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Paul finishes his discourse ;
he bids them an affecting farewell.
A. D. cir. 60.
A. D. cir. 60.
An. Olymp. cir. CCIX. 4.
cir. CCIX. 4.
A. M.cir.4061. 35 I have shewed you all things || 37 And they all wept sore, and A.M.cir: 4064 . * how that so labouring ye ought to
Paul's neck, and kissed
An. Olymp. support the weak, and to remember him, the words of the Lord Jesus, how he said, It 38 Sorrowing most of all for the words which is more blessed to give than to receive.
he spake, that they should see his face, no 36 I And when he had thus spoken, he more. And they accompanied him unto the "kneeled down, and prayed with them all. ship.
• Rom. 15. 1. 1 Cor. 9. 12. 2 Cor. 11. 9, 12. & 12. 13. Eph. 4. 28.
1 Thes. 4. 11. & 5. 14. 2 Thes. 3. 8.
1 Ch. 7. 60. & 21.5.-- Gen. 45. 14. & 46.29, ver. 25.
may be to the people, it is no cause of reproach to the 1. As the disciples are stated to have come together on minister, to be obliged thus to employ himself.
the first day of the week, we may learn from this, that ever Verse 35. I have shewed you all things] The pre- || since the apostolic times, the Lord's day, now the Christian position rata is to be understood before marta ; and the sabbath, was set apart for religious exercises ; such as the clause should be read thus, I have shewed you in all || preaching of God's holy word, and celebrating the Sacrathings, 8c.
ment of the Lord's Supper. Besides its being the day on It is more blessed to give than to receive.] That is, the which our blessed Lord rose from the dead, the practice of the giver is more happy than the receiver. Where, or on what | apostles, and the primitive church, is an additional reason why occasion our Lord spake these words we know not, as they we should religiously celebrate this first day of the week. do not exist in any of the four Evangelists. But, that our They who, professing the Christian religion, still prefer the Lord did speak them, St. Paul's evidence is quite sufficient to Jewish sabbath, have little to support them in the New Testaprove. The sentiment is worthy of Christ. A truly generous ment. How prone is man to affect to be wise above what is mind, in affluence, rejoices in opportunities to do good ; and written, while he is, in almost every respect, below the teachfeels happy in having such opportunities. A man of an in- ing so plainly laid down in the Divine word. dependent spirit, when reduced to poverty, finds it a severe 2. The charge of St. Paul to the pastors of the church of trial to be obliged to live on the bounty of another; and Christ at Ephesus and Miletus, contains much that is interfeels pain in receiving what the other feels a happiness in esting to every Christian minister :-1, If he be sent of God communicating. Let, therefore, the man who is able to give, at all, he is sent to feed the flock. 2. But, in order to feed feel himself the obliged person ; and think how much pain them, he must have the bread of life. 3. This bread he the feeling heart of his supplicant must endure, in being must distribute in its due season, that each may have that obliged to forego its native independence, in soliciting and portion that is suitable to time, place, and state. 4. While receiving the bounty of another. I am not speaking of com- he is feeding others, he should take care to have his own soul mon beggars; these have got their minds already depraved, || fed: it is possible for a minister to be the instrument of feedand their native independence reduced, by sin and idleness, | ing others, and yet starve himself. 5. If Jesus Christ en. to servility.
trust to his care the souls he has bought by his own blood; Verse 36. He kneeled down, and prayed] Kneeling was the what an awful account will he have to give in the day of proper posture of a supplicant; it argues at once both humi- || judgment, if any of them perish through his neglect? Though lity and submission ; and he who prays to God, should endea- || the sinner, dying in his sins, has his own blood upon his Tour to feel the utmost measures of both.
head; yet, if the watchman has not faithfully warned him, Verse 37. Fell on Paul's neck] Leaned their heads his blood will be required at the watchman's hand. Let him against his shoulder, and kissed his neck. This was not an who is concerned read Ezek. chap. xxxiii. 3, 4, 5. and think unusual custom in the East.
of the account which he is shortly to give unto God. Verse 38. That they should see his face no more.] This 3. Tenderness and sympathy are not inconsistent with the was a most solemn meeting, and a most affecting parting. I highest state of grace. Paul warns his hearers day and night The man who had first pointed out to them the Lord Jesus with tears. His hearers now weep sore at the departure of Christ, by whom they had been brought into so glorious a their beloved pastor. They who can give up a Christian state of salvation, is now going away, in all likelihood, to minister with indifference, have either profited little under be seen no more till the day in which the quick and dead that ministry, or they have back-slidden from the grace of shall stand before the throne of judgment. Such a scene, God. The pastors should love as fathers, the converts as and its correspondent feelings, are more easily imagined than || children; and all feel themselves one family, under that great described.
head Christ Jesus.
