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Acts 4:24-31

4:24 When they heard this, they raised their voices to God with one mind 1  and said, “Master of all, 2  you who made the heaven, the earth, 3  the sea, and everything that is in them, 4:25 who said by the Holy Spirit through 4  your servant David our forefather, 5 

Why do the nations 6  rage, 7 

and the peoples plot foolish 8  things?

4:26 The kings of the earth stood together, 9 

and the rulers assembled together,

against the Lord and against his 10  Christ. 11 

4:27 “For indeed both Herod and Pontius Pilate, with the Gentiles and the people of Israel, assembled together in this city against 12  your holy servant Jesus, whom you anointed, 13  4:28 to do as much as your power 14  and your plan 15  had decided beforehand 16  would happen. 4:29 And now, Lord, pay attention to 17  their threats, and grant 18  to your servants 19  to speak your message 20  with great courage, 21  4:30 while you extend your hand to heal, and to bring about miraculous signs 22  and wonders through the name of your holy servant Jesus.” 4:31 When 23  they had prayed, the place where they were assembled together was shaken, 24  and they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak 25  the word of God 26  courageously. 27 

1 sn With one mind. Compare Acts 1:14.

2 tn Or “Lord of all.”

sn The use of the title Master of all (δεσπότης, despoths) emphasizes that there is a sovereign God who is directing what is taking place.

3 tn Grk “and the earth, and the sea,” but καί (kai) has not been translated before “the earth” and “the sea” since contemporary English normally uses a coordinating conjunction only between the last two elements in a series of three or more.

4 tn Grk “by the mouth of” (an idiom).

5 tn Or “ancestor”; Grk “father.”

6 tn Or “Gentiles.”

7 sn The Greek word translated rage includes not only anger but opposition, both verbal and nonverbal. See L&N 88.185.

8 tn Or “futile”; traditionally, “vain.”

9 tn Traditionally, “The kings of the earth took their stand.”

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

sn See the note on Christ in 2:31.

11 sn A quotation from Ps 2:1-2.

12 sn The application of Ps 2:1-2 is that Jews and Gentiles are opposing Jesus. The surprise of the application is that Jews are now found among the enemies of God’s plan.

13 sn A wordplay on “Christ,” v. 26, which means “one who has been anointed.”

14 tn Grk “hand,” here a metaphor for God’s strength or power or authority.

15 tn Or “purpose,” “will.”

16 tn Or “had predestined.” Since the term “predestine” is something of a technical theological term, not in wide usage in contemporary English, the translation “decide beforehand” was used instead (see L&N 30.84). God’s direction remains as the major theme.

17 tn Or “Lord, take notice of.”

18 sn Grant to your servants to speak your message with great courage. The request is not for a stop to persecution or revenge on the opponents, but for boldness (great courage) to carry out the mission of proclaiming the message of what God is doing through Jesus.

19 tn Grk “slaves.” See the note on the word “servants” in 2:18.

20 tn Grk “word.”

21 tn Or “with all boldness.”

22 tn The miraculous nature of these signs is implied in the context.

23 tn Grk “And when.” 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.

24 sn The place where they were assembled…was shaken. This signifies that God is in their midst. See Acts 16:26; Exod 19:18; Ps 114:7; Isa 6:4.

25 tn The imperfect verb has been translated as an ingressive imperfect (“began to speak”). Logical sequencing suggests that their speaking began after they were filled with the Spirit. The prayer was answered immediately.

26 tn Or “speak God’s message.”

27 tn Or “with boldness.”

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