|Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary|
5:38-42 The plain instruction is, Suffer any injury that can be borne, for the sake of peace, committing your concerns to the Lord's keeping. And the sum of all is, that Christians must avoid disputing and striving. If any say, Flesh and blood cannot pass by such an affront, let them remember, that flesh and blood shall not inherit the kingdom of God; and those who act upon right principles will have most peace and comfort.
Verse 42. - (Cf. Luke 6:30, 34a, 35.) The connexion is as follows: Our Lord spoke first (ver. 39) of entire submission to injuries; then (ver. 40) of acceptance of loss of property; then (ver. 41) of acceptance of a burden imposed; here of acceptance of a demand for pecuniary assistance. This, in its turn, forms an easy transition to the subject of ver. 43, sqq. Give to him that asketh thee, etc. This verse has been often adduced by unbelievers to prove the incompatibility of our Lord's utterances with the conditions of modern society. Wrongly. Because our Lord is inculcating the proper spirit of Christian life, not giving rules to be literally carried out irrespective of circumstances. Hammond (vide Ford) points out that we have "a countermand" in 2 Thessalonians 3:7, 10. (For the possibility of accounting for the verbal differences between this verse and Luke 6:30 by supposing an Aramaic original, see Professor Marshall, in the Expositor, April, 1891, p. 287.)
Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible
Give to him that asketh thee,.... To every man, Luke 6:30 whether Jew or Gentile; friend or foe; believer or unbeliever; a good, or a bad man; worthy or unworthy; deserving or not, that asketh alms, whether food or money; give it freely, readily, cheerfully, according to your abilities, and as the necessity of the object requires: for such rules are always supposed, and to be observed; and though all are to be relieved, yet the circumstances of persons, and their relation to men, are to be considered, and special regard is to be had to the household of faith.
And from him that would borrow of thee, turn not away; refuse him not, turn not away from him with a frown, or without speaking to him, or with a denial; look upon him with a pleasant countenance, cheerfully lend him what he wants, whether he be a Jew, from whom it was not lawful to take usury, or a stranger, from whom it, was lawful to take it, yet take it not; lend him freely, "hoping for nothing again", Luke 6:35 which must not be understood of not hoping for the money lent, for then it would be giving, and not lending; but of not hoping for any reward for lending it: and indeed the money itself is not to be hoped for again, when the circumstances of the borrower are such, that he is not able to make a return.
Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary
42. Give to him that asketh thee—The sense of unreasonable asking is here implied (compare Lu 6:30).
and from him that would borrow of thee turn not thou away—Though the word signifies classically "to have money lent to one on security," or "with interest," yet as this was not the original sense of the word, and as usury was forbidden among the Jews (Ex 22:25, &c.), it is doubtless simple borrowing which our Lord here means, as indeed the whole strain of the exhortation implies. This shows that such counsels as "Owe no man anything" (Ro 13:8), are not to be taken absolutely; else the Scripture commendations of the righteous for "lending" to his necessitous brother (Ps 37:36; 112:5; Lu 6:37) would have no application.
turn not thou away—a graphic expression of unfeeling refusal to relieve a brother in extremity.
Same Subject—Love to Enemies (Mt 5:43-48).
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