|Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary|
16:19-24 Christianity by no means destroys civility. Religion should promote a courteous and obliging temper towards all. Those give a false idea of religion, and reproach it, who would take encouragement from it to be sour and morose. And Christian salutations are not mere empty compliments; but are real expressions of good-will to others, and commend them to the Divine grace and blessing. Every Christian family should be as a Christian church. Wherever two or three are gathered together in the name of Christ, and he is among them, there is a church. Here is a solemn warning. Many who have Christ's name much in their mouths, have no true love to him in their hearts. None love him in truth, who do not love his laws, and keep his commandments. Many are Christians in name, who do not love Christ Jesus the Lord in sincerity. Such are separated from the people of God, and the favour of God. Those who love not the Lord Jesus Christ, must perish without remedy. Let us not rest in any religious profession where there is not the love of Christ, earnest desires for his salvation, gratitude for his mercies, and obedience to his commandments. The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ has in it all that is good, for time and for eternity. To wish that our friends may have this grace with them, is wishing them the utmost good. And this we should wish all our friends and brethren in Christ. We can wish them nothing greater, and we should wish them nothing less. True Christianity makes us wish those whom we love, the blessings of both worlds; this is meant in wishing the grace of Christ to be with them. The apostle had dealt plainly with the Corinthians, and told them of their faults with just severity; but he parts in love, and with a solemn profession of his love to them for Christ's sake. May our love be with all who are in Christ Jesus. Let us try whether all things appear worthless to us, when compared with Christ and his righteousness. Do we allow ourselves in any known sin, or in the neglect of any known duty? By such inquiries, faithfully made, we may judge of the state of our souls.
Verse 23. - The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you. This is a gnorisma, or "badge of confidence," which, in one or other of its forms, is found at the end of all St. Paul's Epistles. Here it is the same as in 1 Thessalonians 5:28. "With you all" is added in 2 Thessalonians 3:18; Romans 16:24; Philippians 4:23. In Galatians and Philemon we have "with your spirit." In the pastoral Epistles and Colossians, "Peace be with you." In Ephesians 6:24 it is confined to those "who love the Lord Jesus in sincerity." In 2 Corinthians 13:14 alone we have the full "apostolic benediction."
Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible
The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you. This is the apostle's salutation in all his epistles, and is a token of the truth and genuineness of them; See Gill on Romans 16:20; and is a wish for a supply of all grace from Christ, and an increase of it in the saints; that they may have the communications of it to them, to quicken, invigorate, and draw forth into exercise the grace they have received, and to enable and assist them in the discharge of every duty.
Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary
23. The grace, &c.—This is the salutation meant in 1Co 16:21; and from which unbelievers (1Co 16:22; compare 2Jo 10:11) are excluded [Bengel].
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