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Saturday, December 2nd, 2023
the Week of Christ the King / Proper 29 / Ordinary 34
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Bible Commentaries
Acts 19

Garner-Howes Baptist CommentaryGarner-Howes

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Verse 1

PAUL’S RETURN TO EPHESUS V. 1-7 (Confers Gift of Holy Spirit on Certain Ones)

1) "And it came to pass," (egento de) "Then it occurred,"

2) "That, while Apollos was at Corinth," (en to ton Apollo einai en Korintho) "While Apollos was to be in Corinth," in Achaia, where certain admiring disciples later gloried in his grandiloquent style of preaching, in preference to that of Paul, to the point of becoming party to carnal contention in the church, 1 Corinthians 1:12; 1 Corinthians 3:4.

3) "Paul having passed through the upper coasts," (Paulon dielthonta ta anoterika mera) "That Paul had passed through the upper (higher parts) or coasts," not the main road to Ephesus which passed thru Colosse and Laodicea, but the shorter road running thru Cayster Valley, a route that led over higher mountains of Asia from Antioch in Pisidia to Ephesus, Colossians 2:1.

4) "Came to Ephesus:” (ethein eis Epheson) "To come or he came into Ephesus," making good his former conditional intentions, Acts 18:19; Acts 18:21.

5) "And finding certain disciples," (kai heurein tinas mathetes) "And when he found some special disciples there," some one dozen who appear to have come to Ephesus with, and have been disciples of Apollos, 18:24-26; There were about twelve of them, Acts 19:7, who knew nothing of the miraculous gifts of the Holy Spirit, Acts 2:1-12.

Verse 2

1) "He said unto them," (eipen te pros autous) "He inquired of them," of these twelve special disciples who knew nothing of the Holy Spirit gifts thru the church, Acts 19:27.

2) "Have ye received the Holy Ghost since ye believed?" (ei pneuma hagion elabete pisteusantes) "When you all had believed did you then or thereafter receive the Holy Spirit?" in a special demonstration, accompanied with supernatural gifts, as came on Pentecost, Acts 2:1-12; To Cornelius and his household, Acts 10:43-48.

3) "And they said unto him," (hoi de pros auton) "Then they responded to him," to his inquiry.

4) "We have not so much as heard whether there be any Holy Ghost." (all’ oud’ ei’ pneuma hagion estin ekousamen) "But we have not even heard about (it) if there even exists any Holy Spirit," in special demonstration, such as came on Pentecost, by which special spiritual gifts came to members of the church. The subject matter, contextual setting, and following occurrence of the laying on of hands, and conference of the Holy Spirit, by Paul, upon these twelve brethren, so that they received the gift of tongues, seems to validate the view that it was not the regenerating or indwelling of the Holy Spirit about which Paul made inquiry, or about which the twelve asserted they had not so much as heard, but the Holy Spirit gifts, that followed salvation, baptism and church membership, 1 Corinthians 12:1; 1 Corinthians 12:3-11.

Certainly John the Baptist had preached the Holy Spirit, and Apollos could not have been a minister of God had he not heard of and been empowered of the Holy Spirit, Matthew 3:11; Romans 8:9; Luke 3:16; Acts 18:24-28.

Verse 3

1) "And he said unto them," (eipen te) "Then he inquired of them," further, as a basis of instructing them regarding gifts of the Holy Spirit, as he did to the church at Corinth, 1 Corinthians 12:1-11.

2) "Unto what then were ye baptized?" (eis to oun ebaptisthete) "With reference to what then were you all baptized?" What was the occasion of your baptism?

3) "And they said, unto John’s baptism." (hoi de eipan eis to loannou baptisma) "Then they replied, with reference to the baptism of John," of John the Baptist, who had been "sent from heaven, from God to baptize (immerse) only those who gave testimony of repentance for their sins and faith in Jesus Christ, who should come after him, to prepare a people for Jesus to use, in establishing His church, Matthew 3:1-11; John 1:1-34; John 15:26-27; Acts 1:20-21.

Paul simply would not lay hands on disciples until he first certified that they had received "heaven-sent" or "heaven approved" baptism. There was nothing wrong with their baptism, for it was the only kind that Jesus, all of the apostles, and every member of the early church had received. Paul is not said to have either baptized or re-baptized a single one of the twelve, Acts 19:7. He simply determined that they had Scriptural baptism, before he laid hands on them.

Verse 4

1) "Then said Paul," (eipen de Paulos) "And Paul said," asserted, affirmed.

2) "John verily baptized with the baptism of repentance," (loannes ebaptisen baptisma metanoias) "John rightly (truly) baptized a baptism of repentance," the same as I preach, Acts 17:31-32; Acts 20:21; 2 Corinthians 7:10.

3) "Saying unto the people," (to lao legon) "Repeatedly saying to the people," explaining to the people, the masses who came out to hear him in the wilderness of Judea, Matthew 3:5-7; Luke 3:1; Mark 1:3-5.

4) "That they should believe," (hina pisteusosin) "in order that they should believe," or trust in or receive, John 1:6-7; John 1:23; John 1:29.

5) "On him which should come after him," (eis ton erchomenon met’ auton) "Into (with reference to) the one who was coming after (succeeding) him," Jesus Christ, John 1:29.

6) "That is, on Christ Jesus." (tout’ estin eis in lesoun

touto estin eit ton lesoun) "This is (this belief is) into Jesus," the savior, deliverer, or redeemer, Acts 4:12; Acts 10:43; Acts 13:38-39.

Verse 5

1) "When they heard this," (akousantes de) "Then hearing," or when they heard; note, the "this" is not in the original language - They were baptized "when they heard," heard John, who preached repentance, faith, and the Holy Ghost, Matthew 3:1-12. Protestants have added the word "this" to make them re-baptized by Paul, that John’s baptism was not scriptural, belonged to another age.

2) "They were baptized," (ebaptisthesan) "They were baptized," immersed, dipped, buried, or submerged; When they heard, or gave heed to John the Baptist’s message, by repentance and faith, they were then baptized, by John the Baptist, not baptized or re-baptized by Paul, as inferred by the adding of "this" in the Episcopal King James version.

3) "In the name of the Lord Jesus." (eis to onoma tou kuriou lesou) "Into (with reference to) the name of the Lord Jesus," identified in baptism with the authority of Jesus Christ, the things he was to represent or did represent, in worship and service. John preached Him that should come after him, that is the Christ - the one way of salvation that all true prophets preached, and then baptized such as professed to receive Him by faith, by heaven’s command and orders, Acts 10:43; John 1:32-34. John the Baptist preached in the name of Jesus, Him that should come after him, as surely as Peter, James, John, and Paul did, John 1:6-7; John 1:11-12; John 1:19-31; Acts 4:12.

Verse 6

1) "And when Paul had laid his hands on them," (kai epithen tos autois tou Paulou cheiros) "And (after the inquiry) as Paul laid (his) hands upon them;" After he, Paul, had certified that they had received John’s heaven sent, heaven’s authorized baptism, he laid his hands on them. That Paul either baptized or re-baptized these brethren does not seem to be asserted, as is generally, mistakenly held by protestantism.

