2 Corinthians 1:21
Now he which establishes us with you in Christ, and has anointed us, is God;
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(21) He which stablisheth us with you . . .—For a moment the thought of an apology for his own conduct is merged in the higher thought of the greatness of his mission. The word “stablisheth,” or “confirmed,” as in 1Corinthians 1:8, is connected with the previous “Amen” as the emphatic formula of ratification. In the insertion of “with you” we note St. Paul’s characteristic anxiety to avoid the appearance of claiming for himself what others might not claim with equal right. He repeats the confident hope which he had expressed in 1Corinthians 1:8.

In Christ.—Literally, into Christ, as though the result of the “establishing” was an actual incorporation with Him. This seems a truer interpretation than that which paraphrases, “confirms us in believing on Christ.”

And hath anointed us.—Literally, and anointed, as referring to a definite moment in the life of the disciples. The verb follows naturally on the mention of Christ the Anointed One. The time referred to is that when, on baptism or the laying on of hands (Acts 8:17), they had received the first-fruits of the gift of the Spirit, as in Acts 2:38; Acts 8:17; Acts 10:44; Acts 19:6; the “unction from the Holy One” (1John 2:20; 1John 2:27).

2 Corinthians


2 Corinthians 1:21

The connection in which these words occur is a remarkable illustration of the Apostle’s habit of looking at the most trivial things in the light of the highest truths. He had been obliged, as the context informs us, to abandon an intended visit to Corinth. The miserable crew of antagonists, who yelped at his heels all his life, seized this change of purpose as the occasion for a double-barrelled charge. They said he was either fickle and infirm of purpose, or insincere, and saying ‘Yea’ with one side of his mouth and ‘Nay’ with the other. He rebuts this accusation with apparently quite disproportionate vehemence and great solemnity. He points in the context to the faithfulness of God, to the firm Gospel which he had preached, to God’s great ‘Yea!’ as his answer. He says in effect, ‘How could I, with such a word burning in my heart, move in a region of equivocation and double-dealing; or how could I, whose whole being is saturated with so firm and stable a Gospel, be unreliable and fickle? The message must make the messenger like itself. Communion with a faithful God must make faith-keeping men; the certainties of God’s “Yea,” and the certitudes of our “Amen,” must influence our characters.’ And so to suppose that a man, influenced by Christianity, is a weak, double-dealing, unsteadfast man is a contradiction in terms. In the text he carries his argument a step further, and points, not only to the power of the Gospel to steady and confirm, but also to the fact that God Himself communicates to the believing soul Christian stability by the anointing which He bestows.

So, then, we have in these words the declaration that inflexible, immovable steadfastness is a mark of a Christian, and that this Christian steadfastness, without which there is no Christianity worth the naming, is a direct gift from God Himself by means of that great anointing which He confers upon men. To that thought, in one or two of its aspects, I ask your attention.

I. Notice the deep source of this Christian steadfastness.

The language of the original, carefully considered, seems to me to bear this interpretation, that the ‘anointing’ of the second clause is the means of the ‘establishing’ of the first-that is to say, that God confers Christian steadfastness of character by the bestowment of the unction of His Divine Spirit.

Now notice how deep Paul digs in order to get a foundation for a common virtue. There are many ways by which men may cultivate the tenacity and steadfastness of purpose which ought to mark us all. Much discipline may be brought to bear in order to secure that; but the text says that the deepest ground upon which it can be rested is nothing less divine and solemn than this, the actual communication to men, to feeble, vacillating, fluctuating wills, and treacherous, wayward, wandering hearts, of the strength and fixedness which are given by God’s own Spirit.

I suppose I need not remind you that from beginning to end of Scripture, ‘anointing’ is taken as the symbol of the communication of a true divine influence. The oil poured on the head of prophet, priest, and king was but the expression of the communication to the recipient of a divine influence which fitted him as well as designated him, for the office that he filled. And although it is aside from my present purpose, I may just, in a sentence, point to the felicity of the emblem. The flowing oil smoothes the surface upon which it is spread, supples the limbs, and is nutritive and illuminating; thus giving an appropriate emblem of the secret, silent, quickening, nourishing, enlightening influences of that Spirit which God gives to all His sons.

