|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 30. - If I must needs. If boasting is forced on me as a moral necessity (δεῖ). The things which concern mine infirmities. After all, St. Paul cannot keep up even for a few verses anything which can be regarded as "boasting after the flesh" (ver. 18). Practically his boasting has been only of those afflictions which to others might sound like a record of disgraces, but which left on him the marks of the Lord Jesus. His hairbreadth escapes were to him, as Bossuet said of the wounds of the Prince of Conde, "marks of the protection of Heaven."
Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible
If I must needs glory.... The apostle signifies that glorying was not agreeable to him; he was not fond of it, it was a subject he did not delight to dwell upon; what he had done was by force, and through necessity; he was compelled to it by the boasts of the false apostles: and since he must needs glory in order to stop their mouths;
will glory says he, of things which concern mine infirmities; meaning not his sins, for these cause shame; but his afflictions and sufferings for Christ, under which he was supported, and from which he was delivered by the power of Christ; and that was the reason he chose to glory of them; for though they rendered him mean and despicable in the eyes of the world, yet his bearing them with so much patience, courage, and pleasure, and his many singular deliverances out of them, served greatly to illustrate the power and grace of Christ, and at the same time proved him to be a true and faithful minister of the Gospel; to whom so much honour was vouchsafed, as to suffer shame for the name of Christ, and to be so singularly marked out by him, as the object of his favour, love, and care.
Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary
30. glory of … infirmities—A striking contrast! Glorying or boasting of what others make matter of shame, namely, infirmities; for instance, his humbling mode of escape in a basket (2Co 11:33). A character utterly incompatible with that of an enthusiast (compare 2Co 12:5, 9, 10).
2 Corinthians 11:30 Parallel Commentaries
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