2) "The Holy Ghost came on them;” (elthe to pneuma to hagion ep’ autous) "The Holy Spirit came upon them," that is, the gift of the Holy Spirit, a special manifestation of the Holy Spirit, such as came to the church on Pentecost. These special Holy Spirit gift manifestations seem to have been given by the apostles, after Pentecost, by the laying on of hands. Had not Apollos and these disciples, brethren, not already held the Holy Spirit, they could not have been saved - people were not and are not saved by laying on of hands, Romans 8:9 b; 1 Corinthians 12:3; Acts 8:16-17.

3) "And they spake with tongues and prophesied." (elalou te glossais kai epopheteuon) "As a result they then spoke in tongues (languages) and prophesied." The subject matter, contextual setting, and related Biblical truth regarding this event seems to be, that Paul simply would not lay hands for conferring the Holy Spirit gifts on any claiming to be disciples of Jesus, without first certifying that they had first received Scriptural baptism. The inflection of "have or did ye receive the Holy Ghost since or when ye believed? “ about which they responded, that they had not even heard or learned of such, apparently refers to what they immediately received after Paul laid his hands on them, the gifts of the Holy Spirit, tongues, and prophecy. See Acts 8:12-21.

Verse 7

1) "And all the men were," (esan de hoi pantes andres) "Then all the men, disciples who had received the gifts, were," in number; These were the "certain disciples," or special class of disciples, apparently saved, scripturally baptized believers in Jesus Christ, who had been baptized by John the Baptist, as well perhaps as Apollos, Acts 18:24-26.

2) "About twelve." (hosei dodeda) "About twelve," or about a dozen, Acts 19:1, all mature male disciples or baptized learners who knew about Jesus and the church, but nothing about the special Holy Spirit empowering that came to the church - "ye" on the day of Pentecost, with accompanying special Holy Spirit conferred gifts, Acts 1:8; Acts 2:1-11; Acts 5:32; Acts 10:39-41.

Verse 8


1) "And he went into the synagogue," (eiselthon de eis ten sunagogen) "Then he entered into the synagogue," of Ephesus in Asia Minor, as his custom was, because there he found people interested at least who thought they were interested, in the word of God, Acts 13:5; Acts 14:1; Acts 6:1-4; Acts 17:10-12; Acts 17:17; Acts 18:4.

2) "And spake boldly for the space of three months," (eparresiazeto epi menas treis) "He spoke boldly over a period of three months," with holy boldness, openly, courageously, though in the minority regarding his faith in Jesus Christ as the Messiah, the risen Lord of whom the Old Testament had prophesied, and as Apollos had done, Acts 18:26; Acts 4:13; Acts 4:29; Acts 4:31; 2 Corinthians 7:14.

3) "Disputing and persuading," (dialegomenos kai peithon) "Lecturing and persuading," accompanied by encounters and disputations, regarding subject matter, contextual setting, and the evident or particular, specific, and/or necessary meaning of the Scriptures, which the Jews claimed to believe, Mark 7:1-13; John 5:39-40; John 8:24; John 8:32.

4) "The things concerning the kingdom of God." (pere tes basileias) "Concerning the kingdom of God. The term “of God," is not in the better manuscripts, yet the contextual setting infers of necessity that they had interest in the redeemer, savior, Lord, and King of whom their Scriptures spoke. Paul reasoned wherever he went that the Savior had come and fulfilled His first earthly mission, as Savior and founder of His church, ascended into heaven, and empowered that church to preach the gospel, until his return to earth, and His coming millennial kingdom work, 1 Timothy 3:15-16; 1 Corinthians 15:20-29; Mark 1:14-15; Galatians 4:4-5; Acts 13:38-39; Acts 17:30-32.

Verse 9

1) "But when divers were hardener, and believed not," (hos de tines esklerunonto kai epeithoun) "Then as certain ones were hardened and unpersuaded," or as some disobeyed, believed not, were obstinate, resisted, rejected the Word and the Holy Spirit, Acts 7:51; John 3:18; Proverbs 29:11; Ezekiel 33:7-11.

2) "But spake evil of that way before the multitude," (kakologountes ten hodon enopion tou plethous) "Speaking ill, (evil, in derision of) the way (the way of Jesus, John 14:6) before the face of the multitude," in opposition to the preaching and testimony of Paul and his missionary companions in travel; It was "the way" or "that way" of salvation the Jews rejected in masses, John 5:39-40; John 8:24; John 8:32; John 8:36; Acts 4:11-12.

3) "He departed from them," (apostas ap’ auton) "He withdrew from them," from their company, he separated himself, departed from the synagogue rulers and their obstinate followers, Proverbs 1:22-29; Proverbs 29:11; Hebrews 4:7.

4) "And separated the disciples," (aporisen tous rnathetas) "He separated the disciples," from the synagogue, where they had assembled to hear him preach, lecture, and dispute for the previous three months, 2 Corinthians 6:14-17; Hebrews 13:8; Hebrews 13:18; Judges 1:3.

5) "Disputing daily in the school of one Tyrannus." (kath’ hemeran dialegomenos en te schole Turanou) "Lecturing daily in the school of Tyrannus," a private school that embraced Christian values, to the extent that Paul, the mighty missionary, writer, gospel preacher, doctrinarian teacher, fund raiser for charitable needs, remained in the school, as a daily instructor for two years, Acts 19:10; as an educator he spent at least six and one half years as certified by a study of Acts 11:26 (1 year); Acts 18:11 (11/2 years) Ephesus here (2 years); and in Rome (2 years) Acts 28:30,

Verse 10

1) "And this continued by the space of two years;” (touto de egeneto epi ete duo) "And this occurred (continued) over a period of the following two years," in addition to the quarter of a year he taught, reasoned, and disputed in the synagogue of the Jews, Acts 19:8. In Acts 20:31 Paul refers to his actual stay or residence in Ephesus as a period of three years, about three years in the usual manner of reckoning periods in round numbers.

2) "So that all they which dwelt in Asia," (hoste pantas tous katoikountas ten Asian) "So that all who inhabited (or resided in) Asia," pro-consular Asia from where people in masses, Jews and Greeks, came for temple festivals as strangers, heathen, Jews and Greeks. It is quite possible that Paul even visited some of the seven churches nearby Ephesus, in Asia, during this time, Acts 20:16-21.

3) "Heard the word of the Lord Jesus," (akousai ton logon tou kuriou) "Came to (were caused to) hear the word of the Lord," by Paul directly or his missionary helpers among whom was Timothy, who worked at Colosse, Colossians 1:1 and others, Colossians 4:7-18.

4) "Both Jews and Greeks." (loudaious te kai Hellenas) "Both Jews and Grecians," proselytes to the Jewish belief in one God, as well as strangers and other Gentile heathens who worshipped at temples of idols, in all parts of Asia, Acts 19:23-27; Psalms 115:3-9.

