bad that Euodia and Syntyche could not pull to_
gether. The longer we serve as pastors the more we find
Euodias and Syntyches, and the Lord give us wisdom when
we come to deal with these cases. „I beseech thee also, true
yokefellow, help those women.”
Let us look at this word „yokefellow.” Is it a proper
name or not? Farrar and others say that this is a proper
noun, and by a play on words, not unusual with Paul, he
calls him a true yokefellow. I think Paul refers to Epaph_
roditus, who was there when this letter arrived and who was
the pastor, and he had just demonstrated at Rome that he
was a true yokefellow with Paul. The subscription says that
this letter was carried by Epaphroditus. Paul could refer
to the pastor of the church as the yokefellow, who put his
neck into the yoke when he found Paul in prison at Rome,
and helped him pull the gospel wagon; so I doubt its being a
proper noun.
Verse 3 closes this way: „Whose names are in the book of
life.” On that book of life I give some scriptures to be stud_
ied: Exodus 32:32_33; Psalm 69:28; 87:6; Isaiah 4:3; Ezekiel
13:9; Daniel 12:1; Luke 10:20; Revelation 3:5; 13:8; 17:8;
20:12; 21:27. I also recommend that one of my sermons in
the first book of sermons called The Library of Heaven. The
last book mentioned as belonging to the „Library of Heaven”
is the book of life, and in that sermon will be found some
helpful light on this book of life, and particularly on this
question: When does a man’s name go into the book of life?
Of course in the divine purpose the roll of the saved was com_
plete in eternity. He who hath numbered the very hairs of
our heads I presume has numbered the heads as well, and in
that sense the book would be the elect as in God’s thought,
but I don’t think that is the thought here. The book of life
is the register of the citizens enrolled. He says, „Our citizen_
ship is in heaven.” Our names go down and we become citi_
zens, that is, whenever we are converted. It is a register of
judicial decisions recorded as each one is justified. Hence
this book is the deciding thing at the judgment seat of Christ:
„Whosoever is not found written in the book of life” – already
written before the judgment day comes – „shall be cast into

the lake of fire.” It is in view of that book that we have that
good old Baptist hymn:
When thou, my righteous Judge, shalt come,
To take thy ransomed people home,
Shall I among them stand?
Shall I, who sometimes am afraid to die.
Be found at thy right hand?
How can I bear the piercing thought:
What if my name should be left out?
In verse 5, going on with the running comment, we have
this statement, „The Lord is at hand.” What does that mean?
It does not mean the Lord’s coming. It means his presence. It
means that we should live continually as if sensible of the
presence of the Lord right here. As John says in the letter
to the Laodiceans, „Behold I stand at the door and knock” –
at the door of the heart of the church member – „and if any
man hear my voice and open the door I will come in and I
will sup with him and he will sup with me.”
Commencing with verse 6 and extending to verse 9 we have
the famous recipe for happiness as found in the analysis. Here
is the secret of happiness, and it certainly consists of he
following things:
1. „Be anxious about nothing.” We have heard people
say, „It is the pace that kills.” It is not the pace that kills;
it is the anxiety that kills – the anxiety that draws the
wrinkles on the brow and the crow’s feet around the eyes,
and makes a man look as if he was not only aged, but bur_
dened – an Atlas with the world on his shoulders, and those
anxieties are the kill_joys and the most foolish things in the
world, for nine_tenths of the things that we are anxious about
never happen. The danger exists in our imagination. „A
brave man never dies but once – a coward is dying all the
time. He dies every day of his life.”
My father taught his children a solemn lesson. He had
only twelve children of his own, so he adopted three other
families, making twenty_five in all, and in the winter time
the great room of our house was he dining room, about forty
feet long, and a fireplace eight feet wide. It took two grown
men to bring in the back log for us. Now, with that big
fireplace roaring and the big, heavy dining table pushed back,
the twenty_five of us would gather around that fire and he
would talk and instruct us. One dayù1 shall never forget it
– it was Saturday – the dining table had just been pushed
back and every boy on the place was growling because they
had planned to go fishing and it was pouring down rain. My
father looked around and said, „Boys, by the will of God, I
give you permission to fret and be anxious about everything
in the world but two things.” We thought this allowed us a
big margin and eagerly asked what they were. This was his
„First, never fret or be anxious about a thing you can help.
If you can help it, just help it, and quit worrying.
„Second, never fret about a thing you can’t help, for fret_
ting won’t do any good.”
The more we thought about it the more we found that
there wasn’t any margin about it at all; the two things cov_
ered all things.
In Psalm 37 is a passage that I have read at family prayers
oftener than any other in the Bible, another recipe for happi_
ness: „Fret not yourselves because of evildoers . . . Trust
in the Lord and do good . . . Delight thyself also in the Lord,
and he shall bring it to pass. Rest in the Lord; wait patiently
for him . . . I have seen the wicked in great power, spreading
himself like a green bay tree; and lo I he passed away. . . . I
have never seen the righteous forsaken nor his seeding beg_
ging bread. . . . The steps of a good man are ordered by the
Lord.” To the same effect is our Saviour’s Sermon on the
Mount: „Be not anxious for the morrow, as to what ye shall
eat or drink, or what ve shall out on.” That is the first step

