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Bible Commentaries
Acts 2

Geneva Study BibleGeneva Study Bible

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Verse 1

2:1 And {1} when the day of Pentecost was {a} fully come, they were {b} all with one accord in one place.

(1) The Apostles being gathered together on a most solemn feast day in one place, that it might evidently appear to all the world that they all had one office, one Spirit, and one faith, are by a double sign from heaven authorised, and anointed with all the most excellent gifts of the Holy Spirit, and especially with an extraordinary and necessary gift of tongues.

(a) Literally, "was fulfilled": that is, was begun, as in Lu 2:21 . For the Hebrews say that a day or a year is fulfilled or ended when the former days or years are ended, and the other has begun; Jeremiah 25:12 : "And it will come to pass that when seventy years are fulfilled, I will visit, etc." For the Lord did not bring his people home after the seventieth year was ended, but in the seventieth year: Now the day of Pentecost was the fiftieth day after the feast of the Passover.

(b) The twelve apostles, who were to be the patriarchs as it were of the Church.

Verse 4

2:4 And they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and began to speak with {c} other tongues, as the {d} Spirit gave them utterance.

(c) He calls them "other tongues" which were not the same as the apostles commonly used, and Mark calls them "new tongues".

(d) By this we understand that the apostles were not speaking one language and then another by chance at random, or as eccentric men used to do, but that they kept in mind the languages of their hearers: and to be short, that they only spoke as the Holy Spirit directed them to speak.

Verse 8

2:8 {e} And how hear we every man in our own tongue, wherein we were born?

(e) Not that they spoke one language, and different languages were heard, but the apostles spoke with different languages: for otherwise the miracle would have been in the hearers, whereas it is really in the speakers; Nazianzen in his oration of Whitsunday.

Verse 10

2:10 Phrygia, and Pamphylia, in Egypt, and in the parts of Libya about Cyrene, and strangers of Rome, {f} Jews and proselytes,

(f) By Jews he means those that were both Jews by birth and Jews by profession of religion, though they were born in other places: and these latter ones were proselytes, who were born Gentiles, and embraced the Jewish religion.

Verse 12

2:12 {2} And they were all amazed, and were in doubt, saying one to another, What meaneth this?

(2) God’s word pierces some in such a way that it drives them to seek out the truth, and it so chokes others that it forces them to be witnesses of their own impudency.

Verse 13

2:13 Others {g} mocking said, These men are full of new wine.

(g) The word which he uses here signifies a kind of mocking which is reproachful and insolent: and by this reproachful mocking we see that no matter how great and excellent the miracle, the wickedness of man still dares to speak evil against it.

Verse 14

2:14 But Peter, standing up with the eleven, {h} lifted up his voice, and said unto them, Ye men of Judaea, and all [ye] that dwell at Jerusalem, be this known unto you, and hearken to my words:

(h) The holiness of Peter is to be marked, in which the grace of the Holy Spirit is to be seen, even from the very beginning.

Verse 15

2:15 For these are not drunken, as ye suppose, seeing it is [but] the {i} third hour of the day.

(i) After the sunrise, which may be about seven or eight o’clock to us.

Verse 16

2:16 But this is that which was spoken by the {k} prophet Joel;

(k) There is nothing that can dissolve questions and doubt except testimony taken out of the Prophets: for men’s reasonings may be overturned, but God’s voice cannot be overturned.

Verse 17

2:17 {3} And it shall come to pass in the last days, saith God, I will pour out of my Spirit upon {l} all {m} flesh: and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, and your young men shall see visions, and your old men shall dream dreams:

(3) Peter setting forth the truth of God against the false accusations of men, shows in himself and in his companions that the prophecy of Joel concerning the full giving of the Holy Spirit in the latter days has been fulfilled: and this grace is also offered to the whole Church, to the certain and undoubted destruction of those who condemn it.

(l) All without exception, both upon the Jews and Gentiles.

(m) That is, men.

Verse 21

2:21 {4} And it shall come to pass, [that] whosoever shall {n} call on the name of the Lord shall be saved.

(4) The most important use of all the gifts of the Holy Spirit is to bring men to salvation by faith.

(n) These words "call on" signify in Holy Scriptures and earnest praying and craving for help from God’s hand.

Verse 22

2:22 {5} Ye men of Israel, hear these words; Jesus of Nazareth, a man {o} approved of God among you by miracles and wonders and signs, which God did by him in the midst of you, as ye yourselves also know:

(5) Christ, being innocent, was by God’s providence crucified by wicked men.

(o) Who is by those works which God did by him so manifestly approved and admitted of, that no man can deny him.

