1 Corinthians 16:5
Now I will come to you, when I shall pass through Macedonia: for I do pass through Macedonia.
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)
(5) For I do pass through Macedonia.—A misrepresentation of these words gives rise to the incorrect statement that this Epistle was written at Philippi, which is to be found in the subscription at the end of this chapter in our English Bible. The Apostle does not here refer to where he is at the moment of writing, but to his intention regarding his journey. He had intended to go first to Corinth (see 2Corinthians 1:15-16), but he has altered that plan, and says that his intention now is to pass through Macedonia first, and then visit Corinth. Then he says, “For I do pass through Macedonia.” To this intention the Apostle adheres. (See Introduction.)

1 Corinthians 16:5-9. Now I will come unto you — If Providence permit; when I shall pass — Or rather, when I shall have passed; through Macedonia; for I do pass through Macedonia — I purpose going that way, that I may visit the churches there, and receive their collections. And it may be that I will abide, &c. — That I shall continue some time; yea, and winter with you — Having spent the summer and autumn in my progress through Macedonia. That ye may bring me on my journey — That some of you may accompany me a little way, and help me forward toward Jerusalem, or whithersoever else I go — Through whatever parts I may pass thither. For, &c. — As if he had said, I speak of coming at some future time; for I will not see you now — In my way from hence to Macedonia. But I trust — That the little delay, which this plan may occasion, will be made up to your satisfaction; for I purpose to tarry a while with you — When I come, which the necessities of the churches of Macedonia will not at present give me leave to do. But I will tarry at Ephesus until Pentecost — A plain intimation this that he was now at Ephesus, and consequently that the inscription added at the end of this epistle, which tells us it was written from Philippi, is far from being authentic. Indeed, this may be gathered also from the salutations in the close of this epistle, which are not from the churches of Macedonia, but from Asia. And, it may be affirmed in general, that, as Dr. Doddridge justly observes, no credit is to be given to these additions, which have been presumptuously made to the epistles, and very imprudently retained. For a great door and effectual is opened to me — “The door of a house being a passage into it, the opening of a door, in the eastern phrase, signified the affording a person an opportunity of doing a thing. See Colossians 4:3; Hosea 2:15. The apostle’s long abode at Ephesus was owing to his great success in converting the Ephesians, and such strangers as had occasion to resort to that metropolis. But about the time this letter was written, his success was greater than common. For many, who used curious arts, the arts of magic and divination, were converted, and burned their books, containing the secrets of these arts, Acts 19:17-20. This so enraged the idolaters at Ephesus, but especially the craftsmen, that they raised the great tumult described Acts 19:23-41.” — Macknight. Therefore the apostle adds, and there are many adversaries — Many opposers, who, (he hereby insinuates,) if he were to leave Ephesus immediately, might perhaps take advantage of his absence, to the great injury of the new-planted church there. 16:1-9 The good examples of other Christians and churches should rouse us. It is good to lay up in store for good uses. Those who are rich in this world, should be rich in good works, 1Ti 6:17,18. The diligent hand will not make rich, without the Divine blessing, Pr 10:4,22. And what more proper to stir us up to charity to the people and children of God, than to look at all we have as his gift? Works of mercy are real fruits of true love to God, and are therefore proper services on his own day. Ministers are doing their proper business, when putting forward, or helping works of charity. The heart of a Christian minister must be towards the people among whom he has laboured long, and with success. All our purposes must be made with submission to the Divine providence, Jas 4:15. Adversaries and opposition do not break the spirits of faithful and successful ministers, but warm their zeal, and inspire them with fresh courage. A faithful minister is more discouraged by the hardness of his hearers' hearts, and the backslidings of professors, than by the enemies' attempts.Now I will come unto you - I purpose to come unto you. He had expected to see them on his way to Macedonia, but, on some account, had been induced to abandon that design. See the notes at 2 Corinthians 1:15-17.

When I shall pass through Macedonia - When I shall have passed through Macedonia. He proposed to go to Macedonia first, and, having passed through that country, visiting the churches, to go to Corinth. For the situation of Macedonia, see the notes at Acts 16:9.