And inasmuch as here this oil of the Divine Spirit is stated as being the true ground and basis of Christian steadfastness, it is obvious that the anointing intended cannot be that of mere designation to, and inspiration for, apostolic or other office, but must be the universal possession of all Christian men and women. ‘Ye,’ says another Apostle, speaking to the whole democracy of the Christian Church, and not to any little group of selected aristocrats therein-’ye have an unction from the Holy One,’ and every man and woman who has a living grasp of the living Christ, receives from Him this great gift.

Then, notice further that this anointing by a Divine Spirit, which is a true source of life to those that possess it, is derived from, and parallel with, Christ’s anointing. We use the word ‘Christ’ as a proper name, and forget what it means. The ‘Christ’ is the Anointed One. And do you think that it was a mere accident, or the result of a scanty vocabulary, which compelled the Apostle, in these two contiguous clauses, to use cognate words when he said:-’He that establisheth us with you in the Anointed, and hath anointed us, is God’ ? Did he not mean to say thereby, ‘Each of you in a very true sense, if you are a Christian, is a Christ’ ? You, too, are anointed; you, too, are God’s Messiahs. On you in a measure the same Spirit rests which dwelt without measure in Him. The chief of Christ’s gifts to the Church is the gift of His own life. All His brethren are anointed with the oil that was poured upon His head, even as the oil upon Aaron’s locks percolated to the very skirts of his garments. Being anointed with the anointing which was on Him, all His people may claim an identity of nature, may hope for an identity of destiny, and are bound to a prolongation of part of His function and a similarity of character. If He by that anointing was made Prophet, Priest, and King for the world, all His children partake of these offices in subordinate but real fashion, and are prophets to make God known to men, priests to offer up spiritual sacrifices, and kings at least over themselves, and, if they will, over a world which obeys and serves those that serve and love God. Ye are anointed-’Messiahs’ and ‘Christs,’ by derivation of the life of Jesus Christ.

And if these things be true, it is plain enough how this divine unction, which is granted to all Christians, lies at the root of steadfastness.

We talk a great deal about the gentleness of Christ; we cannot celebrate it too much, but we may forget that it is the gentleness of strength. We do not sufficiently mark the masculine features in that character, the tremendous tenacity of will, the inflexible fixedness of purpose, the irremovable constancy of obedience in the face of all temptations to the contrary. The figure that rises before us is that of the Christ yearning over weaklings far oftener than it is that of the Christ with knitted brow, and tightened lips, and far-off gazing eye, ‘steadfastly setting His face to go to Jerusalem,’ and followed as He pressed up the rocky road from Jericho, by that wondering group, astonished at the rigidity of purpose that was stamped on His features. That Christ gives us His Spirit to make us tenacious, constant, righteously obstinate, inflexible in the pursuit of all that is lovely and of good report, like Himself. That Divine Spirit will cure the fickleness of our natures; for our wills are never fixed till they are fixed in obedience, and never free until they elect to serve Him. That Divine Spirit will cure the wandering of our hearts and bind us to Himself. It will lift us above the selfish and cowardly dependence on externals and surroundings, men and things, in which we are all tempted to live. We are all too like aneroid barometers, that go up and down with every variation of a foot or two in our level, but if we have the Spirit of Christ dwelling in us, it will cut the bonds that bind us to the world, and give us possession of a deeper love than can be sustained by, or is derived from, these superficial sources. The true possession of the Divine Spirit, if I might use such a metaphor, sets a man on an insulating stool, and all the currents that move round about him are powerless to reach him. If we have that Divine Spirit within us, it will give us an experience of the preciousness and the truth, the certitude and the sweetness, of Christ’s Gospel, which will make it impossible that we should ever cast away the confidence which has such ‘recompense of reward.’ No man will be surely bound to the truth and person of Christ with bonds that cannot be snapped, except he who in his heart has the knowledge of Him which is possession, and by the gift of the Divine Spirit is knit to Jesus Christ.

So, dear friends, whilst the world is full of wise words about steadfastness, and exalts determination of character and fixity of purpose, rightly, as the basis of much good, our Gospel comes to us poor, light, thistledown creatures, and lets us see how we can be steadfast and settled by being fastened to a steadfast and settled Christ. When storms are raging they lash light articles on deck to holdfasts. Let us lash ourselves to the abiding Christ, and we, too, shall abide.

