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Xiii. 6: xxiv. 15, 21
Phil. iii. 5. bch. xxiii. 6. c Gen, iii. 11:
xxii. 18: xxvi. 4: xlix. 10. Deut. xviii. 15.
happy, king Agrippa, because I shall answer for myself
this day before thee touching all the things whereof I am a ch. Hl. 8: accused of the Jews : 3 especially m because I know thee to
Hil.be expert in all customs and questions which are among C Gen. ii. 1.: the Jews: wherefore I beseech thee to hear me patiently. Hornet.ix. 4 My manner of life from my youth, which was at the first Sam. vii, 12. among mine own nation at Jerusalem, know all the Jews; 1. 18. v. 5 which knew me from the beginning, if they would jer. 1. : testify, that after a the most straitest sect of our religion 10. Ezek." I lived a Pharisee. Ob And now I stand and am judged
for the hope of cthe promise made of God unto our chan. 92.*fathers: 7 unto which promise d our twelve tribes, ind Datei isi stantly serving God e o day and night, 'hope to come. For 1 Thess. ii. which hope's sake, P king Agrippa, I am accused of the Poi ii. 11. Jews. 8 Why should it be thought a thing incredible
ix.6: xl. 10. Jer. xxiii. 5: Xxxiii. 14, 15, 16. Ezek xxxiv. 23: xxxvii. 24. Dan. ix. 21. Micah vii. 20.
Rom. xv. 8.
Tit. ii 13. d James i. 1. e Luke ii. 37.
1 Thess. iii 10. 1 Tim.
v.5. f Phil iii. 11.
m render, because thou art.
very precisely. The band was stretched Paul and the Jews, which lies beneath the out with the two lower fingers shut, and surface of this verse, but is yet not brought the rest straightened. St. Paul's hand was out: he had already arrived at the accunchained- compare “these bonds," ver. 29. plishment of this bope, to which they, with
5. the strictest sect] See ch. xxii. all their sacrifices and zeal, were as ve: only 3. Josephus calls the Pharisees “a sect of earnestly tending, having it yet in the the Jews professing to be more devout future only (see Rom. x. 2). It was conthan other men, and to observe the laws cerning this hope (in what sense appears more strictly.” The use of the term finds not yet) that he was accused by the Jews another example in Eph. v. 15, which is 8.] Having impressed on his hearers literally,“ See ye walk strictly.” The word the injustice of this charge from the Jews, rendered sect is the same as that rendered with reference to his holding that hope in ch. xxiv.5, 14 “heresy,” here used in an which they themselves held, he now leaves indifferent sense. 6.] The promise much to be filled up, not giving a conspoken of is not that of the resurrection fession of his own faith, but proceeding merely, but that of a Messiah and His as if it were well understood. “You askingdom, involving (ver. 8) the resurrec. sume rightly, that I mean by this hope, in tion. This is evident from the way in my own case, my believing it accomplished which he brings in the mention of Jesus in the crucified and risen Jesus of Naza. of Nazareth, and connects His exaltation reth. Then, this being acknowledger, be (ver. 18) with the universal preaching of goes on to show how his own view became repentance and remission of sins. But he so changed with regard to Jesus; drawing hints merely at this hope, and does not a contrast in some respects between him explain it fully: for Agrippa knew well self, who was supernaturally brought to what was intended, and the mention of any the faith, and them, who yet could not king but Cesar would have misled and pre refuse to believe that God could and might judiced the Roman procurator. There is raise the dead. All this he mainly ad. great skill in binding on his former Phari. dresses to Agrippa (ver. 26), as being the saic life of orthodoxy (in externals), to his best acquainted with the circumstanes, now real and living defence of the hope of and, from his position, best qualified to Israel. But though he thus far identifies judge of them. It may be, as Stier them, he makes no concealment of the dif. suggests, that if not open, yet practical ference between them, ver. 9 ff. 7. Sadduceism had tainted the Herodian our twelve tribes] The Jews in Judæa, family. Paul knew, at all events, bow and those of the dispersion also. See generally the highly cultivated, and those James i. 1. There was a difference between in power and wealth, despised and thought
1 Tim. i. 13.
h ch, viii. 3.
