The Berean Expositor
Volume 30 - Page 13 of 179
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when men believed the testimony of John the Baptist, and not to the re-baptism of the
twelve disciples by Paul himself.
Acts 19: 1-12.
Paul. Ministry at Ephesus.
c | 1. Paul's arrival at Ephesus.
d | 1. Certain men. Their character. Disciples.
e | 2. Spiritual gifts. Their ignorance of them.
f | 3. What they had received. John's baptism.
g | 4, 5. What Paul said. Paul's description of John's action.
g | 6. What Paul did. Luke's description.  Paul's action.
f | 6. What they now received. Special gifts.
e | 6. Spiritual gifts. Their use of them.
d | 7. The men. Their number. About twelve.
c | 8-12. Paul's continuance at Ephesus.
The words pneuma hagion ("the Holy Ghost") in verse 2 refer to spiritual gifts, and
not to the Holy Spirit Himself. These coming gifts of the Spirit had been spoken of by
John, but the men concerned here had not heard of Pentecost. After this interview with
the Apostle, we read that "the holy spirit came on them; and they spake with tongues and
After this the Apostle spends three months in the synagogue, "disputing and
persuading the things concerning the kingdom of God". We read that some of those who
heard "were hardened", and once again there is a movement towards the Gentiles:
"He departed from them, and separated the disciples, disputing daily in the school of
one Tyrannus" (Acts 19: 9).
This "school of Tyrannus" was probably what the Jews called Beth Midrash, a kind of
private rabbinical seminary, and here the Apostle continues for the space of two years, so
that all in Asia "hear the word of the Lord Jesus, both Jews and Greeks".
"And God wrought special miracles by the hands of Paul" (Acts 19: 11).
Why should God have wrought "special" miracles by the hands of Paul, just at this
point? The word translated "special" is not easy to explain, because it changes its
meaning and application at different times. The word tugchano means "to hit a mark, as
with an arrow" (Homer 2: 12: 394), and then, by an easy transition, "to hit upon", "to
light upon", with the element of chance attached, as in Acts 17: 17, "to meet by
chance" (paratucho). Ho tuchon means "an every-day man", or, with the negative, "no
ordinary man"; and the word is used by Josephus in describing Herod's temple as "no
common work".
Coming back now to the record of Acts 19:, let us notice the two kinds of miracles
that are particularized.