Introduction

\\INTRODUCTION TO 2 CORINTHIANS 6\\

The apostle having given a commendation of the Gospel in the latter
part of the preceding chapter, does in this address the ministers of
it that were at Corinth, under the character of fellow labourers,
and by way of entreaty, that they would be careful to make it appear
that they had not received neither the Gospel of the grace of God,
nor gifts to minister it, in vain, \\#2Co 6:1\\ and in proof of the
Gospel being a ministry of reconciliation, and a doctrine of free
grace and salvation, which carry in them so many arguments why it
should not be received in vain, the apostle in \\#2Co 6:2\\ cites a
passage out of \\#Isa 49:8\\ by which it appears, that the Gospel
dispensation is a time of acceptance, and of salvation; and which he
accommodates to the then present time in which he lived; and is true
of the whole intermediate time between the sufferings and death of
Christ, which was the time in which he was helped and succoured, and
his second coming, when all the elect will have been gathered in:
after which he proceeds to give directions how to conduct without
offence, that so no blame and reproach might fall upon the
ministration of the Gospel, \\#2Co 6:3\\ and proposes himself, and other
faithful ministers, as examples to them, who had approved themselves
as the ministers of God by their patient bearing all kind of
afflictions for the sake of Christ, and his Gospel, of which a
particular enumeration is given in \\#2Co 6:4,5\\ and by the exercise
of various other graces, virtues, and gifts bestowed upon them, and
which were illustrious in them, of which there is a particular
detail in \\#2Co 6:6,7\\ though by reason of the different lights in
which they were viewed by men, as well as the different appearances
they made, and the different things that might be said of them,
either through misrepresentation or ignorance, or as under different
considerations, many very strange and enigmatical things are
predicated of them, \\#2Co 6:8-10\\ which can only be unriddled by
their being possessors of the Gospel of Christ, and being partakers
of the grace of God. And next the apostle addresses the members of
the church at Corinth; and to make way for the exhortations he had
to deliver to them, and that they might be taken in good part by
them, he expresses his great regard to them; how free he was to
communicate anything that might be profitable to them, and how much
his heart was enlarged with love to them, \\#2Co 6:11\\ that there was
no straitness of Spirit in him towards them, though there was so
much in them towards him, \\#2Co 6:12\\. Wherefore he entreats them, as
his children, that as he had shown paternal love to them, they would
also express filial affection and obedience to him, \\#2Co 6:13\\ and
then he enters upon his exhortation to have no communion with
ungodly persons; and which he confirms by five arguments taken from
the disagreement of righteousness and unrighteousness, of light and
darkness, of Christ and Belial, of a believer and an unbeliever, and
of the temple of God and of idols, \\#2Co 6:14-16\\ by which he
suggests, that as the proper characters of wicked men are
unrighteousness, darkness, Belial, unbelievers, and idols, or
idolaters; so the names of saints were righteousness, light, Christ,
believers, and the temple of God; and in proof of the latter, he
produces some passages out of \\#Le 26:11,12 Eze 36:26,27\\ and in
the words of the prophet \\#Isa 52:11\\ he calls upon the Corinthians to
quit the company of sinful and unclean men, to separate from them,
and have nothing to do with them in things criminal and sinful; and
for their encouragement to regard such an exhortation, the promises
of God are mentioned; as that he will receive such persons into his
protection, and will behave as a father towards them, and treat them
as his sons and daughters, \\#2Co 6:17,18\\.