2:5 Now there were devout Jews 1 from every nation under heaven residing in Jerusalem. 2 2:6 When this sound 3 occurred, a crowd gathered and was in confusion, 4 because each one heard them speaking in his own language. 2:7 Completely baffled, they said, 5 “Aren’t 6 all these who are speaking Galileans? 2:8 And how is it that each one of us hears them 7 in our own native language? 8 2:9 Parthians, Medes, Elamites, and residents of Mesopotamia, Judea and Cappadocia, Pontus and the province of Asia, 9 2:10 Phrygia and Pamphylia, Egypt and the parts of Libya near Cyrene, 10 and visitors from Rome, 11 2:11 both Jews and proselytes, 12 Cretans and Arabs – we hear them speaking in our own languages about the great deeds God has done!” 13
1 tn Grk “Jews, devout men.” It is possible that only men are in view here in light of OT commands for Jewish men to make a pilgrimage to Jerusalem at various times during the year (cf. Exod 23:17, 34:23; Deut 16:16). However, other evidence seems to indicate that both men and women might be in view. Luke 2:41-52 shows that whole families would make the temporary trip to Jerusalem. In addition, it is probable that the audience consisted of families who had taken up permanent residence in Jerusalem. The verb κατοικέω (katoikew) normally means “reside” or “dwell,” and archaeological evidence from tombs in Jerusalem does indicate that many families immigrated to Jerusalem permanently (see B. Witherington, Acts, 135); this would naturally include women. Also, the word ἀνήρ (ajnhr), which usually does mean “male” or “man” (as opposed to woman), sometimes is used generically to mean “a person” (BDAG 79 s.v. 2; cf. Matt 12:41). Given this evidence, then, it is conceivable that the audience in view here is not individual male pilgrims but a mixed group of men and women.
2 tn Grk “Now there were residing in Jerusalem Jews, devout men from every nation under heaven.”
3 tn Or “this noise.”
4 tn Or “was bewildered.”
5 tn Grk “They were astounded and amazed, saying.” The two imperfect verbs, ἐξίσταντο (existanto) and ἐθαύμαζον (eqaumazon), show both the surprise and the confusion on the part of the hearers. The verb ἐξίσταντο (from ἐξίστημι, existhmi) often implies an illogical perception or response (BDAG 350 s.v. ἐξίστημι): “to be so astonished as to almost fail to comprehend what one has experienced” (L&N 25.218).
6 tn Grk “Behold, aren’t all these.” The Greek word ἰδού (idou) at the beginning of this statement has not been translated because it has no exact English equivalent here, but adds interest and emphasis (BDAG 468 s.v. 1).
7 tn Grk “we hear them, each one of us.”
8 tn Grk “in our own language in which we were born.”
9 tn Grk “Asia”; in the NT this always refers to the Roman province of Asia, made up of about one-third of the west and southwest end of modern Asia Minor. Asia lay to the west of the region of Phrygia and Galatia. The words “the province of” are supplied to indicate to the modern reader that this does not refer to the continent of Asia.
10 tn According to BDAG 595 s.v. Λιβύη, the western part of Libya, Libya Cyrenaica, is referred to here (see also Josephus, Ant. 16.6.1 [16.160] for a similar phrase).
12 sn Proselytes refers to Gentile (i.e., non-Jewish) converts to Judaism.
13 tn Or “God’s mighty works.” Here the genitive τοῦ θεοῦ (tou qeou) has been translated as a subjective genitive.