| || |The Berean Expositor
Volume 25 - Page 11 of 190 Index | Zoom | |
The last few verses of Acts 28: are associated with Rome. The keyword is
rejection, for Israel now pass off the scene; they become Lo-ammi, and salvation is sent
to the Gentile, without reference to the Jew. This brings the book to a close.
We can now visualize the Book of the Acts under three R's thus:--
Jews only. Peter.
Jews and Gentiles. Paul and others.
Gentiles only. Paul.
With the preparation afforded by this survey we can take up the opening section, and
learn its lessons without its being spoiled by the intrusion of matters that had no place
during the period of this first section, but belong to subsequent times and commissions.
The Twelve (1: 15 - 2: 13).
pp. 113 - 117
The first section of the Acts proper, viz., 1: 15 - 2: 13, is indicated in the structure
given in Volume XXIV, page 3. This section must now be given consideration. The
construction of the first verse is unusual. The flow of the narrative is abruptly broken by
the insertion of the statement: "the number of the names together were about one
hundred and twenty." Why should it have been necessary thus to break into the
sentence? The answer must be, because in some way the number of those gathered had
special significance, and that the very manner of the introduction of the information is
intended to arrest attention. When we put one hundred and twenty into figures, 120, we
become conscious of the presence of the factor 12. We also notice that the remainder of
chapter one is occupied with the bringing of the number of the apostles, once more, up to
twelve, Matthias being added to the eleven" (Acts 1: 26), and Peter "standing up with the
eleven" (Acts 2: 14). Our attention is also drawn to the enumeration of the countries
from which the assembled Jews had come (Acts 2: 9-11).
(4) Dwellers in Mesopotamia,
(5) in JudŠa, (6) in Cappadocia, (7) in Pontus, (8) and Asia, (9) Phrygia,
(10) Pamphylia, (11) in Egypt, and (12) parts of Libia about Cyrene.
Here are twelve countries, and those that came from them summed up in the worlds
that follow as being "strangers of Rome, Jews and proselytes, Cretes and Arabians". The
terms "strangers" and "proselytes" show that we are no longer reading a list of countries
represented, but a summary of the characteristics of the crowd of persons assembled.
The recurrence of Israel's number, twelve, is not accidental. Accordingly we take
note of the recurring feature as follows:--
The number assembled (Acts 1: 15) . . . . .
The number of the apostles made up (Acts 1: 26) . . .
The number of nations represented (Acts 2: 9-11) . . .