And base things of the world
Who are reckoned the filth of the world, and the offscouring of all things; men of mean birth, education, and business of life:
and things that are despised;
and set at nought, as poor persons generally are; yet God
them; even the poor of this world, rich in faith, and heirs of a kingdom:
yea, and things which are not;
some think the Gentiles are here intended, who by the Jews are called "things that are not": as in the apocryphal books:
``O Lord, give not thy sceptre unto "them that be nothing", and let them not laugh at our fall; but turn their device upon themselves, and make him an example, that hath begun this against us.'' (Esther 14:11)
``56 As for the other people, which also come of Adam, thou hast said that "they are nothing", but be like unto spittle: and hast likened the abundance of them unto a drop that falleth from a vessel. 57 And now, O Lord, behold, these heathen, which have ever been "reputed as nothing", have begun to be lords over us, and to devour us.'' (2 Esdras 6)(See Gill on Romans 4:17) for note on non-entities, or such who are not in being, are meant; but who are not accounted of, or are reckoned as nothing; and these the Lord calls by his grace, as a fruit and evidence of electing love:
to bring to nought things that are;
who, on the account of their noble birth, large possessions, and high attainments in knowledge and learning, thought themselves something; all which will one day be abolished, and will stand them in no stead with regard to future happiness and glory. The Jews F17 have a saying quite contrary to all this, that
``the Shekinah, or presence of God, does not dwell on any but upon a wise man, a mighty man, and a rich man.''
F17 T. Bab. Sabbat, fol. 92. 1.