Gal. i. 13.
naring received my of the saints hicho cha
with you, 9 that God should raise the dead ? 981 verily 8 John Evi, thought with myself, that I ought to do many things contrary to the name of Jesus of Nazareth. 10 h Which hoch.. thing I also did in Jerusalem : and many of the saints did I shut up in ' prison, having received authority i from the ich is 14, 21: chief priests; and when they were put to death, I gave my s voice against them. 11 k And I punished them oft in k ch. xxii. 19. every synagogue, and compelled them to blaspheme; and being exceedingly mad against them, I persecuted them even unto strange cities. 12 l Whereupon as I went to Ich. ix. 2: Damascus with authority and commission from the chief priests, 13 at midday, 0 king, I saw in the way a light from heaven, above the brightness of the sun, shining round about me and them which journeyed with me. 14 And when we were all fallen to the earth, I heard a voice t speaking unto me, and saying in the Hebrew tongue, Saul, Saul, why persecutest thou me? it is hard for thee to kick against the pricks. 15 And I said, Who art thou, 9 render, if God raiseth.
r render, prisons. s render, vote.
t render, saying unto me. incredible the doctrine of the resurrection. hardly have been less than thirty, when
It is not, as commonly rendered, sent on his errand of persecution to 'that God should raise the dead' (E. V.): Damascus. On the fact, compare the but the question is far stronger than this: words “ Saul was consenting unto his why is it judged by you a thing past death,” ch. viii. 1. 11. punished belief, if God raises the dead ? i. e..if God, them) viz. by scourging ; comp. Matt. x. in His exercise of power, sees fit to raise 17. Í compelled them to blaspheme does the dead (the word implying that such a not imply that any did blaspheme (Christ : fact has veritably taken place), is it for so Pliny, in his celebrated Epistle, speaks you to refuse to believe it ? 9.] of ordering the Bithynian Christians to Henceforward he passes to his own history, curse Christ, and adds, that he hears none -how he once refused, like them, to can be compelled to do this who are really believe in Jesus: and shews them both the Christians): the verb only relates the process of his conversion, and the ministry attempt. The persecuting the Christians with which he was entrusted to others. even to foreign cities, forms the transition
10, 11.] This is the “great persecu- to the narrative following. 12. Wheretion” of ch. viii. 1. We are surprised upon) literally, In which things (being here by the unexpected word saints (holy engaged). 13.] See notes on ch. ix. ones), which it might have been thought 3—8, where I have treated of the discrehe would have rather in this presence pancies, real or only apparent, between the avoided. But, as Stier renarks, it belongs three accounts of Saul's conversion. See to the more confident tone of this speech, also ch. xxii. 6–10. 14. in the Hewhich he delivers, not as a prisoner defend brew tongue] These words are expressed ing himself, but as one being heard before here only. In ch. ix. we have the fact those who were his audience, not his judges. remarkably preserved by the Hebrew form
I gave my vote against them can in the original; in ch. xxii. he was speakhardly be taken figuratively, as many ing in Hebrew, and the notice was not Commentators, trying to escape from the required. it is hard for thee to kick inference that the young man” Saul was against the pricks] This is found here a member of the Sanhedrim; but must be only; in ch. ix. the words are spurious, understood as testifying to this very fact, having been inserted from this place. The however strange it may seem. He can metaphor is derived from oxen at plough
o Isa. XXXV. 5:
i. 70. John viii. 12.
Lord ? And u he said, I am Jesus whom thou persecutest.
16 But rise, and stand upon thy feet: for I have appeared m ch. Xxii. 15. unto thee for this purpose, mto make thee a minister and nch. xxii. 21. a witness both of these things which thou hast seen, and 1. 2. Luke of those things in the which I will appear unto thee; Cor. iv. s. 17 delivering thee from the people, and from the Gentiles, Thess. v.5. " unto whom [> now] I send thee, 18 ° to open their eyes, Ep. col.Si. [y and p 2 to turn them from darkness to light, and from
: 2,25** the power of Satan unto God, 9 that they may receive * Eph. i. . forgiveness of sins, and inheritance among them which
U read, with all our oldest authorities, the Lord.
omit, with all our MSS.
1 Thess. v.5. p 2 Cor. vi. 14.
v. 8. Col. i. 13. 1 Pet.
q Luke i. 77. r Eph. i. 11.
