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TEXT. except they give a distinction in the sounds, how shall it be known

what is piped, or harped ? 8 For if the trumpet give an uncertain sound, who shall prepare him

self to the battle ? 9 So likewise you, except ye utter by the tongue words easy to be un

derstood, how shall it be known what is spoken? For ye shall speak

into the air. 10 There are, it may be, so many kinds of voices in the world, and none

of them is without signification. 11 Therefore, if I know not the meaning of the voice, I shall be unto

him that speaketh a barbarian ; and he that speaketh shall be a

barbarian unto me. 12 Even so ye, forasmuch as ye are zealous of spiritual gifts, seek that

ye may excel to the edifying of the church. 13 Wherefore let him that speaketh in an unknown tongue pray that

he may interpret.

PARAPHRASE. as pipe, or harp, are not made use of, to make an insignificant noise; but distinct notes, expressing mirth, or mourning, or

the like, are played upon them, whereby the tune and compo8 sure are understood. And if the trumpet sound not some

point of war that is understood, the soldier is not thereby in9 structed what to do. So likewise ye, unless with the tongue,

which you use, utter words of a clear and known signification

to your hearers, you talk to the wind; for your auditors un10 derstand nothing that you say. There is a great number of

significant languages in the world; I know not how many : 11 every nation has its own. If then I understand not another's

language, and the force of his words, I am to him, when he speaks, a barbarian ; and whatever he says, is all gibberish to

me; and so is it with you; ye are barbarians to one another, 12 as far as ye speak to one another in unknown tongues. But

since there is emulation amongst you concerning spiritual gifts,

seek to abound in the exercise of those which tend most to the 13 edification of the church. Wherefore, let him that speaks an

NOTE. in the following significations, I leave to the judgment of others : Ist, 'Atozhulis, “ revelation," something revealed by God, immediately to the person, vid. ver.30. 2dly, ryw015, “knowledge, the understanding the mystical and evangelical sense of passages in the Old Testament, relating to our Saviour and the Gospe!. 3dly, 1185r7eís, “ prophecy,” an inspired hymn, vid. ver. 26. 4tbly, Aitzi, “ doctrine," any truth of the Gospel concerning faith or manners. But whether this, or any other precise meaning of these words can be certainly made out now, it is perhaps of po great necessity to be orer-curious; it being enongh, for the understanding the sense and argument of the apostle here, to know that these terms stand for some intelligible discourse, tending to the edification of the church, though of what kind each of them was, in particular, we certainly know


TEXT. 14 For if I pray in an unknown tongue, my spirit prayeth, but my under

standing is unfruitful. 15 What is it then? I will pray with the Spirit, and I will pray

with the understanding also : I will sing with the Spirit, and I will sing with

the understanding also. 16 Else, when thou shalt bless with the Spirit, how shall he that occu

pieth the room of the unlearned, say Amen, at thy giving of thanks; seeing he understandeth not what thou sayest ?


unknown tongue, pray that he may interpret what he says. 14 For, if I pray in the congregation in an unknown tongue, my

spirit, it is true, accompanies my words, which I understand,

and so my spirit prays"; but my meaning is unprofitable to 15 others who understand not my words. What, then, is to be

done in the case ? Why, I will, when moved to it by the Spirit, pray in an unknown tongue, but so that my meaning may be understood by others; 1. e. I will not do it but when there is somebody by, to interpret ". And so will I do also in singing'; I will sing by the Spirit

, in an unknown tongue; but I will take care that the meaning of what I sing shall be 16 understood by the assistants. And thus ye should all do, in all like cases.

