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Bible Commentaries

Abbott's Illustrated New Testament

Acts 23

Verse 1

Verse 1

Earnestly beholding; looking around upon the assembly with an air of confidence and conscious innocence.

Verse 2

Verse 2

Offended at so bold and decided an assertion of his innocence.

Verse 3

Verse 3

Thou whited wall; thou hypocrite. Ananias did, in fact, afterwards come to a violent and miserable death, by the hands of assassins.

Verse 5

Verse 5

I wist not--that he was the high priest. He was not high priest officially, though he had held the office at a former period, and still retained the title. On this account it may have been that there was nothing in his dress, or in his situation in the assembly, to designate his rank.

Verse 6

Verse 6

Of the hope, &c. Here was another artifice, (Acts 21:26;) for, although what Paul said was strictly true, as he had actually met with opposition on this account, still it was not this, but other and very different charges, (Acts 21:28,Acts 22:22,) which had been the exciting cause of the present tumult; so that, at this time, such a statement was adapted to give a false impression. The conduct of Paul in this, and in the former case, has generally been approved,--the cases having been regarded as examples of commendable adroitness. But whether it was best to resort to these indirect measures, rather than to take the bold and perfectly honest course usually characteristic of him, ought not to be considered as settled simply by the fact that he did resort to them. We was liable to fall into error and sin in his conduct and measures, as well as all other inspired men. We observe that no permanent good resulted from the artifices in either case.

Verse 8

Verse 8

No resurrection; no future existence.

Verse 11

Verse 11

At Rome; thus implying that he was to be rescued from the danger which threatened him, and enabled to execute his purpose of going to Rome. (Acts 19:21.)

Verse 12

Verse 12

Under a curse; under an oath.

Verse 15

Verse 15

And we, &c.; that is, they were to lay wait for him and assassinate him on the way.

Verse 17

Verse 17

Thus Paul appealed to a military a man for protection, which, if granted, he knew must necessarily be military. His example is of no absolutely binding authority; but the case shows, at least, how he understood the gospel in respect to the right of human governments to exercise such powers, for the purposes of public and private protection.

Verse 23

Verse 23

To Caesarea; in order to remove him effectually from the scene of danger. The foot-soldiers were only to accompany him a part of the way, until he should have reached a safe distance from the city.

Verse 24

Verse 24

The governor; the governor of Judea, a successor of Pilate.

Verse 27

Verse 27

Having understood that he was a Roman. Lysias misrepresented the facts in his own favor. He speaks as if his taking Paul was a rescue prompted by his zeal to protect the rights of a Roman citizen. By this means, he thought he should exhibit himself in a favorable light before the governor; whereas the fact was, that he arrested Paul as a criminal, and was going to put him to the torture, he accidentally learned that he was a Roman. (Acts 22:24-30.)

Verse 28

Verse 28

When I would have known; that is, in order that I might know.

Verse 29

Verse 29

Of bonds; imprisonment.

Verse 32

Verse 32

And returned; as the prisoner was now so far from the city as to be out of immediate danger.

Verse 35

Verse 35

In Herod's judgment-hall; in a place of confinement connected with it. This hall was a celebrated public edifice erected by Herod.

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Bibliographical Information
Abbott, John S. C. & Abbott, Jacob. "Commentary on Acts 23". "Abbott's Illustrated New Testament". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/eng/ain/acts-23.html. 1878.