Sunday, August 22, 2010

Acts Chapter Twenty-Two

Acts Chapter Twenty-Two (NIV)
Acts Chapter Twenty-Two (NASB)


Verses 1-21: Paul addresses the Jews (largely a review of Paul's conversion in Chapter Nine).

Verses 22-29: Paul before the Roman Tribune.

Verse 30: Paul stands before the Jewish Council.


(A) Acts 22:2--"And when they heard that he was addressing them in the Hebrew language, they became even more quiet." The most common language in Israel was Aramaic (and the word "Hebrew" here could mean "Aramaic.") Depending on whether Paul addressed the Jews in Hebrew or Aramaic, this verse could mean either (1) the Jews became quiet because Paul was speaking Hebrew, which would have been a bit more difficult to understand, or (2) the Jews became quiet because Paul was speaking Aramaic, and this was surprising to them, since the mob most likely assumed that Paul was a Hellenist (Greek-speaking Jew).

(B) Acts 22:9--"Now those who were with me saw the light but did not understand the voice of the one who was speaking to me." For some reason, Muslims often point to this verse as a contradiction when compared with Acts 9:7, which reads, "The men who were traveling with him stood speechless, hearing the voice but seeing no one." Obviously, there's no contradiction here. Paul's companions saw the light but not Jesus, and heard the voice but didn't understand it.

(C) Acts 22:25--"But when they had stretched him out for the whips, Paul said to the centurion who was standing by, 'Is it lawful for you to flog a man who is a Roman citizen and uncondemned?'" It was illegal to flog a Roman citizen without a trial. Paul again demands his civil rights as a Roman citizen.


Charis kai Eirene said...

It's saddening how the Jews responded to Paul's statement that the Lord was sending him to the Gentiles by saying that "He is not fit to live!" I understand that the Jews held a great deal of animosity towards their oppressors, but I still find it disturbing that because Paul wants the eternal lives of other racial groups to be saved, those of his own race want to take his life away. Perhaps this is a case of grace amnesia.

Through grace, Abraham was chosen to be a father of nations and through grace his posterity received the truth and revelation about God. The proper response to unmerited favor should be thankfulness. Thus, it is not fitting that those who are recipients of such extravagant grace should be displeased and angered when He extends that grace towards other people.

For all of us, the response to the grace we receive should be graciousness towards others and gratitude towards God. Rather than being hoarders of God's grace, it should abound in our hearts so that we unbearably long for His grace to reach all people.

Lydia McGrew said...

Sorry if this is OT, but what about Acts 17's own trial? Wasn't there supposed to be a pre-trial hearing one of these days in here to decide whether the charges are going to trial?