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Comment: John Chrysostom

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John Chrysostom

John Chrysostom

“‘All this is from God, who through Christ reconciled us to himself and gave us the ministry of reconciliation’ (2Co 5:18). Nothing is of ourselves, for remission of sins and adoption and unspeakable glory are given to us by Him. Paul no longer exhorts the Corinthians from the things to come only (2Co 5:1-10), but even from those things now present. Consider that we shall be raised again, and go on to imperishability, and have an eternal house. But since present things have more force to persuade than things to come with those who do not believe in these as they ought, he shows how great are the things they have already received. What was received by them? They are all dead (he said, ‘all died’ and ‘He died for all,’ and so He loved all alike) hardened, and grown old in their vices.

“But behold God gives a new soul (for it was cleansed), and a new body, a new worship, promises new, and testament, life, table, dress, and all things new absolutely. For instead of the Jerusalem below we have received that mother city which is above (Gal 4:26). Instead of a material temple we have seen a spiritual temple (2Co 5:1). Instead of tables of stone, fleshly ones (2Co 3:3); instead of circumcision, baptism (Col 2:11-12); instead of the manna, the Lord’s body; instead of water from a rock, blood from His side (Jn 19:34); instead of Moses’ or Aaron’s rod, the Cross; instead of the promised land, the kingdom of heaven; instead of a thousand priests, one High Priest; instead of an unreasoning lamb, a spiritual Lamb. With these and such things in his thought he said, ‘all things are new’ (2Co 5:17). But ‘all’ these ‘things are from God,’ by Christ, and His free gift.”

John Chrysostom, Homilies on 2 Corinthians, 11.4

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