For I do pass through Macedonia - I design to do it. It is my present intention. Though he had abandoned, from some cause, the design of passing through Corinth on his way to Macedonia, yet he had not given up the design itself. It was still his intention to go there.

5-7. His first intention had been (2Co 1:15, 16) to pass through them (Corinth) to Macedonia, and again return to them from Macedonia, and so to Judea; this he had announced in the lost epistle (1Co 5:9); now having laid aside this intention (for which he was charged with levity, 2Co 1:17, &c., whereas it was through lenity, 2Co 1:23; 2:1), he announces his second plan of "not seeing them now by the way," but "passing through Macedonia" first on his way to them, and then "tarrying a while," and even "abiding and wintering with them."

for I do pass—as much as to say, "This is what I at last resolve upon" (not as the erroneous subscription of the Epistle represents it, as if he was THEN at Philippi, on his way through Macedonia); implying that there had been some previous communication upon the subject of the journey, and also that there had been some indecisiveness in the apostle's plan [Paley]. In accordance with his second plan, we find him in Macedonia when Second Corinthians was written (2Co 2:13; 8:1; 9:2, 4), and on his way to Corinth (2Co 12:14; 13:1; compare Ac 20:1, 2). "Pass through" is opposed to "abide" (1Co 16:6). He was not yet in Macedonia (as 1Co 16:8 shows), but at Ephesus; but he was thinking of passing through it (not abiding as he purposed to do at Corinth).

See Poole on "1 Corinthians 16:4" Now I will come unto you,.... Which he again assures them of, as being his real intention and design; though some had given out that he would not come to them any more, and hoped they should never see him any more; see 1 Corinthians 4:18.

When I shall pass through Macedonia; hereby fixing the time when he intended to visit them after he had gone through that country, and had received their collections for the saints at Jerusalem, which the churches there so generously made, and pressed him to the ministering of, of which he speaks in his next epistle.

For I do pass through Macedonia; not that he was then passing through Macedonia, or was in it, and so at Philippi, from whence this epistle is said to be written, as the subscription at the end of it expresses, for he was now at Ephesus; see 1 Corinthians 16:8 and from thence was this epistle written; he was not in Macedonia till some time after, see 2 Corinthians 2:12 but the sense is, that he should take his tour through Macedonia; and so the Vulgate Latin version renders it, "for I shall pass through Macedonia"; and so coming into Greece, he intended to come to Corinth, and stay some time with them.

Now I will come unto you, when I shall pass through Macedonia: for I do pass through Macedonia.
EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)
1 Corinthians 16:5 f. His arrival, which had not hitherto been specifically determined, is now defined by him as respects its tim.

ὅταν Μακεδ. διέλθω] According to 2 Corinthians 1:15, it had previously been his plan to proceed from Ephesus by Corinth to Macedonia, from Macedonia again back to Corinth, and then onward to Jerusalem. This plan, however, he has altered (see 2 Corinthians 1:15; 2 Corinthians 1:23 ff.), and he now intends to journey first through Macedonia, and then to Corinth, where he thinks perhaps (τυχόν) to spend some time, or even to winter. In the second Epistle, too, we see him actually engaged on this journey in Macedonia (2 Corinthians 2:13; 2 Corinthians 8:1; 2 Corinthians 9:2; 2 Corinthians 9:4), and upon the way to Corinth (1 Corinthians 2:1, 1 Corinthians 12:14, 1 Corinthians 13:1, al.). Acts 20:1-2, agrees with thi.

Μακεδ. γὰρ διέρχ.] is not a parenthesis, but the Μακεδ. put first corresponds to the πρὸς ὑμᾶς δέ which follows, and the διέρχομαι to the παραμενῶ: for Macedonia I journey through (without halting), but with you will I perhaps remain. The present διέρχ. designates the future as present in conception, i.e. conceived as quite certain. From the erroneous rendering: I am on my journey through Macedonia, arose the erroneous statement in the subscription, that the letter was written from Philipp.

παραμενῶ] he remained three months, Acts 20:2.