Verse 11

1) "And God wrought special miracles," (dunameis te ou tas tuchousas ho theos epoiei) "And dynamic, miraculous deeds, not just ordinary, God did," to attest before the unbelievers that he (Paul) was from God, as Jesus did, Mark 2:9-12; John 20:21; Acts 28:1-10. Paul repeatedly was used of the Lord, with these supernatural special spiritual gift attestations or certifications of his Divine, mission and message, Hebrews 2:4.

2) "By the hand of Paul:” (dia ton cheiron Paulou) "Through the hands (instrumentality) of Paul," so that he later asserted that he had labored in the Lord, the will of the Lord, more than anyone of his religious or irreligious accusers, deriders, or sniping faultfinders, 2 Corinthians 11:1-28.

Verse 12

1) "So that from his body " (hoste apo tou chrotos) "So that from the skin (flesh-surface of his body)," even from his hands, Acts 19:11.

2) "Were brought unto the sick," (epi tous asthenountas) "Upon those continually ailing," to those who were chronically ill, that by all means he might, like our Lord, save or win some, 1 Corinthians 9:19-23.

3) "Handkerchiefs or aprons " (oudaria e simikinthia) "Aprons or handkerchiefs," were caused to be brought to those who could not be reached by the hands of Paul. Perhaps there were aprons or handkerchiefs normally used for drying and wiping sweat from the body of fever of the sick.

4) "And the diseases departed from them," (apopheresthai) "And the diseases went from the chronically ill, and those obsessed of wicked spirits," both those chronically ill, physically and mentally, or emotionally, as when our Lord did such miracles, Mark 1:29-34; Luke 4:38-41.

5) "And the evil spirits went out of them. (kai apallassesthai ap’ auton tas nosous) "And the wicked spirits were caused to go out," to go away (even) from those obsessed or possessed by them, in the same manner that our Lord cast them out, Matthew 8:16-17; Luke 8:27-39; Luke 9:38-43.

Verse 13


1) "Then certain of the vagabond Jews," (de tinas kai ton perierchomenon loudaion) "Then also certain of the strolling, vagabond, or unsettled Jews;" The term “perierchomenon" points to a class of Jews who wandered about, from place to place, practicing exorcism as a monetary profession, base deceivers, covetous for monetary gain, 1 Timothy 6:10.

2) "Exorcists," (eksotkiston) "Who were exorcists," practitioners of deceit, trickery, or magic arts, covetous for gain from a life of cheating, theft, and dishonesty, thru incantations and false claims of ability to help their slave-like dupes, by the use of prominent names, including that of Abraham.

3) "Took upon them to call over," (epercheiresan onomazein epi) "Took upon themselves, masqueraded, or attempted to operate or practice their evil trade, by calling over the needy," by adjuring over the needy, and commanding evil spirits, with a strong appeal of command, Mark 1:23-25; Mark 5:6-8; Evil spirits adjured Jews not to interrupt their business.

4) "Them which had evil spirits," (tous echontas ta pneumata ta pomera) "Those who had wicked spirits," very vile, profane spirits, spirits of wicked disposition. Their form was a fake, a masquerade, for they had not even received the Lord Jesus - They knew Him not, nor did He know them, Matthew 7:22-23.

5) "The name of the Lord Jesus, saying," (to onoma tou kuriou lesou) "The name (that is the authority) of the Lord Jesus," (Gk. legontes) "repeatedly saying," using the rhythmic phrase repeatedly as follows:

6) "We adjure you by Jesus whom Paul preacheth." (horkizo humas ton lesoun hon Paulos kerussei) "I exorcise you by (the authority of) Jesus whom Paul heralds or proclaims;" These, like many in this century, were apostles of sin and Satan, lying, deceiving, posing as miracle working apostles of Christ, doing it for personal gain, even as many do in protestantism and false cults today, 2 Corinthians 11:13-15; Matthew 7:22-23.

Verse 14

1) "And there were," (hesan de) "And there were," existed in Ephesus.

2) "Seven sons of one Sceva," (tinos Skeua hepta hpioi) "Seven sons of a certain vagabond Jew named Sceva," in dispersion in Ephesus of Asia Minor, who were wandering, meandering, strolling, lying, deceiving Jocobites, known as exorcists.

3) "A Jew, and chief of the priests," (Ioudaiou archiereos) –A Jewish chief priest," or chief of the priestly line of Aaron, of the tribe of Levi in Asia Minor, in dispersion, where they had no Jewish temple for sacrifice, but synagogues only.

4) "Which did so." (touto poiountes) "Who did this," attempted to use this phrase as a means of performing miracles as Jesus, Paul, and the Apostles did. In concourse, collusion, with ulterior motives, like Simon the Sorcerer, they moved to perform this wicked deed on an obsessed demon controlled man, Acts 8:9-11; Acts 8:18-24, recounted as follows:

Verse 15

1) "And the evil spirit answered and said," (apokrithen de to pneuma to ponerou eipen autois) "Then replying or responding the wicked spirit said to them," to the seven sons of Sceva, who had attempted to call the name of Jesus upon them, to drive them out of the demon possessed man.

2) "Jesus I know," (ton men lesoun ginosko) "The Jesus I indeed (surely) know," as all demons know and fear Him, because their destiny has been sealed and their judgement fixed, 2 Peter 2:1-4; Judges 1:6. They now await their final suffering, with their wicked dupes, following the Great White Throne Judgement, Luke 8:27-28; Mark 1:23-24; James 2:19.

3) "And Paul I know;” (kai ton Paulon epistamai) "And Paul I recognize or understand," even demon spirits know who the saved are, who is indwelt by the spirit of God, those who arethe children of God, Romans 8:14-16; Job 1:1-10; John 4:13; Acts 16:16-18 clearly indicates that the demon spirit possessing the damsel at Philippi gave testimony that he knew Paul, Silas, and the servants of God there.

4) “But who are ye?" (humeis de tines este) "But who are you all?" who are you seven masquerading, meandering, covetous, fake healing mimics? The evil spirit even showed contempt for these deceivers who had his own nature. Even religious dishonesty, in false prophets, is known by the demons of hell who must dance with glee at keeping them under the slave-damning hold, until the hour of judgement, Galatians 6:7-8; Numbers 32:23; 2 Peter 2:1-4; Judges 1:6. Demons know when religious men piously claim to do things "in the name" or by the authority of Jesus, when He has not authorized them to do such. Today many religious persons claim to have authority to work miracles, to baptize, to personally receive tithes, to give the Lord’s Supper wherever and to whoever they choose, without the authority of Jesus Christ or His church as an executive at all. They lie, deceive, and masquerade as angels of light, but are in fact servants of the devil in such behavior, Matthew 7:22-23; 2 Corinthians 11:13-15; Such authority was given to His church only, Matthew 28:18-20; John 20:21; Acts 1:8.

Verse 16


1) "And the man in whom the evil spirit was," (kai ho anthropos en hon en to pneuma to poneron) "And the man in whom the wicked spirit was," in whom he existed, had his habitation, place of obsession; For demons, wicked spirits, to do damage to God’s creation, seem to have to inhabit some created, living creature, Luke 8:29-33.

