2 Corinthians 4:7
Parallel Verses
New International Version
But we have this treasure in jars of clay to show that this all-surpassing power is from God and not from us.

King James Bible
But we have this treasure in earthen vessels, that the excellency of the power may be of God, and not of us.

Darby Bible Translation
But we have this treasure in earthen vessels, that the surpassingness of the power may be of God, and not from us:

World English Bible
But we have this treasure in clay vessels, that the exceeding greatness of the power may be of God, and not from ourselves.

Young's Literal Translation
And we have this treasure in earthen vessels, that the excellency of the power may be of God, and not of us;

2 Corinthians 4:7 Parallel
Commentary
Clarke's Commentary on the Bible

But we have this treasure in earthen vessels - The original, οστρακινοις σκευεσιν, signifies, more literally, vessels made of shells, which are very brittle; and as the shell is the outward part of a fish, it is very fit, as Dr. Hammond observes, to resemble our bodies in which our souls dwell. The Platonists make two bodies of a man: the one they call οξημα ψυχης, the chariot of the soul; the other, that which we see and touch; and this they call οστρακινον which is the same to us as the shell is to the fish. The word οστρακον not only signifies a shell, or vessel made of shell, but also πηλος ωπτημενος, an earthen vessel which has been burnt in the kiln, and earthen vessels or pottery in general; the difference between σκευη οστρακινα, earthen ware, and σκευη κεραμεως, the potter's vessel, is this: the latter implies the vessel as it comes out of the hands of the potter Before it is burnt; and the other is the vessel After it has passed through the kiln. St. Chrysostom, speaking of this difference, observes that the vessels once baked in the kiln, if broken, are incapable of being restored, δια την εκ τουπυρος εγγινομενην αυτοις ἁπαξ αντιτυπιαν, because of the hardness once gotten by fire; whereas the others are of clay unbaken, if they be spoiled ῥᾳδιωϚπρος το δευτερον επανελθῃ σχημα, they may easily, by the skill of the potter, be restored to some second form. See Hammond. This comports excellently with the idea of St. Paul: our bodies are in a recoverable form: they are very frail, and easily marred; but by the skill of the workman they may be easily built up anew, and made like unto his glorious body. The light and salvation of God in the soul of man is a heavenly treasure in a very mean casket.

The rabbins have a mode of speech very similar to this. "The daughter of the emperor thus addressed Rabbi Joshua, the son of Chananiah: O! how great is thy skill in the law, and yet how deformed thou art! what a great deal of wisdom is laid up in a sordid vessel! The rabbi answered, Tell me, I pray thee, of what are those vessels in which you keep your wines? She answered, They are earthen vessels. He replied, How is it, seeing ye are rich, that ye do not lay up your wine in silver vessels, for the common people lay up their wine in earthen vessels? She returned to her father, and persuaded him to have all the wine put into silver vessels; but the wine turned acid; and when the emperor heard it he inquired of his daughter who it was that had given her that advice? She told him that it was Rabbi Joshua. The rabbi told the whole story to the emperor, and added this sentence: The wisdom and study of the law cannot dwell in a comely man. Caesar objected, and said, There are comely persons who have made great progress in the study of the law. The rabbi answered, Had they not been so comely they would have made greater progress; for a man who is comely has not an humble mind, and therefore he soon forgets the whole law." See Schoettgen. There is a great deal of good sense in this allegory; and the most superficial reader may find it out.

That the excellency of the power may be of God; and not of us - God keeps us continually dependent upon himself; we have nothing but what we have received, and we receive every necessary supply just when it is necessary; and have nothing at our own command. The good therefore that is done is so evidently from the power of God, that none can pretend to share the glory with him.

Treasury of Scripture Knowledge

this.

2 Corinthians 4:1 Therefore seeing we have this ministry, as we have received mercy, we faint not;

2 Corinthians 6:10 As sorrowful, yet always rejoicing; as poor, yet making many rich; as having nothing, and yet possessing all things.

Matthew 13:44,52 Again, the kingdom of heaven is like to treasure hid in a field; the which when a man has found, he hides...

Ephesians 3:8 To me, who am less than the least of all saints, is this grace given...

Colossians 1:27 To whom God would make known what is the riches of the glory of this mystery among the Gentiles; which is Christ in you...

Colossians 2:3 In whom are hid all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge.

in.

2 Corinthians 5:1 For we know that if our earthly house of this tabernacle were dissolved, we have a building of God, an house not made with hands...

2 Corinthians 10:10 For his letters, say they, are weighty and powerful; but his bodily presence is weak, and his speech contemptible.

Judges 7:13,14,16-20 And when Gideon was come, behold, there was a man that told a dream to his fellow, and said, Behold, I dreamed a dream, and...

