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  • ROBERTSON'S NT WORD STUDIES
    & BIBLE COMMENTARY - ROMANS 13

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    13:1 {Every soul} (pasa yuce). As in #2:9; Ac 2:43. A Hebraism for pas anqrwpos (every man). {To the higher powers} (exousiais huperecousais). Abstract for concrete. See #Mr 2:10 for exousia. huperecw is an old verb to have or hold over, to be above or supreme, as in #1Pe 2:13. {Except by God} (ei me hupo qeou). So the best MSS. rather than apo qeou (from God). God is the author of order, not anarchy. {The powers that be} (hai ousai). "The existing authorities" (supply exousiai). Art ordained (tetagmenai eisin). Periphrastic perfect passive indicative of tassw, "stand ordained by God." Paul is not arguing for the divine right of kings or for any special form of government, but for government and order. Nor does he oppose here revolution for a change of government, but he does oppose all lawlessness and disorder.

    13:2 {He that resisteth} (ho antitassomenos). Present middle articular participle of antitassw, old verb to range in battle against as in #Ac 18:6, "he that lines himself up against." {Withstandeth} (anthestˆken). Perfect active indicative of anqistemi and intransitive, "has taken his stand against." {The ordinance of God} (tei tou qeou diatagei). Late word, but common in papyri (Deissmann, _Light, etc._, p. 89), in N.T. only here and #Ac 7:53. Note repetition of root of tassw. {To themselves} (heautois). Dative of disadvantage. See #Mr 12:40 for "shall receive a judgment" (krina lˆmpsontai). Future middle of lambanw.

    13:3 {A terror} (fobos). this meaning in #Isa 8:13. Paul does not approve all that rulers do, but he is speaking generally of the ideal before rulers. Nero was Emperor at this time. {From the same} (ex autes). "From it" (exousia, personified in verse #4).

    13:4 {A minister of God} (qeou diakonos). General sense of diakonos. Of course even Nero was God's minister "to thee (soi ethical dative) for good (eis to agaqon, for the good)." That is the ideal, the goal. {Beareth} (forei). Present active indicative of forew, old frequentative form of ferw, to bear, to wear. {But if thou do} (ean de poiˆis). Condition of third class, ean and present active subjunctive of poiew, "if thou continue to do." {Sword} (macairan). Symbol of authority as to-day policemen carry clubs or pistols. "The Emperor Trajan presented to a provincial governor on starting for his province, a dagger, with the words, '_For me_. If I deserve it, _in_ me'" (Vincent). {An avenger} (ekdikos). Old adjective from ek and dike (right), "outside of penalty," unjust, qen in later Greek "exacting penalty from one," in N.T. only here and #1Th 4:6.

    13:5 {Ye must needs} (anagke). "There is necessity," both because of the law and because of conscience, because it is right (#2:15; 9:1).

    13:6 {Ye pay} (teleite). Present active indicative (not imperative) of tele", to fulfil. {Tribute} (forous). Old word from ferw, to bring, especially the annual tax on lands, etc. (#Lu 20:22; 23:1). Paying taxes recognizes authority over us. {Ministers of God's service} (leitourgoi qeou). Late word for public servant (unused leitos from Attic lews, people, and ergw, to work). Often used of military servants, servants of the king, and temple servants (#Heb 8:2). Paul uses it also of himself as Christ's leitourgos (#Ro 15:16) and of Epaphroditus as a minister to him (#Php 2:25). See qeou diakonos in verse #4. {Attending continually} (proskarterountes). Present active participle of the late verb proskarterew (pros and karterew from kartos or kratos, strength) to persevere. See on ¯Ac 2:42; 8:13.

    13:7 {Dues} (opheilas). Debts, from ofeilw, to owe. Often so in the papyri, though not in Greek authors. In N.T. only here, #Mt 18:32; 1Co 7:3. Paying debts needs emphasis today, even for ministers. {To whom tribute is due} (twi ton foron). We must supply a participle with the article t"i like apaitounti ("to the one asking tribute"). So with the other words (to whom custom, t"i to telos apaitounti; to whom fear, t"i ton fobon apaitounti; to whom honor, t"i tˆn timˆn apaitounti). Phoros is the tribute paid to a subject nation (#Lu 20:22), while telos is tax for support of civil government (#Mt 17:25).

    13:8 {Save to love one another} (ei me to allelous agapain). "Except the loving one another." this articular infinitive is in the accusative case the object of opheilete and partitive apposition with meden (nothing). this debt can never be paid off, but we should keep the interest paid up. {His neighbor} (ton heteron). "The other man,"the second man."Just as in the relations of man and God pistis has been substituted for nomos, so between man and man agape takes the place of definite legal relations" (Sanday and Headlam). See #Mt 22:37-40 for the words of Jesus on this subject. Love is the only solution of our social relations and national problems.