2) "Leaped on them," (ephelomenos epi autous) "Leapinhem," repeatedly leaping on all seven of the young men who had attempted to drive the wicked spirit out of him. Their magic art deception back-fired. These fake miracle workers got an earthly foretaste of their final punishment in hell, with all who "fake it" thru life, Matthew 7:22-23; Galatians 6:7-8; Ecclesiastes 12:13-14.

3) "And overcame them and prevailed against them," (katakurieusas amphoteron ischusen kat’ auton) "Both over-mastering them and was strong against them;- He literally "beat the tar" out of all seven of the "fake healers," who had attempted to cast the wicked spirit from him.

4) "So that they fled out of that house," (hoste ekphugein ek tou oikou ekeinou) "So that they escaped, all seven of them, out of the house (residence) where they cornered him," hemmed him in, Acts 19:14.

5) "Naked and wounded." (gumnous kai tetra umatismenous) "Both naked and wounded," beat up, black and blue all over, with their garments torn or ripped to shreds, wounded and naked or near naked, all seven of them, a near massacred mess in appearance. This contrasts the sorcery and magic of fake Jew healers in Paul’s day with true miracles that Peter, Paul, and other apostles performed in New Testament days, before the Bible was finished, and the special spiritual gifts all ceased except the gifts of faith, hope, and charity, 1 Corinthians 13:13; Ephesians 4:11-14; 2 Timothy 3:16-17.

Verse 17

1) "And this was known," (touto de egeneto ginoston) "Then this event became known," a matter of common knowledge of general report, continued to be magnified or reported, showing that the power and help of God’s ordained men excelled that of false prophets, as Isaiah 8:20; Matthew 7:15; Matthew 7:22-23; 2 Corinthians 11:13-15,

2) "To all the Jews and Greeks," (pasin loudaiois te kai Hellesin) "Both to all the Jews and Greeks," in the area or community. The fake and farce claims of this Seven-Son-Sceva clan of roving Gypsy-like band of shooting, religious stars, Jude v. 13, was well exposed, Numbers 32:23; Ecclesiastes 12:14.

3) "Also dwelling in Ephesus;” (tois katoikousin ten Epheson) "That is to all those residing in Ephesus," in the metropolis of Ephesus, so widely inhabited by idol worshippers, who were easily led to follow some hopeful outward demonstration of sorcerers, fake magic arts craftsmen, Psalms 115:3-8.

4) "And fear fell on them all," (kai epepesin phobos epi pantas autous) "And a respectful fear fell upon (came over) them all," over all of the Jews and Greeks in Ephesus, a reverential fear, a respectful fear, as found, Luke 1:65; Luke 7:16; Acts 5:5; Acts 5:11. God intervened, and used this demon controlled man to beat some sense of honesty and integrity into the sons of Sceva, and make known their devilish deeds to all the local public.

5) "And the name of the Lord Jesus was magnified." (kai emegaluneto to onoma tou kuriou lesou) "And the name (authority) of the Lord Jesus was magnified," caused to be greatly respected, as a result of this episode, and evident Divine intervention; Praise often follows trials and fears, Matthew 27:54; Romans 8:28.

Verse 18

1) "And many that believed came," (polloi te ton pepisteukotou erchonto) "And many of those who had believed came forward," as a result of the experience of the seven sons of Sceva, attempted exorcists, perhaps other Jewish students of the magic arts and sorcery, practiced among the Jews of dispersion.

2) "And confessed," (ekshomologournenoi kai) "And repeatedly confessing," Acts 20:21; 2 Peter 3:9; 2 Corinthians 7:10. They came, acknowledging that they believed in the one true God (who had commanded in His law), to which they claimed to subscribe, that sorcerers and witches, and those who practiced magic arts should be put to death, Leviticus 20:6; Joshua 13:22; Revelation 21:8.

3) "And shewed their deeds." (apangellontes tas prakseis auton) "Telling of their practices," the deceptions, lying, beguiling, dishonest trickery in which they had engaged, in which they masqueraded. That their deeds were wicked was set forth in their own law. Like a man or woman seeking to justify their own adultery, lying, or theft, so long as it did not hurt their own families, these roving Jews were primarily making a trade of deceiving the Gentiles by lying chicanery, after the order of Jacob at his worst, all the time knowing that it was forbidden in their own law. 2 Corinthians 4:3-4; Acts 17:30-31; Luke 13:5; Romans 2:4-5.

True repentance, confession of sins, linked with faith in Jesus Christ, brings pardon, forgiveness, cleansing, and regeneration to the sinner, Isaiah 55:6-7; Matthew 3:6; Mark 1:14-15; Luke 13:3-5; Romans 10:9-13; Ephesians 1:7; 1 John 1:8-9.

Verse 19

1) "Many of them also which used curious arts," (hikanoi de ton ta perierga praksanton) "And a considerable number of those practicing curious works (crooked works)," by which they cheated, deceived people, to make a living, by magical, hoodwinking guile.

2) "Brought their books together," (sunenegkantes tas

Biblious) "Bringing together the books by volunteer agreement, of their own accord," so deeply were they convinced of their own course of dishonesty, lack of integrity, that it appears the school that organized and trained this band of roving thieves was broken up or dissolved.

3) "And burned them before all men" (katekaion enopion panton) "And they burnt them before the face or in the presence of all," before the public, of both-Jews and Greeks, as they threw book after book into the open fire, as a public testimony that they were turning to the living God.

4) "And they counted the price of them," (kai sunepsephisan tas timas auton) "And they totaled, or calculated the prices of them all," to determine their retail value in open market.

5) "And found it fifty thousand pieces of silver." (kai heiron arguriou muriadas pente) "And found the value price of them to be five thousand pieces of silver," or five thousand shekels of silver, a value of at least $25,000.00, or if the term "pente" does mean "fifty" as some translators render it, the value would have been a quarter million dollars ($250,000.00) in value, at least the book burning was of great value.

Verse 20

1) "So mightily," (houtos kata kratos) "Thus by might," or by mighty influence of this event, witness or testimony of this event, Romans 8:28.

2) "Grew the word of God," (tou kuriou ho logos euksane) "The word of the Lord increased in influence," thru the mission work of Paul and the church, Acts 6:7; Acts 12:20-24.

3) "And prevailed." (kai ischuen) "And it was strong," existed with a strong influence and respect. Paul later wrote of "a great and effectual open door that was opened here at Ephesus" and that there were "many adversaries," 1 Corinthians 16:8-9. He had at this later, more mature state of his ministry, come to accept opposition as a thing, a challenge, to be accepted with gratitude, even as our Lord advised His early new covenant church, in His inaugural address, in the sermon on the mount, Matthew 5:11-12: John 15:20: Philippians 3:19; 2 Timothy 3:12; 2 Timothy 4:7-8.

Verse 21

1) "After these things were ended," (hos de eplerothe tauta) "Then when these things were fulfilled," ended or finished, had settled down, after the book-burning-sin-confessing, life-reformation of many students and practitioners of the magic arts, and sorcery promoters among the Jews in Ephesus.