II. In the next place, notice the aim or purpose of this Christian steadfastness.

‘He stablisheth us with you in Christ,’ or as the original has it even more significantly, into or ‘unto Christ.’ Now that seems to me to imply two things-first, that our steadfastness, made possible by our possession of that Divine Spirit, is steadfastness in our relations to Jesus Christ. We are established in reference or in regard to Him. In other words, what Paul here means is, first, a fixed conviction of the truth that He is the Christ, the Son of God, the Saviour of the world, and my Saviour. That is the first step. Men who are steadfast without their intellect guiding and settling the steadfastness are not steadfast, but obstinate and pigheaded. We are meant to be guided by our understandings, and no fixity is anything better than the immobility of a stone, unless it be based upon a distinct and whole-brained intellectual acceptance of Jesus Christ as the All-in-all for us, for life and death, for inward and outward being.

Paul means, next, a steadfastness in regard to Christ in our trust and love. Surely if from Him there is for ever streaming out an unbroken flow of tenderness, there should be ever on our sides an equally unbroken opening of our hearts for the reception of His love, and an equally uninterrupted response to it in our grateful affection. There can be no more damning condemnation of the vacillations and fluctuations of Christian men’s affections than the steadfastness of Christ’s love to them. He loves ever; He is unalterable in the communication and effluence of His heart. Surely it is most fitting that we should be steadfast in our devotion and answering love to Him. And Paul means not only fixedness of intellectual conviction and continuity of loving response, but also habitual obedience, which is always ready to do His will.

So we should answer His ‘Yea!’ with our ‘Amen!’ and having an unchanging Christ to rest upon, we should rest upon Him unchanging. The broken, fluctuating affections and trusts and obediences which mark so much of the average Christian life of this day are only too sad proofs of how scant our possession of that Spirit of steadfastness must be supposed to be. God’s ‘Yea’ is answered by our faltering ‘Amen’; God’s truth is hesitatingly accepted; God’s love is partially returned; God’s work is slothfully and negligently done. ‘Be ye steadfast, unmovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord.’

Another thought is suggested by these words-viz. that such steadfastness as we have been trying to describe has for its result a deeper penetration into Jesus Christ and a fuller possession of Him. The only way by which we can grow nearer and nearer to our Lord is by steadfastly keeping beside Him. You cannot get the spirit of a landscape unless you sit down and gaze, and let it soak into you. The cheap tripper never sees the lake. You cannot get to know a man until you summer and winter with him. No subject worth studying opens itself to the hasty glance. Was it not Sir Isaac Newton who used to say, ‘I have no genius, but I keep a subject before me’ ? ‘Abide in Me; as the branch cannot bear fruit except it abide in the vine, no more can ye except ye abide in Me.’ Continuous, steadfast adhesion to Him is the condition of growing up into His likeness, and receiving more and more of His beauty into our waiting hearts. ‘Wait on the Lord; wait, I say, on the Lord.’

III. Lastly, notice the very humble and commonplace sphere in which the Christian steadfastness manifests itself.

It was nothing of more importance than that Paul had said he was going to Corinth, and did not, on which he brings all this array of great principles to bear. From which I gather just this thought, that the highest gifts of God’s grace and the greatest truths of God’s Word are meant to regulate the tiniest things in our daily life. It is no degradation to the lightning to have to carry messages. It is no profanation of the sun to gather its rays into a burning glass to light a kitchen fire with. And it is no unworthy use of the Divine Spirit that God gives to His children, to say it will keep a man from hasty and precipitate decisions as to little things in life, and from chopping and changing about, with a levity of purpose and without a sufficient reason. If our religion is not going to influence the trifles, what is it going to influence? Our life is made up of trifles, and if these are not its field, where is its field? You may be quite sure that, if your religion does not influence the little things, it will never influence the great ones. If it has not power enough to guide the horses when they are at a slow, sober walk, what do you think it will do when they are at a gallop and plunging? ‘He that is faithful in that which is least is faithful also in much.’ So let us see to two things-first, that all our religion is worked into our life, for only so much of it as is so inwrought is our religion-and, second, that all our life is brought under the sway of motives derived from our religion: for only in proportion as it is, will it be pure and good.