ἵνα ὑμεῖς κ.τ.λ.] ὑμεῖς has the emphasis. Were Paul to remain in another church, others would give him the escort; there is something kindly both in ἵνα and in ὑμεῖς, the unprompted thoughtfulness of lov.

τυχόν] forsan, only here in the New Testament, very common in Greek writer.

οὗ] As Luke 10:1. Bornemann, Schol. in loc.; Kühner, II. p. 318. Whither his thoughts, however, were generally turned at that time, see Acts 19:21.1 Corinthians 16:5-12. § 58. VISITS TO CORINTH. The arrangements for the Collection have led P. to speak of his approaching visit to Cor[2629], and he explains more definitely his plans in this respect (1 Corinthians 16:5-9). Timothy’s coming, though not certain, may be looked for speedily; and the Ap., with some solicitude, asks for him considerate treatment (1 Corinthians 16:10 f.). Apollos is not coming at present, as the Cor[2630] seem to have desired and as Paul had urged upon him; he prefers to wait until circumstances are more favourable (1 Corinthians 16:12).

[2629] Corinth, Corinthian or Corinthians.

[2630] Corinth, Corinthian or Corinthians.5. I will come unto you, when I shall pass through Macedonia] Rather, ‘when I have passed through Macedonia.’ Here the Apostle announces the change of a purpose previously intimated—whether in the lost Epistle, or in some other manner, it is impossible to say—of coming first to Corinth, passing on to Macedonia, and returning to Corinth. See 2 Corinthians 1:15-16. The reason of this change is given in 2 Corinthians 1:23; 2 Corinthians 2:1; 2 Corinthians 7:8-12; 2 Corinthians 12:20-21; 2 Corinthians 13:2; 2 Corinthians 13:10. For the imputations which it brought on the Apostle, see 2 Corinthians 1:17.

for I do pass through Macedonia] This passage has been translated, for I am passing through Macedonia, a rendering which is shewn to be erroneous by 1 Corinthians 16:8, in which St Paul announces his intention of remaining at Ephesus for some time longer. But it has led to the incorrect note at the end of the Epistle in our version, which states that the Epistle was written at Philippi. See Introduction.1 Corinthians 16:5. Ἐλεύσομαι δὲ, but I will come) He had said 1 Corinthians 16:2 when I shall have come.—ὃταν Μακεδονίαν) In this one passage an error in a single accent was discovered in the smaller edition, after a new preface had been written to it; and we are forced to mention this only on the ground, that the affirmation of that preface, in respect to our edition being correct even to the smallest point, may be consistent with itself.—διέρχομαι, I pass) we have here the figure Ploce,[156] of which the antithesis follows, to pass through, to abide, 1 Corinthians 16:6. Wherefore we must not press the present tense. He was not yet in Macedonia, but he was thinking of it, 1 Corinthians 16:8.

[156] See Append. The same word twice used, once in the sense of the word itself, and again used to express an attribute of it.Verse 5. - When I shall pass through Macedonia; rather, when 1 have passed through Macedonia. For I do pass through Macedonia; rather, for 1 mean to pass through Macedonia. We learn from 2 Corinthians 1:15, 16, that it had been St. Paul's intention to sail from Ephesus to Corinth, thence, after a brief stay, to proceed to Macedonia, and on his return to come again for a longer stay at Corinth on his way to Judaea. He had in an Epistle, now lost (see 1 Corinthians 5:9), announced to them this intention, he changed his plan because, in the present disgraceful state of disorganization into which the Church had fallen, he felt that he could not visit them without being compelled to exercise a severity which, he hoped, might be obviated by writing to them and delaying his intended visit. Nothing but his usual delicacy and desire to spare them prevented him from stating all this more fully (2 Corinthians 1:23; 2 Corinthians 2:1). Mistaking the kindness of his purpose, the Corinthians accused him of levity. He defends himself from this charge in the Second Epistle, and he carried out the plan which he here announces (2 Corinthians 2:13; 2 Corinthians 8:1; 2 Corinthians 9:2, 4; 2 Corinthians 12:14; 2 Corinthians 13:1).
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