    13:9 {For this } (to gar). For the article (to) pointing to a sentence see #8:26, here to the quotation. The order of the commandments here is like that in #Lu 18:20; Jas 2:11 and in B for #De 5, but different from that of the Hebrew in #Ex 20; De 5. The use of ou with the volitive future in prohibitions in place of me and the imperative or subjunctive is a regular Greek idiom. {And if there be any other} (kai ei tis hetera). Paul does not attempt to give them all. {It is summed up} (anakephalaioutai). Present passive indicative of anakefalaiow, late literary word or "rhetorical term" (ana, kefalaion, head or chief as in #Heb 8:1). Not in the papyri, but kefalaion, quite common for sum or summary. In N.T. only here and #Eph 1:10. {Namely} (en twi). See to gar at the beginning of the verse, though omitted by B F. The quotation is from #Le 19:18. Quoted in #Mt 5:43; 22:39; Mr 12:31; Lu 10:27; Ga 5:14; Jas 2:8 it is called basilikos nomos (royal law). {Thy neighbor} (ton plesion sou). plesion is an adverb and with the article it means "the one near thee." See on ¯Mt 5:43.

    13:10 {The fulfilment of the law} (plerwma nomou). "The filling up or complement of the law" like peplˆr"ken (perfect active indicative of plerow, stands filled up) in verse #8. See #1Co 13 for the fuller exposition of this verse.

    13:11 {And this } (kai touto). Either nominative absolute or accusative of general reference, a common idiom for "and that too" (#1Co 6:6,8, etc.). {Knowing} (eidotes). Second perfect active participle, nominative plural without a principal verb. Either we must supply a verb like poiˆs"men (let us do it) or poiˆsate (do ye do it) or treat it as an independent participle as in #12:10f. {The season} (ton kairon). The critical period, not cronos (time in general). {High time} (hwra). Like our the "hour" has come, etc. MSS. vary between hemas (us) and humas (you), accusative of general reference with egerthˆnai (first aorist passive infinitive of egeirw, to awake, to wake up), "to be waked up out of sleep" (ex hupnou). {Nearer to us} (egguteron hemwn). Probably so, though hemwn can be taken equally well with hˆ swteria (our salvation is nearer). Final salvation, Paul means, whether it comes by the second coming of Christ as they all hoped or by death. It is true of us all.

    13:12 {Is far spent} (proekopsen). First aorist active indicative of prokoptw, to cut forward, to advance, old word for making progress. See #Lu 2:52; Ga 1:14; 2Ti 2:16; 3:9. {Is at hand} (eggiken). Perfect active indicative, "has drawn nigh." Vivid picture for day-break. {Let us therefore cast off} (apoqwmeqa oun). Aorist middle subjunctive (volitive) of apotiqemi, to put off from oneself "the works of darkness" (ta erga tou skotous) as we do our night-clothes. {Let us put on} (endus"metha). Aorist middle subjunctive (volitive) of enduw, to put on. For this same contrast between putting off (apotiqemi and apekdu") and putting on (enduw) see #Col 3:8-12. {The armor of light} (ta hopla tou photos). The weapons of light, that belong to the light (to the day time). For the metaphor of the Christian armor see #1Th 5:8; 2Co 6:7; Ro 6:13; Eph 6:13ff.

    13:13 {Honestly} (euscemonws). Paul is fond of the metaphor "walk" (peripatew), 33 times though not in the Pastoral Epistles. this old adverb (from euscemwn, graceful) occurs also in #1Th 4:12; 1Co 14:40. The English word "honest" means honorable (Latin _honor_) and so decent. Wycliff translates #1Co 12:32 by "unhonest,"honesty,"honest" for "less honorable, honor, honorable." {Not in revelling} (mˆ k"mois). Plural "revellings." See on ¯Ga 5:21. {Drunkenness} (methais). Plural again, "drunkennesses." See on ¯Ga 5:21. {In chambering} (koitais). Plural also. See on ¯Ro 9:10. {Wantonness} (aselgeiais). Plural likewise. See on ¯2Co 12:21; Ga 5:19. {Not in strife and jealousy} (mˆ eridi kai zˆl"i). Singular here, but some MSS. have the plural like the previous words. Quarrelling and jealousy go with the other vices (Shedd).

    13:14 {But ye on} (endusasqe). The same metaphor as in verse #12. The Lord Jesus Christ is the garment that we all need. See #Ga 3:27 with baptism as the symbol. {Provision} (pronoian). Old word for forethought (from pronoos). In N.T. only here and #Ac 24:2. {For the flesh} (tˆs sarkos). Objective genitive. {To fulfil the lusts thereof} (eis epiqumias). "For lusts." No verb.

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