Paul sails from Miletůs,
and lands at Tyre.
CHAPTER XXI. Paul and his company sail from Miletus, and come to Coos, Rhodes, and Patara, 1. Finding a Phænician
ship at Patara, they go on board, sail past Cyprus, and land at Tyre, 2, 3. Here they find disciples, and stay seven days, and are kindly entertained, 4, 5. Having bade the disciples farewell, they take ship and sail to Ptolemais, salute the brethren, stay with them one day, come to Cæsarea, and lodge with Philip, one of the seven Deacons, 6–9. Here they tarry a considerable time, and Agabus the prophet, foretells Paul's persecution at Jerusalem, 10, 11. The disciples endeavour to dissuade him from going ; but he is resolute, and he and his company depart, 12–16. They are kindly received by James and the elders, who advise Paul, because of the Jews, to shew his respect for the law of Moses, by purifying himself with certain others that were under a vow; with which advice he complies, 17—26. Some of the Asiatic Jews, finding him in the temple, raise an insurrection against him, and would have killed him had he not been rescued by the chief captain, who orders him to be bound and carried into the castle, 27-36. Paul requests liberty to address the people, and is permitted, 37–40.
3 Now when we had discovered Cy- 4. M. cir.4064 An. Olymp.
were gotten from them, and prus, we left it on the left hand, An. Olymp. cir. CCIX. 4. had launched, "we came with a straight and sailed unto Syria, and landed at course unto Coos, and the day following unto | Tyre : for there, the ship was to unlade her Rhodes, and from thence unto Patara :
burden. 2 And finding a ship sailing over unto Phæni 4 And finding disciples, we tarried there seven cia, we went aboard, and set forth.
days : who said to Paul through the Spirit,
A. M.cir. 4064.
A. D. cir. 60
cir. CCIX. 4.
NOTES ON CHAP. XXI.
Verse 3. Cyprus) See the note on chap. iv. 36. and Verse 1. Came with a straight course] Having had, as see the track of this journey on the Map. is necessarily implied, wind and tide in their favour.
Tyre] A city of Phænicia, one of the most celebrated Coos) An island in the Archipelago, or Ægean sea, one maritime towns in the world. See the notes on chap. xii. 20. of those called the Sporades. It was fainous for the worship Matt. xi. 21. of Esculapius and Juno: and for being the birth-place of
of | There, the ship was to unlade her burden.] The freight Hippocrates, the most eminent of physicians; and Apelles, that she had taken in at Ephesus, she was to unlade at Tyre; the most celebrated of painters.
to which place she was bound. Rhodes] Another island in the same sea, celebrated for Verse 4. Who said to Paul through the Spirit] We can. its Colossus, which was one of the seven wonders of the not understand this as a command from the Holy Spirit not world. This was a brazen statue of Apollo, so high that to go up to Jerusalem ; else Paul must have been highly ships in fall sail could pass between its legs. It was the criminal to have disobeyed it. Through the Spirit, must work of Chares, a pupil of Lysippus, who spent twelve years either refer to their own great earnestness to dissuade him in making it. It was 106 feet high, and so great, that few from taking a journey, which they plainly saw would be inpeople could fathom its thumb. It was thrown down by an jurious to him; and so Bp. Pearce understands this place. Or, earthquake, about 224 years before Christ, after having stood if it refer to the Holy Spirit, it must mean, that if he resixty-six years. When the Saracens took possession of this garded his personal safety, he must not, at this time, go up island, they sold this prostrate image to a Jew, who loaded to Jerusalem. The Spirit foretold Paul's persecutions, but 900 camels with the brass of it ; this was about A. D. 660, does not appear to have forbidden his journey ; and Paul was nearly 900 years after it had been thrown down.
persuaded, that in acting as he was about to do, whatever Patara] One of the chief sea-port towns of Syria. personal risk he ran, he should bring more glory to God by
Verse 2. Phænicia] A part of Syria. See the note on going to Jerusalem, than by tarrying at Tyre or elsewhere. саар. хі.
The purport of this divine communication was,
If thou go
Paul sails from Tyre,
and comes to Cæsarca.
cir. CCIX. 4.
