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A. D. cir. 31.

A. D. cir.31.

cir. CCII. 3.

cir. CCII. 3.

Stephen gives an account of

THE ACTS.

the Egyptian persecution; A. M. cir. 4035. laid in a the sepulchre that Abraham 21 And when he was cast out, Pha- A.M.cir. 4035. An. Olymp. bought for a sum of money of the raoh's daughter took him up, and nou An. Olymp.

sons of Emmor the father of Sychem. || rished him for her own son. 17 I But when the time of the promise drew 22 And Moses was learned in all the wisdom nigh, which God had sworn to Abraham, othes of the Egyptians, and was 'mighty in words and people grew and multiplied in Egypt,

in deeds. 18 Till another king arose which knew not 23 * And when he was full forty years old, it Joseph.

came into his heart to visit his brethren the chil19 The same dealt subtilly with our kindred, dren of Israel. and evil entreated our fathers, "so that they cast 24 And seeing one of them suffer wrong, he out their young children, to the end they might defended him, and avenged him that was opnot live.

pressed, and smote the Egyptian : 20 In which time Moses was born, and was 25 'For he supposed his brethren would have : exceeding fair, and nourished up in his father's understood how that God by his hand would house three months :

deliver them: but they understood not.

• Gen. 23. 16. & 35. 19. Gen. 15. 13. ver. 6. Exod. 1. 7, 8, 9. Ps. Hebr. 11. 23.

105. 24, 35.—Exod. 1. 22. e Exod. 2. 2.

Or, fair to God. Exod. 2. 210.- Luke 24. 19. * Exod. 2. 11, 12. Or, Now.

joined to it, and did not know where to find the proper one, " that of the ten portions of wisdom which came into the seem to have inserted Apaan Abraham in the text, for that world, the Egyptians had nine, and that all the inhabitants of purpose, without sufficiently attending to the different circum- | the earth, had only the remaining portion.” Much of the stances of his purchase, from that of Jacob's.

same nature may be seen in the Rabbins, though they apply Verse 18. Which knew not Joseph.] That is, did not the term wisdom here, to magic. approve of him, of his mode of governing the kingdom, nor Was mighty in words and in deeds.] This may

refer to of his people, nor of his God. See the note on Exod. i. 8. the glorious doctrines he taught, and the miracles he wrought in

Verse 19. The same dealt subtilly] Ouros xatamobloa- Egypt. Josephus Ant. lib. ii. cap. X. sect. 1. gives an account peros, a word borrowed from the Septuagint, who thus translate of his being general of an Egyptian army, defeating the Ethiothe Hebrew 15 orann; nithchokmah lo, let us deal wisely with it, || pians who had invaded Egypt, driving them back into their i. e. with cunning and deceit, as the Greek word implies; and own country, and taking Saba their capital, which was afterwhich is evidently intended by the Hebrew. See Gen. xxvii. | wards called Meroe. But this, like many other tales of the 35. thy brother came with subtilty, which the Targumist ex same writer, is worthy of little credit. plains by Kaina be-chokma, with wisdom, that is cunning and Verse 23. When he was full forty years old] This was deceit. For this the Egyptians were so remarkable, that a general tradition among the Jews: “ Moses was 40 years a1YUTTia (Ely to egyptize, signified, to act cunningly, and to use in Pharaoh's court, 40 years in Midian, and 40 years he wicked devices. Hence the Jews compared them to fores, served Israel.” and it is of them that Cant. chap. ii. 15. is understood by the To visit his brethren] Probably on the ground of trying Rabbins. Take us the little foxes which spoil our vines; de- to deliver them from their oppressive bondage. This desire stroy the Egyptians, who having slain our male children, sought seems to have been early infused into his mind by the Spirit to destroy the name of Israel from the face of the earth. of God: and the effect of this desire to deliver his oppressed

To the end they might not live.] Might not grow up and countrymen, was his refusing to be called the son of Phapropagate, and thus build up the Hebrew nation.

raoh's daughter ; see Heb. xi. 24. and thus renouncing all Verse 20. Moses--was exceeding fair] Aseios TW sw, || right to the Egyptian crown, choosing rather to endure afflicwas fair to God, i. e. was divinely beautiful. See the note tion with the people of God, than enjoy the pleasures of sin on Exod. ii. 2.