2) "Paul purposed in the spirit," (etheto ho Paulos ento pneumati) "Paul purposed, resolved, or determined in the (his) spirit," with regards to the will of God, for his course of ministry, Acts 20:22; Romans 8:14; Ephesians 5:16-17.

3) "When he passed through Macedonia and Achaia," (dielthon ten Makedonian kai Achaian) "Passing through the territory of Macedonia and Achaia," and when this purposed short tour was completed, he had further purposed to return to Judea. In Macedonia and Achaia, from the European continent, and from the Gentile churches, he gathered and carried a gift to the needy saints in Judea, Romans 15:25-29.

4) "To go to Jerusalem," (poreuesthai eis lerosoluma) "To go into Jerusalem," because he wanted to, thought it to be the proper, fitting thing to do, to touch base with the home church and show his affections for them, Romans 9:1-5.

5) "Saying, after I have been there," (eipon hoti meta to genesthai me ekei) "Saying that after I have come to be (have arrived) there," in Jerusalem, to carry a gift of charity from the churches of the Gentiles, to help the poor, needy saints, thru which he hoped to reach some of the law-bound Jews, to open the gospel of grace to them, Romans 15:25; Romans 15:29; Acts 20:24.

6) "1 must also see Rome." (dei me kai Romen edein) "It behooves me (it becomes me) to see Rome also," Romans 1:13-15; Romans 15:22-29. This desire to go to Rome may have been motivated from his friendship with Aquila and Priscilla who had been driven from Rome, in whose home and trade craft of tent-making, Paul had stayed and labored near two years in Corinth, Acts 18:1-3; Acts 18:18; Acts 18:24-28.

Verse 22

1) "So he sent into Macedonia," (aposteilas de eis Makedonian) "Then sending (on a mission) into Macedonia," preceding him there for the specific purpose of soliciting help for the poor saints in Judea, to relieve them in their dire poverty.

2) "Two of them that ministered unto him," (duo ton diakonounton auto) "Two of those continually ministering to him," to his needs, as assistants in whatever common need he had in his mission, educational, writing and benevolent work, Romans 16:23; 2 Timothy 4:20.

3) "Timotheus and Erastus;” (Timotheon kai Eraston) "Timothy and Erastus," companion helpers in his mission labors; The former, (Timothy) was so close to him that he referred to him as his own son, 1 Timothy 1:2; Titus also later joined Timothy and Erastus in these missions and benevolent labors, 2 Corinthians 8:1-7; 2 Corinthians 8:16-24.

4) "But he himself stayed in Asia for a season." (autos epeschen chronon eis ten Asian) "He delayed for a period of time in Asia," at Ephesus, where he had preached and taught the Word of God, that had prevailed over both Judaism of the law, and her roving apostate exorcists, and over heathen idolatry, Acts 19:8-20. It is quite probable that while Paul kept residence in Ephesus, the usage of the phrase, "in Asia for a season," indicates he may have spent time out of Ephesus, visiting other inland brethren and churches, as Antioch of Pisidia, Iconium, Derbe, and Lystra, It is also likely that the Holy Spirit detained him there to strengthen the brethren, thru the riot the silversmiths of the goddess Diana stirred up against Paul and the church and disciples of the Lord, as further discussed Acts 19:23 to Acts 20:1.

Verse 23


1) "And the same time there arose," (egeneto de kata ton kairon ekeinon) "Now there occurred about that time," the season of time that Paul remained in Asia and Ephesus, after he sent Timothy and Erastus into Macedonia. Acts 19:22.

2) "No small stir about that way." (tarachos ouk oligos peri tes hodou) "No little trouble concerning the way," concerning the way of the Lord, about the Lord Jesus Christ, John 1:6; Acts 4:11-12; Acts 9:2; Acts 19:9; Acts 24:22. This way, called "that way" by enemies of the Lord, taught that "There be no gods, which are made with hands," Acts 19:26. And the charge was true, a necessary element in preaching the gospel, 1 Corinthians 8:6; Acts 17:24-31; Psalms 115:3-8.

Verse 24

1) "For a certain man named Demetrius," (Demetrios gar tis onomati) "For a certain one by name of Demetrius;” any time the term "certain one," "certain man," or “certain woman," etc., is used, it eliminates a generality. It points out one person, to the exclusion of all others. He was perhaps a union leader or master of the trade guild, perhaps unrelated to the Demetrius of 3 John 1:12.

2) "A silversmith," (argurokopos) "A silversmith," by trade, by business, industry, and profession, a producer and/or distributor of silver products, statutes to be placed in shrine temples and smaller ones to be worn as adornments.

3) "Which made silver shrines for Diana,"(poion naous argurous Artemidos) "Who engaged in silver shrines production of Artemis," known as the goddess Diana, apparently of varying sizes and shapes, for homes, public places, and to be carried on the bodies or person of idol patrons.

4) "Brought no small gain unto the craftsmen;” (pareicheto tois technitais ouk oligen ergasian) "Provided the Artisans (technical workers) no little trade," no small financial gain. Affirmatively, this means that the silver shrine producing trade simply was a big profit making business to the false god making craftsmen who produced shrines of the idol goddess Diana. It was fear of loss of money, in this false-god trade-guild-business that motivated Demetrius, the headmaster of the workmen, to incite public opposition to the ministry of Paul and the Ephesian Christian brethren on this occasion; 1 Timothy 6:10 certifies that the "love of money" covetous, affectionate craving for money, is the root of all (kinds of) evil, a thing here exemplified. It was this covetous care for greed and gain that incited masters of soothsayers against Paul and Silas, Acts 16:16; Acts 16:19.

Verse 25

1) "Whom he called together," (ous sunsthroisas) "Whom he called, assembled in colleague," he summoned to a council to discuss their fears of loss, in their common-cause-craft. Demetrius is said to have been a contemptible little Jew who loved the dollar, above Jewish law, and hated Paul and the church for their interference in his trade profits, John 15:20.

2) "With the workmen of like occupation " (kai tous peri ta toiauta ergatas) "As well as the workmen engaged in such things in the area," a sort of workmen’s union, trade, or guild, that bound the common craft workmen to each other’s defense when personal danger of loss in business matters seemed at hand.

3) "And said, Sirs, ye know," (eipen andres epistasthe) "And said, men you all understand," you all realize, or are aware. Demetrius was the chairman, presiding officer, or lead spokesman, as master, chief or overseer who introduced or laid before them and defined the problem they faced.

4) "That by this craft we have our wealth." (hoti ek tautes tes ergasias he euporia hemin estin) "That from this trade we have our gain," profit or livelihood, by engaging in this false-god making trade "we have, hold, or secure our wealth;" The trade, like prostitution, the liquor, or gambling business, was morally and ethically wrong; The moral aspect didn’t bother Demetrius, it was the ego of profit from the production of the silver shrines, the "love of money at any cost," that disturbed him. Like the rich barn builder and the rich man who later cried for mercy in hell, he was covetous for money for the moment, Luke 12:16-21; Luke 16:19-31; 1 John 2:15-17.

Verse 26

1) "Moreover ye see and hear," (kai theoreite kai akouete) "And you all behold (observe) and hear," as a rumor being circulated. The purpose of Demetrius was to stir up or incite hostility against Paul whom Demetrius referred to as "this (fellow) Paul."