And as regards this special virtue and prime quality of steadfastness and fixedness of purpose, you can do no good in the world without it. Unless a man can hold his own, and turn an obstinate negative to the temptations that lie thick about him, he will never come to any good at all, either in this life or in the next. The basis of all excellence is a wholesome disregard of externals, and the cultivation of a strong self-reliant and self-centred, because God-trusting and Christ-centred, will. And I tell you, especially you young men and women, if you want to do or be anything worth doing or being, you must try to get your natures hardened into being ‘steadfast, unmovable.’ There is only one infallible way of doing it, and that is to let the ‘strong Son of God’ live in you, and in Him to find your strength for resistance, your strength for obedience, your strength for submission. ‘I have set the Lord always before me; because He is at my right hand, I shall not be moved.’

There are two types of men in the world. The one has his emblem in the chaff, rootless, with no hold, swept out of the threshing-floor by every gust of wind. That the picture of many whose principles lie at the mercy of the babble of tongues round about them, whose rectitude goes at a puff of temptation, like the smoke out of a chimney when the wind blows; who have no will for what is good, but live as it happens. The other type of man has his emblem in the tree, rooted deep, and therefore rising high, with its roots going as far underground as its branches spread in the blue, and therefore green of leaf and rich of fruit ‘We are made partakers of Christ if we hold fast the beginning of our confidence, steadfast until the end.’2 Corinthians 1:21-22. Now he which stablisheth us — Apostles and teachers; with you — All true believers; in the faith of Christ — Or he who confirms both you and us in the truth; and hath anointed us — With the oil of gladness, with joy in the Holy Ghost; thereby giving us strength both to do and suffer his will: or, he who hath consecrated us to this apostolic office, and endued us with the gifts and graces of the Holy Ghost, thereby qualifying us for it; is God — From whom alone every good and perfect gift cometh. Who hath also sealed us — Stamped his image on our hearts; thus marking and sealing us as his own property. Anciently, seals were used for marking goods, as the property of the person who had put his seal on them, that they might be distinguished from the goods of others. Thus all believers are said to be sealed with the Spirit of promise, or which was promised, (Ephesians 1:13,) because they are thereby marked as Christ’s property. Thus, likewise, the servants of God are said to be sealed on their foreheads for the same purpose, Revelation 7:3; Revelation 9:4. The apostles therefore are said to have been sealed of God, because by the sanctifying graces and the extraordinary gifts conferred upon them, they were declared to be both his servants and the apostles of his Son, and could not be suspected either of fraud or falsehood. And given us the earnest of the Spirit — Those sacred communications of his grace, which are the anticipation of our future felicity. There is a difference between an earnest and a pledge. A pledge is to be restored when the debt is paid; but an earnest is not taken away, but completed. Such an earnest is the Spirit; the first-fruits of which true believers have, (Romans 8:23,) and wait for all its fulness. The apostle is thought by some to allude to the custom of hiring servants by giving them earnest-money; as if he had said, He hath hired us to be his servants, and the apostles of his Son, by giving us the Holy Spirit in his gifts and graces. These are called the earnests with which the apostles were hired, because they were to them a sure proof of those far greater blessings which God would bestow on them in the life to come, as the wages of their faithful services. For the same reason all believers are represented as having the earnest of the Spirit given them, 2 Corinthians 5:5; Ephesians 1:14. 1:15-24 The apostle clears himself from the charge of levity and inconstancy, in not coming to Corinth. Good men should be careful to keep the reputation of sincerity and constancy; they should not resolve, but on careful thought; and they will not change unless for weighty reasons. Nothing can render God's promises more certain: his giving them through Christ, assures us they are his promises; as the wonders God wrought in the life, resurrection, and ascension of his Son, confirm faith. The Holy Spirit makes Christians firm in the faith of the gospel: the quickening of the Spirit is an earnest of everlasting life; and the comforts of the Spirit are an earnest of everlasting joy. The apostle desired to spare the blame he feared would be unavoidable, if he had gone to Corinth before he learned what effect his former letter produced. Our strength and ability are owing to faith; and our comfort and joy must flow from faith. The holy tempers and gracious fruits which attend faith, secure from delusion in so important a matter.Now he which stablisheth us - He who makes us firm (ὁ βέβαιῶν ἡμᾶς ho bebaiōn hēmas); that is, he who has confirmed us in the hopes of the gospel, and who gives us grace to be faithful, and firm in our promises. The object of this is to trace all to God, and to prevent the appearance of self-confidence, or of boasting. Paul had dwelt at length on his own fidelity and veracity. He had taken pains to prove that he was not inconstant and fickle-minded. Here he says, that this was not to be traced to himself, or to any native goodness, but was all to be traced to God. It was God who had given them all confident hope in Christ; and it was God who had given him grace to adhere to His promises, and to maintain a character for veracity. The first "us," in this verse refers probably to Paul himself; the second includes also the Corinthians, as being also anointed and sealed.

