1 Corinthians 12:24
For our comely parts have no need: but God has tempered the body together, having given more abundant honor to that part which lacked.
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)
(24) For our comely parts have no need.—These words (better, and our comely parts have no need) conclude the former verse. The words, “But God hath tempered,” commence a new sentence, in which the natural practice of covering parts of the body is stated to be in harmony with God’s evident intention.

1 Corinthians 12:24-26. For our comely and graceful parts have no need — Of being so adorned, as they appear to greater advantage uncovered; but God hath tempered the body together Συνεκερασε, hath attempered and united in just proportions the several parts thereof; having given — To such as are naturally weak and without beauty; more abundant honour — Through their greater efficacy in the nourishment and preservation of the body, and by causing them to be cared for and served by the noblest parts. That there should be no schism in the body — No division of separate interests; but that the members should have the same care one for another — As being each an important part of the whole. And whether one member suffer, all the members — In consequence of their close union with, and dependance on each other, should suffer with it — As losing the assistance of the disabled member, and concerned to remove the cause of its suffering. Or one member be honoured — Clothed and gratified; all the members should rejoice with it — Deriving advantage from its welfare, and the ornament of one part being looked upon as that of the whole. “By comparing schism in the church to schism in the body, we are taught that it consists in a natural want of affection in some of the members toward their fellow-members, whereby contentions and animosities are produced. Further, by showing that the members of the body are so united as to be necessary to each other’s existence, the apostle hath taught us that there should be no envy nor strife among the disciples of Christ; but that each, by the right exercise of his proper gift, should assist his neighbour, and rejoice when his welfare is promoted.”12:12-26 Christ and his church form one body, as Head and members. Christians become members of this body by baptism. The outward rite is of Divine institution; it is a sign of the new birth, and is called therefore the washing of regeneration, Tit 3:5. But it is by the Spirit, only by the renewing of the Holy Ghost, that we are made members of Christ's body. And by communion with Christ at the Lord's supper, we are strengthened, not by drinking the wine, but by drinking into one Spirit. Each member has its form, place, and use. The meanest makes a part of the body. There must be a distinction of members in the body. So Christ's members have different powers and different places. We should do the duties of our own place, and not murmur, or quarrel with others. All the members of the body are useful and necessary to each other. Nor is there a member of the body of Christ, but may and ought to be useful to fellow-members. As in the natural body of man, the members should be closely united by the strongest bonds of love; the good of the whole should be the object of all. All Christians are dependent one upon another; each is to expect and receive help from the rest. Let us then have more of the spirit of union in our religion.For our comely parts - The face, etc. "Have no need." No need of clothing or ornament.

But God hath tempered the body together - Literally, "mingled" or mixed; that is, has made to coalesce, or strictly and closely joined. He has formed a strict union; he has made one part dependent on another, and necessary to the harmony and proper action of another. Every part is useful, and all are suited to the harmonious action of the whole. God has so arranged it, in order to produce harmony and equality in the body, that those parts which are less comely by nature should be more adorned and guarded by apparel.

Having given more abundant honour ... - By making it necessary that we should labor in order to procure for it the needful clothing; thus making it more the object of our attention and care. We thus bestow more abundant honor upon those parts of the body which a suitable protection from cold, and heat, and storms, and the sense of comeliness, requires us to clothe and conceal. The "more abundant honor," therefore, refers to the greater attention, labor, and care which we bestow on those parts of the body.

24. tempered … together—on the principle of mutual compensation.

to that part which lacked—to the deficient part [Alford], (1Co 12:23).

God hath, in the wisdom of his providence, so ordered it, that as we have some parts of our body which are judged uncomely, and not for those noble uses that others are; so we have other parts that are, for use, more noble, yet in common repute more ignoble and uncomely: and the same wise God hath so built the body of man, as of both these to make a temperament so as they all concur in the composition of the same body, and more abundant honour in covering and clothing them is given to those parts, that, in the judgment of men, seemed most to lack honour, that their uncomeliness might by some artificial means be taken away. For our comely parts have no need,.... As the face, eyes, nose, lips, cheeks, &c. which stand in no need of an external covering, of any outward ornament: so such as are blessed with the bounties of nature and providence, with the gifts of the Holy Spirit, and are eminent for grace and holiness, and are enabled to walk worthy of their calling, and to have their conversations as become the Gospel of Christ, holding the mystery of the faith in a pure conscience, these have no need of such a covering, as the former have, to hide and conceal them from the world:

but God hath tempered the body together; he hath composed it in such a forth, constituted it in such an order, mixed and united all its parts in such a manner, as that they are all beneficial to each other; and such is the harmonious contexture of the whole, that it is a most beautiful structure:

having given more abundant honour to that part which lacked; or, as the Syriac version renders it, "which is the least"; and such is the temperament and constitution of the church, having mixed rich and poor persons, of greater and lesser gifts, together, for mutual good.