in the recipe for happiness. Throw anxieties over your shoul_
ders. They don’t do a bit of good.
It was a custom in that big family of ours to practice arch_
ery. It was noticeable that whenever a boy drew an arrow
to the head and let it fly at the target, if the arrow, visible in
its flight, seemed to be going too far to the right he would
lean to the left, as if his leaning would shape the course of
a shaft after it was sped from the bow. So in futile anxiety
we waste our strength on impossible things.
2. „But in everything by prayer and supplication with
thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God.”
When we are troubled about anything let us take it to the
Lord in prayer. We can’t carry it. Let us put in on him.
That is the second step. What is the result? „And the peace
of God which passeth all understanding shall keep your hearts
and minds through Christ Jesus.” The peace of God!
3. The first step disposes of anxiety, and the second sub_
stitutes prayers and supplication with thanksgiving. The
third element of the recipe relates to the government of the
thoughts: „Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, what_
soever things are honorable, whatsoever things are just,
whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely,
whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any vir_
tue, and if there be any praise, think on these things.”
I call attention to a law. We become assimilated, that is,
made like unto the things that we habitually and steadfastly
contemplate. If we habitually think about falsehood, and
dishonesty, and murder, and unlawful things, and things of
bad report, and immodest things, then we become like them.
A lady member of my church had great concern about the
future of her daughter. I said to her, „My sister, what sort
of pictures do you hang up in your daughter’s room to look
at the first thing in the morning and the last thing at night?
If you want her to be unselfish, put up the picture of Florence

