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Acts 14:23

Context
14:23 When they had appointed elders 1  for them in the various churches, 2  with prayer and fasting 3  they entrusted them to the protection 4  of the Lord in whom they had believed.

Acts 19:4

Context
19:4 Paul said, “John baptized with a baptism of repentance, telling the people to believe in the one who was to come after him, 5  that is, in Jesus.”

Acts 9:42

Context
9:42 This became known throughout all 6  Joppa, and many believed in the Lord. 7 

Acts 11:17

Context
11:17 Therefore if God 8  gave them the same gift 9  as he also gave us after believing 10  in the Lord Jesus Christ, 11  who was I to hinder 12  God?”

Acts 16:31

Context
16:31 They replied, 13  “Believe 14  in the Lord Jesus 15  and you will be saved, you and your household.”

1 sn Appointed elders. See Acts 20:17.

2 tn The preposition κατά (kata) is used here in a distributive sense; see BDAG 512 s.v. κατά B.1.d.

3 tn Literally with a finite verb (προσευξάμενοι, proseuxamenoi) rather than a noun, “praying with fasting,” but the combination “prayer and fasting” is so familiar in English that it is preferable to use it here.

4 tn BDAG 772 s.v. παρατίθημι 3.b has “entrust someone to the care or protection of someone” for this phrase. The reference to persecution or suffering in the context (v. 22) suggests “protection” is a better translation here. This looks at God’s ultimate care for the church.

5 sn These disciples may have had their contact with John early on in the Baptist’s ministry before Jesus had emerged. This is the fifth time Luke links John the Baptist and Jesus (Acts 1:5; 11:16; 13:25; 18:25).

6 tn Or “known all over.” BDAG 511 s.v. κατά A.1.c. has “became known throughout all Joppa” for γνωστὸν γενέσθαι καθ᾿ ὅλης ᾿Ιόππης (gnwston genesqai kaq{olh" Iopph").

7 sn This became known…many believed in the Lord. This is a “sign” miracle that pictures how the Lord can give life.

8 tc Codex Bezae (D) and {a few other Western witnesses} here lack ὁ θεός (Jo qeo", “God”), perhaps because these scribes considered the Holy Spirit to be the gift of Christ rather than the gift of God; thus leaving the subject implicit would naturally draw the reader back to v. 16 to see the Lord Jesus as the bestower of the Spirit.

9 sn That is, the same gift of the Holy Spirit.

10 tn Or “gave us when we believed”; or “gave us after we believed”; or “gave us who believed”; or “gave them when they believed the same gift as he also gave us.” The aorist dative plural participle πιστεύσασιν (pisteusasin) can be understood in several different ways: (1) It could modify ἡμῖν (Jhmin, “us”) or αὐτοῖς (autois, “them”). Proximity (it immediately follows ἡμῖν) would suggest that it belongs with ἡμῖν, so the last option (“gave them when they believed the same gift he also gave us”) is less likely. (2) The participle could be either adverbial or adjectival, modifying ἡμῖν. This decision is primarily a contextual one. The point Peter made is not whether or not the Gentiles believed, since both groups (“us” and “they”) had believed in the Lord Jesus Christ. The point was whether or not the Gentiles received the Spirit when they believed, just as Jewish Christians had received the Spirit on the day of Pentecost when they believed. Translated as an adjectival participle, πιστεύσασιν only affirms the fact of belief, however, and raises somewhat of a theological problem if one realizes, “Would God have given the Gentiles the Spirit if they had not believed?” (In other words, belief in itself is a theological prerequisite for receiving the Spirit. As such, in the case of the Gentiles, it is assumed.) Thus in context it makes more sense to understand the participle πιστεύσασιν as adverbial, related to the time of belief in connection with the giving of the Spirit. (3) The participle πιστεύσασιν as a temporal participle can refer to action antecedent to the action of the main verb ἔδωκεν (edwken) or contemporaneous with it. Logically, at least, the gift of the Spirit followed belief in the case of the original Christians, who had believed before the day of Pentecost. In the case of Cornelius and his household, belief and the reception of the Spirit were virtually simultaneous. One can argue that Peter is “summarizing” the experience of Jewish Christians, and therefore the actions of belief and reception of the Spirit, while historically separate, have been “telescoped” into one (“gave them the same gift as he gave us when we believed”), but to be technically accurate the participle πιστεύσασιν should be translated “gave them the same gift as he also gave us after we believed.” A number of these problems can be avoided, however, by using a translation in English that maintains some of the ambiguity of the Greek original. Thus “if God gave them the same gift as he also gave us after believing” is used, where the phrase “after believing” can refer either to “them” or to “us,” or both.

11 tn Or “Messiah”; both “Christ” (Greek) and “Messiah” (Hebrew and Aramaic) mean “one who has been anointed.”

12 tn Or “prevent,” “forbid” (BDAG 580 s.v. κωλύω 1.a). Peter’s point is that he will not stand in the way of God.

13 tn Grk “said.”

14 sn Here the summary term of response is a call to believe. In this context it refers to trusting the sovereign God’s power to deliver, which events had just pictured for the jailer.

15 tc The majority of mss add Χριστόν (Criston, “Christ”) here (C D E Ψ 1739 Ï sy sa), but the best and earliest witnesses read simply τὸν κύριον ᾿Ιησοῦν (ton kurion Ihsoun, “the Lord Jesus”; Ì74vid א A B 33 81 pc bo). The addition of “Christ” to “Lord Jesus” is an obviously motivated reading. Thus on both external and internal grounds, the shorter reading is strongly preferred.



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