Verse 23

2:23 Him, being delivered by the determinate counsel and {p} foreknowledge of God, ye have taken, and by wicked {q} hands have crucified and {r} slain:

(p) God’s everlasting foreknowledge, which can neither be separated from his determinate counsel, as the Epicureans say, neither yet be the cause of evil: for God in his everlasting and unchangeable counsel appointed the wicked act of Judas to an excellent end: and God does that well which the instrument does wickedly.

(q) God’s counsel does not excuse the Jews, whose hands were wicked.

(r) The fact is said to be theirs by whose counsel and urging on it is done.

Verse 24

2:24 {6} Whom God hath raised up, having loosed the {s} pains of death: because it was not possible that he should be holden of it.

(6) As David foretold, Christ did not only rise again, but also was void of all decay in the grave.

(s) The death that was full of sorrow both of body and mind: therefore when death appeared conqueror and victor over those sorrows, Christ is rightly said to have overcome those sorrows of death when, as being dead, he overcame death, to live forever with his Father.

Verse 27

2:27 Because thou wilt not {t} leave my soul in hell, neither wilt thou suffer thine Holy One to see corruption.

(t) You will not allow me to remain in the grave.

Verse 28

2:28 Thou hast {u} made known to me the ways of life; thou shalt make me full of joy with thy countenance.

(u) You have opened to me the way of true life.

Verse 30

2:30 Therefore being a prophet, and knowing that God had {x} sworn with an oath to him, that of the fruit of his loins, according to the flesh, he would raise up Christ to sit on his throne;

(x) Had sworn solemnly.

Verse 32

2:32 {7} This Jesus hath God raised up, whereof we all are witnesses.

(7) Peter witnesses that Jesus Christ is the appointed everlasting King, which he manifestly proves by the gifts of the Holy Spirit and the testimony of David.

Verse 33

2:33 Therefore being by the {y} right hand of God exalted, and having received of the Father the promise of the Holy Ghost, he hath shed forth this, which ye now see and hear.

(y) Might and power of God.

Verse 36

2:36 Therefore let all the house of Israel know assuredly, that God hath {z} made that same Jesus, whom ye have crucified, both Lord and Christ.

(z) Christ is said to be "made" because he was advanced to that dignity, and therefore it is not spoken with reference to his nature, but with reference to his position and high dignity.

Verse 38

2:38 {8} Then Peter said unto them, Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost.

(8) Repentance and remission of sins in Christ are two principles of the Gospel and therefore of our salvation: and they are obtained by the promises apprehended by faith, and are ratified by us in baptism; and with our salvation comes the power of the Holy Spirit (Ed.).

Verse 39

2:39 For the {a} promise is unto you, and to your children, and to all that are afar off, [even] as many as the Lord our God shall call.

(a) The word that is used here shows us that it was a free gift.

Verse 40

2:40 {9} And with many other words did he testify and exhort, saying, Save yourselves from this untoward generation.

(9) He is truly joined to the Church who separates himself from the wicked.

Verse 41

2:41 {10} Then they that gladly received his word were baptized: and the same day there were added [unto them] about three thousand souls.

(10) A notable example of the power of the Holy Spirit: but such are not baptized until they make confession of their faith. (Ed.)

Verse 42

2:42 {11} And they continued stedfastly in the apostles’ doctrine and {b} fellowship, and in {c} breaking of bread, and in prayers.

(11) The marks of the true Church are the doctrine of the apostles, the duties of charity, the pure and simple administration of the ordinances, and the true invocation used by all of the faithful.

(b) Sharing of goods, and all other duties of charity, as is shown afterwards.

(c) The Jews used thin loaves, and therefore they broke them rather than cut them: so by breaking of bread they meant living together, and the banquets which they used to keep. And when they kept their love feasts, they used to celebrate the Lord’s supper, which even in those days began to be corrupted, and Paul corrects this in 1 Corinthians 11:17-34 .

Verse 43

2:43 {12} And fear came upon every soul: and many wonders and signs were done by the apostles.

(12) As often as the Lord thinks it to be expedient, he bridles the rage of strangers, so that the Church may be planted and have some refreshing.

Verse 44

2:44 {13} And all that believed were together, and had all things common;

(13) Charity makes all things common with regard to their use, according as necessity requires.

Verse 46

2:46 {14} And they, continuing daily with one accord in the temple, and breaking bread from house to house, did eat their meat with gladness and singleness of heart,

(14) The faithful came together at the beginning with tremendous results, not only for the hearing of the word, but also to eat.

Bibliographical Information
Beza, Theodore. "Commentary on Acts 2". "The 1599 Geneva Study Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/eng/gsb/acts-2.html. 1599-1645.
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