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Acts 15:14-17

Context
15:14 Simeon 1  has explained 2  how God first concerned himself 3  to select 4  from among the Gentiles 5  a people for his name. 15:15 The 6  words of the prophets agree 7  with this, as it is written,

15:16After this 8  I 9  will return,

and I will rebuild the fallen tent 10  of David;

I will rebuild its ruins and restore 11  it,

15:17 so that the rest of humanity 12  may seek the Lord,

namely, 13  all the Gentiles 14  I have called to be my own, 15  says the Lord, 16  who makes these things

1 sn Simeon is a form of the apostle Peter’s Aramaic name. James uses Peter’s “Jewish” name here.

2 tn Or “reported,” “described.”

3 tn BDAG 378 s.v. ἐπισκέπτομαι 3 translates this phrase in Acts 15:14, “God concerned himself about winning a people fr. among the nations.”

4 tn Grk “to take,” but in the sense of selecting or choosing (accompanied by the preposition ἐκ [ek] plus a genitive specifying the group selected from) see Heb 5:1; also BDAG 584 s.v. λαμβάνω 6.

5 sn In the Greek text the expression “from among the Gentiles” is in emphatic position.

6 tn Grk “And the.” Because of the difference between Greek style, which often begins sentences or clauses with “and,” and English style, which generally does not, καί (kai) has not been translated here.

7 sn The term agree means “match” or “harmonize with.” James’ point in the introduction argues that many of the OT prophets taught this. He gives one example (which follows).

8 tn Grk “After these things.”

9 sn The first person pronoun I refers to God and his activity. It is God who is doing this.

10 tn Or more generally, “dwelling”; perhaps, “royal tent.” According to BDAG 928 s.v. σκηνή the word can mean “tent” or “hut,” or more generally “lodging” or “dwelling.” In this verse (a quotation from Amos 9:11) BDAG refers this to David’s ruined kingdom; it is possibly an allusion to a king’s tent (a royal tent). God is at work to reestablish David’s line (Acts 2:30-36; 13:32-39).

11 tn BDAG 86 s.v. ἀνορθόω places this verb under the meaning “to build someth. up again after it has fallen, rebuild, restore,” but since ἀνοικοδομέω (anoikodomew, “rebuild”) has occurred twice in this verse already, “restore” is used here.

12 tn Or “so that all other people.” The use of this term follows Amos 9:11 LXX.

13 tn Here καί (kai) introduces an explanatory clause that explains the preceding phrase “the rest of humanity.” The clause introduced by καί (kai) could also be punctuated in English as a parenthesis.

14 tn Or “all the nations” (in Greek the word for “nation” and “Gentile” is the same).

sn Note the linkage back to v. 14 through the mention of Gentiles. What Simeon explained is what the OT text says would happen.

15 tn Grk “all the Gentiles on whom my name has been called.” Based on well-attested OT usage, the passive of ἐπικαλέω (epikalew) here indicates God’s ownership (“all the Gentiles who belong to me”) or calling (“all the Gentiles whom I have called to be my own”). See L&N 11.28.

16 sn A quotation from Amos 9:11-12 LXX. James demonstrated a high degree of cultural sensitivity when he cited a version of the text (the Septuagint, the Greek translation of the Old Testament) that Gentiles would use.



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