Nightingale or Clara Barton. If you want her to be modest
or pure in heart, put up the picture of Mrs. Prentiss. If you
want her to be worldly_minded, then put up those fashionable
pictures that represent worldly things, like a round of fashion_
able social games and pleasures, as the thing for her to think
While I am talking about pictures I am not referring so
much to painted canvas as to the direction of habitual
thoughts. It is a tremendous lesson.
God pity the poor girl whose selfish, worldly_minded mother
is thinking only of society’s demands and leaves the girl’s
soul beggarly and bankrupt in the sight of God.
Dr. Broadus used to say, „The best way to judge a man
to ask him to tell what he reads when he is tired. On
what does he relax his mind.” Some people want to go to a
show, some to read yellow_backed literature, some to take a
moral furlough. Our habitual trend is evidenced by what our
minds turn to as soon as restraint of duty is removed. What
comes to us first – say, on Monday morning after we have
preached on Sunday – on what the preachers call „Blue Mon_
4. The fourth element of the recipe for happiness is in
the verses 11_13: „I have learned in whatsoever state I am,
therein to be content. I know how to be abased, and I know
how to abound: in everything and in all things have I learned
the secret both to be filled and to be hungry, both to abound
and to be in want. I can do all things in him that strengthen_
eth me.” Of course that man is unhappy whose happiness de_
pends on a big dinner, and he can’t get it, or upon the weather;
he is miserable because it rains or is cold, or if the bank
breaks and the crop fails. Here I give a secret that I told
all over Texas in 1887: The springs of our happiness are
never outside of us but in us. If we are all right inside, the
external things can’t disturb our happiness. The remarkable,
acute discernment of Robert Burns expresses the thought ex_
„Tis no’ in title, nor in rank,
Tis no’ in wealth like London bank,
To give us peace and rest;
If happiness has not her seat
And center in the breast;
We may be wise, or rich, or great,
But never can be blest.
I have already discussed the offerings that Paul next refers
to, and so I come to the conclusion of the letter: „Salute every
saint in Christ Jesus.” But suppose a man is a Methodist!
Well, if he be a saint, salute him. If he be a Roman Catholic,
give him the hand of fellowship – not the hand of church
fellowship – but Christian fellowship; rejoice in heart over
every really converted soul of whatever denomination.
„They that are of Caesar’s household salute you.” What
was Caesar’s household? It does not mean Caesar’s individual
family, but his slaves and dependents. The household of a
Roman Emperor included clients and advisers, as well as
hundreds of slaves, well_trained, efficient, educated, and many
of them nobles in their own land before their captivity. Some
of the noblest men and women in Rome were slaves who had
been princes and princesses in their own land; some of them
had been heroes. Caesar’s household was very extensive. Dr.
Lightfoot calls attention to the fact that a recent discovery
bears on this passage. He says that the names of 170 mem_
bers of Caesar’s household are inscribed on the monuments
that have been discovered, and they include quite a number
of names mentioned in Paul’s letter to the Romans.

1. What the sense of „perfect” in 3:15, and what its distinction
from „perfected” in 3:12?
2. What the sense of „reveal” in 3:15?
3. What two examples, one good and the other bad, are put before
us in 3:17_18, and who are these „enemies of the cross”?
4. Cite the instances of Paul’s weeping, showing for what in each
case, and cite every instance of our Lord’s weeping and for what in
each case, together with a pertinent passage from the psalm concerning the same, and the cases of Elisha and Jeremiah, all bearing on the ministry of tears.
5. Who has given a great discourse on the tears of Paul?
6. Cite the first stanza of the hymn on the weeping of Christ, and
Macaulay’s couplet on Henry of Navarre in the battle of Ivry,
7. What the allusion in „Our citizenship is in heaven,” and what the
parallel passage in Ephesians?
8. On the „whence also we wait for our Lord” (v. 20), cite a
passage from the Psalm and one from Peter in Acts, showing how
long our Lord remains in heaven, and a pertinent passage each from
Romans and I Corinthians to show what his employment is in heaven.
9. What Paul’s „crown of rejoicing” in 4:1, and our Lord’s at the
10. Why is an alienation between two prominent good women of a
church more disastrous and more difficult to heal than in the case
of men?
11. Who the yokefellow in 4:2, and does the reference to Clement
mean that he, with the women, labored with Paul, or that these women labored with Clement and others as well as Paul?
12. Cite the passages in both Testaments on the „book of life,” tell
what it is, when the enrolment takes place, and what its final use.
13. Cite a stanza from a great hymn bearing on this final use.
14. What the meaning of „The Lord is at hand,” and cite a similar
passage from James and one from Revelation.
15. State the four elements of the recipe for happiness in 4:6_8,
11_13, and give parallel to same, part in Psalm and part in the Sermon on the Mount.
16. What the meaning of Caesar’s household?

Philemon 1_25.

