Galatians 3:9 – They which be of Faith are blessed with Scripture Commentary

Bible Scripture

So then they which be of faith are blessed with faithful Abraham. – Galatians 3:9

Pulpit Commentary

Verse 9. – So then they which be of faith are blessed with faithful Abraham (ὥστε οἱ ἐκ πίστεως εὐλογοῦνται σὺν τῷ πιστῷ Ἀβραάμ) “Are blessed;” are objects of benediction. The apostle gathers from the words cited in ver. 8 the two particulars, that there are who get to be blessed like Abraham and with him, and that it is by faith like Abraham’s, without works of the Law, that they do so. He seems to have an eye to the sense of Divine benediction which the Galatians had themselves experienced, when upon their simply believing in Christ the Spirit’s gifts had been poured forth upon them. The word “faithful” (πιστῷ) is inserted, ex abundanti almost, to mark the more explicitly and emphatically, the condition on which both Abraham and therefore others in him gain the blessing. This being “in Abraham,” which is here predicated of all who gain justification and God’s benediction, is analogous to the image of Gentiles, being by faith “grafted,” and by faith abiding, in the “olive tree,” which we have in Romans 11:17, 20. The verbal πιστὸς is generally passive, “one to be believed or trusted in,” and so a man “of fidelity;” but it is also at times active, in the sense of “one who believes,” as John 20:27Acts 10:452 Corinthians 6:15Ephesians 1:11 Timothy 4:101 Timothy 5:161 Timothy 6:2 (so in ἄπιστοςJohn 20:27ὀλιγόπιστοςMatthew 6:30). In consequence of this use of the term in Scripture, both fidelis in ecclesiastical Latin and “faithful” in English have often this signification.

 

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James 1:12 – Count It All Joy with Scripture Commentary

Bible Scripture

My brethren, count it all joy when ye fall into divers temptations; – James 1:12

Pulpit Commentary

Verses 2-18. – THE SUBJECT OF TEMPTATION. This section may be subdivided as follows: –
(1) The value of temptation (vers. 2-4).

(2) Digression suggested by the thought ‘of perfection (vers. 5-11).

(3) Return to the subject of temptation (vers. 12-18). Verses 2-4. – The value of temptation. Considered as an opportunity, it is a cause for joy. Verse 2.My brethren. A favorite expression with St. James, occurring no less than fifteen times in the compass of this short Epistle. Count it all joy, etc.; cf. 1 Peter 1:6, “Wherein ye greatly rejoice, though now for a little while, if need be, ye have been put to grief in manifold temptations, that the proof of your faith (τὸδοκίμιον ὑμῶν τῆς πίστεως)… might be found unto praise,” etc. The coincidence is too close to be accidental, although the shade of meaning given to δοκίμιον is slightly different, if indeed it has any right in the text in St. Peter (see Herr, vol. it. p. 102). Here it has its proper force, and signifies that by which the faith is tried, i.e. the instrument of trial rather than the process of trial. Thus the passage in ver. 3 becomes parallel to Romans 5:3, “tribulation worketh patience.” With regard to the sentiments of ver. 2, “Count it all joy,” etc., contrast Matthew 6:13. Experience, however, shows that the two are compatible. It is quite possible to shrink beforehand from temptation, and pray with intense earnestness, “Lead us not into temptation,” and yet, when the temptation comes, to meet it joyfully, Περίπέσητε. The use of this word implies that the temptations of which St. James is thinking are external (see Luke 10:30, where the same word is used of the man who fell among thieves). 1 Thessalonians 2:14 and Hebrews 10:32, 33 will show the trials to which believing Jews were subject. But the epithet “manifold” would indicate that we should not confine the word here to trials such as those.

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Hebrews 13:15 – Praise Scripture With Commentary

By him therefore let us offer the sacrifice of praise to God continually, that is, the fruit of our lips giving thanks to his name. – Hebrews 13:15

Pulpit Commentary

Verse 15.Through him therefore let us offer the sacrifice (or, a sacrifice) of praise to God continually, that is, the fruit of lips confessing to his Name.Θυσία αἰνέσεως is the designation in the ritual of the Law of the voluntary peace offering, offered by individuals on occasions calling for special thanksgiving (Leviticus 7:12). In the psalms it is used to express generally praise and thanksgiving (see Psalm 1:14, 23; 116:17. Θῦσον τῷ Θεῷ θυσίαν αἰνέσεως καὶ ἀπόδος τῷ ὑψίστῳ τὰς εὐχάς σου, etc.). In virtue of their participation in the true and complete Sin Offering, Christians may fulfill this part of the ancient symbolism, not occasionally, but “continually;” bringing to God, not fruits of the earth, but the “fruit of the lips” (an expression found in Hosea 14:2, where the LXX. has καρπὸν χειλέων ἡμῶν), i.e. continual praise, springing from thankful hearts. In the Eucharist especially (hence so called) such sacrifice is continually offered, over the one atoning Sacrifice which is pleaded and partaken cf. But not in communions only, but ever in their daily lives, such “sacrifice of praise and thanksgiving” is due. But, as the next verse reminds the readers, the “knit of the lips” is not enough; there is a further sacrifice of our own, whereby we must show that we are true partakers of Christ, and truly thankful.

