Bible Verse Explanations and Resources


2 Corinthians 8:23

Adam Clarke
Bible Commentary

Whether any do inquire of Titus - Should it be asked, Who is this Titus? I answer, he is my companion, and my fellow laborer in reference to you; 2 Corinthians 2:13; 2 Corinthians 7:6, 2 Corinthians 7:7. Should any inquire, Who are these brethren, Luke and Apollos? I answer, They are Αποστολοι, apostles of the Churches, and intensely bent on promoting the glory of Christ.

Albert Barnes
Notes on the Whole Bible

Whether any do inquire of Titus - It is to be observed that the words “any do inquire” are not in the original; nor is it clear that these are the most proper words to be introduced here. The Greek may mean either, “if any do inquire about Titus,” or it may mean “if anything is to be said about Titus.” The sense of the passage may either be, that some of the faction at Corinth might be disposed to inquire about the authority of Titus to engage in this work, or that Paul having said so much in commendation of the persons who went with Titus, it seemed proper also to say something in his favor also. The idea is, “If any inquiry is made from any quarter about him, or if it is necessary from any cause to say any thing about him, I would say he is my partner,” etc.

He is my partner … - He partakes with me in preaching the gospel, and in establishing and organizing churches; compare Titus 1:5. To the Corinthians this fact would be a sufficient commendation of Titus.

Or our brethren be inquired of - That is, the brethren who accompanied Titus. If any inquiry was made about their character, or if it was necessary to say anything in regard to them.

They are the messengers of the churches - They have the entire confidence of the churches, having been selected and appointed by them to a work of labor and responsibility; compare Philemon 2:25. The words here rendered “messengers of the churches,” are in the original “apostles of the churches,” ( ἀπόστολοι ἐκκλησιῶν apostoloi ekklēsiōn). The word “apostles” here is used evidently in its proper sense, to denote one who is sent out to transact any business for others, or as an agent or legate. These persons were not apostles in the technical sense, and this is an instance where the word is applied in the New Testament to those who had no claim to the apostolic office. It is also applied in a similar way to Apollos and Barnabas, though neither, strictly speaking, were apostles.

And the glory of Christ - That is, they have a character so well known and established for piety; they are so eminent Christians and do such honor to the Christian name and calling, that they may be called the glory of Christ. It is an honor to Christ that he has called such persons into his church, and that he has so richly endowed them. Every Christian should so live as that it would appear to all the world that it was an honor and glory to the Redeemer that he had such followers; an honor to his gospel that it had converted such and brought them into his kingdom. It is sufficient honor, moreover, to any man to say that he is “the glory of Christ.” Such a character should be, and will be, as it was here, a recommendation sufficient for any to secure them the confidence of others.

Matthew Henry
Concise Bible Commentary
The apostle commends the brethren sent to collect their charity, that it might be known who they were, and how safely they might be trusted. It is the duty of all Christians to act prudently; to hinder, as far as we can, all unjust suspicions. It is needful, in the first place, to act uprightly in the sight of God, but things honest in the sight of men should also be attended to. A clear character, as well as a pure conscience, is requisite for usefulness. They brought glory to Christ as instruments, and had obtained honour from Christ to be counted faithful, and employed in his service. The good opinion others have of us, should be an argument with us to do well.
Ellen G. White
SDA Bible Commentary, vol. 6 (EGW), 1104

Paul presents his pattern, his ideal. Christ had given Himself to a life of poverty that they might become rich in heavenly treasure. He would refresh their memories in regard to the sacrifice made in their behalf. Christ was commander in the heavenly courts, yet He took the lowest place in this world. He was rich, yet for our sakes, He became poor. It was not spiritual riches that He left behind; He was always abounding in the gifts of the Spirit. But He was of poor parentage. The world never saw its Lord wealthy (Manuscript 98, 1899). 6BC 1104.1

Rich in Attainments—Christ, the Majesty of heaven, became poor, that we through His poverty might be made rich. Not rich merely in endowments, but rich in attainments. 6BC 1104.2

These are the riches that Christ earnestly longs that His followers shall possess. As the true seeker after the truth reads the Word, and opens his mind to receive the Word, he longs after truth with his whole heart. The love, the pity, the tenderness, the courtesy, the Christian politeness, which will be the elements in the heavenly mansions that Christ has gone to prepare for those that love Him, take possession of his soul. His purpose is steadfast. He is determined to stand on the side of righteousness. Truth has found its way into the heart, and is planted there by the Holy Spirit, who is the truth. When truth takes hold of the heart, the man gives sure evidence of this by becoming a steward of the grace of Christ (Manuscript 7, 1898). 6BC 1104.3

Read in context »
Ellen G. White
SDA Bible Commentary, vol. 6 (EGW), 1102-4