This letter was addressed to Philemon, Apphia, Archippus,
and the church in Philemon’s house. The probable relations
of these parties to each other are as follows: …Philemon the
husband, Apphia the wife, Archippus the son. Philemon was
probably pastor of the church in his own house, and Archip_
pus probably pastor of the church at Colosse, or possibly at
Hierapolis. This letter was principally addressed to Philemon
because he) alone, under the law, had full control over Onesi_
mus for life or death, and his decision was final. The family
and the church in his house were included because the status
of Onesimus, when determined by Philemon, would necessarily
interest and affect them all.
The relation of Paul to Philemon prior to this letter is given
in verse 19, in which Paul says, „Thou owest to me even
thine own self,” which implies that he was Paul’s convert.
This conversion probably occurred in Paul’s two years’ meet_
ing at Ephesus when „All they that dwelt in Asia heard the
word of the Lord, both Jews and Greeks,” Acts 19:10.
The inhabitants of the Lycus valley were doubtless accus_
tomed to attend the May Festivals at Ephesus in honor of
Diana „whom all Asia worshiped” (Acts 19:27). Paul’s meet_
ing overlapped two of these festivities. Paul also calls Phile_
mon his „beloved and fellow worker” (v. 1) and his „partner
(v. 17). The terms seem to imply that Philemon was a
preacher. Moreover, Paul heard reports by Epaphras of
Philemon’s faith and work (vv. 5_7).
Paul’s previous relation to Archippus is seen from the fol_
lowing statements: He calls him „fellow soldier” (v. 2) and
in the accompanying letter to the Colossians (4:17) he sends
this message: „Say to Archippus, Take heed to the ministry
which thou hast received in the Lord, that thou fulfill it.”
So it is probable that Archippus also was a convert of Paul
and ordained by him.
Doubtless his family lived at Colosse (Compare verses 2,
11, 12, 16 with Colossians 1:2; 4:9, 17) and other letters
were sent at the same time with this, viz.: Colossians and
Ephesians (Compare Philemon 10, 13; Colossians 4:7, 9;
Ephesians 6:21), the date of which is about A.D. 63.
The characteristics of the letter to Philemon are, (1) It
is one of the shortest in the New Testament. (2) It is more
personal than any other except perhaps 2 John. Three John,
though personal also, has more to say of missionary and
church matters. (3) .It is about a private matter over which
Philemon has absolute legal control.
This brief personal letter about a private matter is of im_
mense importance, and therefore was incorporated into the
inspired Bible, That private matter touches the worldwide
institution .of slavery – an institution as old as human history
– and discloses the attitude of Christianity toward the insti_
tution. But there are other Pauline passages which also
disclose Christianity’s attitude toward slavery. Paul himself
in Galatians 3:27_28 declares, „For as many of you as were
baptized into Christ did put on Christ. In Christ Jesus there
can be neither bond nor free.” And in I Corinthians 12:13
he declares: „In one Spirit were we all baptized into one
body, whether bond or free,” and in Colossians 3:11 he de_
clares: „In the new man there cannot be Greek and Jew, cir_
cumcision and uncircumcision, barbarian, Scythian, bondman,
freeman; but Christ is all and in all.” These are great
These passages teach (1) In Christ there can be no dis_
tinction between bond and free. (2) In water baptism there