For if thou, by the impulse of the Spirit, givest thanks to God in an unknown tongue, which all understand

NOTES. 14 ? This is evident from ver. 4, where it is said, “He that speaketh with a

tongue, edifies himself.” 15 6 I will not pretend to justify this interpretation of te roi by the exact rules of the

Greek idiom ; but the sense of the place will, I think, bear me out in it. And, as there is occasion often to remark, he must be little versed in the writings of St. Paul, who does not observe, that when he has used a term, he is apt to repeat it again, in the same discourse, in a way peculiar to himself, and somewhat varied from its ordinary signification. So, having here, in the foregoing verse, used yoős, for the sentiment of his own mind, which was unprofitable to others, when he prayed in a tongue unknown to them, and opposed' it to aveõpe ce, which he used there, for his own sense accompanying his own words, intelligible to himself, when, by the impulse of the Spirit, he prayed in a foreign tongue; he here, in this verse, continues to use praying, to nyeupatı, and ti voi, in the same opposition; the one for praying in a strange tongue, which alone his own mind understood and accompanied; the other, for praying so, as that the meaning of his mind, in those words be uttered, was made known to others, so that they were also benefited. This use of wreumati is farther confirmed, in the next verse : and what be means by vot, here, he expresses by drà voós, ver. 19, and there explains the meaning of it. * For so he orders, in the use of an unknown tongue, ver. 27. · Here it may be observed, that as, in their public prayer, one prayed, and the others held their peace; so it was in their singing, at least in that singing, which was of extempore hymns, by the impulse of the Spirit. VOL, VIII.


TEXT. 17 For thou verily givest thanks well, but the other is not edified. 18 I thank my God, I speak with tongues more than you all : 19 Yet in the church I had rather speak five words with my understand

ing, that by my voice I might teach others also, than ten thousand

words in an unknown tongue. 20 Brethren, be not children in understanding: howbeit, in malice be

ye children, but in understanding be men. 21 In the law it is written, “With men of other tongues, and other lips,

will I speak unto this people ; and yet, for all that, will they not

hear me, saith the Lord.” 22 Wherefore tongues are for a sign, not to them that believe, but to

them that believe not : but prophesying serveth not for them that believe not, but for them which believe.

PARAPHRASE. not, how shall the hearer, who, in this respect, is unlearned, and, being ignorant in that tongue, knows not what thou say

est, how shall he say Amen? How shall he join in the thanks, 17 which he understands not? Thou, indeed, givest thanks well; 18 but the other is not at all edified by it. I thank God, I speak 19 with tongues more than you all : But I had rather speak in the

church five words that are understood, that I might instruct

others also, than, in an unknown tongue, ten thousand, that 20 others understand not. My brethren, be not, in understanding,

children, who are apt to be taken with the novelty, or strangeness of things: in temper and disposition be as children, void

of malice k; but, in matters of understanding, be ye perfect 21 men, and use your understandings'. Be not so zealous for the

use of unknown tongues in the church; they are not so proper there: it is written in the law m, “With men of other

tongues, and other lips, will I speak unto this people; and 22 yet, for all that, will they not hear me, saith the Lord.'

that, you see, the speaking of strange tongues miraculously is not for those who are already converted, but for a sign to those who are unbelievers : but prophecy is for believers, and

NOTES. 20 k By xaxía, “ malice," I think here is to be understood all sorts of ill temper of

mind, contrary to the gentleness and innocence of childhood; and, in particular, their emulation and strife, about the exercise of their gifts in their assemb lies.

| Vid. Rom. xvi. 19. Eph. iv. 13—15. 21 m The books of sacred Scripture, delivered to the Jews by divine revelation,

under the law, before the time of the Gospel, which we now call the Old Testament, are, in the writings of the New Testament, called sometimes, “the law, the prophets, the psalms," as Luke xxiv. 44; sometimes “ the law and the prophets," as Acts xxiv. 14. And sometimes they are all comprehended under this one name, “the law,'' as here ; for the passage cited is in Isaiah, chap. xxviii. 1.

TEXT. 23 If, therefore, the whole church be come together into one place, and

all speak with tongues, and there come in those that are unlearned,

or unbelievers, will they not say, that ye are mad ? 24 But if all prophesy, and there come in one that believeth not, or one

unlearned, he is convinced of all, he is judged of all. 25 And thus are the secrets of his heart made manifest; and so, falling

down on his face, he will worship God, and report that God is in

you of a truth. 26 How is it then, brethren? When ye come together, every one of

you hath a psalm, hath a doctrine, hath a tongue, hath a revelation,

hath an interpretation. Let all things be done to edifying. 27 If any man speak in an unknown tongue, let it be by two, or at the

most by three, and that by course; and let one interpret.