Col. i. 12.
or drawing a burden, who, on being by divine grace, more than they all (1 Cor. pricked with the goad, kick against it, and xv. 8—10).- The expression a minister of so cause it to pierce deeper. See instances, those things which thou hast seen may in my Greek Test., of the use of the pro- be compared with “ministers of the ori," verb. 16-19.] There can be no ques. which St. Luke calls the eye- riidesses, tion that St. Paul here condenses into one, Luke i. 2. and of those things in various sayings of our Lord to him at the which (or, on account of which) I different times, in visions, see ch. xxii. will appear unto thee] That such vision 18-21; and by Ananias, ch. ix. 15; see did take place, we know, from ch. xvii. 9; also ch. xxii. 15, 16. Nor can this, on the xxii. 18; xxiii. 11; 2 Cor. xii. 1; Gal. i. strictest view, be considered any deviation 12. 17. delivering thee from? This, from truth. It is what all must more or and not 'choosing thee out of,' is the right less do who are abridging a narrative, or meaning the people] as elsewhere, giving the general sense of things said at the Jewish people. “ Thus," says Calvin, various times. There were reasons for its “ the Lord armed him against all fears being minute and particular in the details which awaited him, and at the same time of his conversion; that once related, the prepared him to bear the cross." commission which he thereupon received is unto whom] to both, the people, and the not followed into its details, but summed Gentiles; not the Gentiles only. 18. up as committed to him by the Lord him. not, as Beza, and A. V., 'to turn ther: self. It would be not only irreverent, but but, that they may turn; see ver. 20.—The false, to imagine that he put his oron general reference of whom becomes tacitls thoughts into the mouth of our Lord; but modified (not expressly, speaking as he was I do not see, with Stier, the necessity of tothe Jew Agrippa) by theexpressions abore, maintaining that all these words were ac darkness and the power of Satan, both, tually spoken to him at some time by the in the common language of the Jens Lord. The message delivered by Aranias applicable only to the Gentiles. But in certainly furnished some of them; and the reality, and in Paul's mind, they had their unmistakeable utterings of God's Spirit sense as applied to Jews,-who were in which supernaturally led him, may have spiritual darkness and under Satan's power, furnished more, all within the limits of however little they thought it. See Col. truth. 16.] for this purpose refers i. 13. that they may receive A to what follows, to make thee, &c.; for third step : first the opening of the eyesgives the reason for rise, and stand upon next, the turning to God-next, the res thy feet. See reff. of these things ceiving remission of sins and a place among which thou hast seen] Stier remarks, the sanctified; see ch. xx. 32.-This last that Paul was the witness of the glory reference determines the words by faith of Christ : whereas Peter, the first of the that is in me to belong, not to sanctified, former twelve, describes himself (1 Pet. but to receive.—Thus the great object of v. 1) as 'a witness of the sufferings of Paul's preaching was to awaken and shew Christ, and a partaker of the glory that the necessity and efficacy of faith that is shall be revealed.' So true it was that this in Christ. And fully, long ere this, had latest born among the Apostles, became, he recognized and acted on this his great
[y at] Jerusalemshewed first unto them into the heavenly
are & sanctified, by faith that is in me. 19 Whereupon, Osch. IX. 82. -
y Luke xxiv.
27. 41. ch. xxiv. 14:
Ron. iii. 21
Col. i. 18.
c Luke ii. 32.
a render, country. b render, worthy of their. C render, endeavoured.
d render, If [at least] Christ was liable to suffering, and, first rising from the dead, was to .... mission. The epistles to the Galatians and light, to be preached to the Jews (the Romans are two noble monuments of the people) and Gentiles, must spring from the APOSTLE OF FAITH. 19. I was not resurrection of the dead, and that Christ disobedient] See Isa. 1. 5. 22.] The the first from the resurrection, was to therefore refers to the whole course of announce it. See Isa. xlii. 6; xlix. 6; deliverances which he had had from God, Ix. 1, 2, 3; Luke ii. 32; ch. xiii. 47. not merely to the last. It serves to close 24.] The words as he thus spake for the narrative, by shewing how it was that himself must refer to the last words he was there that day,-after such repeated spoken by Paul : but it is not necessary persecutions, crowned by this last attempt to suppose that these only produced the to destroy him. 23. If (not, "that," effect described on Festus. Mr. Humphry as A. V.)] meaning, that the things fol. remarks, “ Festus was probably not so lowing were patent facts to those who well acquainted as his predecessor (ch. knew the prophets. See Heb. vii. 15 xxiv. 10) with the character of the nation (marginal rendering), where if has the over which he had recently been called same sense. The first thing which to preside. Hence he avails himself of was thus patent was not, as Beza, and Agrippa's assistance (xxv. 26). Hence also A. V., “that Christ should suffer:" but he is unable to comprehend the earnestthat Christ was liable to suffering. St. ness of St. Paul, so unlike the indifference Paul does not refer to the prophetic an- with which religious and moral subjects nouncement, or the historical reality, of were regarded by the upper classes at the fact of Christ's suffering, but to the Rome. His self-love suggests to him, that idea of the Messiah, as passible and suf- one who presents such a contrast to his own fering, being in accordance with the tes. apathy, must be mad : the convenient hypotimony of the prophets. That the fact of thesis that much learning had produced this His having suffered on the cross was in the result, may have occurred to him on hearing Apostle's mind, can hardly be doubted: Paul quote prophecies in proof of his asserbut that the words do not assert it, is evi- tions.” thou art beside thyself (mad)] dent from the change of construction in the not merely, 'thou ravest,' nor thou art an next clause, where the fact of the bringing enthusiast nor are the words spoken in life and immortality to light by the resur- jest, as Olshausen supposes,—but in earnest, rection is spoken of. first rising from as Chrysostom says: “They are the words the dead] literally, first from the resur- of angry passion.” Festus finds himself rection of the dead: implying that this by this speech of Paul yet more bewildered VOL. I.