can be none. (3) In the Spirit baptism there can be none.
(4) In the church there can be none. These settle the atti_
tude of Christianity toward slavery so far as principles go.
Moreover, in Colossians 3:22 to 4:1; Ephesians 6:5_9; I Tim_
othy 6:1_2; Titus 2:9_10 he sets forth with great clearness the
reciprocal duties of the Christian master and slave. These
passages settle Christianity’s attitude toward slavery so far as
duties go. But in both principles and duties the discussion is
abstract. The peculiar value of Philemon is that it gives us
a concrete case, all the parties involved not only being prom_
inent and well known, but all belonging to one household and
to one church. The slave is named and his offense. The
master, his wife, his son, and his church are named. An
inspired apostle comes in contact with the fugitive slave. Not
then in abstract generalities as given in the two sets of pas_
sages above, but in a most specific and concrete case what
will Christianity do? Not what ought it to do, but what did
it do? Let us not shun the particulars:
1. It convicted the slave of the double sin of fleeing from
the master and of robbing him.
2. It led him to repentance and reformation.
3. It converted him to Christ, thus bringing him into a
blessed state of peace with God.
4. It manifested intense sympathy, with and love toward
this slave as a man equal before God with all other men in
religious privileges.
5. It restores the now penitent fugitive slave, with his
own consent, to his master, according to the laws of the land,
but it identifies the slave with the apostle returning him, who
assumes all that the slave owes the master by theft or loss of
6. It counts the converted slave as a spiritual son and as
the very heart of the sender.
7. It commends him as a brother in Christ to the master,
and intercedes for full forgivenesss.
8. It assumes not to command that the slave be set free,
but suggests it to the master, as of his own free will, in ex_
pressing confidence that the Christian master „will do more
than is asked.” Thus Christianity’s attitude toward slavery
is expressed in the foregoing principles, reciprocal duties, and
concrete case. Without the concrete case the Bible would be
Let us see how this attitude has been received:
1. Those who comprehend that kingdom of our Lord
is not of this world, but having to do with spiritual matters
between God and man and between man and man, and stands
opposed to arms and violence as a means of propagation, and
that while it claims that we should render unto God all that
is God’s, and unto Caesar all that is Caesar’s, are thoroughly
satisfied with this attitude and believe that its leavening
principles will ultimately abolish slavery and all other legal
evils, through the consent of the evildoers converted to God,
and that the evildoers not converted to God will be subjected
to the punishments of his province and judgment.
2. But fanatics in every age have been dissatisfied with this
attitude because it deals only with cases where slave or master
is a Christian, and does not commence a crusade against
slave_holding per se, denouncing and fighting governments
and legislation enforcing or permitting slavery, and censure
Christianity because it does not resort to violence to enforce
its principles. It sneers at an inspired apostle returning a
fugitive slave and trusting to voluntary love to bring about
his emancipation. For example, these fanatics in this coun_
try quit preaching „Christ and him crucified” and substituted
the theme, „John Brown and him hanged.” The result was
an emancipation by violence at a cost of blood and treasure
that beggars computation, leaving behind problems to be
sloved that may prove to be insoluble by human wisdom.
Slavery was imposed upon the colonies and later upon the
States of this Union as follows:
1. The mother country dumped upon the colonies convicts
and political prisoners as slaves.
2. Some of the colonies made slaves of conquered Indians.
3. Men of commerce here and in Europe, through greed,
equipped slave ships and introduced African slavery. One
New England seaport fitted out a fleet of 250 slave ships,
thereby laying the foundation of colossal fortunes which their
descendants enjoy to this day.
4. Long after the section into which the slaves were sold
earnestly desired the abolition of the slave trade, it was re_
tained in the interest of those enriching themselves by the
The best men in both free and slave sections regretted its )
imposition on the nation, but in view of many grave com-
plications were sorely puzzled as to the most honest and
practical solution of the problem.
Though born and reared in the South, personally I never
knew but one politician who advocated the perpetuity of the
slave trade. From my earliest childhood the most familiar
talk I can recall was on this line: This institution was im_
posed upon us. We believe it to be evil, but we recognize
difficulties and complications in the solution of the evil calling
for the highest human wisdom and forbearance. Its rigors
should be abated and gradual emancipation encouraged where
provision can be made for the care of those emancipated. In_
deed, the first time I ever heard the word „Abolitionist,” it
was applied to me, only a child, because I said, „There ought
to be no slaves.”
In Paul’s day slavery as an institution was worldwide and
had so existed from the beginning of history. More than
half the population of the Roman Empire were slaves. The
slave had no rights in law. He could be tortured, maimed,
crucified, fed to fishes, or thrown to wild beasts at the’ will of
his master. The majority of these slaves were war captives,
equal to their masters in social position and heroism, and
oftentimes superior in education and patriotism. This im_
mense servile population formed an ever restless, seething,
muttering volcano beneath the fabric of society.
Servile insurrections of magnitude had occurred, threaten_