for a season. Verse 22. In all the wisdom of the Egyptians Who Verse 24. Smote the Egyptian See this explained, were at that time, the most intelligent and best instructed Exod. ii. 11, 12. people in the universe. Philo says, Moses was taught arith Verse 25. He supposed his brethren would have understood, metic, geometry, poetry, music, medicine, and the knowledge &c.] He probably imagined, that, as he felt from the divine inof hieroglyphics. In Sohar Kadash, fol. 46. it is said, I fluence, he was appointed to be their deliverer, they would

And of the deliverance

CHAP. VII.

of Israel by Moses.

A.M.cir. 4035.
A. D. cir. 31.

cir. CCII. 3.

26 * And the next day he shewed thy shoes from thy feet: for the A. M.cir. 4035. An. Olymp. himself unto them as they strove, and place where thou standest is holy An. Olymp. cir. Ccil's. would have set them at one again, ground. saying, Sirs, ye are brethren ; why do ye wrong 34 I have seen, I have seen the affliction of one to another?

my people which is in Egypt, and I have heard 27 But he that did his neighbour wrong thrust their groaning, and am come down to deliver him away, saying, "Who made thee a ruler and them. And now come, I will send thee into a judge over us?

Egypt. 28 Wilt thou kill me, as thou killedst the Egyp 35 This Moses whom they refused, saying, tian yesterday?

Who made thee a ruler and a judge ? the same 29 «Then fled Moses at this saying, and was adid God send to be a ruler and a deliverer by stranger in the land of Madian, where he begat the hand of the angel which appeared to him in two sons.

the bush. 30 « And when forty years were expired, there 36 'He brought them out, after that he had appeared to him in the wilderness of mount Sina, || * shewed wonders and signs in the land of Egypt, an angel of the Lord in a flame of fire in a bush. 'and in the Red sea, "and in the wilderness forty

31 When Moses saw it, he wondered at the years. sight: and as he drew near to behold it, the 37 1 This is that Moses, which said unto the voice of the Lord came unto him,

children of Israel, “A prophet shall the Lord 32 Saying, I am the God of thy fathers, the your God raise up unto you of your brethren, God of Abraham, and the God of Isaac, and the like unto me; Phim shall

ye

hear. God of Jacob. Then Moses trembled, and 38 - This is he, that was in the church in the durst not behold.

wilderness with the angel which spake to him 33 ? Then said the Lord to him, Put off in the mount Sina, and with our fathers : 'who

* Exod. 2. 13.-See Luke 12. 14. ch. 4. 7. Exod. 2. 15, 22. & Ps. 105. 27.—Exod. 14. 21, 27, 28, 29.-- Exod. 16. 1, 35. Deut. 4. 20. & 18.3, 4. & Exod. 3. 2.- Matt. 29. 39. Heb. 11. 16. Exod. 18. 15, 18. ch. 3. 22. :-o Or, as myself. Matt. 17. 5. - Exod. 19. 3. 5. Josh. 5. 15.-_Exod. 3. 7. _b Exod. 14. 19. Numb. 20. 16. 3, 17, - Isai. 63. 9. Gal. 3. 19. Hebr. 2. 2.- Exod. 2L 1. Deut. 5. - Exod. 12. 41. & 33. 1. * Exod. 7, & 8, & 9, & 10, & 11, & 14. ( 27, 31. & 33. 4. John 1. 17.

kave his divine appointment signified to them in a similar way; and made partakers of the inheritance among the saints in and the act of justice which he now did in behalf of his op- light? No doubt they felt that this was the drift of his pressed countryman, would be sufficient to shew them, that speech. he was now ready to enter upon his office, if they were will Verse 37. This is that Moses, which said--A prophet, &c.] ing to concur.

