Galatians 6:18
Brothers, the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with your spirit. Amen.
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(18) With your spirit.—The grace of God works especially on the “spirit,” or highest part, of man.

[The subscription, as it stands in our Bibles, appears for the first time in MSS. dating from about the beginning of the ninth century, though before this the Epistle had been described as written from Rome by Theodoret, Euthalius, and Jerome. We have seen that the choice really lies between Ephesus and Macedonia, or Corinth, and that the probability seems to be somewhat in favour of the latter.]

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6:16-18 A new creation to the image of Christ, as showing faith in him, is the greatest distinction between one man and another, and a blessing is declared on all who walk according to this rule. The blessings are, peace and mercy. Peace with God and our conscience, and all the comforts of this life, as far as they are needful. And mercy, an interest in the free love and favour of God in Christ, the spring and fountain of all other blessings. The written word of God is the rule we are to go by, both in its doctrines and precepts. May his grace ever be with our spirit, to sanctify, quicken, and cheer us, and may we always be ready to maintain the honour of that which is indeed our life. The apostle had in his body the marks of the Lord Jesus, the scars of wounds from persecuting enemies, for his cleaving to Christ, and the doctrine of the gospel. The apostle calls the Galatians his brethren, therein he shows his humility and his tender affection for them; and he takes his leave with a very serious prayer, that they might enjoy the favour of Christ Jesus, both in its effects and in its evidences. We need desire no more to make us happy than the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ. The apostle does not pray that the law of Moses, or the righteousness of works, but that the grace of Christ, might be with them; that it might be in their hearts and with their spirits, quickening, comforting, and strengthening them: to all which he sets his Amen; signifying his desire that so it might be, and his faith that so it would be.Brethren, the grace ... - See the note at Romans 16:20. 18. Brethren—Place it, as Greek, "last" in the sentence, before the "Amen." After much rebuke and monition, he bids them farewell with the loving expression of brotherhood as his last parting word (see on [2358]Ga 1:6).

be with your spirit—which, I trust, will keep down the flesh (1Th 5:23; 2Ti 4:22; Phm 25).

The apostle closeth this Epistle with this prayer, as he generally concludeth all his Epistles, with wishing them grace,

the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ; under which he comprehendeth all the effects of the free love of God upon believers’ souls, for the sake, and in and through the merits, of the Lord Jesus Christ: this he prayeth that they might feel in their hearts, and that it might be in their spirits, to quicken, strengthen, comfort, and establish them, according to the different manifestations of the Spirit of grace.

It hath been said before, that we are not to look upon these dates of apostolical Epistles as part of holy writ, for in some of them there are manifest mistakes; but most think that this Epistle was written from Rome, while Paul was a prisoner there, who are in part guided to it from Galatians 6:17, thinking that it was written at a time when Paul was there suffering imprisonment. But of this there is no certainty. Brethren,.... So he calls them, to testify his affection for them, notwithstanding their infirmity and instability, and the roughness with which he had treated them; and to show his great humility and condescension in owning the relation, and putting them on a level with himself, which the pride of the false teachers would not suffer them to do.

The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with your spirit: which is his concluding benediction and usual salutation and token in all his epistles: he wishes that more gifts of grace might be bestowed upon them; that the Gospel of the grace of God might be continued with them; that the love of Christ might be shed abroad in their hearts; that they might receive out of his fulness grace for grace; that there might be an increase of grace in their souls; that it might abound in them, and they grow in the exercise of it: he does not pray that the law of Moses, or the righteousness of works, but that the grace of Christ might be with them; not in the mere notion of it, but in the spiritual experience of it; that it might be in their hearts, and with their spirits, quickening, comforting, and strengthening them; making them more spiritual and evangelical in their frames and duties, and freeing them from a carnal and legal spirit: to all which he sets his

Amen; signifying his desire that so it might be, and his faith that so it would be. The subscription of the letter follows,

unto the Galatians, written from Rome; where perhaps he was then a prisoner; the Arabic version adds, "by Titus and Luke": who might be sent with it, but the subscriptions of the epistles are not to be depended on.

{12} Brethren, the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with your {q} spirit. Amen. <<To the Galatians written from Rome.>>

(12) Taking his farewell of them, he wishes them grace, and the Spirit against the deceits of the false apostles, who labour to beat those outward things into their brains.

(q) With your minds and hearts.

Galatians 6:18. Ἡ χάρις τοῦ κυρίου κ.τ.λ.] See on Galatians 1:6.

