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Acts 19:17-20

Context
19:17 This became known to all who lived in Ephesus, 1  both Jews and Greeks; fear came over 2  them all, and the name of the Lord Jesus was praised. 3  19:18 Many of those who had believed came forward, 4  confessing and making their deeds known. 5  19:19 Large numbers 6  of those who had practiced magic 7  collected their books 8  and burned them up in the presence of everyone. 9  When 10  the value of the books was added up, it was found to total fifty thousand silver coins. 11  19:20 In this way the word of the Lord 12  continued to grow in power 13  and to prevail. 14 

1 map For location see JP1 D2; JP2 D2; JP3 D2; JP4 D2.

2 tn Grk “fell on.” BDAG 377 s.v. ἐπιπίπτω 2 has “φόβος ἐ. ἐπί τινα fear came upon someoneAc 19:17.”

3 tn Or “exalted.”

4 tn Grk “came”; the word “forward” is supplied in the translation to clarify the meaning and to conform to the contemporary English idiom.

5 tn Or “confessing and disclosing their deeds.” BDAG 59 s.v. ἀναγγέλλω 2 has “W. ἐξομολογεῖσθαι: . τὰς πράξεις αὐτο'ν make their deeds known Ac 19:18.”

sn Making their deeds known. Ephesus was a major pagan religious center with much syncretistic “magical” practice. Coming to Jesus changed the lives and attitudes of these believers, creating a social impact.

6 tn BDAG 472 s.v. ἱκανός 4.a has “many, quite a few” for ἱκανοί (Jikanoi) in this verse.

7 tn On this term see BDAG 800 s.v. περίεργος 2.

8 tn Or “scrolls.”

9 tn Or “burned them up publicly.” L&N 14.66 has “‘they brought their books together and burned them up in the presence of everyone’ Ac 19:19.”

10 tn Grk “and when.” Because of the length of the Greek sentence, the conjunction καί (kai) has not been translated here. Instead a new English sentence is begun.

11 tn Or “fifty thousand silver drachmas” (about $10,000 US dollars). BDAG 128 s.v. ἀργύριον 2.c states, “ἀργυρίου μυριάδας πέντε 50,000 (Attic silver) drachmas Ac 19:19.” Another way to express the value would be in sheep: One drachma could buy one sheep. So this many drachmas could purchase a huge flock of sheep. A drachma also equals a denarius, or a day’s wage for the average worker. So this amount would be equal to 50,000 work days or in excess of 8,300 weeks of labor (the weeks are calculated at six working days because of the Jewish cultural context). The impact of Christianity on the Ephesian economy was considerable (note in regard to this the concerns expressed in 19:26-27).

12 sn The word of the Lord is a technical expression in OT literature, often referring to a divine prophetic utterance (e.g., Gen 15:1, Isa 1:10, Jonah 1:1). In the NT it occurs 15 times: 3 times as ῥῆμα τοῦ κυρίου (rJhma tou kuriou; Luke 22:61, Acts 11:16, 1 Pet 1:25) and 12 times as λόγος τοῦ κυρίου (logo" tou kuriou; here and in Acts 8:25; 13:44, 48, 49; 15:35, 36; 16:32; 19:10; 1 Thess 1:8, 4:15; 2 Thess 3:1). As in the OT, this phrase focuses on the prophetic nature and divine origin of what has been said.

13 tn The imperfect verb ηὔξανεν (huxanen) has been translated as a progressive imperfect, as has the following verb ἴσχυεν (iscuen).

14 sn The word of the Lord…to prevail. Luke portrays the impact of Christianity in terms of the Lord’s transforming power in the lives of individuals.



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