This V. ill be a guide and guard in evei-y way that we ii.si ri and our comfurt
every condition we may
bt- 111. [l .s che presence of God that makes lieaven to If l.tavcn, and that will make this earth to be like to hjaen. No matter where we arv , if God !).. Aua us; nor who is absent, if God be present w iih us. . That the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ might be ijith them. So this apostle concluded his hrst ei)i.s'.lc to these Thessalonians ; and it is through the trace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that we may com- fortably hojje to have peace with God, and enjoy the j}resence of (iod, for he has made tliem nigh, that were afar off. It is this grace that is all in all to make us happy. This is what the apostle admired and magnified on all occasions, what he delighted and trusted in ; and by this salutation or benediction, 7uritten with his oivn hand, as the to/cen of every e/mi/e, (when the rest was written by an amanuen- sis,) he took care lest the churches he wrote to should be imposed on by counterfeit epistles, which he knew would be of dangerous consequence. Let MS he til mkful that we have the canon of scrip- ture t- .in/ktc, and by the wonderful and special cai-e of Divine Providence presei- ed pure and un- corrupt through so many successive ages; and n( t dare lo ackl to it, oi diminish from it. Let us believe the diine original of the sacred scriptures, and con- form our faith and practice to this our sufficient and only rule, which is able to make us ivise unto salva- tion, through faith which is in Christ Jesus. Amen.
FIRST EPISTLE OF ST. PAUL TO TIMOTHY.
Completed by Mr. Atkinson.
HITHERTO Paul's Epistles were directed to churches ; now follow some to particular persons : two to Timothy, one to Titus, and another to Philemon ; all three ministers. Timothv and Titus were evan- gelists, an inferior order to the apostles, as appears by that, (Eph. 4. 11.) Sotne prophets, some a/iostles, some evangelists. Their commission and work was much the same with that of the apostles, to plant churches, and water the churches tlat were planted ; and accordingly they were itinerants, as we find Timothy was. Timothy was first converted by Paul, and therefore he calls him his own son in the faith : we read of his conversion, Acts 16. 3. Tne scope of these two Epistles, is, to direct Timothy how to discharge his office as an evangelist at Ephe- sus, where he now was, and where Paul ordered him for some time to reside, to perfect the good work which he had begun there. As for the ordinary pastoral charge of that church, he had very solenmly committed it to the Presbytery, as appears from Acts 20. 28. where he charges the presbyters Co feed thejiock of God, which he had purchased with his own blood.
I. TIMOTHY, I.
After the inscription (v. I, 2.) we have, 1. the charge given to Timothy, v. 3, 4. II. The true end of the law, (v. 5 . . 11.) wliere he shews it is entirely a^rteable to the gospel. 111. He mentions his own call to be an apostle; for which he expresses his thankfulness, v. Ii..l6. IV'. His dox- ology, V. 17. V. A renewal of the charge to Timolhy, v. 18. And of Hymeneus and Alexander, v. 19, 20.
1.PAUL, an apostle of Jesus Christ, by A the commandment of God our Sa- viour, and Lord Jesus Christ, who is our hope ; 2. Unto Timothy, my own sou in the faith : g;race, mercy, and peace, from God our Father and Jesus Christ our Lord. 3. As I besought thee to abide still at Ephe- sus, when 1 went into Macedonia, that thou mightest charge some that they teach no other doctrine, 4. iXeither give heed to fables and endless genealogies, wliich mi- nister questions, rather than godly edifying which is in faith : so do. Vol. vi.—4 I.