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Bible Commentaries
Acts 3

Orchard's Catholic Commentary on Holy ScriptureOrchard's Catholic Commentary

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Verses 1-26

III 1-11 The Cure of the Lame Man —1. The evening sacrifice was at the ninth hour, about 3 p.m. SS. Peter and John are together here, 8:14, and in the Gospels, e.g.Luke 5:10; John 1:35.

2. The Gate was probably that to the court of the women, and a good post for a beggar, since all entering the temple used it.

4. The beggar must witness the miracle as plainly as possible.

6. St Peter has obeyed the counsel of poverty. The name represents the Person whose power effects the cure. Our Lord worked miracles in his own Name, the Apostles invoke his authority,

7. ’His feet and ankles’. The man had been born lame, had to be carried everywhere, and was 40 years old, 4:22. 11. Solomon’s porch, at the east of the temple, was used by those who wished to teach, 5:12; John 10:23.

12-26 St Peter’s Speech —This has the same argument as the first discourse. The lesson of the miracle is driven home, Jesus is shown to be the Messias, and there is a concluding exhortation to repentance. The same main themes will be found in every speech of St Peter, and in that of St Paul, ch 13, for all aimed at setting forth the new faith to the Jews.

12-16 The Miracle is the Work of Jesus Risen —12. ’Why do you fasten your eyes upon us, as though by a power or piety of our own we had made him walk?’

13. God is mentioned in a way that would win Jewish hearts. Jesus is his pa? + ?, as in 26 and 4:27, 30, translated in Vg and DV ’son’ or ’child’. It probably has this sense in ch. 4, when used among the faithful, but it also means ’servant’. Here in his speech to Jews, St Peter aims primarily at showing that our Lord is the Messias, the Servant, familiar to his audience, whose sufferings are described in Is 53. He wishes to prove once more, that Jesus, in spite of his crucifixion, is the Messias. The title ’servant’ is reserved for our Lord. The Apostles call themselves the ’slaves’ d?? + ???? of God.

14. The Holy One, and the Just are in the OT Messianic titles, cf.Isaiah 53:11, and also especially attributes of God. Our Lord is called the Just One in 7:52 and 22:14, also in speeches to Jews. In this title and that of ’servant’, St Luke preserves the names under which our Lord’s divinity was partly veiled, for those not yet able to receive it, cf.§ 817a and c. St Peter emphasizes Jewish guilt more than in 2:23.

15. Our Lord is the author, not of physical life, for the Jews could hardly yet be told that they had killed their Creator, but of the supernatural life of grace, as in John 10:10, John 10:28; John 17:2, etc. 16 is awkward and may be tr. ’The name of Jesus, thanks to faith in it, has made this man strong, whom you see and know: and the faith which comes from Jesus has given him this perfect health in the presence of you all’. Thus the power of Jesus is is the chief cause of the miracle, and the faith power and name, which Jesus gave to St Peter, its instrumental cause.

17-18 The Jews in Ignorance fulfilled the Prophecies concerning the Suffering Messias —Again the scandal of the cross must be removed by showing that all was foretold, Is 53, Ps 21, as our Lord had taught, Luke 24:26-27. On the ignorance, cf.1 Corinthians 2:8; Luke 23:34; Acts 13:27.

19-26 Exhortation to Repentance —19. ’Repent cf. 2:38. 20-21. ’In order that times of refreshing may come from the presence Of the Lord, and that he may send the Christ appointed to you, Jesus . . . .’ The conversion of the Jews is a necessary preliminary of the Second Coming, Romans 11:25-26, and this is described not as a judgement, but as the restoration of all things, cf. 2 Peter 3:11-13; Isaiah 65:17.22-23. Deuteronomy 18:15-19 quoted freely. 24. The appeal to the prophets is extended beyond the Second Coming to all Christ’s work and the events since Pentecost.

25. The promise to Abraham included all races.

26. ’To you first God has sent his servant, whom he has raised up, to bring you a blessing, by turning every one of you from your wickedness’. God raised up, i.e. sent into the world, his Messias, to save all men, but the Jews first, as in 13:46; Romans 10:11-13. The last phrase is perhaps correctly tr. in DV, with its emphasis on freewill.

Bibliographical Information
Orchard, Bernard, "Commentary on Acts 3". Orchard's Catholic Commentary on Holy Scripture. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/eng/boc/acts-3.html. 1951.
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