And hath anointed us - Us who are Christians. It was customary to anoint kings, prophets, and priests on their entering on their office as a part of the ceremony of inauguration. The word "anoint" is applied to a priest, Exodus 28:41; Exodus 40:15; to a prophet, 1 Kings 19:16; Isaiah 61:1; to a king, 1 Samuel 10:1; 1 Samuel 15:1; 2 Samuel 2:4; 1 Kings 1:34. It is applied often to the Messiah as being set apart, or consecrated to his office as prophet, priest, and king - that is, as appointed by God to the highest office ever held in the world. It is applied also to Christians as being consecrated, or set apart to the service of God by the Holy Spirit - a use of the word which is derived from the sense of consecrating, or setting apart to the service of God. Thus, in 1 John 2:20, it is said, "But ye have an unction from the Holy One and know all things." So in 1 John 2:27, "But the anointing which ye have received abideth in you," etc. The anointing which was used in the consecration of prophets, priests, and kings, seems to have been designed to be emblematic of the influences of the Holy Spirit, who is often represented as poured upon those who are under his influence Proverbs 1:23; Isaiah 43:4; Joel 2:28-29; Zechariah 12:10; Acts 10:45, in the same way as water or oil is poured out. And as Christians are everywhere represented as being under the influence of the Holy Spirit, as being those on whom the Holy Spirit is poured, they are represented as "anointed." They are in this manner solemnly set apart, and consecrated to the service of God.

Is God - God has done it. All is to be traced to him. It is not by any native goodness which we have, or any inclination which we have by nature to his service. This is one of the instances which abound so much in the writings of Paul, where he delights to trace all good influences to God.

21. stablisheth us … in Christ—that is, in the faith of Christ—in believing in Christ.

anointed us—As "Christ" is the "Anointed" (which His name means), so "He hath anointed (Greek, "chrisas") us," ministers and believing people alike, with the Spirit (2Co 1:22; 1Jo 2:20, 27). Hence we become "a sweet savor of Christ" (2Co 2:15).

The anointing here mentioned is, doubtless, the same mentioned by St. John, 1Jo 2:20,27, by which is understood the Holy Spirit: so as God’s anointing his people signifies his giving them his Holy Spirit, to dwell and to work in them; which Holy Spirit diffuseth itself throughout the whole soul of the believer, as the oil of old poured out upon the heads of the kings, high priests, and prophets. Believers are said to be anointed, because God hath, by his Spirit given to them, declared, that he hath set them apart to be kings and priests, a royal priesthood. The same God also establisheth their souls both in faith and love, and all in Christ; in him as our Head, and through him as the meritorious cause of all that grace wherein we stand. It is observable, that how much soever vain man may ascribe to the power of man’s will, yet the blessed apostle attributeth all to God; both our anointing, the first infusion of gracious habits, and also our establishing. It is grace by which we stand. Now he which stablisheth us with you,.... Two things are in this verse ascribed to God. First, the establishing of the saints in Christ; in which may be observed, that the people of God are in a firm, settled, established state and condition; they are encircled in the arms of everlasting love; they are secure of the favour of God; they are engraven on his hands, and set as a seal on his heart, from whence they can never be removed; they are taken into his family by adopting grace; and will never be turned out; they are in a state of justification, and shall never enter into condemnation; they are regenerated and sanctified by the Spirit of God, and shall never finally and totally fall from that grace they have received. This their establishment is "in" Christ, and in no other. They had no stability in Adam, nor have they any in themselves; their standing is alone in him; the unchangeable love and favour of God, which is their grand security, is in Christ; the covenant of grace, in which is all their salvation, is made and stands fast with him; their persons, with all their grace and glory, are put into his hands, and made his care and charge, and there they are safe. They are espoused unto him, made one with him, incorporated into him, and are built upon him the rock of ages, where they are so established, that hell and earth cannot shake them, so as to remove and unsettle them from this foundation: one and all of them, and all together, are established in him,

