on Hebrews 13 :5
Let your conversation - That is, the whole tenor of your conduct, τροπος, the manner of your life, or rather the disposition of your hearts in reference to all your secular transactions; for in this sense the original is used by the best Greek writers.
Be without covetousness - Desire nothing more than what God has given you; and especially covet nothing which the Divine Providence has given to another man, for this is the very spirit of robbery.
Content with such things as ye have - Αρκουμενοι τοις παρουσιν· Being satisfied with present things. In one of the sentences of Phocylides we have a sentiment in nearly the same words as that of the apostle: Αρκεισθαι παρεουσι, και αλλοτριων απεχεσθαι· Be content with present things, and abstain from others. The covetous man is ever running out into futurity with insatiable desires after secular good; and, if this disposition be not checked, it increases as the subject of it increases in years. Covetousness is the vice of old age.
I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee - These words were, in sum, spoken to Joshua, Joshua 1:5 : "As I was with Moses, so will I be with thee; I will not fail thee, nor forsake thee." They were spoken also by David to Solomon, 1 Chronicles 28:20 : "David said to Solomon his son, Be strong and of good courage, and do it: fear not, nor be dismayed; for the Lord God, even my God, will be with thee; he will not fail thee, nor forsake thee." The apostle, in referring to the same promises, feels authorized to strengthen the expressions, as the Christian dispensation affords more consolation and confidence in matters of this kind than the old covenant did. The words are peculiarly emphatic: Ου μη σε ανω, ουδ' ου μη σε εγκαταλιπω. There are no less than five negatives in this short sentence, and these connected with two verbs and one pronoun twice repeated. To give a literal translation is scarcely possible; it would run in this way: "No, I will not leave thee; no, neither will I not utterly forsake thee." Those who understand the genius of the Greek language, and look at the manner in which these negatives are placed in the sentence, will perceive at once how much the meaning is strengthened by them, and to what an emphatic and energetic affirmative they amount.
This promise is made to those who are patiently bearing affliction or persecution for Christ's sake; and may be applied to any faithful soul in affliction, temptation, or adversity of any kind. Trust in the Lord with thy whole heart, and never lean to thy own understanding; for he hath said, "No, I will never leave thee; not I: I will never, never cast thee off."
on Hebrews 13 :5
Let your conversation - Your "conduct" - for so the word "conversation" is used in the Scriptures; notes, Philippians 1:27.
Be without covetousness - Ephesians 5:3 note; Colossians 3:5 note.
And be content with such things as ye have - see the Philippians 4:11-12 notes; Matthew 6:25-34 notes. The particular reason here given for contentment is, that God has promised never to leave his people. Compare with this the beautiful argument of the Saviour in Matthew 6:25 ff.
For he hath said - That is, God has said.
I will never leave thee nor forsake thee - see Deuteronomy 31:6; Joshua 1:5; 1 Chronicles 28:20. Substantially the same expression is found in each of those places, and all of them contain the principle on which the apostle here relies, that God will not forsake his people.
on Hebrews 13 :5
13:5 He - God. Hath said - To all believers, in saying it to Jacob, Joshua, and Solomon. Gen 28:15; Jos 1:5; 1Chr 28:20.