Lamentations 4:2 The precious sons of Zion, comparable to fine gold, how are they esteemed as earthen pitchers, the work of the hands of the potter!

1 Corinthians 1:28 And base things of the world, and things which are despised, has God chosen, yes, and things which are not...

1 Corinthians 4:9-13 For I think that God has set forth us the apostles last, as it were appointed to death: for we are made a spectacle to the world...

Galatians 4:13,14 You know how through infirmity of the flesh I preached the gospel to you at the first...

2 Timothy 2:20 But in a great house there are not only vessels of gold and of silver, but also of wood and of earth; and some to honor...

that.

2 Corinthians 3:5,6 Not that we are sufficient of ourselves to think any thing as of ourselves; but our sufficiency is of God...

2 Corinthians 12:7-9 And lest I should be exalted above measure through the abundance of the revelations, there was given to me a thorn in the flesh...

2 Corinthians 13:4 For though he was crucified through weakness, yet he lives by the power of God. For we also are weak in him...

1 Corinthians 2:3-5 And I was with you in weakness, and in fear, and in much trembling...

Ephesians 1:19,20 And what is the exceeding greatness of his power to us-ward who believe, according to the working of his mighty power...

Ephesians 2:5,8,9 Even when we were dead in sins, has quickened us together with Christ, (by grace you are saved;)...

Colossians 2:12 Buried with him in baptism, wherein also you are risen with him through the faith of the operation of God...

1 Thessalonians 1:5 For our gospel came not to you in word only, but also in power, and in the Holy Ghost, and in much assurance...

Library
The Winsome Jesus.
The Face of Jesus: Jesus drew crowds, men, women, children, bad people, enemies--His personality--face--impress of experiences--the glory of God in that face, 2 Corinthians 4:6. Hebrews 1:3. The Music of God in the Voice of Jesus: the eye--Jesus' eyes, Luke 4:16-30. John 8:59. 10:31. 7:32, 45, 46. 18:6. Mark 10:32. 9:36. 10:13-16. Luke 19:48.--His voice, Matthew 26:30. personal touch, Matthew 8:3, 15. 9:29. 17:7. 20:34. Mark 1:41. 7:33. Luke 5:13. 22:51. (John 14:16-20). His presence irresistible.
S. D. Gordon—Quiet Talks about Jesus

In the Bitter Cold of Winter the Trees Stand Bare of Leaves...
1. In the bitter cold of winter the trees stand bare of leaves, and it seems as if their life, too, had departed for ever, yet in the spring time they put forth new leaves and beautiful flowers, and the fruit begins to show itself. So was it with Me in My crucifixion and resurrection, and so it is with my faithful cross-bearers (2 Cor. iv.8-11; vi.4-10). Though they seem to be crushed and dead beneath their cross they still put forth the beautiful flowers and glorious fruits of eternal life which
Sadhu Sundar Singh—At The Master's Feet

Memoir of John Bunyan
THE FIRST PERIOD. THIS GREAT MAN DESCENDED FROM IGNOBLE PARENTS--BORN IN POVERTY--HIS EDUCATION AND EVIL HABITS--FOLLOWS HIS FATHER'S BUSINESS AS A BRAZIER--ENLISTS FOR A SOLDIER--RETURNS FROM THE WARS AND OBTAINS AN AMIABLE, RELIGIOUS WIFE--HER DOWER. 'We have this treasure in earthen vessels, that the excellency of the power may be of God, and not of us.'--2 Cor 4:7 'For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, saith the Lord.'--Isaiah 55:8. 'Though ye have lien among the
John Bunyan—The Works of John Bunyan Volumes 1-3

Preaching (ii. ).
For Thy sake, beloved Lord, I will labour in Thy Word; On the knees, in patient prayer; At the desk, with studious care; In the pulpit, seeking still There to utter all Thy will. I pursue the subject of attractive preaching, taking still the word attractive in its worthiest sense, and again laying stress on the necessity of attractiveness of the right sort. We have looked a little already at some of the external requisites to this end; now let us approach some which have to do with matter more
Handley C. G. Moule—To My Younger Brethren

Cross References
Judges 7:2
The LORD said to Gideon, "You have too many men. I cannot deliver Midian into their hands, or Israel would boast against me, 'My own strength has saved me.'

Job 4:19
how much more those who live in houses of clay, whose foundations are in the dust, who are crushed more readily than a moth!

Job 10:9
Remember that you molded me like clay. Will you now turn me to dust again?

Job 33:6
I am the same as you in God's sight; I too am a piece of clay.

Lamentations 4:2
How the precious children of Zion, once worth their weight in gold, are now considered as pots of clay, the work of a potter's hands!

John 16:33
"I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world."

1 Corinthians 2:5
so that your faith might not rest on human wisdom, but on God's power.

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