11. Johd x. 20. 1 Cor. i.
d 2 Kings ix, a thou art beside thyself; e much learning doth make thee 23: ii. 13, 14:
I mad. 25 But he said, I am not mad, most noble Festus;
but speak forth the words of truth and soberness. 26 For the king knoweth of these things, before whom also I speak freely : for I am persuaded that none of these things are hidden from him ; for this thing was not done in a corner. 27 King Agrippa, believest thou the prophets ? I know that thou believest. 28 Then Agrippa said unto
Paul, f Almost thou persuadest me to be a Christian. 29 And el Cor. vii. 7. Paul said, I would to God, that & not only thou, but also
all that hear me this day, were both almost and altogether such as I am, except these bonds. 30 And [h when he had thus spoken,] the king rose up, and the governor, and
Bernice, and they that sat with them : 31 and when ther e render, thy much.
f read and render, with small persuasion thou thinkest that thou canst make me ....
& render, whether with little persuasion or with much, not only thou, but also all who hear me this day, might become such as I am, ....
h omit. than before. thy much learning] or, ing in the margin seems to suit best both as it may be rendered, those many writings. the words and the context. It appears Meyer understands Festus to allude to the also that Agrippa is characterizing no effect many rolls which Paul had with him in on himself, but what Paul was fancying in his imprisonment (we might compare “the his mind, reckoning on the persuasion which books, especially the parchments” of 2 he had expressed above (ver. 26): and that Tim. iv. 13) and studied: but the ordinary he speaks of something not that he is likely interpretation, thy much learning, seems to become, but that contrasts strangely more natural, and so De Wette.
with his present worldly position and in. doth make thee mad] or, is turning thee tentions. I would therefore render the to madness, is turning thy brain. words thus: Lightly (with small trouble) 25.7 truth may be spoken warmly and art thou persuading thyself that thou enthusiastically, but cannot be predicated canst make me a Christian : and underof a madman's words : soberness is directly stand them, in connexion with Paul's opposed to madness. 26.] Agrippa is having attempted to make Agrippa a witdoubly his witness, (1) as cognizant of the ness on his side,– I am not so easily to facts respecting Jesus, (2) as believing the be made a Christian of, as thou supposest.' prophets. This latter he does not only 29.] I could wish to God, that wheassert, but appeals to the faith of the king ther with ease or with difficulty (on my as a Jew for its establishment. was part), not only thou, but all who hear me not done in a corner] This, the act done to-day, might become such as I am, except to Jesus by the Jews, and its sequel, was only these bonds. He understands the not done in an obscure corner of Judæa, saying just as Agrippa had uttered it, viz. but in the metropolis, at a time of more that he was calculating on making him than common publicity. 28.] These a Christian, easily, 'with little trouble,' words of Agrippa have been very variously with slight exertion or persuasion and explained. I have discussed the proposed contrasts with it, with difficulty, with renderings in the note in my Greek Test. great trouble,' ' with much labour.' See From that it appears that the rendering further in my Greek Test. except of the A. V. is inadmissible, for want of these bonds] He shews the chain, which any example of the original expression being in military custody, he bore on his bearing this meaning: and that the render arm, to connect him with the soldier who