This very Moses, so highly esteemed and honoured by God, Verse 26. Unto them as they strove] Two Hebrews. | announced that very prophet whom ye have lately put to See on Exod. ii. 13, &c.

death. See the observations at the end of Deut. xviii. Verse 30. In a flame of fire in a bush.] See this and the Verse 38. With the angel which spake to him] Stephen following verses largely explained in the notes on Exod. iii. shews that Moses received the law by the ministry of angels; 1-8.

and that he was only a mediator between the angel of God Verse 36. He brought them out, after that he had shewed and them. wonders, &c.] Thus the very person whom they had re The lively oracles] soyle Sweta, the living oracles. The jected, and in effect, delivered up into the hands of Pharaoh doctrines of life, those doctrines, obedience to which entitled that he might be slain ; was the person alone, by whom they them, by the promise of God, to a long life upon earth, which were redeemed from their Egyptian bondage. And does not spoke to them of that spiritual life which every true believer St. Stephen plainly say by this, that the very person Jesus has in union with his God: and promised that eternal life Christ, whom they had rejected and delivered up into the which those who are faithful unto death, shall enjoy with him hands of Pilate to be crucified, was the person alone, by in the realms of glory. whom they could be delivered out of their spiritual bondage, The Greek word soylov, which we-translate oracle, signifies

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A. D. cir. 31.

A. D. cir. 31. Au. Olymnp. cir. CCII. 9.

O ye

A.M.cir. 1035. received the lively 4 oracles to give in the works of their own hands. A. M.cir. 4036. unto us :

42 Then God turned, and gave An. Olymp. 39 To whom our fathers would not them up to worship the host of hea- cir. CCII. 3. obey, but thrust him from them, and in their ven; as it is written in the book of the prophets, hearts turned back again into Egypt,

house of Israel, ha ve ye offered to me 40 Saying unto Aaron, Make us gods to go slain beasts and sacrifices by the space of forty before us : for as for this Moses, which brought years in the wilderness ? us out of the land of Egypt, we wot not what is 43 Yea, ye took up the tabernacle of Moloch, , become of him.

and the star of your god Remphan, figures which 41 And they made a calf in those days, and ye made to worship them: and I will carry you offered sacrifice unto the idol, and rejoiced away beyond Babylon.

* Rom. 3. 2.

LD Exod.32.1. -- Deut. 9. 16. Ps. 106. 19. - Ps. 81.12.
Ezek. 20. 25, 39. Rom. 1. 24. 2 Thes. 2. 11.

· Deut. 4. 19. & 17. 3. 2 Kings 17. 16. & 21.3. Jer. 19. 13.

Amos 5. 25, 26.

sun;

a divine revelation, a communication from God himself, and up the tabernacle of your Molek), as some have done. The is here applied to the Mosaic law; to the Old Testament in place is indeed very obscure, and the two texts do not tend to general, Rom. iii. 2. Heb. v. 12. and to divine revelation in cast light on each other. The Rabbins say sikuth, which we general, 1 Pet. iv. 11.

translate tabernacle, is the name of an idol. Molech geneVerse 39. In their hearts turned back again into Egypt] || rally understood to mean the and several persons of good Became idolaters, and preferred their Egyptian bondage and judgment, think that by Remphan or Raiphan is meant the their idolatry to the promised land, and the pure worship of planet Saturn, which the Copts call Pr@av Rephan. It will God. See the whole of these transactions explained at large be seen above that instead of Remphan, or as some of the best in the notes on Exod. xxxii.

MSS. have it Rephan, the Hebrew text has 73 Chiun, which Verse 42. Then God turned, and gave them up, &c.] He might possibly be a corruption of 7 Reiphan, as it would be left them to themselves, and then they deified and wor very easy to mistake the , caph for a resh, and the dau shipped the sun, moon, planets, and principal stars.

shurek 1 for pe.