μετὰ τοῦ πνεύματος ὑμῶν] sc. εἴη. A special design, on account of which Paul did not write merely μεθʼ ὑμῶν (1 Corinthians 16:23; Colossians 4:18; 1 Thessalonians 5:28), or μετὰ πάντων ὑμῶν (2 Corinthians 13:13; Php 4:23; 2 Thessalonians 3:18; Titus 3:15), is indeed assumed by many expositors (that Paul desired once more to indicate that salvation does not come from the σάρξ; Chrysostom, Theophylact, Beza, and others; also Rückert, Usteri, Schott, Olshausen), but cannot be made good; especially as also in Philemon 1:25 (and 2 Timothy 4:22), instead of the persons simply, we find that with greater significance and fervour the spirit of the persons (so also at the close of the Epistle of Barnabas) is named, because it is on the πνεῦμα of man (the higher principle of life with the νοῦς; see on Luke 1:46; Romans 1:4; Romans 8:10; 2 Corinthians 2:13, et al.) that the grace of Christ works (Romans 8:10; Romans 8:16), when the Spirit of Christ takes up His abode in the human spirit and so confers His χαρίσματα. Paul might also have written μετὰ τῶν ψυχῶν ὑμ. (comp. 2 Corinthians 12:15; 1 Peter 1:9; 1 Peter 1:22; 1 Peter 2:11; 1 Peter 2:25); but even in that case the gracious operation of Christ would have to be conceived as issuing from the seat of self-consciousness (the πνεῦμα of man).

ἀδελφοί] The epistle, in great part so severe, ends with a mode of address which still breathes unaltered love (1 Corinthians 16:24). Galatians 6:18. μετὰ τ. πνεύματος. This form of the final blessing occurs also in 2 Timothy 4:22 and Philemon 1:25, but not elsewhere: it was probably suggested here by the stress laid on the life of the Spirit in the Epistle.

The subscription ἀπὸ Ῥώμης is neither genuine nor correct. Its absence in the oldest MSS. stamps it as an addition of later date. The Epistle was evidently written before the Roman captivity (see Introduction, pp. 144–7).18. The Epistle commenced with expostulation and rebuke. It closes with benediction. Grace is the key-note of the Apostle’s argument. Grace—the Grace of the Lord Jesus Christ—the blessing he invokes on their behalf. It is the farewell prayer of a brother for his ‘brethren’, and it breathes the spirit of His Divine Master, of Whom we read, ‘And it came to pass, while He blessed them, He was parted from them’.

Unto the Galatians … Rome] The Subscription in the earliest MSS. is simply, ‘To Galatians’. The additional words ‘written from Rome’ appear first in a correction of the Vatican MS. of uncertain date, and in two of the later Uncials. It has been shewn in the Introduction that the statement, which rests on no sufficient authority, is clearly incorrect.Galatians 6:18. Ἡ χάριζ, grace) This is in consonance with the whole epistle.—μετὰ τοῦ πνεύματος ὑμῶν, with your spirit) having vanquished the flesh, Galatians 6:1; comp. 1 Thessalonians 5:23; 2 Timothy 4:22; Philemon 1:25.—ἀδελφοὶ, brethren) The severity of the whole epistle is thus softened; comp. Galatians 1:6, note.[69]

[69] Bengel, J. A. (1860). Vol. 4: Gnomon of the New Testament (M. E. Bengel & J. C. F. Steudel, Ed.) (J. Bryce, Trans.) (1–59). Edinburgh: T&T Clark.Verse 18. - Brethren, the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with your spirit. Amen (ἡ χάρις τοῦ Κυρίου ἡμῶν Ἰησοῦ Ξριστοῦ μετὰ τοῦ πνεύματος ὑμῶν ἀδελφοί Ἀμήν); the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with your spirit, brethren. Amen. "The grace of Jesus Christ" denotes his Saviour's loving-kindness, not only effectual in making a guilty soul acceptable to God through his atonement, but also in purifying it from sin, enduring it with spiritual strength, and securing its final salvation. The pre-eatery imperative "be," which, of course, is to be supplied, clothes a friendly wish in the pious form of a prayer. "With," the μετὰ which, in the Septuagint, represents the Hebrew 'im, meaning "present to help," is illustrated by Genesis 21:22; Ruth 2:4; Judges 6:12; Matthew 1:23; 28:90; John 3:2; John 16:32. "With your spirit," here, as in Philippians 4:23; Philemon 1:25; 2 Timothy 4:22, replaces the "with you," which is the form in which the farewell greeting is commonly couched; as in 1 Corinthians 16:23; Ephesians 6:24, etc. There is no polemical reference whatever in the substitution; rather it is an affectionate amplification or intensification of the kindly wish or blessing, the outcome of affectionate yearning, after the stern rebukes which he had felt himself compelled to address to them. It expresses his desire that Christ's grace might be very near to them - near to the most intimate and most controlling part of their nature. The singular "spirit" is conjoined with the plural pronoun "your," as in Romans 8:16; 1 Corinthians 6:19 ("your body"); 1 Thessalonians 5:23, "your spirit and soul and body." The word "brethren" is added last of all, as it were in caressing affectionateness, as in Philemon 1:7. The final "Amen" seals the true earnestness and the devotional spirit of the benediction.

The grace, etc.

The same form of benediction occurs Plm 1:25.


Rev. rightly puts the word at the end of the verse. The position is unusual. It would seem as if Paul intended to close this severe letter with an assurance that the "foolish Galatians" were still his brethren: They are addressed as "brethren," Galatians 4:12; Galatians 5:11; Galatians 6:1. Comp. 1 Corinthians 16:24.

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