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  • VINCENT'S NEW TESTAMENT
    WORD STUDIES - ACTS 18

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    CHAPTER XVIII

    1. Found. "A Jewish guild always keeps together, whether in street or synagogue. In Alexandria the different trades sat in the synagogue arranged into guilds; and St. Paul could have no difficulty in meeting, in the bazaar of his trade, with the like-minded Aquila and Priscilla" (Edersheim, "Jewish Social Life").

    2. Lately (prosfatwv). Only here in New Testament, though the kindred adjective, rendered new, is found in Heb. x. 20. It is derived from fenw, to slay, and the adjective means, originally, lately slain; thence, fresh, new, recent. It is quite common in medical writings in this sense.

    3. Of the same craft (omotecnon) It was a Rabbinical principle that whoever does not teach his son a trade is as if he brought him up to be a robber. All the Rabbinical authorities in Christ's time, and later; were working at some trade. Hillel, Paul's teacher, was a wood-cutter, and his rival, Shammai, a carpenter. It is recorded of one of the celebrated Rabbis that he was in the habit of discoursing to his students from the top of a cask of his own making, which he carried every day to the academy.

    Tent-makers (skhnopoioi). Not weavers of the goat's-hair cloth of which tents were made, which could easily be procured at every large town in the Levant, but makers of tents used by shepherds and travelers. It was a trade lightly esteemed and poorly paid.

    5. Was pressed in the spirit (suneiceto tw pneumati). Instead of spirit the best texts read logw, by the word. On pressed or constrained, see note on taken, Luke iv. 38. The meaning is, Paul was engrossed by the word. He was relieved of anxiety by the arrival of his friends, and stimulated to greater activity in the work of preaching the word.

    6. Opposed themselves (antitassomenwn). Implying an organized or concerted resistance. See on resisteth, 1 Pet. v. 5.

    12. Gallio. Brother of the philosopher Seneca (Nero's tutor), and uncle of the poet Lucan, the author of the "Pharsalia." Seneca speaks of him as amiable and greatly beloved.

    Deputy. See on Ch. xiii. 7. The verb, to be deputy, occurs only here.

    Judgment-seat. See on ch. vii. 5.

    14. Lewdness (radiourghma). See on mischief, ch. xiii. 10. Rev., villainy.

    15. Question. The best texts read the plural, guests. See on ch. xv. 2. Judge. In the Greek the position of the word is emphatic, at the beginning of the sentence: "Judge of these matters I am not minded to be."

    17. Cared for none of these things. Not said to indicate his indifference to religion, but simply that he did not choose to interfere in this case.

    18. Took his leave (apotazamenov). See on Luke ix. 61; Mark vi. 46. Priscilla and Aquila. They are named in the same order, Rom. xvi. 3; 2 Timothy iv. 19.

    Having shorn his head. Referring to Paul, and not to Aquila.

    He had a vow. A private vow, such as was often assumed by the Jews in consequence of some mercy received or of some deliverance from danger. Not the Nazarite vow, though similar in its obligations; for, in the case of that vow, the cutting of the hair, which marked the close of the period of obligation, could take place only in Jerusalem.

    21. I must by all means keep this feast that cometh in Jerusalem.

    The best texts omit.

    24. Eloquent (logiov). Only here in New Testament. The word is used in Greek literature in several senses. As logov means either reason or speech, so this derivative may signify either one who has thought much, and has much to say, or one who can say it well. Hence it is used: 1. Of one skilled in history. Herodotus, for example, says that the Heliopolitans are the most learned in history (logiwtatoi) of all the Egyptians. 2. Of an eloquent person. An epithet of Hermes or Mercury, as the God of speech and eloquence. 3. Of a learned; person generally. There seems hardly sufficient reason for changing the rendering of the A.V. (Rev., learned), especially as the scripture-learning of Apollos is specified in the words mighty in the scriptures, and his superior eloquence appears to have been the reason why some of the Corinthians preferred him to Paul. See 1 Corinthians i. 12; ii. 4; 2 Cor. x. 10.

    25. Instructed. See on Luke i. 4.

    Fervent (zewn). Fervent, which is formed from the participle of the Latin ferveo, to boil or ferment, is an exact translation of this word, which means to seethe or bubble, and is therefore used figuratively of mental states and emotions. See on leaven, Matt. xiii. 33.

    Diligently (akribwv). Rather, accurately; so far as his knowledge went. The limitation is given by the words following: knowing only the baptism of John. See on Luke i. 3; and compare the kindred verb, inquired diligently, Matt. ii. 7, where Rev. renders learned carefully/y.

    26. More perfectly (akribesteron). The comparative of the same word. More accurately.

    27. Exhorting (protreyamenoi). Originally, to turn forward, as in flight. Hence, to impel or urge. The word may apply either to the disciples at Corinth, in which case we must render as A.V., or to Apollos himself, as Rev., encouraged him. I prefer the former. Hackett very sensibly remarks that Apollos did not need encouragement, as he was disposed to go.

    Helped (sunebaleto). The radical sense of the word is to throw together: hence, to contribute; to help; to be useful to. He threw himself into the work along with them. On different senses of the word, see notes on Luke ii. 19; xiv. 31; and compare Acts iv. 15; xxvii. 18; xxviii. 27; xx. 14. Through grace. Grace has the article, the special grace of God imparted. Expositors differ as to the connection; some joining through grace with them which had believed, insisting on the Greek order of the words; and others with helped, referring to grace conferred on Apollos. I prefer the latter, principally for the reason urged by Meyer, that "the design of the text is to characterize Apollos and his work, and not those who believed."

    28. Mightily (eutonwv). See on Luke xxiii. 10.

    Convinced (diakathlegceto). Only here in New Testament. See on tell him his fault, Matt. xviii. 15. The compound here is a very strong expression for thorough confutation. Confute (Rev.) is better than convince. Note the prepositions. He confuted them thoroughly (dia), against (kata) all their arguments.

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