This emendation would bring the IleIn the book of the prophets] As this quotation is found brew, Septuagint, and the text of Luke, nearer together; but in Amos chap. v. 25. by the book of the prophets, is meant | there is no authority either from MSS. or Versions for this the twelve minor prophets; which in the ancient Jewish di- correction : however, as Chiun is mentioned in no other vision of the sacred writings, formed only one book. place, though Molech often occurs, it is the more likely

Have ye offered to me slain beasts] It is certain, that the that there might have been some very early mistake in the (sraelites did offer various sacrifices to God, while in the wil- ||text; and that the Septuagint has preserved the true readderness; and it is as certain, that they scarcely ever did it | ing. with an upright heart. They were idolatrous either in heart It was customary for the idolaters of all nations to carry or act, in almost all their religious services, these were there- || images of their gods about them in their journies, military fore so very imperfect, that they were counted for nothing in expeditions, &c. and these being very small, were enclosed the sight of God; for this seems to be strongly implied in the in little boxes, perhaps some of them in the shape of temples, question here asked, have ye offered to me (exclusively and called tabernacles ; or as we have it. Acts xix. 24. shrines. with an upright heart,) slain beasts and sacrifices by the space These little gods were the penates and lares among the Roof forty years on the contrary, these forty years were little mans; and the telesms or talismans among the ancient eastern else than a tissue of rebellion and idolatry.

idolaters. The Hebrew text seems to refer to these when it Verse 43. Ye took up the tabernacle of Moloch, and the star says, the tabernacle of your Molech, and Chiun your images, of your god Remphan, figures which ye made to worship || duine tsalmeycem, your telesms, TOUS TUTOYS, the types or sithem.] This is a literal translation of the place, as it stands mulachres' of your gods. See the note on Gen. xxxi. 19. in the Septuagint : but in the Hebrew text it stands thus : Many of those small portable images are now in my own colbut ye have borne the tabernacle of your Moloch, and Chiun lection, all of copper or brass; some of them the identical your images, the star of your god which ye made to your-penates of the ancient Romans; and others the offspring of selves. This is the simple version of the place, unless we the Hindoo idolatry; they are from an ounce weight to half

venasatem

a pound. Such images as these, I suppose the idolatrous Ismalkekem, ye took SIKUT: your king, (instead of ye took || raelites, in imitation of their neighbours, the Moabites, Am

oemasudem eth Sicuth ונשאתם את סכות מלככס should translate

Mentions likewise the building of

CHAP. VII.

the tabernacle and the temple.

A.M.cir. 4035
A. D. cir. Si.
An. Olymp.

44 I Our fathers had the taberna- | sired to find a tabernacle for the God A. M. cir.4035.

A, D. cir. 31. cle of witness in the wilderness, as he of Jacob.

An. Olymp. cir. CCII. 3. had appointed, “speaking unto Mo 47 \But Solomon built him a house. cir. CCII. 3. ses, that he should make it according to the 48 How beit, 'the most High dwelleth not fashion that he had seen.

in temples made with hands; as saith the pro45 · Which also our fathers, that came after, | phet, brought in with Jesus into the possession of the 49 * Heaven is my throne, and earth is Gentiles, whom God drave out before the face my footstool: what house will ye build me? of our fathers, unto the days of David;

saith the Lord: or what is the place of my 46 'Who found favour before God, and de- l rest?

"Or, who spake. Exod. 25. 40. & 26. 30._Hebr. 8.5.- Josh. 3. 14. Or, having received.- Neh. 9. 24. Ps. 44. 2. & 78. 55. ch. 13.

1 Sam. 16. 1. 2 Sam. 7. 1. Ps. 89. 19. ch. 13. 22.

& 1 Kings 8. 17. 1 Chron. 22. 7. Ps. 132. 4, 5. LA 1 Kings 6. 1. & 8. 20. 1 Chron. 17. 12. 2 Chron. 3. ). Ni Kings 8. 27. 2 Chron. 2. 6. & 6. 18. ch. 17. 24. Isai. 66. 1, 2. Matt. 5. 34, 35. & 23. 22.

monites, 8c. to have carried about with them : and to such in heart. Thus he proves that neither tabernacle nor temple the prophet appears to me, unquestionably to allude. are essentially requisite for the true worship of the true God.