2) "That not only at Ephesus, but almost throughout all Asia," (hoti ou monon Ephesou alla schedon Oases tes Asias) "That not only (those) of Ephesus but almost all (those) of Asia," or what was also known as Asia Minor, Acts 19:27.

3) "This Paul hath persuaded and turned away much people," (ho Paulos houtos metestesen hikanon ochlon) "This Paul has already persuaded and perverted (turned away) a considerable crowd," an high compliment to Paul’s evangelistic, missionary, and teaching ministry, and its influence, as it went out from the school of Tyrannus, Acts 19:10.

4) "Saying, that they be no gods," (legon hoti ouk eisin theoi) "Saying repeatedly that they are not gods," do not exist as gods, a matter repeatedly certified in the Scriptures, Psalms 115:4-8; Jeremiah 10:3-5; Jeremiah 16:19-20; Hosea 8:6-7.

5) "That are made with hands:" (hoi dia cheiron ginomenoi) "Those coming into being through hands," or having been made with hands; handmade idols are not gods, Acts 17:29; 1 Corinthians 8:3-7; 1 Corinthians 10:19-22. Paul put it plainly, so that a prejudiced, covetous, infidel Jew could understand that worshippers and customers and patronizers of idols and idolators, were worshippers, patronizers, customers and clients of devils or demon spirits, a matter forbidden by both Jewish law and the teachings of Jesus Christ, Exodus 20:1-5; 1 Corinthians 8:5; Acts 4:12; Acts 17:30-31.

Verse 27

1) "So that not only this our craft is in danger," (ou monon de touto kinduneuei hemin to meros) "Not only is our share or stock now in danger," in this local union of the craft of Ephesus. It is here evident that the "fear of man bringeth a snare," for these craftsmen were incited to fear true men of God, to their own demon directed destruction, Proverbs 29:1; Proverbs 29:25.

2) "To be set at nought," (eis apelegmon elthein) "To come into disrepute," to be rejected, no longer bought and used, to be shut down, because of limited demand for our product.

3) "But also that the temple of the great goddess Diana," (alla kai to tes megales theas Artemidos heiron) "But also the temple of the great goddess known as Artemis or Diana," a dumb idol, and more dumb in spiritual matters were those who worshipped the idol, Galatians 4:8; Psalms 115:4-8. He argued "perish the thought" that this goddess worship should be destroyed by a little Christian missionary and his church band, 2 Corinthians 11:13-15.

4) "Should be despised," (eis outhen logisthenai) "Is in danger to be reckoned as nothing," rejected, abandoned as an object of worship or adoration, as believers turned to Jesus Christ, the adorable living Son of the living God, 1 Thessalonians 1:9-10; as the Thessalonians, Corinthians, and Galatians had done, 1 Corinthians 12:2; Galatians 4:8.

5) "And her magnificence should be destroyed," (mellein te kai kathareistheisthai tes megaleiotetos autes) "And her greatness is about to be diminished;" This deceitful, devil empowered, little heathen, Jewish union-craft-master cared no more for the significance of Diana as an object of devotion than a "pimp of prostitution trade," cares for a prostitute or her clients, and that is for the covetous profits of greed he may get as gain from the debauching trade, 1 Timothy 6:10; John 3:19; He loved "darkness rather than light," and used the trade as a shadow box for his vulgar, heartless, wicked profit.

6) "Whom all Asia and the world worshippeth." (hen hote he Asia kai he oikoumene sebetai) "Whom all Asia and the inhabited part of the earth worships;" What a compliment to heathenism! It was a lie, an exaggeration-but, such as might be expected of a child of the devil, demon incited in a broadside hate-attack upon God’s man and God’s people in Ephesus, John 8:44.

Verse 28

1) "And when they heard these sayings, they were full of wrath," (akousantes de kai genomenoi plereis thurou) "Then when they had heard (the complaints of Demetrius) becoming full of anger," incited to anger for fear of losing their false-god business and industry. Their false religion and covetous greed for wealth impulses inflamed their deranged carnal passions.

2) "And cried out, saying," (ekrazon legontes) "They cried aloud, repeatedly saying," in mass slogan, repeating rhythm, much as the patrons, deluded heathen worshippers of Baal had done, 1 Kings 18:26-29.

3) "Great is Diana of the Ephesians." (megale he Artemis Ephesion) "Great is (exists) the Artemis of the Ephesians," the goddess Diana. False religions exercise a wondrous fascination over their clientele, thru emotional enthusiasm, which the natural, unregenerate mind and heart is prone to impulsively embrace, rather than Divine truth, 1 Corinthians 2:14. Our Lord warned of such as "wolves in sheep’s clothing," Matthew 7:15; Acts 20:28. There is no true worship of God, thru media of idols, like Diana, or that of Statues and images of so-called saintized persons, of the Christian era, John 4:24.

Statues and images of Roman and Greek Catholicism, with a "Christian veneer," are no more acceptable to God than the heathen goddess Diana.

Like the goddess Diana and other heathen idol gods, those statues, images, and idols, patronized and emulated by Roman and Greek Catholicism, have 1) "eyes but they see not," 2) "mouths but they speak not," 3) "ears but they hear not," 4) "noses but they smell not," 5) hands but they handle not," 6) "feet but they walk not." "They that make (manufacture, form or fabricate them) are like unto them," "so is every one that trusteth in them." Blind, deaf and dumb, spiritually, Psalms 115:5-8.

Verse 29


1) "And the whole city was filled with confusion:" (kai eplesthe he polis tes sugcheseos) "And the city (of Ephesus) was filled with the murmuring and boisterous confusion;" The incited, fleshly motivated excitement of "hallelujah hurrahs," the shouting and yelling, was motivated, not by virtue of affection for their goddess, but by virtue of losing their jobs, of popular prestige, and their lewd money making business, 1 Timothy 6:10. Rather than for love for the Iiving, true God, Acts 17:27-28; 1 Timothy 6:17; 1 John 2:15; 1 John 5:21.

2) "And having caught Gaius and Aristarchus, men of Macedonia," (sunarpasantes Gaion kai Aristarchus Makesonas) "Having seized, "nabbed," Gaius and Aristarchus, Macedonians, with a firm grip," when they could not find Paul at the school of Tyrannus, as they had hoped and expected, Acts 20:4. Aristarchus was a native of Thessalonica, and once a prisoner with Paul, 1 Corinthians 1:14.

3) "Paul’s companions in travel," (sunekdemos Paulon) "Close traveling companions of Paul," in his missionary, evangelistic, educational, and benevolent labors, Acts 27:2; Colossians 4:10; Philemon 1:24.

Whether they were "nabbed," "pounced upon," or seized in their homes, at the school of Tyrannus, or elsewhere is not disclosed.

4) "They rushed with one accord into the theatre." (hormesan te homothumadon eis to theatron) "They then rushed with one mind, purpose, or intent into the (city) theatre," A public arena that would hold more than twenty thousand people; It is said to have been 495 feet in diameter, perhaps the largest in the world at that time. These men of God, Gaius and Aristarchus, were dragged into the theatre, in view of the Temple of the goddess Diana nearby, to listen to the two hours of mob violence that followed, Acts 19:34.

