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Commentary On Hebrews by Jean Calvin


Chapter 12:28. let us have grace, etc So Beza, Grotius, Doddridge, and Scott. The Vulg. and Calvin are no doubt wrong. The authority as to MSS. is altogether in favor of the verb being in the imperative mood. Macknight gives this singular rendering, |Let us hold fast a gift whereby we can worship God,| etc. He explains the |gift| as denoting the dispensation of religion. No less unsuitable is the version of Stuart, though countenanced by some of the fathers, |Let us manifest gratitude (by which we may serve God acceptably) with reverence and godly fear.| When |charis| means gratitude, it is ever followed by a dative case, which is not the case here. To have faith, echein pistin is to possess it, (Matthew 17:20;) to have eternal life is to possess it, (Matthew 19:16;) to have hope is to enjoy or possess it, (Romans 15:4;) and so to have grace is to possess it. And this alone comports with what follows; it is the possession of that by which we may |serve God acceptably.| By |grace| we are to understand the gracious help and assistance which God promises to all who seek it.

To receive a kingdom is to obtain a right or a title to it; and having the promise of this kingdom we ought to seek, attain, and possess that grace, that divine help, by which we may in the meantime serve God acceptably. This is the obvious meaning of the passage.

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