A.M.cir: 1064: that he should not go up to Jeru- || and we entered into the house 4. M.Cor.4064. An. Olymp. salem.
of Philip the evangelist," which An. Olymp. 5 And when we had accomplished was one of the seven ; and abode cir. CCIX. 4. those days, we departed and went our way; and with him. they all brought us on our way, with wives and 9 And the same man had four daughters, virchildren, till we were out of the city: and we gins, e which did prophesy. kneeled down on the shore, and prayed.
10 I And as we tarried there many days, there 6 And when we had taken our leave one of came down from Judea a certain prophet, named another, we took ship; and they returned 'home' Agabus. again.
11 And when he was come unto us, he took 7 And when we had finished our course from Paul's girdle, and bound his own hands and Tyre, we came to Ptolemais, and saluted the feet, and said, Thus saith the Holy Ghost, So brethren, and abode with them one day. shall the Jews at Jerusalem bind the man that
8 And the next day we that were of Paul's owneth this girdle, and shall deliver him into the company departed, and came unto Cæsarea : hands of the Gentiles.
a Ch. 20.36,- John 1.11.
Eph. 4. 11. 2 Tim. 4.5.--ch. 6.5. & 8. 26,40.-Joel 2. 28. ch. 2. 17.ch. 11. 28.-ver. 33. ch. 20.23.
up to Jerusalem, the Jews will persecute thee; and thou Verse 6. Taken-leave] AOTIA TAJLEVOL ; having given each wilt be imprisoned, &c.” As he was apprised of this, he other the kiss of peace, as was the constant custom of the might have desisted, for the whole was conditional : Paul Jews and primitive Christians. might or might not go to Jerusalem : if he did go, he would They returned home] That is, the men, their wives, and be persecuted, and be in danger of losing his life. The Holy their children. Spirit neither commanded him to go, bor forbad him: the Verse 7. We came to Ptolemais] This was a sea-port whole was conditional; and he was left to the free exercise town of Galilee, not far from Mount Carmel, between Tyre of his own judgment and conscience. This was a similar and Cæsarea, where the river Belus empties itself into the case to that of David in Keilah, 1 Sam. xxiii. 9—13. David It was at first called Accho, (and this is the reading prevented the threatened evil by leaving Keilah : Paul fell of the Syriac and Arabic,) and belonged to the tribe of into it, by going to Jerusalem.
Asher, Judges i. 31. it was enlarged and beautified by the Verse 5. When we had accomplished those days) That is, first of the Egyptian Ptolemies, from whom it was called the seven days mentioned in the preceding verse.
Ptolemais. This place terminated St. Paul's voyage : and And they all brought us on our way, with wides and this is what is expressed in the text : And we came from Tyre children] It is not likely that Paul, Silas, Luke, &c. had to Plolemais, where our voyage ended. See the Greek text. either wives or children with them; and it is more natural Verse 8. IVe that were of Paul's company] Οι περι τον to suppose that the brethren of Tyre, with their wives and laužor. This clause is wanting in ABCE. and many others, children, are those that are meant : these, through affection the Syriac, Coptic, Vulgate, Armenian, &c. to the apostles, accompanied them from their homes to the Came unto Cæsarea] This was Cæsarea of Palestine, alship; and the coming out of the husbands, wives, and child ready sufficiently described. See on chap. viii. 40. dren, shews what a general and affectionate interest the preach Philip the evangelist] One of the seven deacons, who seems ing and private conversation of these holy men had excited to have settled here, after he had baptized the eunuch. See
Knceled down on the shore, and prayed.] As God fills on chap. viii. 40. heaven and earth, so he may be worshipped every whcre : Verse 9. Four daughters, virgins, which did prophesy.] as well, when circumstances require it, on the sea-shore, as Probably these were no more than teachers in the church; in the temple. We have already seen, in the case of Lydia, | for we have already seen that this is a frequent meaning of that the Jews had proseuchas by the river sides, &c. and the word prophecy : and this is undoubtedly one thing inan observation in Tertullian seems to intimate, that they litended by the prophecy of Joel, quoted chap. ii. 17, and 18. preferred such places, and in the open air offered their peti- of this book. If Philip's daughters might be prophetesses, tions to God by the sea-shore: Omissis templis, per omne | why not teachers ? littus, quocumque in aperto aliquando jam præces ad cælum Verse 10. Agubus.] See the note on chap. xi. 28. mittunt. Tertul. de Jejunio.
Verse 11. Took Paul's girdle, and bound his own hands,&c.]