ing to upheave and destroy the foundations of government.
Here and there some high_spirited slave – a hero, noble, or
prince in his own country – resented, by violence, the indigni_
ties heaped upon him by a cruel and capricious master. Hence
a law was enacted by Augustus Caesar that when a master
was killed by a slave, all the other slaves of the household
should be put to death. Many rich, corrupt Romans had
hundreds of slaves. A case in point occurred about the time
Paul entered Rome as a prisoner. An infuriated slave, unable
in his proud spirit to endure longer the tyranny and cruelty
to which he was subjected, slew his Roman master, Pedanius.
When it was found that 400 fellow household slaves must now
perish, under the law, by wholesale execution, there were pop_
ular appeal and protest. But the inexorable Senate decided
that public safety demanded the enforcement of the law, and
so they sent out a battalion of the Praetorian Guard to repress
popular interference and see that the law was enforced. Bo,
surrounded by the imperial guard, the 400 innocent men,
women, and children were publicly executed.
Roman literature of Paul’s day and later teems with al_
lusions to the danger to the state arising from the system of
slavery. Historians, poets, and orators grew eloquent on the
dangers toward the state and the masters, but seemed not to
realize the horrors of the system toward the slave.
Our Lord had said, „My kingdom is not of this world,
else would my servants fight.” The mission of Christianity
would have perished if it had, as a political, earth force,
preached a crusade against civil institutions and relations. It
contented itself by lifting master and slave into a spiritual
kingdom where in Christ there would be neither bond nor
free, but all were brothers, with equal religious privileges and
rights. This leaven ultimately creates a Christian civiliza_
tion, in whose atmosphere all men become equal, even in
civil matters.
One privilege remained to the slave – he might flee to an
influential friend of his master and implore his intercession.
A case in point is as follows: About thirty years after Paul’s
letter, a fugitive slave of a rich Roman fled to the noblest
Roman of his day, Pliny the younger. Fortunately for litera_
ture, Pliny’s letter of intercession, when he returned the fugi_
tive slave to his master, has been preserved, furnishing an
historical parallel to Paul’s letter apart from its religious
Following is a translation of Pliny’s letter:
Caius Pliny to Sabinianus, health: Thy freedman, with
whom thou saidst thou wast incensed, came to me, and falling
at my feet, as if at thine, clung to them. He wept much,
much he entreated, and much was the force of his silence. In
short, he fully satisfied me of his penitence. Truly I believe
him to be reformed, because he is sensible of his wrong. Thou
art angry I know; and thou art angry justly, this also I know;
but clemency has then the highest praise, when there is the
greatest cause for anger. Thou hast loved the man, and I
hope thou wilt love him. Meanwhile it is sufficient that thou
suffer thyself to be entreated. It will be right for thee to be
angry with him again, if he shall deserve it, because having once
yielded to entreaty, thine anger will be the more just.
Forgive something in view of his youth. Forgive on account
of his tears. Forgive for the sake of thine own kindness. Do
_ not torture him, lest thou torture also thyself; for thou wilt
be in torture, when thou, who art so gentle, shalt be angry.
I fear lest, if to his prayers I should unite my own, I should
seem not to ask, but to compel. Yet I will unite them, and
the more fully and abundantly in that I have very sharply and
severely reproved him, strictly threatening that I will never
hereafter intercede for him. This I said to him because it
was necessary to alarm him; but I do not say the same to
thee. For perchance I shall intercede again, and shall again
obtain; only that my request be such aa it befits me to ask and
thee to grant. Farewell.
The letter of the noble heathen does him great credit, not
only as an epistolary gem, exquisite in tact and style, but
shows his kindliness of heart toward an unfortunate man shut
off by law from human right or privilege. But it does not
recognize the inherent manhood of a slave. It makes no plea
on that score. There is condescending pity in it, but no ap_
peal to God’s fatherhood or man’s brotherhood. It sees no
place in time or eternity where master and slave, on a footing
of equality, stand without distinction of person or social posi_
tion before a supreme and final judge. It does not commend
the slave as Pliny’s son, or very heart, or as a brother beloved
to Sabinianus. It does not offer to make good whatever debt
the slave, under the law, may owe to the master. As the
heavenly kingdom is higher than the Roman Empire, so far
does Paul’s letter surpass the letter of the noble heathen.
For other purposes than illustration and comparison this
letter of Pliny is here introduced. It brings to the fore these
1. Did Onesimus, like the slave of Sabinianus, designedly
flee to Rome to invoke the intercession of Paul as an influen_
tial friend of his master, Philemon?
2. Had there been opportunity to Onesimus to sufficiently
know Paul and his relation to Philemon as a warrant for
this step?
3. Was Paul, before this letter, ever in the Lycus valley,
thus affording the opportunity of this knowledge to Onesimus?
The answers to these questions in order are as follows:
1. In the absence of any statement from Paul as to how Tie
first met Onesimus in Rome, we may for the present say
only this much: It is possible that Onesimus designedly fled
to Rome to seek Paul’s intercession with his master, and
hence that Onesimus himself brought about the first meeting
with the apostle for this very purpose.
2. It is every way probable that Onesimus had ample op_
portunity sufficiently to know Paul and his influential rela_