you are

not for unbelievers ; and therefore fitter for your assemblies. 23 If, therefore, when the church is all come together, you should

all speak in unknown tongues, and men unlearned, or unbe

lievers, should come in, would they not say, “that 24 mad ?” But if ye all prophesy, and an unbeliever, or an igno

rant man, come in, the discourses he hears from you reaching 25 his conscience, and the secret thoughts of his heart, he is con

vinced, and wrought upon; and so, falling down, worships 26 God, and declares that God is certainly amongst you. What

then is to be done, brethren ? When you come together, every one is ready", one with a psalm, another with a doctrine, another with a strange tongue, another with a revelation, another

with an interpretation. Let all things be done to edification. 27 Even though any one speak in an unknown tongue, which is

NOTES. 26 » It is plain, by this whole discourse of the apostle's, that there were contentions

and emulations amongst them, for precedency of their gifts; and therefore I think éxasos éxe may be rendered “ every one is ready," as impatient to be first heard. If there were no such disorder amongst them, there would have been no need for the regulations given, in the end of this rerse, and the seven verses following, especially ver. 31, 32, where he tells them, they all may prophesy, one by one, and that the motions of the Spirit were not so ungovernable, as not to leave a man master of himself. He must not think himself under a necessity of

speaking, as soon as he found any impulse of the Spirit upon bis mind. 27 • St. Paul has said, in this chapter, as much as conveniently could be said,

to restrain their speaking in unknown tougues, in their assemblies, which seems to be that, wherein the vanity and ostentation of the Corinthians was most forward to show itself. “It is not,” says ke,“ a gift intended for the edification of believers; however, since you will be exercising it in your meetings, let it always be so ordered, that it may be for edification;" tite, I have rendered “although.” So I think it is sometimes used; but nowhere, as I remember, simply for “ if,” as in our translation; nor will the sense here bear

TEXT. 28 But if there be no interpreter, let him keep silence in the church ; and

let him speak to himself, and to God. 29 Let the prophets speak, two or three, and let the other judge. 30 If any thing be revealed to another, that sitteth by, let the first hold 31 For ye may all prophesy, one by one, that all may learn, that all may

be comforted. 32 And the spirits of the prophets are subject to the prophets. 33 For God is not the author of confusion, but of peace, as in all

churches of the saints.

his peace.

PARAPHRASE. a gift that seems least intended for edification P; let but two, or three at most, at any one meeting, speak in an unknown

tongue; and that separately, one after another; and let there 28 be but one interpreter 9. But if there be nobody present

that can interpret, let not any one use his gift of tongues in

the congregation ; but let him, silently, within himself, speak 29 to himself, and to God. Of those, who have the gift of pro

phecy, let but two or three speak at the same meeting, and let 30 the others examine and discuss it. But if, during their debate,

the meaning of it be revealed to one that sits by, let him, that 31 was discoursing of it before, give off. For ye may all

prophesy, one after another, that all may in their turns be 32 hearers, and receive exhortation and instruction. For the

gifts of the Holy Ghost are not like the possession of the heathen priests, who are not masters of the spirit that possesses them. But Christians, however filled with the Holy Ghost, are masters

of their own actions, can speak, or hold their peace, as they 33 see occasion, and are not hurried away by any compulsion. It

is, therefore, no reason for you to speak, more than one at once, or to interrupt one another, because you find yourselves inspired and moved by the Spirit of God. For God is not the author of confusion and disorder, but of quietness and peace. And this is what is observed in all the churches of God.

NOTES. " whether ;" which is the common signification of eite. And, therefore, I take the apostle's sense to be this: “You must do nothing but to edification ;" though you speak in an unknown tongue, “even an unknown tongue must be made use of, in your assemblies, only to edification." p Vid. ver. 2 and 4. 4 The rule of the synagogue was: “in the law, let one read, and one interpret: in the prophets, let one read, and two interpret : in Esther, teu may read, and ten interpret.” It is not improbable, that some such disorder had been introduced into the church of Corinth, by the Judaizing, false apostle, which St. Paul would here put an eod to.

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