Paul leaves Cæsarea,
and comes to Jerusalem.
1. M.cir. 4064. A. D. cir. 60.
A. D. cir. 60.
An. Olymp. cir. CCIX. 4.
cir. CCIX. 4.
12 And when we heard these things, || one Mnason of Cyprus, an old disci- A.M.cir: 1064An. Olymp. both we, and they of that place, be- || ple, with whom we should lodge.
sought him not to go up to Jeru 17 I . And when we were come to salem.
Jerusalem, the brethren received us gladly. 13 Then Paul answered, “What mean ye to 18 And the day following, Paul went in with weep and to break mine heart ? for I am ready, us unto “ James ; and all the elders were prenot to be bound only, but also to die at Jerusa- | sont. lem for the name of the Lord Jesus.
19 And when he had saluted them, he de14 And when he would not be persuaded, we clared particularly what things God had wrought ceased, saying, The will of the Lord be done. | among the Gentiles ' by his ministry.
15 And after those days we took up our car 20 And when they heard it, they glorified the riages, and went up to Jerusalem.
Lord, and said unto him, Thou seest, brother, 16 There went with us also certain of the how many thousands of Jews there are which disciples of Cæsarea, and brought with them believe ; and they are all 5 zealous of the law:
* Ch. 20. 24.) Matt. 6. 10. & 26. 42. Luke 11. 2. & 22. 42.
. ch. 15. 4.- ch. 15. 13. Gal. 1. 19. & 2. 9.
• Ch. 15. 4, 12, Rom. 15. 18, 19. ch. 1. 17. ch. 20. 24.
6 ch. 22. 3. Rom. 10. 2. Gal. 1. 14.
This was no doubt a prophet, in the commonly received us to one Mnason, with whom we were to lodge. This is sense of the term; and his mode of acting was like that of most likely, as the text will bear this translation. But it is the ancient prophets, who often accompanied their predic- possible that Mnason, formerly of Cyprus, now an inhabi. tions with significant emblems. Jeremiah was commanded tant of Jerusalem, might have been down at Cæsarea, met to bury bis girdle by the river Euphrates, to mark out the the disciples, and invited them to lodge with him while they captivity of the Jews. Jerem. xiii. 4. For more examples were at Jerusalem ; and having transacted his business at of this figurative or symbolical prophesying, see Jerem. xxvii. Cæsarea, might now accompany them to Jerusalem. His 2, 3. xxviii. 4. Isai. xx. Ezek. iv. xii. &c.
being an old disciple, may either refer to his having been a Into the hands of the Gentiles.] That is, the Romans, for very early convert, probably one of those on the day of the Jews had not, properly speaking, the power of life and Pentecost ; or to his being now an old man. death. And as Agabus said, he should be delivered into the Verse 18. Went in with us unto James] This was James hands of the Gentiles, be shewed thereby that they would the less, son of Mary, and cousin to our Lord. He appears attempt to destroy his life. This prediction of Agabus was to have been bishop of the church in Jerusalem : and perhaps literally fulfilled, see ver. 33.
the only apostle who continued in that city. We have al. Verse 12. Besought him not to go up to Jerusalem.] For ready seen what a very important character he sustained in they all understood the prophecy to be conditional and con
the council. See chap. xv. 13. tingent; and that it was in Paul's power to turn the scale. All the elders were present.] It appears that they had
Verse 13. I am ready not to be bound only] He was been convened about matters of serious and important mo. resolute and determined; but was under no constraining ne ment: and some think it was relative to Paul himself; of cessity. See the note on ver. 4.
whose arrival they had heard, and well knew how many of Verse 14. The will of the Lord be done.) May that which those that believed were disaffected towards him. is most for his glory take place! They plainly saw from the Verse 19. Declared particularly, &c.] He no doubt had prophecy what would take place, if Paul went to Jerusalem; heard that they were prejudiced against him; and by de. and every one saw that he had power to go, or not to go. claring what God had done by him among the Gentiles,
Verse 15. Took up our carriages] AT65XELAT Quevos ; we shewed how groundless this prejudice was : for were he a made ourselves ready; packed up our things ; got our baggage bad man, or doing any thing that he should not do, God in order. This is what the text means,
would not have made him such a singular instrument of so Verse 16. And brought with them one Mnuson, &c.] It much good. is not very likely that they would bring a man with them, Verse 20. How many thousands] Ilocal uupiades; how with whom they were to lodge in Jerusalem ; therefore, the many myriads, how many times 10,000. This intimates that text should perhaps be read as Bp. Patrick proposes : There there had been a most extraordinary and rapid work even went with us certain of the disciples of Cæsarea, bringing among the Jews : but what is here spoken is not to be cons
On the advice of the brethren,
Paul purifies himself in the temple.
