2 Corinthians 11:5

For I suppose I was not the least behind the very chief apostles.
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AD 400
Paul does not think that he is inferior to the other apostles because he has taught the same things and done the same miracles. Commentary on Paul’s Epistles.

Cornelius a Lapide

AD 1637
For I suppose I was not a whit behind the very chiefest Apostles. Beza says: "If Paul was in no way inferior to the chiefest Apostles, therefore Peter was not his superior in power and authority, and consequently he is not the Prince of the Apostles and of the Church." I answer that Paul yielded to none in any of the things just mentioned, such as in preaching Christ, in the gifts of the Spirit, in the genuineness of his Gospel, in the labours he bore, and in apostolical gifts in general. The question of power and primacy, therefore has no place here. Were he here to claim it for himself, it would be a sign of the most foolish ambition. Moreover, although by the phrase the very chiefest Apostles, Chrysostom, Theophylact, Å’cumenius, understand Peter, James , and John , and this interpretation seems more simple and true, yet very many later writers understand it to refer to the false apostles, who boasted of their greatness. In this case S. Paul is speaking ironically.

George Leo Haydock

AD 1849
For I suppose. Many understand this as spoken ironically, and alluding to the false apostles, who called themselves great. But it ought rather to be understood in a literal sense, that God had performed as many and great miracles by his hands, as by any of the apostles. St. Paul here wishes to refute those who called themselves the disciples of Peter, and other apostles. (Calmet)

John Chrysostom

AD 407
For I reckon that I am not a whit behind the very chiefest Apostles, no longer making comparison of himself with them, but with Peter and the rest. 'So that if they know more than I do, [they know more] than they also.' And observe how here also he shows modesty. For he did not say, 'the Apostles said nothing more than I,' but what? I reckon, so I deem, that I am not a whit behind the very chiefest Apostles. For since this also appeared to bespeak an inferiority in him, that those having preceded him were of greater name; and more respect was entertained for them, and these persons were intending to foist themselves in; therefore he makes this comparison of himself with them with the dignity that becomes him. Therefore he also mentions them with encomiums, not speaking simply of the Apostles, but the very chiefest, meaning Peter and James and John.

John Chrysostom

AD 407
Paul does not appeal to what he taught but to who he is. His status is at least equal (indeed, it is far superior) to that of those who had led the Corinthians astray.

Knowing this first, that no prophecy of the scripture is of any private interpretation - 2 Peter 1:20

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