1 Corinthians 9:20
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New International Version
To the Jews I became like a Jew, to win the Jews. To those under the law I became like one under the law (though I myself am not under the law), so as to win those under the law.

New Living Translation
When I was with the Jews, I lived like a Jew to bring the Jews to Christ. When I was with those who follow the Jewish law, I too lived under that law. Even though I am not subject to the law, I did this so I could bring to Christ those who are under the law.

English Standard Version
To the Jews I became as a Jew, in order to win Jews. To those under the law I became as one under the law (though not being myself under the law) that I might win those under the law.

Berean Study Bible
To the Jews I became like a Jew, to win the Jews. To those under the Law I became like one under the Law (though I myself am not under the Law), to win those under the Law.

Berean Literal Bible
And to the Jews I became like a Jew, so that I might win the Jews. To those under the Law, as under the Law (myself not being under the Law) so that I might win those under the Law.

New American Standard Bible
To the Jews I became as a Jew, so that I might win Jews; to those who are under the Law, as under the Law though not being myself under the Law, so that I might win those who are under the Law;

King James Bible
And unto the Jews I became as a Jew, that I might gain the Jews; to them that are under the law, as under the law, that I might gain them that are under the law;

Holman Christian Standard Bible
To the Jews I became like a Jew, to win Jews; to those under the law, like one under the law--though I myself am not under the law--to win those under the law.

International Standard Version
To the Jews I became like a Jew in order to win Jews. To those under the Law I became like a man under the Law, in order to win those under the Law (although I myself am not under the Law).

NET Bible
To the Jews I became like a Jew to gain the Jews. To those under the law I became like one under the law (though I myself am not under the law) to gain those under the law.

New Heart English Bible
To the Jews I became as a Jew, that I might gain Jews; to those who are under the law, as under the law, not being myself under the law, that I might gain those who are under the law;

Aramaic Bible in Plain English
And I was with the Judeans as a Judean that I may gain the Judeans and I was with those who are under The Written Law like those who are under The Written Law that I might gain those who are under The Written Law.

GOD'S WORD® Translation
I became Jewish for Jewish people. I became subject to Moses' Teachings for those who are subject to those laws. I did this to win them even though I'm not subject to Moses' Teachings.

New American Standard 1977
And to the Jews I became as a Jew, that I might win Jews; to those who are under the Law, as under the Law, though not being myself under the Law, that I might win those who are under the Law;

Jubilee Bible 2000
And unto the Jews I became as a Jew, that I might gain the Jews; to those that are under the law, as under the law, that I might gain those that are under the law;

King James 2000 Bible
And unto the Jews I became as a Jew, that I might gain the Jews; to them that are under the law, as under the law, that I might gain them that are under the law;

American King James Version
And to the Jews I became as a Jew, that I might gain the Jews; to them that are under the law, as under the law, that I might gain them that are under the law;

American Standard Version
And to the Jews I became as a Jew, that I might gain Jews; to them that are under the law, as under the law, not being myself under the law, that I might gain them that are under the law;

Douay-Rheims Bible
And I became to the Jews, a Jew, that I might gain the Jews:

Darby Bible Translation
And I became to the Jews as a Jew, in order that I might gain the Jews: to those under law, as under law, not being myself under law, in order that I might gain those under law:

English Revised Version
And to the Jews I became as a Jew, that I might gain Jews; to them that are under the law, as under the law, not being myself under the law, that I might gain them that are under the law;

Webster's Bible Translation
And to the Jews I became as a Jew, that I might gain the Jews; to them that are under the law, as under the law, that I might gain them that are under the law;

Weymouth New Testament
To the Jews I have become like a Jew in order to win Jews; to men under the Law as if I were under the Law--although I am not--in order to win those who are under the Law;

World English Bible
To the Jews I became as a Jew, that I might gain Jews; to those who are under the law, as under the law, that I might gain those who are under the law;

Young's Literal Translation
and I became to the Jews as a Jew, that Jews I might gain; to those under law as under law, that those under law I might gain;
Study Bible
Paul the Servant to All
19Though I am free of obligation to anyone, I make myself a slave to everyone, to win as many as possible. 20To the Jews I became like a Jew, to win the Jews. To those under the Law I became like one under the Law (though I myself am not under the Law), to win those under the Law. 21To those without the Law I became like one without the Law (though I am not outside the law of God but am under the law of Christ), to win those without the Law.…
Cross References
Acts 16:3
Paul wanted Timothy to accompany him, so he took him and circumcised him on account of the Jews in that area, for they all knew that his father was a Greek.

Acts 21:23
Therefore do what we advise you. There are four men with us who have taken a vow.

Romans 11:14
in the hope that I may provoke my own people to jealousy and save some of them.

Galatians 2:19
For through the Law I died to the Law so that I might live to God.
Treasury of Scripture

And to the Jews I became as a Jew, that I might gain the Jews; to them that are under the law, as under the law, that I might gain them that are under the law;

unto.

