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HAYDOCK CATHOLIC BIBLE COMMENTARY ON THE NEW TESTAMENT
Ver. 2. One another's burdens. This is not contrary to what is added v. 5, that every one shall bear his own burden, because in the first place the sense is, that we must bear patiently with one another's faults and imperfections; in the second, that every one must answer for himself at God's tribunal. Wi. — Every one has his failings and weaknesses, and stands in need of indulgence from his brethren; he must, therefore, grant to them what he so much desires to receive from them. Calmet.
Ver. 6. Communicate . . . in all good things: by this communication, is understood an assisting of others in their wants. Wi. — Such as are blessed with the goods of this world, should gladly communicate a share of their efforts to the preachers and teachers of the true faith; and this not merely as a return for what they have received, but also that they may be made thereby partakers of their merit. S. Aug. l. 2. evang. quæst. q. 8.
Ver. 7. This is addressed to the avaricious, who, under various pretexts, excused themselves from contributing to the support of their teachers. But they are here informed, that their excuses will not screen them from the anger of God. Calmet.
Ver. 8. He that soweth in his flesh, &c. The apostle represents the flesh and the spirit like two fields, on which men sow good or bad seed, according to which they shall reap. Wi.
Ver. 9. Works of mercy are the seed of life everlasting, and the proper cause thereof, and not faith only.
Ver. 10. The household of the faith: those who profess the same true faith. Wi. — We are more bound to assist Christians than Jews; Catholics than heretics. S. Jerom, q. 1. ad Hedibim.
Ver. 11. What a letter I have written . . . with my own hand. S. Jerom understands this of what he is now beginning to write, the rest being written by the hand of another. Others understand the whole letter. Wi. — S. Chrys. Theophylact, and Theodoret, suppose that the apostle wrote the whole epistle with his own hand, and here excuses himself for writing so ill the Grecian letters, which were so very different from those of his native language. But S. Jerom understands, that he wrote only this latter part of the epistle, as a testimony that the whole came from him. Calmet.
Ver. 12-13. He tells them the false teachers would have them circumcised first, to avoid persecution from the Jewish party; and secondly to glory in having made them their proselytes. Wi.
Ver. 14. As for my part, I will glory in nothing but in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, but in Christ crucified. Wi.
Ver. 15. But a new creature; but to be born anew, to receive the spiritual life of grace. Wi.
Ver. 17. I bear the marks of the Lord Jesus in my body, by the stripes and wounds I have received for preaching the gospel. Wi. — Formerly it was not unusual to stamp certain characters on the bodies of soldiers, fugitives, and of domestics, purposely to distinguish them. —— There are three principal parts in this epistle. The first is the history of the vocation of S. Paul, c. i. and ii.; the second is on justification and the abrogation of the law; the third is an exhortation to persevere in Christian liberty, to avoid its abuse, and to perform the various duties of a Christian.