For Any & All who wish to know about the History of Israel and How those same things are effecting the Body of Christ Today. How God addresses those things today within the New Testament through Jesus Christ and His Finished Work at The Cross. All can Join: Believers and Non-believers.

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    4:1 And as they spake unto the people, the priests, and the captain of the temple, and the Sadducees, came upon them,
    4:2 Being grieved that they taught the people, and preached through Jesus the resurrection from the dead.
    4:3 And they laid hands on them, and put them in hold unto the next day: for it was now eventide.
    4:4 Howbeit many of them which heard the word believed; and the number of the men was about five thousand.
    4:5 And it came to pass on the morrow, that their rulers, and elders, and scribes,
    4:6 And Annas the high priest, and Caiaphas, and John, and Alexander, and as many as were of the kindred of the high priest, were gathered together at Jerusalem.
    4:7 And when they had set them in the midst, they asked, By what power, or by what name, have ye done this?
    4:8 Then Peter, filled with the Holy Ghost, said unto them, Ye rulers of the people, and elders of Israel,
    4:9 If we this day be examined of the good deed done to the impotent man, by what means he is made whole;
    4:10 Be it known unto you all, and to all the people of Israel, that by the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, whom ye crucified, whom God raised from the dead, even by him doth this man stand here before you whole.
    4:11 This is the stone which was set at nought of you builders, which is become the head of the corner.
    4:12 Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved.
    4:13 Now when they saw the boldness of Peter and John, and perceived that they were unlearned and ignorant men, they marvelled; and they took knowledge of them, that they had been with Jesus.
    4:14 And beholding the man which was healed standing with them, they could say nothing against it.
    4:15 But when they had commanded them to go aside out of the council, they conferred among themselves,
    4:16 Saying, What shall we do to these men? for that indeed a notable miracle hath been done by them is manifest to all them that dwell in Jerusalem; and we cannot deny it.
    4:17 But that it spread no further among the people, let us straitly threaten them, that they speak henceforth to no man in this name.
    4:18 And they called them, and commanded them not to speak at all nor teach in the name of Jesus.
    4:19 But Peter and John answered and said unto them, Whether it be right in the sight of God to hearken unto you more than unto God, judge ye.
    4:20 For we cannot but speak the things which we have seen and heard.
    4:21 So when they had further threatened them, they let them go, finding nothing how they might punish them, because of the people: for all men glorified God for that which was done.
    4:22 For the man was above forty years old, on whom this miracle of healing was shewed.
    4:23 And being let go, they went to their own company, and reported all that the chief priests and elders had said unto them.
    4:24 And when they heard that, they lifted up their voice to God with one accord, and said, Lord, thou art God, which hast made heaven, and earth, and the sea, and all that in them is:
    4:25 Who by the mouth of thy servant David hast said, Why did the heathen rage, and the people imagine vain things?
    4:26 The kings of the earth stood up, and the rulers were gathered together against the Lord, and against his Christ.
    4:27 For of a truth against thy holy child Jesus, whom thou hast anointed, both Herod, and Pontius Pilate, with the Gentiles, and the people of Israel, were gathered together,
    4:28 For to do whatsoever thy hand and thy counsel determined before to be done.
    4:29 And now, Lord, behold their threatenings: and grant unto thy servants, that with all boldness they may speak thy word,
    4:30 By stretching forth thine hand to heal; and that signs and wonders may be done by the name of thy holy child Jesus.
    4:31 And when they had prayed, the place was shaken where they were assembled together; and they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and they spake the word of God with boldness.
    4:32 And the multitude of them that believed were of one heart and of one soul: neither said any of them that ought of the things which he possessed was his own; but they had all things common.
    4:33 And with great power gave the apostles witness of the resurrection of the Lord Jesus: and great grace was upon them all.
    4:34 Neither was there any among them that lacked: for as many as were possessors of lands or houses sold them, and brought the prices of the things that were sold,
    4:35 And laid them down at the apostles' feet: and distribution was made unto every man according as he had need.
    4:36 And Joses, who by the apostles was surnamed Barnabas, (which is, being interpreted, The son of consolation,) a Levite, and of the country of Cyprus,
    4:37 Having land, sold it, and brought the money, and laid it at the apostles' feet.
    A C T S.