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John 4:23 – Worship Scripture With Commentary

But the hour comes, and now is, when the true worshippers shall worship the Father in spirit and in truth: for the Father seeks such to worship him. – John 4:23

Pulpit Commentary

Verse 23.But the hour cometh, and now is – already the day has dawned, the new conception is breaking like “awful rose of dawn” upon the minds of some – when the veritable worshippers – those who answer to the idea of worshippers, those who actually draw near to the Father in living fellowship and affectionate appreciation of his eternal Name – shall worship the Father in spirit and in truth. An old misreading of this text, accepted by some Fathers, and based upon the idea expressed in John 16:13, has found expression in the Sinaitic Codex, “in the spirit of the truth.” But “spirit” here does not refer to the Holy Spirit, but to the spirit of man – that part of man’s constitution through which he most especially bears the image of God, and with which the Divine Spirit deals, and in which he dwells (Romans 8:26). The worship in spirit is worship contrasted with all mere carnal concomitants, all mere shadows of the good things to come, all mere ritual, all specialties of place, or time, or sacrament, or order. It need not be in despite of a genuine reverence for days, or seasons, or postures, or washings, but in absolute independence of them, and they, without this, will be actually valueless. And in truth; i.e. as dealing with reality, the adequate and veracious expression of genuine desires and veritable emotions; καὶ γὰρ, nam et (ver. 9). For indeed also the Father seeketh such to be his worshippers. Luthardt and Meyer differ as to the emphasis. Meyer insists that the καὶ γάρ lays stress on the word which immediately follows, and he refers to 1 Corinthians 14:8 as not contradicting the rule. He would render, “For the Father also on his part seeketh,” etc. Luthardt says that the new thought is to be found in ζητεῖ, and therefore upon this the emphasis is laid. Westcott, by many passages, such as Matthew 8:9; Matthew 26:73; Mark 10:45; Luke 6:32, etc., urges that καὶ γὰρ “alleges a reason which is assumed to be conclusive from the nature of the case.” The whole sentence is therefore covered by the expression, “For the Father also on his part seeketh those as worshippers of him who worship him in spirit and in truth.” A slight contrast is felt between the regimen of προσκυνεῖν with accusative, here again introduced, following upon that with dative in the first clause. Moulton would render the first clause, “offer worship to the Father,” and the second by “worship him.” The Father is now seeking, by the ministry of his Son, by the gift of his Spirit, for those who approach him with deeply felt need and true affection, in spirit, not in ceremony, in truth, not in hypocritical or heartless profession. This is another indication of the high truth taught in the prologue (John 1:4, 9; John 3:21; John 18:38, see notes) that there are vast differences among men, even anterior to their reception of the perfect revelation of the Father’s heart in Christ Jesus. “The life is the light of men.” There are those who “do the truth” and are “of the truth,” who “worship God in spirit and in truth.” The whole gospel dispensation is a search for these.

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Exodus 34:14 – Worship Scripture With Commentary

For thou shalt worship no other god: for the LORD, whose name is Jealous, is a jealous God: – Exodus 34:14

Pulpit Commentary

Verse 14.For thou shalt worship no other God. This is a reference to the Second Commandment (Exodus 20:5). The meaning is – “Thou shalt not spare the idolatrous emblems of the Canaanite nations, for thou couldst only do so to worship them, and thou art already forbidden to worship any other god beside me.” The existence of the Decalogue and its binding nature, is assumed throughout this chapter.

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Revelation 22:9 – Worship Scripture With Commentary

Then said he to me, See you do it not: for I am your fellow servant, and of your brothers the prophets, and of them which keep the sayings of this book: worship God. – Revelation 22:9

Pulpit Commentary

Verse 9.Then saith he unto me, See thou do it not: for I am thy fellow servant, and of thy brethren the prophets, and of them which keep the sayings of this book: worship God; and he saith, etc. (cf. the words of Revelation 19:10). Here we have “the prophets;” in the former passage we have the “spirit of prophecy,” in much the same sense; here, again, we have “them which keep the sayings of this book,” in place of “that have the testimony of Jesus,” in Revelation 19:10. In the latter case, also, there is little difference of meaning, since the “sayings of this book” are exhortations to a faithful bearing of “the testimony of Jesus;” those, therefore, “who keep” (that is, carry out) “the sayings” are those who “hold the testimony of Jesus.” “The prophets” need not be restricted in meaning to either Old or New Testament prophets, but may include both. The direct inspiration of the message which St. John has to deliver is here asserted. In unison with the teaching of the Mosaic covenant, the angel commands to worship God alone (cf.Exodus 34:14, etc.).

