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Acts 16:31-34

Context
16:31 They replied, 1  “Believe 2  in the Lord Jesus 3  and you will be saved, you and your household.” 16:32 Then 4  they spoke the word of the Lord 5  to him, along with all those who were in his house. 16:33 At 6  that hour of the night he took them 7  and washed their wounds; 8  then 9  he and all his family 10  were baptized right away. 11  16:34 The jailer 12  brought them into his house and set food 13  before them, and he rejoiced greatly 14  that he had come to believe 15  in God, together with his entire household. 16 

1 tn Grk “said.”

2 sn Here the summary term of response is a call to believe. In this context it refers to trusting the sovereign God’s power to deliver, which events had just pictured for the jailer.

3 tc The majority of mss add Χριστόν (Criston, “Christ”) here (C D E Ψ 1739 Ï sy sa), but the best and earliest witnesses read simply τὸν κύριον ᾿Ιησοῦν (ton kurion Ihsoun, “the Lord Jesus”; Ì74vid א A B 33 81 pc bo). The addition of “Christ” to “Lord Jesus” is an obviously motivated reading. Thus on both external and internal grounds, the shorter reading is strongly preferred.

4 tn Grk “And they.” Here καί (kai) has been translated as “then” to indicate the continuity with the preceding verse. Greek style often begins sentences or clauses with “and,” but English style does not.

5 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; 19:10, 20; 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.

6 tn Grk “And at.” 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 tn Grk “taking them…he washed.” The participle παραλαβών (paralabwn) has been translated as a finite verb due to requirements of contemporary English style.

8 tn On this phrase BDAG 603 s.v. λούω 1 gives a literal translation as “by washing he freed them from the effects of the blows.”

9 tn Here καί (kai) has been translated as “then” to indicate the logical sequence.

10 sn All his family. It was often the case in the ancient world that conversion of the father led to the conversion of all those in the household.

11 tn Or “immediately.”

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

13 tn Grk “placed [food] on the table” (a figurative expression). Since the actual word for food is not specified, it would also be possible to translate “set a meal before them,” but since this is taking place in the middle of the night, the preparations necessary for a full meal would probably not have been made. More likely Paul and Silas were given whatever was on hand that needed little or no preparation.

14 tn Or “he was overjoyed.”

15 tn The translation “come to believe” reflects more of the resultative nuance of the perfect tense here.

16 tn The phrase “together with his entire household” is placed at the end of the English sentence so that it refers to both the rejoicing and the belief. A formal equivalence translation would have “and he rejoiced greatly with his entire household that he had come to believe in God,” but the reference to the entire household being baptized in v. 33 presumes that all in the household believed.



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