us with you; all the elect of God are alike, and together in Christ, and have the same place and standing in his love, power, and care; they make up one body, of which Christ is the head, and not one of them shall be lost, whether they be Jews or Gentiles, ministers or private believers; for so this phrase may be interpreted, "us" Jews "with you" Gentiles, or "us" ministers "with you" believers. This work of establishing the saints in Christ is wholly the Lord's act; he

is God that does it; which does not contradict the word and ordinances being means of establishment; nor does it hinder or discourage persons making use of means for their stability; for the apostle here is not speaking so much of the stability of hearts, frames, and exercise of grace, as of state; though a firm, steady, and stable assurance of interest in Christ, is what God gives by his Spirit. The apostle's view seems to be this, that whatever steadfastness and stability the saints have, whether ministers or people, they ought to ascribe it entirely to God, Father, Son, and Spirit. "Secondly", the anointing of them:

he hath anointed us; which is to be understood either of the unction of ministers, with the gifts of the Spirit for ministerial service; or rather of the anointing of private Christians with the grace of the Spirit, compared to oil or ointment, in allusion to the anointing oil under the law, by which the tabernacle, and its vessels, Aaron, and his sons, were anointed, who were typical of the saints and priests of God under the Gospel; or to the lamp oil in the candlestick, which was pure, and for light; or to oil in common, for its sweet smell, refreshing nature, and for its usefulness for ornament and healing. This also is the Lord's work, and not man's; this unction comes from the God of all grace, through Christ, by the Spirit.

{13} Now he which stablisheth us with you in Christ, and hath anointed us, is God;

(13) He attributes the praise of this constancy only to the grace of God, through the Holy Spirit. In addition he concludes that they cannot doubt of his faith and his fellows, without doing injury to the Spirit of God, seeing that they themselves know all this to be true.

2 Corinthians 1:21 f. Δέ] not specifying the ground of τῷ Θεῷ πρὸς δόξαν (Grotius), nor confirming the assurance that he had preached without wavering (Billroth), but continuative. Paul has just, with διʼ ἡμῶν, pointed to the blessed result which his working (and that of his companions) is bringing about, namely, that the Amen of faith is said to all God’s promises to the glory of God. But now he wishes to indicate also the inner divine life-principle, on which this working and its result are based, namely, the Christian stedfastness, which is due to no other than to God Himself.

On the construction, comp. 2 Corinthians 5:5; hence Billroth (whom Olshausen follows) has incorrectly taken ὁ δὲ βεβαιῶνΘεός as subject, and ὁ καὶ σφραγ. κ.τ.λ. as predicate. It is to be translated: “And He who makes us stedfast with you toward Christ, after He has also anointed us, is God; who also,” etc. Since the anointing precedes the βεβαιοῦν, and is its foundation, and Paul has not written ὁ δὲ χρίσας ἡμᾶς καὶ βεβαιῶν κ.τ.λ., it is not to be regarded with the expositors as qui autem confirmat et unxit, but καὶ χρίσας ἡμᾶς is to be taken as a definition subordinate to the βεβαιῶν, and καί as the also of the corresponding relation; otherwise, there would be a hysteron-proteron, which there is no ground for supposin.

εἰς Χριστόν] in relation to Christ, so that we remain unshakenly faithful to Christ. Chrysostom well says: ὁ μὴ ἐῶν ἡμᾶς παρασαλεύεσθαι ἐκ τῆς πίστεως τῆς εἰς τ. Χριστόν. The explanation: into Christ (Billroth, Olshausen) has against it the present participle. For the believers are already in Christ; their continued confirmation (βεβ., see on 1 Corinthians 1:6) therefore could not but take place in Christo, Colossians 2:7, not in Christum.

σὺν ὑμῖν] Paul adds, in order not to appear as if he were denying to the readers the βεβαίωσις εἰς Χριστόν. Estius says aptly: “ut eos in hac sua defensione benevolos habeat.” This agrees with the whole tone of the context; but there is not, as Rückert conjectures, a side-glance at those who had held the apostle to be a wavering ree.