    CHAP. IV.
    In going over the last two chapters, where we met with so many good things that the apostles did, I wondered what was become of the scribes and Pharisees, and chief priests, that they did not appear to contradict and oppose them, as they had used to treat Christ himself; surely they were so confounded at first with the pouring out of the Spirit that they were for a time struck dumb! But I find we have not lost them; their forces rally again, and here we have an encounter between them and the apostles; for from the beginning the gospel met with opposition. Here, I. Peter and John are taken up, upon a warrant from the priests, and committed to jail, ver. 1-4. II. They are examined by a committee of the great sanhedrim, ver. 5-7. III. They bravely avow what they have done, and preach Christ to their persecutors, ver. 8-12. IV. Their persecutors, being unable to answer them, enjoin them silence, threatening them if they go on to preach the gospel, and so dismiss them, ver. 13-22. V. They apply to God by prayer, for the further operations of that grace which they had already experienced, ver. 23-30. VI. God owns them, both outwardly and inwardly, by manifest tokens of his presence with them, ver. 31-33. VII. The believers had their hearts knit together in holy love, and enlarged their charity to the poor, and the church flourished more than ever, to the glory of Christ, ver. 33-37.
    We have here the interests of the kingdom of heaven successfully carried on, and the powers of darkness appearing against them to put a stop to them. let Christ's servants be ever so resolute, Satan's agents will be spiteful; and therefore, let Satan's agents be ever so spiteful, Christ's servants ought to be resolute.

    I. The apostles, Peter and John, went on in their work, and did not labour in vain. The Spirit enabled the ministers to do their part, and the people theirs.

    1. The preachers faithfully deliver the doctrine of Christ: They spoke unto the people, to all that were within hearing, v. 1. What they said concerned them all, and they spoke it openly and publicly. They taught the people, still taught the people knowledge; taught those that as yet did not believe, for their conviction and conversion; and taught those that did believe, for their comfort and establishment. They preached through Jesus the resurrection from the dead. The doctrine of the resurrection of the dead, (1.) Was verified in Jesus; this they proved, that Jesus Christ had risen from the dead, as the first, the chief, that should rise from the dead, ch. xxvi. 23. They preached the resurrection of Christ as their warrant for what they did. Or, (2.) It is secured by him to all believers. The resurrection of the dead includes all the happiness of the future state. This they preached through Jesus Christ, attainable through him (Phil. iii. 10, 11), and through him only. They meddled not with matters of state, but kept to their business, and preached to the people heaven as their end and Christ as their way. See ch. xvii. 18.

    2. The hearers cheerfully receive it (v. 4): Many of those who heard the word believed; not all--perhaps not the most, yet many, to the number of about five thousand, over and above the three thousand we read of before. See how the gospel got ground, and it was the effect of the pouring out of the Spirit. Though the preachers were persecuted, the word prevailed; for sometimes the church's suffering days have been her growing days: the days of her infancy were so.

