Robertson's Word Pictures in the NT - Greek NT


vers 1.
Defence (apologiav). See on answer, 1 Pet. iii. 15.

vers 2.
Kept-silence (parescon hsucian). Lit., gave quiet.

vers 3.
At the feet. Referring to the Jewish custom of the pupils sitting on benches or on the floor, while the teacher occupied an elevated platform. Gamaliel. One of the seven Rabbis to whom the Jews gave the title Rabban. Rab, "teacher," was the lowest degree; Rabbi, "my teacher," the next higher. and Rabban, "our teacher," the highest. Gamaliel was a liberal Pharisee. "As Aquinas among the schoolmen was called Doctor Angelicus, and Bonaventura Doctor Seraphicus, so Gamaliel was called the Beauty of the Law. He had no antipathy to the Greek learning. Candor and wisdom seem to have been features of his character" (Conybeare and Howson). See ch. v. 34 sq.

Instructed (pepaideumenov). See on chastise, Luke xxiii. 16.

According to the perfect manner (kata akribeian). Lit., according to the strictness. See on perfect understanding, Luke i. 3; and diligently, Acts xviii. 25. Compare, also, Acts xviii. 26; xxvi. 5.

Zealous (zhlwthv). Or a zealot. On the word as a title, see on Mark iii. 18.

vers 4.
Way. See on ch. ix. 2.

vers 5.
Estate of the elders (presbuterion). The eldership or Sanhedrim.

Went. The imperfect: was journeying.

vers 6.
About noon. Not mentioned in ch. 9.

vers 8.
Of Nazareth (o Nazwraiov). Lit., the Nazarene. Not mentioned in ch. 9.

vers 9.
Heard not (ouk hkousan). The verb is to be taken in the sense of understood, as Mark iv. 33; 1 Cor. xiv. 2, which explains the apparent discrepancy with ch. ix. 7.

vers 11.
For the glory of that light. The cause of his blindness is not stated in ch. 9.

vers 12.
A devout man, etc. In ch. ix. 10, he is called a disciple. Paul here "affirms that he was not introduced to Christianity by an opponent of Judaism, but by a strict Jew" (Gloag).

vers 13.
Stood (epistav). More correctly, as Rev., "standing by (epi)." Receive thy sight (anableyon). Better, look up. See the following words: I looked up upon him. The word admits of both translations, to look up and to recover sight.

I looked up upon him. Some unite both meanings here: I looked up with recovered sight. So Rev., in margin.

vers 14.
The God of our fathers - Just One. A conciliatory touch in Paul's speech, mentioning both God and Christ by their Jewish names. Compare ch. iii. 14; vii. 52.

Hath chosen (proeceirisato). See on ch. iii. 20. Better, as Rev., appointed.

vers 15.
All men. He keeps back the offensive word Gentiles (ch. ix. 15).

vers 16.
Wash away (apolousai). See on ch. xvi. 33.

vers 17.
I was in a trance (genesqai me en ekstasei). Rev., more correctly, I fell into a trance; the verb meaning to become, rather than the simple to be. On trance, see note on astonishment, Mark v. 42; and compare note on Acts x. 10.

vers 20.
Martyr. Better, as Rev., witness. The special sense of the word was probably not in use at this time. See on ch. i. 22. It occurs, however, in Apoc. ii. 13; xvii. 6.

Standing by. See on verse 13.

Consenting (suneudokwn). See on allow, Luke xi. 48; and compare Acts viii. 1.

Slew. See on Luke xxiii. 32.

vers 21.
Gentiles. "The fatal word, which hitherto he had carefully avoided, but which it was impossible for him to avoid any longer, was enough.... The word 'Gentiles,' confirming all their worst suspicions, fell like a spark on the inflammable mass of their fanaticism" (Farrar, "Life and Work of Paul").

vers 22.
They gave him audience (hkouon). The imperfect. Up to this word they were listening.

Lifted up their voice, etc. "Then began one of the most odious and despicable spectacles which the world can witness, the spectacle of an oriental mob, hideous with impotent rage, howling, yelling, cursing, gnashing their teeth, flinging about their arms, waving and tossing their blue and red robes, casting dust into the air by handfuls, with all the furious gesticulations of an uncontrolled fanaticism" (Farrar). Hackett cites Sir John Chardin ("Travels into Persia and the East Indies") as saying that it is common for the peasants in Persia, when they have a complaint to lay before their governors, to repair to them by hundreds or a thousand at once. They place themselves near the gate of the palace, where they suppose they are most likely to be seen and heard, and there set up a horrid outcry, rend their garments, and throw dust into the air, at the same time demanding justice. Compare 2 Sam. xvi. 13.

vers 24.
Examined (anetazesqai). Only here and ver. 29. Not found in classical Greek. Apocrypha, Susanna, ver. 14.

By scourging (mastixin). Lit., with scourges.

vers 25.
Bound him with thongs (proeteinan aujton toiv iJmasin). Against the rendering of the A.V. is the word proeteinan, they stretched forward, in allusion to the position of the victim for scourging, and the article with thongs; "the thongs," with reference to some well-known instrument. If the words referred simply to binding him, with thongs would be superfluous. It is better, therefore, to take thongs as referring to the scourge, consisting of one or more lashes or cords, a sense in which it occurs in classical Greek, and to render stretched him out for (or before) the thongs. The word is used elsewhere in the New Testament of a shoe-latchet (Mark i. 7; Luke iii. 16; John i. 27).

Roman. See on ch. xvi. 37.

vers 28.
Sum (kefalaiou). Lit., capital. The purchase of Roman citizenship was an investment. Under the first Roman emperors it was obtained only at large cost and with great difficulty; later, it was sold for a trifle. I was free born (egw kai gegennhmai). Lit., I am even so born, leaving the mind to supply free or a Roman. Better, as Rev., I am a Roman born.

vers 30.
Brought Paul down. To the meeting-place of the Sanhedrim: probably not their usual place of assembly, which lay within the wall of partition, which Lysias and his soldiers would not have been allowed to pass.

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