Acts 16:3 Him would Paul have to go forth with him; and took and circumcised …

Acts 17:2,3 And Paul, as his manner was, went in to them, and three sabbath days …

Acts 18:18 And Paul after this tarried there yet a good while, and then took …

Acts 21:20-26 And when they heard it, they glorified the Lord, and said to him, …

are under.

Romans 3:19 Now we know that what things soever the law said, it said to them …

Romans 6:14,15 For sin shall not have dominion over you: for you are not under the …

Galatians 4:5,21 To redeem them that were under the law, that we might receive the …

Galatians 5:18 But if you be led of the Spirit, you are not under the law.

(20) And unto the Jews I became as a Jew.--This and the following verses are a categorical explanation of the previous statements. They show in detail both how he became the slave of all and the reward he had in view in doing so.

For example, of St. Paul's conformity to Jewish law, see Acts 16:3; Acts 18:18; Acts 20:6; Acts 21:26.

To them that are under the law. . . .--Better, To them that are under the Law, as under the Law, not being myself under the Law. These last words are found in all the best MSS., but have been omitted by an oversight of the copyist in the text from which our own translation is made. Those spoken of as "Jews" are, of course, Jews by birth and religion; those "under the Law" are probably proselytes to Judaism. In neither case do they mean Christian converts, for the object of St. Paul's conduct towards those of whom he here speaks was to win them to the Faith of Christ. He himself was no longer "under the Law" being a Christian (Galatians 2:19).

Verse 20. - Unto the Jews I became as a Jew. When, for instance, he circumcised Timothy (Acts 12:3) and probably Titus also (Galatians 2:3; see 'Life of St Paul,' 1. 412, sqq.); and he was continuing this principle of action when he took the vow of the Nazarite (Acts 21:21-26), and called himself "a Pharisee, a son of Pharisees" (Acts 23:6). To them that are under the Law. That is, not only to Jews, but even to the most rigorous legalists among the Jews. It should be carefully observed that St. Paul is here describing the innocent concessions and compliances which arise from the harmless and generous condescension of a loving spirit. He never sank into the fear of man, which made Peter at Antioch unfaithful to his real principles. He did not allow men to form from his conduct any mistaken inference as to his essential views. He waived his personal predilections in matters of indifference which only affected "the infinitely little." And unto the Jews I became as a Jew,.... That is, in religion; or with respect to some religious observances peculiar to the Jews, for he himself was really a Jew by nature; who became as one unto them in this sense, when he for their sakes circumcised Timothy at Derbe, or Lystra, purified himself at Jerusalem, shaved his head at Cenchrea, observed their sabbath, and abstained from some sorts of food forbidden in the law; and his end in so doing was, not to confirm them in such usages, but that he might hereby have the greater influence over them, and by little and little bring them off of these things, or, as he says,

that I might gain the Jews; bring them over to Christ, and off of a dependence on their own righteousness, for justification before God:

to them that are under the law, as under the law; the Vulgate Latin version adds, "when I was not under the law", and so the Alexandrian copy and some others; by whom seem to be meant the same persons as before; though some have thought that the Samaritans are intended, and others the Sadducees: but if any as distinct from the former are designed, they should rather seem to be the converted Jews; who though they believed in Christ, looked upon themselves to be still under the law, and therefore observed it; with whom the apostle on certain occasions complied, as if he was under it too, that he might have the greater share in their affections and credit; hoping in time that by such means he might be able to prevail upon them to relinquish these things, and wholly attend to the Gospel and ordinances of Christ, or, as he says,

that I might gain them that are under the law; meaning the Jews, who were observers of the law of Moses. 20. I became as a Jew—in things not defined by the law, but by Jewish usage. Not Judaizing in essentials, but in matters where there was no compromise of principle (compare Ac 16:3; 21:20-26); an undesigned coincidence between the history and the Epistle, and so a sure proof of genuineness.

to them that are under the law, as under the law—in things defined by the law; such as ceremonies not then repugnant to Christianity. Perhaps the reason for distinguishing this class from the former is that Paul himself belonged nationally to "the Jews," but did not in creed belong to the class of "them that are under the law." This view is confirmed by the reading inserted here by the oldest manuscripts, versions, and Fathers, "not being (that is, parenthetically, 'not that I am') myself under the law."9:15-23 It is the glory of a minister to deny himself, that he may serve Christ and save souls. But when a minister gives up his right for the sake of the gospel, he does more than his charge and office demands. By preaching the gospel, freely, the apostle showed that he acted from principles of zeal and love, and thus enjoyed much comfort and hope in his soul. And though he looked on the ceremonial law as a yoke taken off by Christ, yet he submitted to it, that he might work upon the Jews, do away their prejudices, prevail with them to hear the gospel, and win them over to Christ. Though he would transgress no laws of Christ, to please any man, yet he would accommodate himself to all men, where he might do it lawfully, to gain some. Doing good was the study and business of his life; and, that he might reach this end, he did not stand on privileges. We must carefully watch against extremes, and against relying on any thing but trust in Christ alone. We must not allow errors or faults, so as to hurt others, or disgrace the gospel.
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