|Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary|
11:22-33 The apostle gives an account of his labours and sufferings; not out of pride or vain-glory, but to the honour of God, who enabled him to do and suffer so much for the cause of Christ; and shows wherein he excelled the false apostles, who tried to lessen his character and usefulness. It astonishes us to reflect on this account of his dangers, hardships, and sufferings, and to observe his patience, perseverance, diligence, cheerfulness, and usefulness, in the midst of all these trials. See what little reason we have to love the pomp and plenty of this world, when this blessed apostle felt so much hardship in it. Our utmost diligence and services appear unworthy of notice when compared with his, and our difficulties and trials scarcely can be perceived. It may well lead us to inquire whether or not we really are followers of Christ. Here we may study patience, courage, and firm trust in God. Here we may learn to think less of ourselves; and we should ever strictly keep to truth, as in God's presence; and should refer all to his glory, as the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who is blessed for evermore.
Verse 29. - Who is weak, and I am not weak? See, by way of example, 1 Corinthians 8:13; 1 Corinthians 9:22; Romans 14:21. Instead of stiffly maintaining my own prejudices, I am always ready to make concessions to weak brethren. Who is offended, and I burn not! That is, "who is ever caused to stumble without my burning with indignation?" In other words, "Is not the intensity of my sympathy whenever any scandal occurs an addition to the trials of my life?"
Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible
Who is weak, and I am not weak.... What church is so? or what particular believer is so? for he had not only the care of all the churches, but of all believers upon him; whoever was weak in the faith he was concerned for them, to instruct, establish, and strengthen them; and suited his discourses, reasonings, and language, to their capacity, that they might understand him, and take in right notions of things: or whoever was of a weak and scrupulous conscience about things indifferent, and fearful of using them lest they should sin in so doing, he was cautious of offending them, or doing anything by which their consciences should be defiled, and their peace be broken: or whoever was afflicted, either in body or mind, he sympathized and bore a part with them:
who is offended, and I burn not? whoever was stumbled and made to fall by anything he said or did, or by the words and actions of others, it gave him sensible pain, it made him very uneasy; he was as one in a flame, all on fire, full of grief and trouble till the cause of the offence was removed, and the person offended made easy and restored; the word here used answers to the Hebrew word used in Job 30:25 where it is said, "was not my soul grieved for the poor?" which Mr. Broughton renders, "did not my soul burn for the poor?" Now by all this which the apostle did and suffered, by all actions and sufferings, care and sympathy, he fully appeared to be a true and faithful minister of Christ, and abundantly more than the false apostles, who could produce none of these things as testimonies in their favour.
Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary
29. I … weak—in condescending sympathy with the weak (1Co 9:22). "Care generates sympathy, which causes the minister of Christ personally to enter into the feelings of all his people, as if he stood in their position, so as to accommodate himself to all" [Calvin].
offended—by some stumbling-block put in his way by others: the "weak" is most liable to be "offended."
I burn not—The "I" in the Greek is emphatic, which it is not in the former clause, "I am not weak." I not only enter into the feeling of the party offended, but I burn with indignation at the offender, I myself taking up his cause as my own. "Who meets with a stumbling-block and I am not disturbed even more than himself" [Neander].
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