    II. The chief priests and their party now made head against them, and did what they could to crush them; their hands were tied awhile, but their hearts were not in the least changed. Now here observe, 1. Who they were that appeared against the apostles. They were the priests; you may be sure, in the first place, they were always sworn enemies to Christ and his gospel; they were as jealous for their priesthood as Cæsar for his monarchy, and would not bear one they thought their rival now, when he was preached as a priest, as much as when he himself preached as a prophet. With them was joined the captain of the temple, who, it is supposed, was a Roman officer, governor of the garrison placed in the tower of Antonia, for the guard of the temple: so that still here were both Jews and Gentiles confederate against Christ. The Sadducees also, who denied the being of spirits and the future state, were zealous against them. "One would wonder" (saith Mr. Baxter) "what should make such brutists as the Sadducees were to be such furious silencers and persecutors. If there is no life to come, what harm can other men's hopes of it do them? But in depraved souls all faculties are vitiated. A blind man has a malignant heart and a cruel hand, to this day." 2. How they stood affected to the apostles' preaching: They were grieved that they taught the people, v. 2. It grieved them, both that the gospel doctrine was preached (was so preached, so publicly, so boldly,), and that the people were so ready to hear it. They thought, when they had put Christ to such an ignominious death, his disciples would ever after be ashamed and afraid to own him, and the people would have invincible prejudices against his doctrine; and now it vexed them to see themselves disappointed, and that his gospel got ground, instead of losing it. The wicked shall see it, and be grieved, Ps. cxii. 10. They were grieved at that which they should have rejoiced in, at that which angels rejoice in. Miserable is their case to whom the glory of Christ's kingdom is a grief; for, since the glory of that kingdom is everlasting, it follows of course that their grief will be everlasting too. It grieved them that the apostles preached through Jesus the resurrection from the dead. The Sadducees were grieved that the resurrection from the dead was preached; for they opposed that doctrine, and could not bear to hear of a future state, to hear it so well attested. The chief priests were grieved that they preached the resurrection of the dead through Jesus, that he should have the honour of it; and, though they professed to believe the resurrection of the dead against the Sadducees, yet they would rather give up that important article than have it preached and proved to be through Jesus. 3. How far they proceeded against the apostles (v. 3): They laid hands on them (that is, their servants and officers did at their command), and put them in hold, committed them to the custody of the proper officer until the next day; they could not examine them now, for it was even-tide, and yet would defer it no longer than till next day. See how God trains up his servants for sufferings by degrees, and by less trials prepares them for greater; now they resist unto bonds only, but afterwards to blood.
    We have here the trial of Peter and John before the judges of the ecclesiastical court, for preaching a sermon concerning Jesus Christ, and working a miracle in his name. This is charged upon them as a crime, which was the best service they could do to God or men.

    I. Here is the court set. An extraordinary court, it should seem, was called on purpose upon this occasion. Observe, 1. The time when the court sat (v. 5) --on the morrow; not in the night, as when Christ was to be tried before them, for they seem not to have been so hot upon this prosecution as they were upon that; it was well if they began to relent. But they adjourned it to the morrow, and no longer; for they were impatient to get them silenced, and would lose no time. 2. The place where--in Jerusalem (v. 6); there it was that he told his disciples they must expect to suffer hard things, as he had done before them in that place. This seems to come in here as an aggravation of their sin, that in Jerusalem, where there were so many that looked for redemption before it came, yet there were more that would not look upon it when it did come. How is that faithful city become a harlot! See Matt. xxiii. 37. It was in the foresight of Jerusalem's standing in her own light that Christ beheld the city, and wept over it. 3. The judges of the court. (1.) Their general character: they were rulers, elders, and scribes, v. 5. The scribes were men of learning, who came to dispute with the apostles, and hoped to confute them. The rulers and elders were men in power, who, if they could not answer them, thought they could find some cause or other to silence them. If the gospel of Christ had not been of God, it could not have made its way, for it had both the learning and power of the world against it, both the colleges of the scribes and the courts of the elders. (2.) The names of some of them, who were most considerable. Here were Annas and Caiaphas, ringleaders in this persecution; Annas the president of the sanhedrim, and Caiaphas the high priest (though Annas is here called so) and father of the house of judgment. It should seem that Annas and Caiaphas executed the high priest's office alternately, year for year. These two were most active against Christ; then Caiaphas was high priest, now Annas was; however they were both equally malignant against Christ and his gospel. John is supposed to be the son of Annas; and Alexander is mentioned by Josephus as a man that made a figure at that time. There were others likewise that were of the kindred of the high priest, who having dependence on him, and expectations from him, would be sure to say as he said, and vote with him against the apostles. Great relations, and not good, have been a snare to many.

    II. The prisoners are arraigned, v. 7. 1. They are brought to the bar; they set them in the midst, for the sanhedrim sat in a circle, and those who had any thing to do in the court stood or sat in the midst of them (Luke ii. 46), so Dr. Lightfoot. Thus the scripture was fulfilled, The assembly of the wicked has enclosed me, Ps. xxii. 16. They compassed me about like bees, Ps. cxviii. 12. They were seated on every side. 2. The question they asked them was, "By what power, or by what name, have you done this? By what authority do you these things?" (the same question that they had asked their Master, Matt. xxi. 23): "Who commissioned you to preach such a doctrine as this, and empowered you to work such a miracle as this? You have no warrant nor license from us, and therefore are accountable to us whence you have your warrant." Some think this question was grounded upon a fond conceit that the very naming of some names might do wonders, as ch. xix. 13. The Jewish exorcists made use of the name of Jesus. Now they would know what name they made use of in their cure, and consequently what name they set themselves to advance in their preaching. They knew very well that they preached Jesus, and the resurrection of the dead, and the healing of the sick, through Jesus (v. 2), yet they asked them, to tease them, and try if they could get any thing out of them that looked criminal.