χρίσας ἡμᾶς] here, without σὺν ὑμῖν, is a figurative way of denoting the consecration to office (Luke 4:18; Acts 4:27; Acts 10:38; Hebrews 1:9), i.e. to the office of teacher of the gospel, without, however, pressing the expression so far as Chrysostom and Theophylact: ὁμοῦ προφήτας καὶ ἱερεῖς κ. βασιλέας ἐργασάμενος. Whether, however, did Paul conceive the consecration as effected by the call (Billroth, Olshausen, Rückert) or by the communication of the Spirit (Calvin, Grotius, Estius, Osiander, and many others, following the ancient expositors)? 2 Corinthians 1:22 is not opposed to the latter view (see below); and since the call to the office is, in point of fact, something quite different from the consecration, χρίσας is certainly to be referred to the holy consecration of the Spirit (comp. Acts 10:38). Comp., further, 1 John 2:20; 1 John 2:27, and Düsterdieck on 1 John 1. p. 355. An allusion to Χριστόν (Bengel, Osiander, Hofmann, and others) would not be certain, even if there stood καὶ χρίσας καὶ ἡμᾶς, because Χριστόν is not used appellatively, but purely as a proper name. An anointing of Christ (as at Luke 4:18; Acts 4:27; Acts 10:38; Hebrews 1:9) is as little mentioned by Paul as by John. If, however, it had been here in his mind, in order to compare with it the consecration of the ἡμεῖς, he could not but have added σὺν αὐτῷ, or some similar more precise definition of the relation intended, to make himself intelligible; comp. the idea of the συζωοποιεῖν σὺν Χριστῷ, and the lik.

ὁ καὶ σφραγισ. ὑμᾶς κ.τ.λ.] is argumentative. How could He leave us in the lurch unconfirmed, He, who has also sealed us, etc.! How would He come into contradiction with Himself! This σφραγισ. ὑμᾶς does not present the same thing, as was just expressed by χρίσας ἡμ., in another figurative form; but by means of καί it adds an accessory new element,[134] namely, the Messianic sealing conferred, although likewise through the Holy Spirit (see the sequel), apart from the anointing, i.e. the inner confirmation of the Messianic σωτηρία. Comp. on Ephesians 1:13; Ephesians 4:30. It is not added to what the sealing objectively relates (to the Messianic salvation), because it is regarded as a familiar notion, well known in its referenc.

καὶ δοὺς κ.τ.λ.] is epexegetical of ὁ σφραγισάμ. ἡμᾶς, Winer, p. 407 [E. T. 545].

τὸν ἀῤῥαβῶνα τοῦ πνεύματος] Comp. 2 Corinthians 5:5. The genitive is the genitive of apposition, as 1 Corinthians 5:8 : the earnest-money, which consists in the Spirit, ἀῤῥαβών (also with the Romans arrhabo or arrha) is properly ἡ ἐπὶ ταῖς ὠναῖς παρᾶ τῶν ὠνουμένων διδομένη προκαταβολὴ ὑπὲρ ἀσφαλείας, Etym. M.; Aristot. Pol. i. 4. 5; Lucian, Rhet. praec. 17, 18. Then it is a figurative expression for the notion guarantee. See in general Wetstein, and especially Kypke, Obss. II. p. 239 f. For what the Holy Spirit is guarantee, Paul does not say, but he presupposes it as an obvious fact in the consciousness of the readers, just as he did with σφραγισάμ. The Holy Spirit is in the heart as an earnest-money given for a guarantee of a future possession, the pledge of the future Messianic salvation. Comp. 2 Corinthians 5:5; Ephesians 1:14. How? see Romans 8:2; Romans 8:10 f., 2 Corinthians 5:5, 2 Corinthians 8:15 ff.; Galatians 4:6 f.; Ephesians 5:19. In ἀῤῥαβ., therefore, the climax τῶνμελλόντων ἀγαθῶν (Theodoret) is characteristi.

ἐν ταῖς καρδιαῖς ἡμ.] The direction is blended with the result, as 2 Corinthians 8:1 : He gave the Spirit, so that this Spirit is now in our hearts. Comp. 2 Corinthians 8:16, and on John 3:35.