Verse 30

1) "And when Paul would have entered in," (Paulon de boulomenou eiselthein) "As Paul intended (had determined in his mind) to enter," to enter the city theatre of Ephesus, where they had dragged Gaius and Aristarchus, his loyal missionary companions in travel, as brethren "born for adversity," and friends that "loveth at all times," Proverbs 17:17; Proverbs 24:10.

2) "Unto the people," (eis ton demon) "Into or unto the mass-mob," to confront them regarding their conduct, and devil-inflamed actions of incited, ignorant behavior, like that of vicious wild beasts, in a ferocious rage, to endanger the life of Paul and other Christians, 1 Corinthians 15:32; 1 Corinthians 16:9; 2 Corinthians 1:8-10. Followers of deceivers, usually wind up in the prison of deceivers, unless they can be halted, arrested in attention, and turned back from their hell-bent course of conduct, Ezekiel 33:7-11; 2 Corinthians 11:13-15.

3) "The disciples suffered him not." (ouk eion auton hoi mathetai) "The disciples (brethren of the church at Ephesus) allowed him not," restrained him, kept him from going in among the "mad-pack," the incited mob, the grisly wolf-pack of God haters; They had whisked him away, to save his life from the hate and personal attack of incited mobs as on other occasions, almost always led by infidel Jews, as at Thessalonica, Acts 17:6; Acts 17:10; and at Jerusalem, Acts 23:16; Acts 23:23-32; Hebrews 13:5.

Verse 31

1) "And certain of the chief of Asia," (tines de kai ton Asiarchon) "Then certain ones of the Asian chiefs," rulers or leaders, not only of the municipality of Ephesus, but also from other provinces of Asia, perhaps religious chiefs recognized by the Roman Empire, men who had come for a festival in Ephesus, at which time Demetrius seized upon the opportunity to incite the mob riot against Paul and his helpers.

2) "Which were his friends," (ontes auto philoi) "Those who were sincere friends to him," whose influence, good will, and respect he had won during his three years of diligent labors in Asia, Acts 20:18; Acts 20:31. This indicates that Paul had earned the friendship of leading men in Asia

Minor, that their attitudes as imperial leaders was friendly, not merely one of toleration.

3) "Sent unto him desiring him," (pempsates pros auton parekalou) "Sending to him besought or appealed to him," caring for him, showing protective brotherly love for him, as friends born for adversity, Proverbs 17:17; John 13:34-35. Paul’s straight preaching had won him the friendship of unbelievers of Mammon, who befriended him here, 1 Timothy 6:1; 1 Timothy 6:7-19.

4) "That he would not adventure himself into the theatre " (me dounai heauton eis to theatron) "Not to give himself over to, or expose himself bodily in the theatre," before, as a possible victim of the incited, riotous, murderous, theatre mob, who meandered like vicious beasts desiring to tear the flesh of some prey. He (Paul), had made to himself friends of Mammon who were humane enough to come to his aid at a time of peril, or crisis of life and death, even as our Lord admonished, Luke 16:16.

Verse 32

1) "Some therefore cried one thing " (men ekrazon ti) "Some indeed cried out something, one thing," "and some another," (alloi oun allo to) "Therefore indeed others (of the mob) cried out something totally different;" without agreement or accord; The idea is that they were repeatedly, continuously babbling, in the theatre, conflicting rumors, tales about Paul, his helpers, the church at Ephesus, and their influence throughout their country of Asia Minor.

2) "For the assembly was confused;” (hen gar he ekklesia sugkechmene) "For the assembly was in a state of near riotous frustration," The term "ekklesia" rendered “church," was used to describe this unruly, rioting mob. Their united hate had become their religion, their church.

3) "And the more part knew not," (kai hoi pleious ouk edeisan) "And the majority of the confused assembled mob did not perceive, realize, understand, or comprehend,"

4) "Wherefore they were come together." (tinos heneka sunelelutheisan) "What had caused them to come together," into such an howling, scowling mob. They, in ignorance, not knowing, not comprehending what they were doing, sinned in the deriding, worldly assembly, unscriptural church mob; As Paul ignorantly persecuted the church, and as the wicked Jews stoned Stephen and derided Christ, not knowing the gravity of their idle, wicked words and deeds, even in like manner they riotously and in tumult, shouted against Paul, Matthew 12:36; 1 Timothy 1:13; Acts 8:3; 1 Corinthians 15:9; Luke 23:34; Acts 7:60.

Verse 33

1) "And they drew Alexander out of the multitude," (ek de tou ochlou sunebasan Aleksandron) "Then some of those out of the crowd instructed Alexander," tried to get him to disassociate himself from any opposition to the goddess Diana and from any opposition to idol worship; they, in effect, tried to get him to recant, or turn away from the faith, to quit his testimony for Christ, Acts 1:8; Acts 4:20; Jeremiah 20:9.

2) "The Jews putting him forward." (probaloton auton ton loudaion) "As the Jews were putting him forward," in the forefront of the crowd. As a Jewish Christian, when they failed to seize or apprehend Paul, Alexander was pounced upon with malice, by those vicious Demetrius-led, Christ-hating Jews, who vented their hatred for God’s Son upon God’s children, 2 Timothy 3:12.

3) "And Alexander beckoned with the hand," (ho de Aleksandros kataseisas ten cheira) "Then Alexander (in the foreground) waving his hand," beckoning or appealing for a moment of attention, as Paul later did for the attention of another incited tumultuous mob, Acts 21:40.

4) "And would have made his defence unto the people." (ethelen apologeisthai to demo) "Strongly desiring to defend himself, to or beware the mob," as Paul often did, Philippians 1:7; Philippians 1:17.

It appears that this Alexander was a different person from the Alexander Paul mentioned in 1 Timothy 1:20; 2 Timothy 4:14, unless he later recanted the faith, and turned traitor toward Paul.

Verse 34

1) "But when they knew that he was a Jew," (epignontes de hoti loudaiois estin) "Then when they knew that he was a Jew," by race or ethnic origin. When the mob recognized that Alexander was a converted Christian Jew, by his testimony, when he was put forward, his love for Jesus Christ, His church, and Paul, Joh 13 34, 35; Matthew 7:20.

2) "All with one voice," (phone egeneto mia ek panton) "All the mob became one voice," as one voice against God, as the heathen voices raged and imagined vain things, Psalms 2:1-2. The roaring dupes of idolatry, obsessed by demon power, acted much as the worshippers of Baal worship before Elijah, 1 Kings 18:25-29.

3) "About the space of two hours cried out," (hos epi horas duo krazontes) "Crying out (aloud) over a period of about two hours," without intermission, preventing Alexander from giving a real defence or apology for the faith, as the mass mob opposed God, Acts 7:51.

