If others are partakers of this power over you
Meaning not any tyrannical power and jurisdiction over them, with respect either to faith or practice; but the right of a maintenance, which either the false apostles, or the true ordinary ministers of the word there, justly claimed, and did enjoy:
are not we rather?
he and Barnabas, especially himself, who was more than an ordinary minister, an apostle, and the first preacher of the Gospel to them:
nevertheless, we have not used this power;
though others had, and they had a right to it, but did not choose to insist upon it; and, rather than do so, worked with their own hands; their not making use of this power was not because they stood in no need of it, and enjoyed an affluence of temporal things, for the reverse of this was their case:
but suffer all things:
famine, thirst, nakedness, hard labour, and many other hardships:
lest we should hinder the Gospel of Christ;
some might suggest, that they preached the Gospel only for gain, and not for the good of souls, and glory of Christ; and other mean spirited persons might be backward of embracing and professing the Gospel, lest it should become chargeable to them; wherefore that the Gospel might not be retarded in its course by the calumny of some, and the sordidness of others, the apostle thought fit to drop his claim to a maintenance from them; though at the same time he would have them know it was a just due, and therefore goes on to defend it by other arguments.