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Acts 21:37

Context
21:37 As Paul was about to be brought into the barracks, 1  he said 2  to the commanding officer, 3  “May I say 4  something to you?” The officer 5  replied, 6  “Do you know Greek? 7 

1 tn Or “the headquarters.” BDAG 775 s.v. παρεμβολή 2 has “barracks/headquarters of the Roman troops in Jerusalem Ac 21:34, 37; 22:24; 23:10, 16, 32.”

2 tn Grk “says” (a historical present).

3 tn Grk “the chiliarch” (an officer in command of a thousand soldiers) See note on the term “commanding officer” in v. 31.

4 tn Grk “Is it permitted for me to say” (an idiom).

5 tn Grk “He”; the referent (the officer) has been specified in the translation for clarity.

6 tn Grk “said.”

7 sn “Do you know Greek?” Paul as an educated rabbi was bilingual. Paul’s request in Greek allowed the officer to recognize that Paul was not the violent insurrectionist he thought he had arrested (see following verse). The confusion of identities reveals the degree of confusion dominating these events.



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