28 And fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.
28 Verse 28. Fear not them which kill the body] των
αποκτεινοντων. Those who slay with acts of cruelty, alluding
probably to the cruelties which persecutors should exercise on his
followers in their martyrdom. But are not able to kill the soul.
Hence we find that the body and the soul are distinct principles,
for the body may be slain and the soul escape; and, secondly, that
the soul is immaterial, for the murderers of the body are not
able, μηδυναμενων, have it not in their power, to injure it.
Fear him] It is, not hell-fire we are to fear, but it is God;
without the stroke of whose justice hell itself would be no
punishment, and whose frown would render heaven itself
insupportable. What strange blindness is it to expose our souls
to endless ruin, which should enjoy God eternally; and to save and
pamper the body, by which we enjoy nothing but the creatures, and
them only for a moment!