4) "Great is Diana of the Ephesians." (megale he Artemis Ephesion) "Great is (exists or endures) the Artemis (Diana) of the Ephesians," an idol goddess of the Ephesian citizenry, and worshipped thru all Asia and in most areas of the Roman Empire, an object of worship to be avoided by people of God, 1 John 5:21; 2 John 1:10-11.

Verse 35


1) "And when the town clerk had appeased the people," (katasteilas de ho grammateus ton ochlon) "And when the town clerk had quieted, or quieted the crowd," had secured an intelligent hearing from the multitude of the disorderly gathering. The town clerk was keeper of the city archives, and was the public reader of civil decrees, and correspondent between the city and the imperial government.

2) "He said, Ye men of Ephesus," (phesin andres Ephesioi) "He said, ye responsible, accountable men, Ephesians."

3) "What man is there that knoweth not," (tis gar estin anthropon hos ou ginoskei) "Who indeed is there of men (of human beings) who does not know,"

4) "How that the city of the Ephesians is a worshipper," (ten Ephesion polin neokoron) "That the city of the Ephesians is a temple warden," a city worshipper, as a whole, a guardian, literally temple-keeper, Acts 17:21. Thirteen cities of Asia had an interest in the temple, but Ephesus was honored with the charge.

5) "Of the great goddess Diana," (ousan tes megales Artemidos) "Being or existing of the great Artemis, the goddess Diana," of Asia, comparable to the goddess Artemis of Greece.

6) "And of the image that fell down from Jupiter?" (kai tou diapetous) "And (even) of the image that exists, as having fallen down from the sky," even Jupiter. There is a similar tradition of the statue of Diana in Tauris and Minerva at Athens.

Verse 36

1) "Seeing then that these things, ’ (anatirreton oun onton touton) "As these matters are undeniable, incontestable," in the blinded minds and hearts of the heathen worshippers, and standing on legal grounds for their place in Ephesus and all Asia Minor.

2) "Cannot be spoken against," (deon estin humas katestalmenous huparchein) " ch have been spoken against," since "you all have been quieted, have yourselves in restraint;- Did they suppose these itinerant preachers (orators) were going to overturn the silversmith idol-making business that promoted the goddess Diana? Ridiculous!

3) "Ye ought to be quiet," (dion estin huparchein) "It is necessary that you all are to be quiet," to have self-control in this matter, not raise a stir, cause, or aid and abet a riot.

4) "And to do nothing rashly," (kai meden propetes prassein) "And to practice not even one rash thing," to do nothing rashly or impulsively, to practice no stupidity, without good judgement, Proverbs 14:29; Proverbs 29:20.

Verse 37

1) "For ye have brought hither these men," (egagete gar tous andrasioutous) "For you all led these men," up here, before the town mob, mob meeting of the city, Gaius and Aristarchus, companions of Paul in mission service, Acts 19:29; Colossians 4:10.

2) "Which are neither robbers of the churches," (oute hierosulous) "Who are neither temple robbers," thieves of temple idols, robbers of idol temples.

3) "Nor yet blasphemers of your goddess." (oute blasphemountas ten theon hemon) "Nor even at all blaspheming your goddess," the goddess Diana, neither guilty in act, nor in language, of disrespect to our goddess, Romans 2:22; 1 Thessalonians 1:9; 1 Corinthians 1:23-24. It appears that Paul studiously, with speech "seasoned with salt," avoided insulting the idol worshippers in Ephesus, as he had done in Athens, Acts 17:22-31; Colossians 4:6.

Verse 38

1) "Wherefore if Demetrius," (ei men oun Dimetrios)" If therefore indeed Demetrius," master of the union of silversmiths of Ephesus, Acts 19:24-25. This question seems to indicate that the town clerk, if not a friend of Christians, at least seemed to be unbiased toward them.

2) "And the craftsmen which are with him," (kai hoi sun auto technitai) "And the Artisans or technicians who are in union, colleague with him," in his business and god-making industry, Acts 19:26-27. The town clerk recognized that the complaint was that the success of the craft was more in danger than their religion.

3) "Have a matter against any man," (echousi pros tina logon) "Have anything (in way of complaint) toward anyone," has a legal charge against anyone.

4) "The law is open and there are deputies:" (agoraioi agontai kai anthupatoi eisin) "There are assizes being held (open, public legal hearings) and there are proconsuls or Roman deputies to hear them," as a court-source of appeal, Acts 13:7. Law officers are to be desired above lynch mobs.

5) "Let them implead one another." (egkaleitosan allelois) "Let them bring a charge against one another," before or in the presence of them, of the members of the court, plead against one another in the presence of the court.

Verse 39

1) "But if ye inquire anything concerning other matters," (ei de ti peraitero epizeteite) "But if you all seek or are in pursuit of anything further," something more public in nature than your craft union, and its incitement against Paul, and his missionary helpers, 2 Corinthians 1:8-10.

2) "It shall be determined," (epiluthesetai) "It will be settled or resolved," brought to a resignation, an end of conflict.

3) "In a lawful assembly." (emteennomenekklesia) "In the lawful assembly," not in an incited street mob, which had been going on that day for two hours, Acts 19:23-34. The purpose of that lawful assembly was civil in nature, not religious, as the church or assembly that Jesus:

a) Chose and established, John 15:16; John 15:26-27; John 20:21.

b) Built, Matthew 16:18; and commissioned, Matthew 28:18-20.

c) Loved and gave Himself for, Ephesians 5:25.

d) Purchased with His own blood, Acts 20:28.

Verse 40

1) "For we are in danger," (kai gar kinduneuomen)"For we are even in danger," because of the mob violence; The "we" referred to were the Ephesian public officials.

2) "To be called in question for this day’s uproar," (egkaleisthai staseos peri tes semeron) "To be charged with insurrection and impeachment concerning today’s mob action," should the report of the riot reach Rome, Acts 21:31-32. This was a public statement of judgement, given by the highly respectable town clerk.

3) "There being no cause," (medenos aitiou huparchontos) "There being or existing not even one real cause," no public ground on which we could defend the mob assembly of that day.

4) "Whereby we may give account," (peri hou ou dunesometha apodounai logon) "Concerning which we shall not be able to give a defensible account," a valid justification to the Roman government.

5) "Of this concourse." (peri tes sustrophes tautes) "Concerning this mob gathering," with its two hour mob rioting, Acts 19:34.

Verse 41

1) "And when he had thus spoken," (kai tauta eipon) "And having said these things repeatedly, very clearly, understandably;" When the town clerk had announced his judgement regarding the complaints and calculated mob violence, agitated and led by Demetrius, Acts 19:24-26; Acts 19:35.

2) "He dismissed the assembly " (apelusen ten ekklesian) "He dismissed or released the assembly," at the theatre, where the people had gathered for a public hearing, that was illegally called or assembled. He pronounced the assembly dissolved, to be dispersed, scattered, or advised them to leave, break it up. As Gallio knew his business at Corinth, so the town clerk at Ephesus knew his business in these circumstances, Acts 18:12-17.

Bibliographical Information
Garner, Albert & Howes, J.C. "Commentary on Acts 19". Garner-Howes Baptist Commentary. https://studylight.org/commentaries/eng/ghb/acts-19.html. 1985.
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