tions with Philemon to warrant the step. This knowledge may
have come about in either of two ways: Philemon, in his
visits to Ephesus, the metropolis of his province, either while
a heathen attending the annual festival in honor of Diana,
or after his conversion in attending Paul’s meeting, may have
followed a common custom not only in taking his wife and
son, but his household slaves. In this way Onesimus could
have known Paul. Again, a household slave must have beard
much of the great apostle, who was not only revolutionizing
all Asia, but especially had revolutionized this family, hus_
band, wife, and son, and had led to Christ Epaphras, the
evangelist, who had planted the churches in the Lycus valley.
In the same way he must have known that Epaphras had
gone to Rome to see Paul, a prisoner there.
Thus the opportunity for knowledge was ample. And when
we consider the fact that after Onesimus reached Rome, know_
ing Paul was there, it would be natural for a fugitive slave,
anxious to escape detection, to avoid meeting one so well ac_
quainted with his master’s family, and it would be quite easy
to avoid the meeting, since Paul was hindered from moving
about by his chain, and his place of confinement as a prisoner
would be well known, unless the slave himself designedly
brought about the meeting. Then our answer to the previous
question must be changed from „possible” to „probable,” for
this furnished an adequate reason for the interview, which
otherwise the slave had both reason and ability to prevent.
3. The third question, to wit: Was Paul ever, before this
letter, in the Lycus valley, thereby increasing the opportunity
of Onesimus to know him? We must divide the question,
settling first: Was Paul ever before in the Lycus valley?
Some contend that he was, because Acts 16:6 says, „He went
through the region of Phrygia and Galatia,” and the Lycus
valley was a part of Phrygia. They fail to note, however,
that all of ancient Phrygia was not incorporated into the Ro_
man province of Asia, and that the following verse distinctly
declares that he was forbidden by the Holy Spirit to speak
the word in Asia at this time.
But Professor Ramsay, an expert on Paul’s travels, con_
tending against Bishop Lightfoot, argues with great force
that Paul on his third tour must have passed through the
Lycus valley to reach Ephesus. The scriptures on which he
bases his contention are Acts 18:23 and 19:1, which say, „He
went through the region of Galatia, and Phrygia, in order,
establishing the disciples . . . and having passed through the
upper country, came to Ephesus.” We shall not here attempt
to decide whether Ramsay or Lightfoot be correct about Paul’s
line of travel on this occasion, since even if one agree with
Ramsay that it led through Colosse, it has no bearing on the
opportunity of Onesimus to know Paul. It was simply a
confirming tour, going over ground previously traveled, and
did not become evangelistic till Ephesus was reached. There
is neither proof nor probability that Paul stopped in the Lycus
valley and no evidence whatever that he became acquainted
with the Philemon family until the great Ephesus meeting
described in Acts 19. Therefore, Professor Ramsay’s conten_
tion, however well sustained, is irrelevant to the matter under
Tradition has something to say of the future of Onesimus:
1. A letter of Ignatius) about A.D. 107, mentions an Ones_
imus, pastor at Ephesus, and incidentally seems to allude
several times to matters in the letter to the Colossians, but
there is nothing in this Ignatius letter to identify Onesimus,
pastor at Ephesus, with Paul’s Onesimus. The mere same_
ness of name proves nothing.
2. Traditions of both the Roman and Greek churches have
much to say of Paul’s Onesimus, giving him exalted positions,
but the historical evidence underlying the traditions is with_
out value, practically amounting to nothing.
After the foregoing discussion there is little more in the
text of the letter to which attention needs to be called. How_
ever, we will look at the section (8:21) of the letter which has
ever excited the greatest admiration. This section discloses
Paul’s method of making his plea:
1. I might enjoin by apostolic authority, but do not.
2. I might appeal to what you owe me, even your very
salvation, but do not.
3. I might have presumed to keep Onesimus to serve me in
your stead, but do not.
4. For love’s sake I beseech rather, being such a one as
Paul, the aged, and a prisoner.
5. Onesimus is the spiritual child of my bonds, my very
6. It may have been God’s providence that you lost him
for a season to have him forever.
7. Before, he was not helpful, though he is named Onesimus
(meaning helpful) ; now he is helpful, justifying the name.
8. Before, he was a slave; now, he is a brother.
9. As you and I are „partners,” what he is tome let him
be to you – receive him as you would me.
10. What he owes you by reason of theft or loss of service
when absent, I, Paul, give written bond to pay.
11. You have refreshed other hearts, refresh also the heart
of Paul, the aged prisoner.
12. I am confident you will do more than I ask.
This plea reminds us of other historical petitions, such as,
Judah’s plea for Benjamin (Gen. 44:18_34), and Jeannie
Dean’s plea before England’s queen for her sister Effie, as
told by Sir Walter Scott in The Heart of Midlothian.
On Lightfoot’s contention that „Paul, the aged” (v. 9)
should harmonize with Ephesians 6:20 and be rendered, „Paul
an ambassador,” I would say that the form of the word is
not the same as in Ephesians. The ambassador feature has
already been given in verse 8. The context demands the
usual meaning of the word „aged.”
J. M. Pendleton illustrates (w. 18_19) the doctrine of
Christ as surety for the sinner, and the release of the obliga_
tion against the original debtor just as soon as the creditor
charges the debt to the surety. In this way Old Testament
saints could be forgiven before the surety actually paid the
debt in expiation.

