VINCENT'S WORD STUDIES
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Robertson's Word Pictures in the NT - Greek NT
Began (hrxato). This is interpreted in two ways. Either, (1), as a simple historical statement equivalent to "all that Jesus did and taught." In favor of this is the fact that the synoptists often record that which is done or said according to its moment of commencement, thus giving vividness to the account. See Matt. xi. 20; xxvi. 22, 37; Mark vi. 7; xiv. 19; Luke viii. 38, etc. According to this explanation the word serves "to recall to the recollection from the Gospel all the several incidents and events, up to the ascension, in which Jesus had appeared as doer and teacher" (Meyer). Or, (2), as indicating that the Gospel contains the beginning, and the Acts of the Apostles the continuation, of the doings and teachings of Jesus. "The earthly life of Jesus, concluded with the ascension, has its fruit and continued efficacy; and his heavenly life, commencing with the ascension, has its manifestation and proof in the acts and experiences of the apostles and first churches. The history of the Church was under the immediate control of the exalted Redeemer, and may justly be considered as the continuation in heaven of the work which he had begun on earth" (Baumgarten and Gloag).
While the truth and importance of this statement are admitted, it is objected that such an intention on Luke's part would have been more clearly intimated, and not left to be inferred from a single doubtful phrase. As regards Luke's intention, I think the first explanation is more likely to be correct. The second, however, states a truth, the value and importance of which cannot be overestimated, and which should be kept in mind constantly in the study of the book of Acts. This is well put by Bernard ("Progress of Doctrine in the New Testament," Lect. IV.): "Thus the history which follows is linked to, or (may I not rather say) welded with, the past; and the founding of the Church in the earth is presented as one continuous work, begun by the Lord in person, and perfected by the same Lord through the ministry of men.... 'The former treatise' delivered to us, not all that Jesus did and taught, but 'all that Jesus began to do and teach until the day when he was taken up.' The following writings appear intended to give us, and do, in fact, profess to give us, that which Jesus continued to do and teach after the day in which he was taken up."
Through the Holy Ghost. Construe with had given commandment: by means of the Holy Spirit, which inspired him. Not, as some interpreters, with whom he had chosen.
Infallible proofs (tekmhrioiv). The word is akin to tekmar a fixed boundary, goal, end; and hence a fixed or sure sign or token. The Rev. omits infallible, probably, assuming that a proof implies certainty. Being seen (optanomenov). Only here in New Testament. Rev., appearing.
Forty days (di hmerwn tesserakonta). Lit., "through forty days." Rev., by the space of. The only passage where the interval between the resurrection and the ascension is given.
The promise (epaggelian). Signifying a free promise, given without solicitation. This is the invariable sense of the word throughout the New Testament, and this and its kindred and compound words are the only words for promise in the New Testament. 'Upiscneomai, meaning to promise in response to a request, does not occur; and oJmologew, Matt. xiv. 7, of Herod promising Salome, really means to acknowledge his obligation for her lascivious performance. See note there.
Not many days hence (ou meta pollav tautav hmerav). Lit., not after many of these days. Not after many, but after a few.
Samaria. Formerly they had been commanded not to enter the cities of the Samaritans (Matt. x. 5).
With one accord (omoqumadon). See on agree, Matt. xviii. 19. xviii. 19. In prayer. The best texts omit and supplication.
Mary. Mentioned here for the last time in the New Testament.
The number of the names together were about, etc. (hn te oclov onomatwn epi to auto). Much better as Rev., and there was a multitude of persons gathered together, about, etc. Oclov, multitude, would not be used of a number about to be stated.
Brother-men. More dignified and solemn than the simple brethren.
This scripture. The best texts substitute the. See on Mark xii. 10.
The Holy Ghost (to Pneuma to %Agion). Lit., The Spirit, the Holy.
Guide. See on lead, Luke vi. 39.
With (sun). The best texts read ejn, among. So Rev.
Obtained (elace). Strictly, "received by lot. " Rev., better, received. Compare Luke i. 9. In classical Greek, of receiving public magistracies. Part (ton klhron). The A.V. does not give the force of the article, the lot which was his. So Rev., "his portion:" lit., lot..
Ministry. See on minister, Matt. xx. 26. Compare bishopric, ver. 20.
Falling headlong (prhnhv genomenov). Lit., having become headlong.
He burst asunder (elakhse). Only here in New Testament. Lit., to crack, to burst with a noise. So Homer, of the bones cracking beneath a blow ("Iliad," xiii., 616). Compare Aristophanes, "Clouds," 410.
Bishopric (episkophn). See on 1 Pet. ii. 12. Rev., better, office, with overseership in margin. Compare Luke xix. 44.
Another (eterov). And different person. See on ch. ii. 4.
xv. 8. Lit, heart-knower.
His own place. Compare "the place in this ministry." Ton idion, his own, is stronger than the simple possessive pronoun. It is the place which was peculiarly his, as befitting his awful sin - Gehenna.