I will carry you away beyond Babylon.] You have carried Concerning the tabernacle to which St. Stephen here refers, your idolatrous images about ; and I will carry you into cap- the Reader is requested to consult the notes on Exod. xxv. tivity, and see if the gods in whom ye have trusted can deli-8, &c. and the subsequent chapters. ver you from my hands. Instead of beyond Babylon, Amos, Speaking unto Moses] 'O law toho spake, as in the from whom the quotation is made, says, I will carry you be margin; signifying the angel of God who spake to Moses, or yond Damascus. Where they were carried, was into Assyria God himself. See Exod. xxv. 40. and Media ; see 2 Kings xvii. 6. now this was not only be Verse 45. Brought in with Jasus) That is, with Joshua, yond Damascus, but beyond Babylon itself; and as Stephen whom the Greek version, quoted by St. Stephen, always writes knew this to be the fact, he states it here, and thus more pre- inoous Jesus; but which should constantly be written Joshua cisely fixes the place of their captivity. The Holy Spirit in in such cases as the present, in order to avoid ambiguity and his farther revelations, has undoubted right to extend or il confusion. lustrate those which he had given before. This case fre Possession of the Gentiles] Twy gorwy of the heathens, quently occurs, when a former prophecy is quoted in later whom Joshua conquered, and gave their land to the children times.

of Israel. Verse 44. Our fathers had the tabernacle of witness in Verse 46. Desired to find a tabernacle] This was in the wilderness] That is, the tabernacle in which the two | David's heart, and it met with the divine approbation. See tables of stone written by the finger of God were laid up, as 2 Sam. vii. 2, &c. and see the purpose, Psal. cxxxii. 2–5. a testimony that he had delivered these laws to the people; but as David had been a man of war, and had shed much and that they had promised to obey them. As one great de- blood, God would not permit him to build the temple ; but sign of St. Stephen was to shew the Jews that they placed he laid the plan and made provision for it, and Solomon exetoo much dependence on outward privileges; and had not cuted the design. used the law, the tabernacle, the temple, nor the temple-ser Verse 48. The Most High dwelleth not in temples made vice, for the purpose of their institution; he labours to bring with hands] Here St. Stephen evidently refers to Solomon's them to a due sense of this, that conviction might lead to re- speech, 1 Kings viii. 27. But will God indeed dwell on the pentance and conversion. And he farther shews, that God earth.? Behold, the heaven, and the heaven of heavens cannot did not confine his worship to one pluce, or form. He was contain thee, how much less this house that I have builded? worshipped without any shrine, in the times of the patriarchs, Both Solomon and St. Stephen mean, that the majesty of God Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, &c. He was worshipped with a tu- could not be contained, not even in the whole vortex of nabernacle, or portable temple in the wilderness. He was wor much less in any temple which human hands could erect. shipped also in the fired temple projected by David, but built As saith the prophet] The place referred to, is Isai. Ixvi. by Solomon : he asserts farther that his infinite majesty can Thus saith the Lord, the heaven is my throne, und the not be confined to temples made by human hands; and where | earth my footstool. Where is the house that ye build unto there is neither tabernacle nor temple, (in any part of his vast || me? And where is the place of my rest, &c. with which the dominions,) he may be worshipped acceptably by the upright || quotation by Stephen, agrees.

ture;

1, 2.

Stephen charges them with

THE ACTS.

resisting the Holy Ghost.

A.M.cir. 4035.
A. D. cir. 31.

50 Hath not my hand made all these cised in heart and ears, ye do always A. M. cir. 9095. An. Olymp. things ?

resist the Holy Ghost : as your fa51 Ye å stiff-necked and "uncircum-thers did, so do

ye.

A. D. cir. 31.

An. Olymp. cir. CCII, 3.

cir. CCII. 3.

· Exod. 32.9. & 33. 3. Isai. 48. 4.

• Lev. 26. 41. Deut. 10. 16. Jer. 4. 4.& 6. 10.& 9. 26. Ezek. 44. 9.

