Grace and peace be multiplied unto you
By a multiplication of grace may be meant a larger discovery of the love and favour of God; which though it admits of no degrees in itself, being never more or less in God's heart, yet, as to the manifestations of it, it is different, and capable of being increased, and drawn out to a greater length; or else an increase of the internal graces of the Spirit of God, as to the actings and exercise of them; or a larger measure of the gifts of the Spirit, for greater usefulness among them; or a clearer view, and a more enlarged knowledge of the Gospel of the grace of God, and the truths of it; and indeed, the word grace may take in all these senses: and by a multiplication of peace, which the apostle in this salutation also wishes for, may be designed an affluence of all kind of prosperity, temporal, and spiritual, external and internal; and more especially an increase of spiritual peace, a fulness of joy and peace in believing, arising from a sense of free justification by Christ's righteousness, and full pardon and atonement by his blood and sacrifice:
through the knowledge of God, and of Jesus our Lord;
which is to be understood, not of a natural, but of a spiritual and evangelical knowledge; of a knowledge of God, not as the God of nature and providence, but as the God of all grace, as in Christ, and a covenant God in him, and of the person, offices, and grace of Christ; and which designs true faith in him, by which means larger discoveries of the grace of God are made, and a greater enjoyment of spiritual peace is had: or it may be rendered, "with the knowledge of God" and the sense then is, that the apostle prays, as for a multiplication of grace and peace, so along with it, an increase of spiritual and evangelical knowledge; which in the best is imperfect, but may be increased by the blessing of God on those means which he has appointed for that end, such as the word and ordinances. The Syriac version renders this clause, "through the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ", leaving out the word "God", and the copulative "and", and adding the word "Christ"; and the Ethiopic version reads, "in the knowledge of our God, Christ Jesus our Lord", without any distinction. After the inscription and salutation begins the epistle, with an account of various special favours bestowed upon these persons; and are mentioned by the apostle to encourage his faith and theirs, in expectation of enjoying what he here wishes unto them, since already such great and good things had been bestowed upon them.