1. To whom was this letter addressed?
2. What the probable relations of these parties to each other?
3. To whom was this letter principally addressed, and why were
the others included?
4. What the relation of Paul to Philemon prior to this letter?
5. What Paul’s previous relation to Archippus?
6. Where did this family live?
7. What other letters were sent at the same time with this?
8. What the date?
9. What the characteristics of the letter to Philemon?
10. What then gives this brief personal letter about a private matter
its immense importance, and justifies its incorporation into the inspired Bible?
11. What other Pauline passages which also disclose Christianity’s
attitude toward slavery; what their teaching, and what the greater
importance of this letter?
12, How has this attitude been received?
13. What example in this country?
14. How was slavery imposed upon the colonies, and later upon the
states of this union?
15. What was the state of mind of the best men in both free and
slave sections toward the institution per set
16. What the condition in Paul’s day?
17. What one privilege remained to the slave?
18. What case in point?
19. What the pleas made in Pliny’s letter?
20. Compare this with Paul’s letter.
21. For what other purposes than illustration and comparison is this
letter of Pliny introduced?
22. What the answers to these questions in order?
23. What has tradition to say of the future of Onesimus?
24. What part of the letter has ever excited the greatest admiration,
and what the items of Paul’s plea?
25. Of what other historical petitions does this remind us?
26. What says the author of Lightfoot’s contention that „Paul the
aged” (v. 9) should harmonize with Ephesians 6:20 and be rendered, „Paul an ambassador”?
27. What great, doctrine does J. M. Pendleton illustrate by verses
18_19, and how?

Lasă un răspuns

Completează mai jos detaliile tale sau dă clic pe un icon pentru a te autentifica:


Comentezi folosind contul tău Dezautentificare /  Schimbă )

Fotografie Google

Comentezi folosind contul tău Google. Dezautentificare /  Schimbă )

Poză Twitter

Comentezi folosind contul tău Twitter. Dezautentificare /  Schimbă )

Fotografie Facebook

Comentezi folosind contul tău Facebook. Dezautentificare /  Schimbă )

Conectare la %s

%d blogeri au apreciat: