1 Timothy 1:5
Now the end of the commandment is charity out of a pure heart, and of a good conscience, and of faith unfeigned:
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(5) Now the end.—The Greek word should be translated But the end. Though Timothy must resist and oppose these false teachers with all courage and firmness, still he must not forget what was the real end, the aim, the purpose of all Christian teaching, which, the Apostle reminds him, is Love.

Of the commandment.—There is no reference here to the famous commandments of the Law of Moses. “Commandment” may be paraphrased in this place by “practical teaching.”

With the false teachers’ sickly “fables,” which only led to disputing, St. Paul contrasts that “healthy practical teaching,” the end and aim of which was love, or charity.

Charity.—That love, or broad, comprehensive charity, towards men, so nobly described in 1 Corinthians 13.

Out of a pure heart, and of a good conscience, and of faith unfeigned.—This broad all-embracing love, or charity, emanates only from “a pure heart:” i.e., a heart free from selfish desires and evil passions. The “pure in heart” alone, said the Lord, in the sermon on the mount (Matthew 5:8), shall enjoy the beatific vision of God.

And of a good conscience.—This “charity” must also spring from a conscience unburthened of its load of guilt, from a conscience sprinkled with the precious blood, and so reconciled to God.

And of faith unfeigned.—And, lastly, the root of this “charity”—the end and aim of the practical teaching of the gospel preached by the Apostles—must be sought in “a faith unfeigned,” in a faith that consists in something more than in a few high-sounding words, which lay claim to a sure confidence that is not felt. The “unfeigned faith” of St. Paul is a faith rich in works rather than in words.

Without this faith, so real that its fruits are ever manifest, there can be no good conscience; without this conscience, washed by the precious blood, there can be no pure heart.

The error of the teachers of whom Timothy was warned, we see from the next verse, consisted not so much in false doctrines as in an utter neglect of inculcating the necessity of a pure, self-denying life. They preferred curious questions and speculative inquiries to the grave, simple gospel teaching which led men to live an earnest, loving life.

1 Timothy 1:5-7. Now the end — The scope, design, or substance; of the commandment — Or charge, rather, as παραγγελια properly signifies, being a noun derived from the verb, translated, that thou mightest charge, 1 Timothy 1:3. The apostle had desired Timothy to continue at Ephesus, that he might charge some to teach no other doctrine than what had been taught: here he informs him what the scope of his charge to these teachers was to be, namely, that instead of inculcating fables, &c., they should inculcate charity, or love to God and man, proceeding from a pure heart — That is, from a heart purified by the Word and Spirit of God, from the love of sin, the love of the world, and all inordinate self-love, and from all corrupt affections and dispositions; a good conscience — A conscience properly informed concerning sin and duty, thoroughly awakened and sprinkled from evil, or the guilt of sin, by the blood of Jesus, Hebrews 9:14; Hebrews 10:22; and faith unfeigned — Namely, in the truths and promises of the gospel, and in Christ, in whom those truths and promises are yea and amen. Observe, reader, this faith unfeigned is the root of the other particulars here named. By it, and by it only, we obtain deliverance from the guilt and power of sin, essential to a good conscience; by it our hearts are purified, Acts 15:9; 1 Peter 1:22 : and as it always worketh by love, (Galatians 5:6,) by it we obtain the love of God and of all mankind, the source, yea, and essence, of all piety and virtue. Here therefore the apostle asserts that the love which he speaks of, proceeding from the principles here named, is the scope and design of the gospel doctrine, or of the whole Christian institution, as it is indeed also of the moral law, and the writings of the prophets. From which — Love, accompanied with these other particulars; some having swerved — The verb αστοχησαντες, thus rendered, signifies to err from the mark at which a person shoots or aims; and is elegantly used in this place, as τελος, the scope aimed at, was introduced in the preceding verse: have turned aside into vain jangling — Unprofitable disputes and discourses. An affectation of high and extensive knowledge sets a man at the greatest distance from faith, and all proper sense of true experimental religion: and of all vanities none are more vain than dry, empty disputes on the things of God. Desiring to be teachers of the law — Greek, νομοδιδασκαλοι, a word which, in the evangelists, is rendered doctors of the law, of the same import with the Hebrew word rabbis. And though it is not used exactly in that sense here, yet there seems to be some reference to it: understanding neither what they say — The very things they utter; nor whereof they affirm — The subject they speak of, or concerning which they express themselves strongly and confidently, as the words περι τινων διαβεβαιουνται properly signify.1:5-11 Whatever tends to weaken love to God, or love to the brethren, tends to defeat the end of the commandment. The design of the gospel is answered, when sinners, through repentance towards God and faith in Jesus Christ, are brought to exercise Christian love. And as believers were righteous persons in God's appointed way, the law was not against them. But unless we are made righteous by faith in Christ, really repenting and forsaking sin, we are yet under the curse of the law, even according to the gospel of the blessed God, and are unfit to share the holy happiness of heaven.Now the end of the commandment - see the notes on Romans 10:4. In order that Timothy might fulfil the design of his appointment, it was necessary that he should have a correct view of the design of the law. The teachers to whom he refers insisted much on its obligation and importance; and Paul designs to say that he did not intend to teach that the law was of no consequence, and was not, when properly understood, obligatory. Its nature and use, however, was not correctly understood by them, and hence it was of great importance for Timothy to inculcate correct views of the purpose for which it was given. The word "commandment" here some have understood of the gospel (Doddridge), others of the particular command which the apostle here gives to Timothy (Benson, Clarke, and Macknight); but it seems more naturally to refer to all that God had commanded - his whole law. As the error of these teachers arose from improper views of the nature and design of law, Paul says that that design should be understood. It was not to produce distinctions and angry contentions, and was not to fetter the minds of Christians with minute and burdensome observances, but it was to produce love.

Is charity - On the meaning of this word, see notes on 1 Corinthians 13:1.

Out of a pure heart - The love which is genuine must proceed from a holy heart. The commandment was not designed to secure merely the outward expressions of love, but that which had its seat in the heart.

And of a good conscience - A conscience free from guilt. Of course there can be no genuine love to God where the dictates of conscience are constantly violated, or where a man knows that he is continually doing wrong. If a man wishes to have the evidence of love to God, he must keep a good conscience. All pretended love, where a man knows that he is living in sin, is mere hypocrisy.

And of faith unfeigned - Undissembled confidence in God. This does seem to be intended specifically of faith in the Lord Jesus, but it means that all true love to God, such as this law would produce, must be based on confidence in him. How can anyone have love to him who has no confidence in him? Can we exercise love to a professed friend in whom we have no confidence? Faith, then, is as necessary under the law as it is under the gospel.

5. But—in contrast to the doctrine of the false teachers.

the end—the aim.

the commandment—Greek, "of the charge" which you ought to urge on your flock. Referring to the same Greek word as in 1Ti 1:3, 18; here, however, in a larger sense, as including the Gospel "dispensation of God" (see on [2463]1Ti 1:4; [2464]1Ti 1:11), which was the sum and substance of the "charge" committed to Timothy wherewith he should "charge" his flock.

charity—LOVE; the sum and end of the law and of the Gospel alike, and that wherein the Gospel is the fulfilment of the spirit of the law in its every essential jot and tittle (Ro 13:10). The foundation is faith (1Ti 1:4), the "end" is love (1Ti 1:14; Tit 3:15).

out of—springing as from a fountain.

pure heart—a heart purified by faith (Ac 15:9; 2Ti 2:22; Tit 1:15).

good conscience—a conscience cleared from guilt by the effect of sound faith in Christ (1Ti 1:19; 1Ti 3:9; 2Ti 1:3; 1Pe 3:21). Contrast 1Ti 4:2; Tit 1:15; compare Ac 23:1. John uses "heart," where Paul would use "conscience." In Paul the understanding is the seat of conscience; the heart is the seat of love [Bengel]. A good conscience is joined with sound faith; a bad conscience with unsoundness in the faith (compare Heb 9:14).

faith unfeigned—not a hypocritical, dead, and unfruitful faith, but faith working by love (Ga 5:6). The false teachers drew men off from such a loving, working, real faith, to profitless, speculative "questions" (1Ti 1:4) and jangling (1Ti 1:6).

Ver. 5,6 Now the end of the commandment is charity: the word translated commandment here is paraggelia, which rather signifies a particular charge given by superiors as to some thing, than a general law, Acts 5:28 16:24; and so in this chapter, 1 Timothy 1:18; which inclineth me to think, that though the proposition be true of the whole law of God, (for love is the fulfilling of the law), and more eminently of the Divine doctrine in the gospel, for the end and perfection it aims at and produces is a pure, ardent love of God, and of men for his sake, and of the gospel, yet it is rather here to be restrained to the commandment relating to preaching, or discoursing the revealed will of God relating to men’s salvation, the end of which is doubtless charity, which ought to be finis operantis, the end of the workman, what he ought to intend and aim at; and is finis operis, the effect of the work, viz. the begetting in the souls of people love to God and their neighbour, neither of which can rationally be obtained by preachers telling people idle stories, and filling their heads with idle questions and speculations.

Out of a pure heart: which love to God and men must proceed from a clean, and holy, and sincere heart.

And of a good conscience; and a good and holy life, when conscience doth not sourly reflect upon men for presumptuous miscarriages.

And of faith unfeigned; which must all be rooted in and attended with a faith unfeigned; rooted in it, as faith signifies a steady assent to Divine revelation; attended with it, as it signifies the soul’s repose and rest upon Christ for the fulfilling of the promises annexed to him that believes and liveth up to such propositions. These are the noble ends of the whole law of God, and particularly of the charge or command God hath given ministers as to preaching, which can by no means be attained by teachers’ discoursing fables and endless genealogies to people, nor by people’s attendance to such discourses, for they can only fill people’s heads with notions and unprofitable questions, which serve to gender strife and contention amongst people, instead of love either to God or men, and so to defile instead of purifying the heart, and have no influence at all upon a holy life, all which can grow out of no root but an unfeigned faith.

From which; from which things (for the article is plural, wn); from which commandment, and from the end of which commandment, from which pure heart, good conscience, and faith unfeigned.

Some having swerved: astochsantev, the word signifies to wander from a scope or mark. Some men either propounding to themselves ends in their discourses to people different from the command concerning preaching, and the true end of that, or at least wandering from that true end, they have turned aside. To do an action well, two things are necessary:

1. The propounding to ourselves a right end;

2. A moving to it by due means and in right order: whoso faileth in either of these, can no more do an action well, than he can shoot an arrow well, that either eyeth no mark, or levelleth his arrow quite beside it.

The preachers reflected on by the apostle, either never considered the true end of preaching, or never regarded it in their action; this made them turn aside from theology to mataeology, from preaching to vain jangling; so we translate it, but the word signifieth foolish talking; so we translate the adjective: Titus 1:10, and so the word properly signifieth, any kind of foolish, impertinent discourse, either serving to no good end, or at least not that which the discourse pretendeth to. And indeed all discourses of fables, and unprofitable, idle questions, tending not to edifying, is no better than foolish talking. Now the end of the commandment is charity,.... By the "commandment" may be meant, the order given to Timothy, or the charge committed to him; see 1 Timothy 1:18 to forbid the teaching of another doctrine, and to avoid fables and endless genealogies; the end and design of which was to cultivate peace, to maintain and secure brotherly love, which cannot long subsist, when a different doctrine is introduced and received; and to promote godly edification, which is brought about by charity or love, for charity edifies; but is greatly hindered by speculative notions, fabulous stories, and genealogical controversies and contentions: or by it may be intended the ministration of the Gospel, called the commandment, 1 Timothy 6:14, because enjoined the preachers of it by Christ; the end of which is to bring persons to the obedience of faith, or to that faith which works by love, to believe in Christ, to love the Lord, his truths, ordinances, people, and ways; or rather the moral law is designed, which is often called the commandment, Romans 7:8 since of this the apostle treats in some following verses; the end and design, sum and substance, completion and perfection of which law are love to God, and love to one another; see Matthew 22:36, which charity or love, when right,

springs out of a pure heart; which no man has naturally; every man's heart is naturally impure; nor can he make it pure; by the strength of nature, or by anything that he can do: there are some that are pure in their own eyes, and in the esteem of others, and yet are not cleansed from their filthiness, and are inwardly full of all manner of impurity; though there are some that have pure hearts, and they are such, who have clean hearts created in them by the Spirit of God; who are regenerated and sanctified by him; whose hearts are purified by faith; and who have their hearts sprinkled from an evil conscience by the blood of Christ; and who are not double minded, speak with a heart and a heart, but whose hearts are sincere and upright, and without hypocrisy; so that charity or love, from such a heart, is love without dissimulation, which is not in tongue and words only, but in deed and in truth; it is an unfeigned love, or loving with a pure heart fervently,

And of a good conscience; there is a conscience in every man, that accuses or excuses, unless it is cauterized or seared: but this conscience is naturally evil and defiled, and does not perform its office aright; either it takes no notice of, and is not concerned about sin, and has no remorse for it, or it takes notice of little things, and lets pass greater ones, or speaks peace when destruction is at hand: a good conscience is a conscience purified by the grace of God, and purged from dead works by the blood of Christ; under the influence of which a man acts uprightly in the discharge of his duty, and exercises a conscience void of offence towards God and man; and charity, proceeding from such a conscience, is of the right kind: and of faith unfeigned; with which a man really, and from the heart, believes what he professes; so did not Simon Magus, and all other temporary believers, whose faith is a feigned faith, a dead and inactive one; whereas true faith is an operative grace, it is attended with good works, and particularly it works by love: and that charity or love, which springs from faith unfeigned, is unfeigned love also, such as answers the design, and is the substance of the commandment. These words may be considered in a gradation, or as a spiritual genealogy, in opposition to the endless ones before mentioned, thus; that charity which is the end of the commandment comes out of a pure heart, out of which proceeds a good conscience, and from thence faith unfeigned. But the other way of interpreting seems best.

{4} Now the end of the {c} commandment is {d} charity out of a pure heart, and of a good conscience, and of faith unfeigned:

(4) The second admonition is, that the right use and practice of the doctrine must be joined with the doctrine. And that consists in pure charity, and a good conscience, and true faith.

(c) Of the Law.

(d) There is neither love without a good conscience, nor a good conscience without faith, nor faith without the word of God.

1 Timothy 1:5. Τὸ δὲ τέλος τῆς παραγγελίας ἐστὶν κ.τ.λ.] It cannot be denied that in παραγγελίας we have an echo of παραγγείλῃς in 1 Timothy 1:3; but it does not follow that we are to understand by it the command which the apostle gave to Timothy not to teach falsely (so Bengel: praecepti quod Ephesi urgere debes). It rather stands here in contrast with the ἑτεροδιδασκαλία just mentioned, and denotes the command which is serviceable to the οἰκονομία Θεοῦ (1 Timothy 1:4). It is equivalent to the ἐντολή in 1 Timothy 6:14, the evangelic law which forms the external rule for the conduct of Christians (Hofmann). The apostle alludes to this because he is about to pass to the doctrine of the heretics regarding the law.

It is wrong to understand by παραγγελία the Mosaic law (Calvin, Beza, and others), from which there would arise a thought foreign to the context; and it is unsatisfactory to take it in a general sense as “practical exhortation” (de Wette, Wiesinger, Plitt, Oosterzee), for in that case the imperative should have been used instead of ἐστιν. It is a peculiarity of the N. T. usage to take expressions which of themselves have a more general signification, and to mark them off with the definite article as ideas specifically Christian; thus τὸ εὐαγγέλιον, ἡ ὅδος (often in Acts), τὸ κήρυγμα, and others.

τέλος] is neither “fulfilment” nor “chief sum” (Luther, Erasmus: quod universam legis mosaicae vim compendio complectitur ac praestat est caritas), but “goal, scopus ad quem tendit παραγγελία” (Koppe, Wegscheider, de Wette, Wiesinger, and others[50]).

While the ἑτεροδιδασκαλία only causes ζητήσεις, which serve to engender divisions (γεννῶσι μάχας, 2 Timothy 2:23), the aim of the command of the gospel is love.

ἀγάπη ἐκ καθαρᾶς καρδίας κ.τ.λ.] The gospel proclaims to the believer one divine act, the reconciliation through Christ grounded in God’s love, and it demands also one human act, viz. love, for πλήρωμα νόμου ἡ ἀγάπη (Romans 13:10). Leo and Matthies wrongly explain ἀγάπη here of love to God and to one’s neighbour. Here and elsewhere in the N. T., where no other genitive of the object is added, we should understand by it love to one’s neighbour. The words following declare of what nature this love should be.

ἐκ καθαρᾶς καρδίας] καρδία denotes the inward centre of human life, especially as the seat of emotions and desires. Hence in regard to love it is often remarked that it must come from the καρδία (comp. Matthew 12:37), and from a heart that is pure, i.e. free from all self-seeking; 1 Peter 1:22 : ἐκ καθαρᾶς καρδίας ἀλλήλους ἀλαπήσατε ἐκτενῶς; comp. 1 Corinthians 13:5 : ἡ ἀγάπηοὐ ζητεῖ τὰ ἑαυτῆς.

The two additions that follow: καὶ συνειδήσεως ἀγαθῆς καὶ πίστεως ἀνυποκρίτου (as is clear from 1 Timothy 1:19; 1 Timothy 3:9; 1 Timothy 4:2), are added with special reference to the heretics, who are reproached with having both an evil conscience and a pretended faith.

συνείδησις ἀγαθή (1 Timothy 1:19; 1 Peter 3:16; καλή, Hebrews 13:18; καθαρά, 1 Timothy 3:9; 2 Timothy 1:3) is not “the conscience pure from the guilt of sin” (de Wette), nor “the conscience reconciled with God” (van Oosterzee, Plitt), nor “the consciousness of peace with God” (Hofmann). Although “a conscience not reconciled with God and one’s neighbours cannot love purely,” there is no hint here of the element of reconciliation. It is simply the consciousness of cherishing no impure, wicked purposes.[51]

πίστις] is not confidence towards one’s neighbour, as it might be here when placed in connection with the idea of love; but, in accordance with the contents of the epistle, is “faith,” which in Galatians 5:6 also is denoted as the ground of love.

ἀνυπόκριτος (also in Romans 12:9; 2 Corinthians 6:6; 1 Peter 1:22, connected with the idea of love) denotes truth and uprightness in opposition to all flattery. It is used here not without allusion to the heretics who conducted themselves as believers in order to gain a more easy admission for their heresies.

[50] Arriani dissertt. Epict. Book I. chap. 20: τέλος ἐστὶ τὸ ἕπεσθαι θεοῖς.

[51] Otto on 2 Timothy 1:3 (pp. 302 f.) explains the expression καθαρὰ συνείδησις rightly (following Matthies) as “the self-consciousness of pure thoughts and endeavours;” but, on the other hand, he is wrong in regard to 1 Timothy 1:19, where he interprets ἀγαθὴ συνείδ. as “the conscience innocent and expectant of all salvation,” “the consciousness of divine grace supporting itself by daily putting to death the old nature.”5. Now the end of the commandment] Better, But the end of the charge, ‘but’ rather than ‘now’ because it is not so much the commencement of a new paragraph as a positive statement of the true aim of the ministry to counteract the statement just made of false aims, so completing the paragraph. ‘The charge,’ the verb or noun occurs seven times in this epistle, and as thus constantly present to St Paul might almost give a second title to the epistle of ‘The Chief Pastor’s Charge,’ 1 Timothy 4:11, 1 Timothy 5:7, 1 Timothy 6:13-17. Here one of the best comments is in the Bishop’s words at the Ordination of Priests in the English Prayer Book, ‘Be thou a faithful dispenser of the word of God,’ ‘Take thou authority to preach the word of God.’

charity] love, a life of active love and union; the opposite of the ‘strifes’ which result from ‘questionings,’ 2 Timothy 2:23. It is important to keep the English word ‘love’ as the equivalent of the Greek word agapè throughout the New Testament, as the Revisers have very properly done. It is a characteristic word, and only confusion is introduced in the mind of English readers by sometimes rendering it ‘charity.’

a pure heart] thoroughly bent on turning from sin and youthful lusts, honestly growing in righteousness, 2 Timothy 2:22.

of a good conscience, and of faith unfeigned] ‘Conscience’ is one of St Paul’s most characteristic words; out of 32 places where it occurs in N.T. 23 are of his using either in speech or writing, six of these belonging to the Pastoral Epistles. See Appendix, D. Literally the word means ‘knowing with’ and Bp Westcott draws out this idea in his definition, “It presents man as his own judge. Man does not stand alone. He has direct knowledge of a law—a law of God—which claims his obedience, and he has direct knowledge also of his own conduct. He cannot then but compare them and give sentence. His ‘conscience’ as the power directing this process is regarded apart from himself (Romans 9:1; Romans 2:15).” See his Additional Note, Hebrews 9:9.1 Timothy 1:5. Τὸ τέλος, the end) to which all things tend. The article denotes the subject. Whoever rightly looks to the end, cannot suffer his energies to be diffused on other things. Paul does not, even to Timothy, write about profound mysteries in particular, in order that he may the rather rebuke the Gentiles; the governor of a church ought to look to the things which are necessary, not to such as are sublime (too high-flown), in discharging the duties of his office.—τῆς παραγγελίας, of the commandment) which you ought to urge upon men at Ephesus, 1 Timothy 1:3; 1 Timothy 1:18.—ἀγάπη, love) The foundation is faith, 1 Timothy 1:4 : the end is love, 1 Timothy 1:14; Titus 3:15. Contentions are unfavourable to this love.—καθαρᾶς, pure) 2 Timothy 2:22; Titus 1:15.—συνειδήσεως ἀγαθῆς, a good conscience) ch. 1 Timothy 3:9; 2 Timothy 1:3; 1 John 3:19, note.[3] Here, with Paul, conscience is in the understanding; the heart is the seat of love. The former would be in the idea, the latter in the desire; comp. Matthew 22:37, note.[4]—πίστεως, of faith) Faith towards God becomes stronger when the heart is purified in respect of our neighbour, and when the conscience is cleansed (rectified) in respect of one’s self; wherefore faith is put in the third place. Pure faith and a good conscience are also treated of conjointly, in 1 Timothy 1:19, and ch. 1 Timothy 4:1-2.

[3] Peter and Paul alone use the term συνείδησις, conscience. John uses καρδία instead.—ED.

[4] Joh. Jam. Sirbius says, “there are three foundations of all that is found in man, Idea, Desire, Motion.”Verse 5. - But for now, A.V.; charge for commandment, A.V.; love for charity, A.V.; a good for of a good, and faith for of faith, A.V. But the end of the charge. Before proceeding with his sentence, in which he was about solemnly to commit the trust of the episcopate of the Church of Ephesus to Timothy, he breaks off abruptly to show the beneficent character of the charge, viz. the furtherance of that brotherly love and purity of heart and life which are the true fruit of the gospel dispensation, but which some, by their false doctrine, were so ruthlessly impeding. Each of these phrases, "a pure heart" and "a good conscience" and "faith unfeigned," seems to rebuke by contrast the merely ceremonial cleanness and the defiled conscience and the merely nominal Christianity of these heretical Judaizers (comp. Titus 1:10-16). The end of the commandment (τέλος τῆς παραγγελίας)

The article with "Commandment" points back to might'st charge, 1 Timothy 1:3. Rend. therefore, of the charge. Τέλος end, aim, that which the charge contemplates.

Love (ἀγάπη)

See on Galatians 5:22. The questionings, on the contrary, engendered strifes (2 Timothy 2:23). Love to men is meant, as meant as N.T. When the word is used absolutely. See Romans 13:10.

Out of a pure heart (ἐκ καθαρᾶς καρδίας)

Comp. Luke 10:27, "Thou shalt love the Lord thy God out of they whole heart (ἐξ ὅλης καρδίας σου), and in or with (ἐν) thy whole soul," etc. For a pure heart, comp. 2 Timothy 2:22. Καθαρός pure in Paul only Romans 14:20. The phrase a pure heart occurs, outside of the Pastorals only in 1 Peter 1:22. For καρδία heart see on Romans 1:21.

A good conscience(συνειδήσεως ἀγαθῆς)

Comp 2 Timothy 1:3. Συνείδησις conscience is common in Paul. See on 1 Peter 3:16.

Faith unfeigned (πίστεως ἀνυποκρίτου)

Ἁνυπόκριτος unfeigned twice in Paul, Romans 12:9; 2 Corinthians 6:6, both times as an attribute of love. In James 3:17, it is an attribute of wisdom, and in 1 Peter 1:22, of brotherly love. Notice the triad, love, conscience, faith. There is nothing un-Pauline in the association of conscience and faith, although, as a fact, Paul does not formally associate them. In 1 Corinthians 8:7, 1 Corinthians 8:10, 1 Corinthians 8:12, conscience is associated with knowledge.

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