For our comely parts have no need: but God hath tempered the body together, having given more abundant honour to that part which lacked.
EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)
1 Corinthians 12:24. Τὰ δὲ εὐσχήμ. ἡμ. οὐ χρ. ἔχ.] which should be separated from what precedes it only by a comma, is not designed to set aside an objection (Chrysostom, Theophylact), but it appertains to the completeness of the subject that, after the ἀσχήμονα have been spoken of, the remark in question should be added regarding the εὐσχήμονα also, in order to let nothing be wanting in the exhibition of the adjustment which takes place in connection with the variety of relation subsisting between the members. Εὐσχημοσύνην περισσ. ἔχειν naturally supplies itself from the foregoing context to οὐ χρείαν ἔχει. All the less ground is there for connecting ἡμῶν with οὐ χρ. ἔχ. (Hofmann, comp Osiander), which would give the thought: they stand in no need of us, which is too general, and which would still need to be limited again by what precedes it.

ἀλλʼ ὁ Θεὸς Κ.Τ.Λ[2000]] cannot be antithesis to the foregoing negative (Hofmann), which would bring the special subordinate thought οὐ χρείαν ἔχει into a connection quite disproportionately grand and far transcending it. There should, on the contrary, be a full stop placed before ἀλλʼ, so as to mark the beginning of a new sentence; and ἀλλʼ rather breaks off (at, see Baeumlein, Partik. p. 15) the delineation of the mutual relations of the members, which has been hitherto given, in order now to raise the readers to the higher point of view from which this relationship is to be regarded, that of the divine appointment and destination.

συνεκέρασε] He has mingled together, i.e. united into one whole out of differently constituted parts.

τῷ ὑστεροῦντι] to that which stands after, remaining back behind others, 1 Corinthians 1:7, 1 Corinthians 8:8; Plato, Pol. vii. p. 539 E, Epin. p. 987 D (see also on Matthew 19:20), i.e. to the part which, according to human estimation, is meaner than others.[2001]

περισσ. δοὺς τιμ.] ΔΟΎς is contemporaneous with συνεκέρασε: so that He gave, namely, when He granted to them, according to 1 Corinthians 12:22-23, respectively their greater necessity and the destination of being clad in a more honourable and more seemly way.

[2000] .τ.λ. καὶ τὰ λοιπά.

[2001] In how far, is stated in vv. 22, 23. By a very arbitrary importation of ideas, Hofmann holds that to τὸ ὑστεροῦν means the loins and genitals, a part of the body which, while falling behind the rest in honour, is distinguished by the honour of serving for the self-propagation of man. Neither that specific reference in itself, nor this more precise definition of the greater honour referred to,—out of place as it is in this connection,—could ever have been guessed by a reader from ver. 22 f.24. tempered] So Wiclif. Disposed, Tyndale. Temperavit, Vulgate. Literally, mingled together.1 Corinthians 12:24. Οὐ χρείαν ἔχει have no need) Why then is it necessary to adorn smooth cheeks with patches?[112]—ΣΥΝΕΚΈΡΑΣΕ) hath tempered together.—τιμήν, honour) comp. 1 Corinthians 12:23, at the beginning.

[112] As was the custom, in Bengel’s days, among fops.—ED.Tempered together (συνέκρασεν)

Only here and Hebrews 4:2. Lit., mixed together. Here the idea of mutual adjustment is added to that of mingling. Compare Plato on God's creating the soul and body. "He made her out of the following elements, and on this manner. Of the unchangeable and indivisible, and also of the divisible and corporeal He made (ξυνεκεράσατο compounded) a third sort of intermediate essence, partaking of the same and of the other, or diverse" (see the whole passage, "Timaeus," 35).

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