[134] Hence καί is to be taken as also, not with the following καί, as wellas also; especially as καὶ σφραγ. and καὶ δούς are not two acts essentially different.2 Corinthians 1:21. ὁ δὲ βεβαιῶν κ.τ.λ.: now He that stablisheth us with you into Christ and anointed us is God, etc. For the form of the sentence cf. chap. 2 Corinthians 5:5. The ultimate ground of St. Paul’s steadfastness in Christ is God Himself; and having been led on to say this, he adds σὺν ὑμῖν, in order to introduce (as he does at every opportunity in the early part of the Epistle) the idea of unity between him and his Corinthian converts. The play on words Χριστόνχρίσας is obvious; the only other place in the N.T. where the idea is found of the “anointing” of the Christian believer by God is 1 John 2:20; 1 John 2:27, ὑμεῖς χρίσμα ἔχετε ἀπὸ τοῦ ἁγίου. Deissmann has pointed out (Bibelstudien, p. 104) that βεβαιόω and ἀρραβών (see note below) are both technical terms belonging to the law courts (cf. Leviticus 25:23, LXX), and that βεβαιῶν is here deliberately used rather than κυριῶν (Galatians 3:15), or any other such word.21. Now he which stablisheth us with you in Christ] Rather, and He, &c., as explaining the words ‘by us.’ ‘Not as though we had any power in ourselves, to do anything of ourselves (cf. ch. 2 Corinthians 3:5), but it is God who stablisheth us and Who anointed us for our great work.’ The meaning of the Greek word translated stablisheth, as of the English one by which it is rendered (derived from the Latin stabilio), is to make firm, immoveable. For ‘in Christ,’ the original has unto or upon Christ, i.e. by the faith and hope in Him which are ‘as an anchor of the soul, both sure and steadfast,’ Hebrews 6:19; cf. 1 Corinthians 3:11. Also Matthew 16:18; Ephesians 2:20.

and hath anointed us] Observe the change of tense here from the present to the past. The Greek however is not the perfect as in the A. V., but the aorist (so Wiclif, the perfect having been introduced by Tyndale, whom the other versions follow). That is, at some indefinite time in the past God ‘anointed’ St Paul and his fellow-labourers (see Acts 10:38; and 1 John 2:20; 1 John 2:27, for the expression ‘anointed’), i.e. when He commissioned them for their task (see Acts 13:2), which was to be ‘ministers of Christ,’ the Anointed One, 1 Corinthians 4:1.

is God] From no less than Him did their commission proceed, and in Him, and in none less, were their ministerial acts done.2 Corinthians 1:21. Ὁ δὲ βεβαιῶν, now He who confirmeth [establisheth]) The Son glorifies the Father, 2 Corinthians 1:19 : whilst [autem, δὲ] the Father in turn glorifies the Son.—βεβαιῶν, confirming) that we may be firm in the faith of Christ. The term sealing corresponds to this word; the one is from Christ and His anointing; the other from the Spirit, as an earnest. That is sealed, which is confirmed as the property of some one, whether it be a property purchased, or a letter, so that it may be certain, to whom it belongs; comp. 1 Corinthians 9:2. A trope[8] abstracts from the persons and things from which it is taken.—ἡμᾶς, us) apostles and teachers.—σὺν ὑμῖν, with you) He speaks modestly of himself.—εἰς Χριστὸν καὶ χρίσας, in [into] Christ, and hath anointed) Conjugate words. From the oil here, we derive strength, and a good savour, 2 Corinthians 2:15. All things tend to the yea; εἰς Χριστὸν, in faith in [towards] Christ.

[8] See Append., on tropus.Verse 21. - Now he that stablisheth us. They will have seen, then, that steadfastness not levity, immutability not vacillation, has been the subject of their teaching. Who is the Source of that steadfastness? God, who anointed us and confirmed us, and you with us, into unity with his Anointed. With you. We partake alike of this Christian steadfastness; to impugn mine is to nullify your own. In Christ; rather, into Christ, so as to be one with him. They are already "in Christo;" they would aim more and more to be established "in Christurn." Who anointed us. Every Christian is a king and priest to God, and has received an unction from the Holy One (1 John 2:20, 27). Stablisheth - in Christ (βεβαιῶν - εἰς)

The present participle with εἰς into indicates the work as it is in progress toward a final identification of the believers with Christ.

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