Verse 50. Hath not my hand made all these things?] | by Christ and the apostles. 2. Because they were uncircumStephen, certainly had not finished his discourse, nor drawn cised in ears, they would neither hear nor obey Moses, the his inferences from the facts already stated: but it is likely, prophets, Christ, nor the apostles. that as they perceived he was about to draw conclusions un As your fathers did, so do ye.] They were disobedient favourable to the temple and its ritual, they immediately | children, of disobedient parents: in all their generations they raised up a clamour against him, which was the cause of the had been disobedient and perverse. This whole people, as following very cutting address.

well as this text, are fearful proofs that the Holy Spirit, the Verse 51. Ye stiff-necked] Enampotpaxriga; a metaphor almighty energy of the living God, may be resisted and reniaken from untoward oxen, who cannot be broken into the dered of none effect. This Spirit is not sent to stocks, stones, yoke ; and whose strong necks cannot be bended to the right or machines, but to human beings endued with rational souls ; or to the left.

therefore it is not to work on them with that irresistible Uncircumcised in heart and ears] This was a Jewish energy which it must exert on inert matter, in order to conmode of speech, often used by the prophets. Circumcision quer the vis inertiæ or disposition to abide eternally in a mowas instituted not only as a sign and seal of the covenant, in- tionless state, which is the state of all inanimate beings : but to which the Israelites entered with their Maker; but also as it works upon understanding, will, judgment, conscience, &c. a type of that purity and holiness which the law of God re in order to enlighten, convince, and persuade. If after all, quires; hence there was an excision of what was deemed not the understanding, the eye of the mind, refuses to behold the only superfluous but also injurious: and by this cutting off, light; the will determines to remain obstinate; the judgment the propensity to that crime which ruins the body, debases | purposes to draw false inferences; and the conscience hardens the mind, and was generally the forerunner of idolatry, was itself against every check and remonstrance ; (and all this is happily lessened. It would be easy to prove this, were not possible to a rational soul, which must be dealt with in a rathe subject too delicate. Where the spirit of disobedience tional way,) then, the Spirit of God being thus resisted, is was found; where the heart was prone to iniquity, and the grieved, and the sinner is left to reap the fruit of his doings. ears impatient of reproof and counsel, the person is repre- To force the man to see, feel, repent, believe, and be saved, sented as uncircumcised in those parts; because devoted to would be to alter the essential principles of his creation, and iniquity, impatient of reproof, and refusing to obey. In Pir-the nature of mind; and reduce him into the state of a makey Eliezer chap. 29. “ Rabbi Seira said. There are five chine, the vis inertiæ of which was to be overcome and conspecies of uncircumcision in the world, four in man; and one ducted by a certain quantum of physical force, superior to in trees. Those in man are the following:

that resistance which would be the natural effect of the cer“1. Uncircumcision of the Ear. Behold their ear is uncir- tain quantum of the vis inertiæ, possessed by the subject, on cumcised, and they cannot hearken, Jer. vi. 10.

and by which, this agent was to operate. Now, man cannot 66 2. The uncircumcision of the lips. How shall Pharaoh be operated on in this way, because it is contrary to the laws hear

me, who am of uncircumcised lips? Exod. vi. 12. of his creation and nature; nor can the Holy Ghost work on “ 3. Uncircumcision of heart. If then their uncircumcised that as a machine, which himself has made a free agent. HEARTS be humbled, Lev. xxvii. 41. Circumcise therefore Man therefore may, and generally does resist the Holy the FORESKIN of your neart, Deut. x. 16. Jer. iv. 4. For Ghost: and the whole revelation of God, bears unequivocali all the house of Israel are uncircumcised in the 11EART, Jer. || testimony to this most dreadful possibility, and most awful ix. 26.

truth. It is trifling with the sacred text, to say, that resist"64. The uncircumcision of the FLESH. Ye shall circumcise | ing the Holy Ghost here, means resisting the laws of Moses, the flesh of your FORESKIN, &c. Gen. xvii. 11.”

the exhortations, threatenings and promises of the prophets, Ye do always resist the Holy Ghost] 1. Because they &c. These it is true, the uncircumcised ear may resist; but the were uncircumcised in heart; they always resisted the influ- uncircumcised heart is that alone, to which the Spirit that ences of the Holy Spirit, bringing light and conviction to their gave the laws, exhortations, promises, &c. speaks : and as minds; in consequence of which, they became hardened matter resists matter; so spirit resists spirit. These were not through the deceitfulness of sin; and neither repented at the only uncircumcised in ear, but uncircumcised also in heart; preaching of John, nor credited the glad tidings told them and therefore they resisted the Holy Ghost, not only in bis

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