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Philippians 3:3 – Worship Scripture With Commentary

For we are the circumcision, which worship God in the spirit, and rejoice in Christ Jesus, and have no confidence in the flesh. – Philippians 3:3

Pulpit Commentary

Verse 3.For we are the circumcision. We: the apostle of the Gentiles identifies himself with the Gentiles (1 Corinthians 9:2l); himself circumcised, he recognizes the great truth that they only are the true circumcision whose hearts are mortified from all worldly and carnal lusts. Which worship God in the spirit; read, with the best manuscripts,which worship by the Spirit of God. The word λατρεία, worship, is used specially of the Jewish ceremonial service (comp. Romans 9:4Luke 2:37; Acts 26:7). We Christians, St. Paul means, have not only the true circumcision, but the only true worship: the temple service prefigured the spiritual worship of the Christian Church. By the Spirit; by his assistance, inspiration: “We know not what we should pray for as we ought: but the Spirit itself maketh intercession for us” (Romans 8:26). And rejoice in Christ Jesus; rather, glory καυχώμενοι). “He that glorieth, let him glory in the Lord,” through whom alone we can obtain salvation, not in any external privileges. And have no confidence in the flesh. Neither in circumcision nor in any other outward rites.

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John 4:24 – Worship Scripture With Commentary

God is a Spirit: and they that worship him must worship him in spirit and in truth.- John 4:24

Pulpit Commentary

Verse 24. – A still more explicit and comprehensive reason is given for the previous assertion, based on the essential nature of God himself in the fulness of his eternal Being. God is Spirit (Πνεῦμα ὁ Θεός; cf. John 1:1, Θεὸς η΅ν ὁ Λόγος, – the article indicates the subject, and the predicate is here generic, and not an indefinite; therefore we do not render it, “God is a Spirit”). The most comprehensive and far-reaching metaphor or method by which Jesus endeavoured to portray the fundamental essence of the Divine Being is “Spirit,” not body, not ὕλη, not κόσμος, but that deep inner verity presented in self-conscious ego; the substantia of which mind may be predicated, and all its states and faculties. The Father is Spirit, the Son is Spirit, and Spirit is the unity of the Father and the Son. St. John has recorded elsewhere that “God is Light,” and “God is Love.” These three Divine utterances are the sublimest ever formed to express the metaphysical, intellectual, and moral essence of the Deity. They are unfathomably deep, and quite inexhaustible in their suggestions, and yet they are not too profound for even a little child or a poor Samaritaness to grasp for practical purposes. If God be Spirit, then they who worship him, the Spirit, must by the nature of the case, must by the force of a Divine arrangement, worship him, if they worship him at all, in spirit and in truth. The truth which our Lord uttered was not unknown in the Old Testament. From Genesis to Malachi, in the Psalms, in the historical books, in Judges, Samuel, and Kings, the Spirit and the spirituality of God are presupposed; but the Lord has generalized these teachings, cited them from darkness and neglect, combined them in one eternal oracle of Divine truth. The Galilaean Peasant has thus uttered the profoundest truth of ethic and religion – one which no sage in East or West had ever surpassed, and towards which the highest minds in all the ages of Christendom have been slowly making approach. Forms, postures, ceremonial, sacraments, liturgies, holy days, and places are not condemned, but they all are inefficacious if this prime condition be not present, and they can all be dispensed with if it be. Only the spirit of man can really touch or commune with the Spirit of spirits, and the history of the new dispensation is the history of a progress from forms to realities, from the sensuous to the spiritual, from the outward to the inward, from the earthly to the heavenly.

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John 4:26 – Worship Scripture With Commentary

Jesus said to her, I that speak to you am he.- John 4:26

Pulpit Commentary

Verse 26.Jesus saith unto her, I that am talking with thee am he. Jesus does utter to the Samaritan woman the truth about himself which he withholds from the sensuous Galilaeans and the carping scribes. Throughout she is susceptible, inquiring, anxious for her own sake to know. The idea she entertained about Messiah would put no obstacle in the way of our Lord’s admission, whereas the opposite idea, the passionate longing for a political revolution, led him to silence others, and even among his disciples to reserve the sublime fact as their sacred secret (cf. Matthew 8:4; Matthew 16:20; Matthew 17:9; Mark 8:30). The truth communicated to this woman was of supreme importance and of universal interest. Our Lord admitted his Messiahship, but of the deeper truths of his incarnation, of the nature of the birth from above, of the Divine life and love, of the means of redemption, and the principles of judgment, he says nothing. Nicodemus learns of both “earthly and heavenly things;” the Samaritaness receives some practical principles. Yet the two conversations are complementary to each other, and throw upon each other reciprocally floods of light. Moreover, there is the same parabolic speech in both; the same habit of mind. It is the same Teacher who uses “the wind” and “the water of the well” to illustrate great spiritual ideas.

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