    III. The plea they put in, the design of which was not so much to clear and secure themselves as to advance the name and honour of their Master, who had told them that their being brought before governors and kings would give them an opportunity of preaching the gospel to those to whom otherwise they could not have had access, and it should be a testimony against them. Mark xiii. 19. Observe,

    1. By whom this plea was drawn up: it was dictated by the Holy Ghost, who fitted Peter more than before for this occasion. The apostles, with a holy negligence of their own preservation, set themselves to preach Christ as he had directed them to do in such a case, and then Christ made good to them his promise, that the Holy Ghost should give them in that same hour what they should speak. Christ's faithful advocates shall never want instructions, Mark xiii. 11.

    2. To whom it was given in: Peter, who is still the chief speaker, addresses himself to the judges of the court, as the rulers of the people, and elders of Israel; for the wickedness of those in power does not divest them of their power, but the consideration of the power they are entrusted with should prevail to divest them of their wickedness. "You are rulers and elders, and should know more than others of the signs of the times, and not oppose that which you are bound by the duty of your place to embrace and advance, that is, the kingdom of the Messiah; you are rulers and elders of Israel, God's people, and if you mislead them, and cause them to err, you will have a great deal to answer for."

    3. What the plea is: it is a solemn declaration,

    (1.) That what they did was in the name of Jesus Christ, which was a direct answer to the question the court asked them (v. 9, 10): "If we this day be examined, be called to an account as criminals, so the word signifies, for a good deed (as any one will own it to be) done to the impotent man,--if this be the ground of the commitment, this the matter of the indictment,--if we are put to the question, by what means, or by whom, he is made whole, we have an answer ready, and it is the same we gave to the people (ch. iii. 16), we will repeat it to you, as that which we will stand by. Be it known to you all who pretend to be ignorant of this matter, and not to you only, but to all the people of Israel, for they are all concerned to know it, that by the name of Jesus Christ, that precious, powerful, prevailing name, that name above every name, even by him whom you in contempt called Jesus of Nazareth, whom you crucified, both rulers and people, and whom God hath raised from the dead and advanced to the highest dignity and dominion, even by him doth this man stand here before you whole, a monument of the power of the Lord Jesus." Here, [1.] He justifies what he and his colleague had done in curing the lame man. It was a good deed; it was a kindness to the man that had begged, but could not work for his living; a kindness to the temple, and to those that went in to worship, who were now freed from the noise and clamour of this common beggar. "Now, if we be reckoned with for this good deed, we have no reason to be ashamed, 1 Pet. ii. 20; ch. iv. 14, 16. Let those be ashamed who bring us into trouble for it." Note, It is no new thing for good men to suffer ill for doing well. Bene agere et male pati vere Christianum est--To do well and to suffer punishment is the Christian's lot. [2.] He transfers all the praise and glory of this good deed to Jesus Christ. "It is by him, and not by any power of ours, that this man is cured." The apostles seek not to raise an interest for themselves, nor to recommend themselves by this miracle to the good opinion of the court; but, "Let the Lord alone be exalted, no matter what becomes of us." [3.] He charges it upon the judges themselves, that they had been the murderers of this Jesus: "It is he whom you crucified, look how you will answer it;" in order to the bringing of them to believe in Christ (for he aims at no less than this) he endeavours to convince them of sin, of that sin which, one would think, of all others, was most likely to startle conscience--their putting Christ to death. Let them take it how they will, Peter will miss no occasion to tell them of it. [4.] He attests the resurrection of Christ as the strongest testimony for him, and against his persecutors: "They crucified him, but God raised him from the dead; they took away his life, but God gave it to him again, and your further opposition to his interest will speed no better." He tells them that God raised him from the dead, and they could not for shame answer him with that foolish suggestion which they palmed upon the people, that his disciples came by night and stole him away. [5.] He preaches this to all the bystanders, to be by them repeated to all their neighbours, and commands all manner of persons, from the highest to the lowest, to take notice of it at their peril: "Be it known to you all that are here present, and it shall be made known to all the people of Israel, wherever they are dispersed, in spite of all your endeavours to stifle and suppress the notice of it: as the Lord God of gods knows, so Israel shall know, all Israel shall know, that wonders are wrought in the name of Jesus, not by repeating it as a charm, but believing in it as a divine revelation of grace and good-will to men."