A.M.cir:4064. 21 And they are informed of thee, s have four men which have a vow on
; cir, CCIX. 4.
are among the Gentiles, to forsake 24 Them take, and purify thyself Moses, saying that a they ought not to circumcise with them, and be at charges with them, that their children, neither to walk after the customs. they may "shave their heads : and all may know
22 What is it therefore ? the multitude must that those things, whereof they were informed needs come together : for they will hear that concerning thee, are nothing ; but that thou thou art come.
thyself also walkest orderly, and keepest the 23 Do therefore this that we say to thee: We law.
a Gal. 2. 3. & 5. 1.
5 Num. 6. 2, 13, 18. ch. 18. 18.
fined to the Jews of Jerusalem ; but to all that had come from Nazariteship; and that the days of their row were nearly at different parts of the land, to be present at this Pen an end, as they were about to shave their heads; for, during tecost.
the time of the Nazariteship, the hair was permitted to They are all zealous of the law.] The Jewish economy was grow, and only shaven off at the termination of the vow. not yet destroyed; nor had God as yet signified that the Among the Jews, it was common to make vows to God on whole of its observances were done away. He continued to extraordinary occasions; and that of the Nazarite appears tolerate that dispensation, which was to be in a certain mea to have been one of the most common; and it was permitted zure in force till the destruction of Jerusalem; and from by their law, for any person to perform this vow by proxy. that period it was impossible for them to observe their own See the law produced in my note on Numb. vi. 21. “ It was ritual. Thus God abolished the Mosaic dispensation, by also customary for the richer sort to bestow their charity on rendering, in the course of his providence, the observation the poorer sort for this purpose ; for Josephus, Ant. lib. xix. of it impossible.
cap. 6. sect. 1. observes, that Agrippa, on his being adVerse 21. Thou teachest --to forsake Moses, 8c.] From vanced from a prison to a throne, by the emperor Claudius, any thing that appears in the course of this book to the con came to Jerusalem; and there, among other instances of his trary, this information was incorrect : we do not find Paul religious thankfulness shewn in the temple, Nafafarwy Eupate preaching thus to the Jews. It is true, that, in his Epistles, || 0an dieTaçe para ouxyous, he ordered very many Nazarites some of which had been written before this time, he shewed to be shaven ; he furnishing them with money for the expences that circumcision and uncircumcision were equally unavaila- of that, and of the sacrifices necessarily attending it." See ble for the salvation of the soul ; and that by the deeds of Bp. Pearce. ihe law no man could be justified; but he had not yet said Verse 24. Be at charges with them] Or, rather, be at to any Jew, forsake Moses, and do not circumcise your charges for them : help them to bear the expence of that children. lle told them that Jesus Christ had delivered them vow. Eight lambs, four rams, besides oil, flour, &c. were from the yoke of the law; but they had, as yet, liberty to the expences on this occasion. See the notes on Numb. vi. wear that yoke, if they pleased. He had shewed them that Thou—walkest orderly, und keepest the law.] Perhaps their ceremonies were useless, but not destructive ; that they this advice meant no more than, Shew them by such means were only dangerous, when they depended on them for sal as are now in thy power, that thou art not an enemy to vation. This is the sum of what Paul had taught on this | Moses ; that thou dost still consider the law to be holy, and subject.
the commandment holy, just, and good. Paul did so, and Verse 22. The multitude must needs come together] Whe- bore the expences of those, who, from a scruple of conther this refers to a regular convocation of the church; or to science, had made a vow, and perhaps were not well able to a tumult that would infallibly take place when it was heard bear the expence attending it. Had they done this in order that the apostle was come, we cannot pretend to say: but it to acquire justification through the law; Paul could not hare is evident that James and the Elders wished some prudent assisted them in any measure with a clear conscience : but as steps to be taken, in order to prevent an evil that they had he did assist them, it is a proof that they had not taken this too much reason to fear.,
vow on them for this purpose. Indeed, vows rather referred Verse 23. We have four men which have u vuro] From | to a sense of obligation, and the gratitude due to God for the shuving of the head, mentioned immediately. after, it is mercies already received, than to the procuring of future faevident that the four men in question, were under the vow of vours of any kind. Besides, God had not yet fully shewn,