    (2.) That the name of this Jesus, by the authority of which they acted, is that name alone by which we can be saved. He passes from this particular instance to show that it is not a particular sect or party that is designed to be set up by the doctrine they preached, and the miracle they wrought, which people might either join with or keep off from at their pleasure, as it was with the sects of the philosophers and those among the Jews; but that it is a sacred and divine institution that is hereby ratified and confirmed, and which all people are highly concerned to submit to and come into the measures of. It is not an indifferent thing, but of absolute necessity, that people believe in this name, and call upon it. [1.] We are obliged to it in duty to God, and in compliance with his designs (v. 11): "This is the stone which was set at nought of your builders, you that are the rulers of the people, and the elders of Israel, that should be the builders of the church, that pretend to be so, for the church is God's building. Here was a stone offered you, to be put in the chief place of the building, to be the main pillar on which the fabric might entirely rest; but you set it at nought, rejected it, would not make use of it, but threw it by as good for nothing but to make a stepping-stone of; but this stone is now become the head of the corner; God has raised up this Jesus whom you rejected, and, by setting him at his right hand, has made him both the corner stone and the head stone, the centre of unity and the fountain of power." Probably St. Peter here chose to make use of this quotation because Christ had himself made use of it, in answer to the demand of the chief priests and the elders concerning his authority, not long before this, Matt. xxi. 42. Scripture is a tried weapon in our spiritual conflicts: let us therefore stick to it. [2.] We are obliged to it for our own interest. We are undone if we do not take shelter in this name, and make it our refuge and strong tower; for we cannot be saved but by Jesus Christ, and, if we be not eternally saved, we are eternally undone (v. 12): Neither is there salvation in any other. As there is no other name by which diseased bodies can be cured, so there is no other by which sinful souls can be saved. "By him, and him only, by receiving and embracing his doctrine, salvation must now be hoped for by all. For there is no other religion in the world, no, not that delivered by Moses, by which salvation can be had for those that do not now come into this, at the preaching of it." So. Dr. Hammond. Observe here, First, Our salvation is our chief concern, and that which ought to lie nearest to our hearts--our rescue from wrath and the curse, and our restoration to God's favour and blessing. Secondly, Our salvation is not in ourselves, nor can be obtained by any merit or strength of our own; we can destroy ourselves, but we cannot save ourselves. Thirdly, There are among men many names that pretend to be saving names, but really are not so; many institutions in religion that pretend to settle a reconciliation and correspondence between God and man, but cannot do it. Fourthly, It is only by Christ and his name that those favours can be expected from God which are necessary to our salvation, and that our services can be accepted with God. This is the honour of Christ's name, that it is the only name whereby we must be saved, the only name we have to plead in all our addresses to God. This name is given. God has appointed it, and it is an inestimable benefit freely conferred upon us. It is given under heaven. Christ has not only a great name in heaven, but a great name under heaven; for he has all power both in the upper and in the lower world. It is given among men, who need salvation, men who are ready to perish. We may be saved by his name, that name of his, The Lord our righteousness; and we cannot be saved by any other. How far those may find favour with God who have not the knowledge of Christ, nor any actual faith in him, yet live up to the light they have, it is not our business to determine. But this we know, that whatever saving favour such may receive it is upon the account of Christ, and for his sake only; so that still there is no salvation in any other. I have surnamed thee, though thou hast not known me, Isa. xlv. 4.

    IV. The stand that the court was put to in the prosecution, by this plea, v. 13, 14. Now was fulfilled that promise Christ made, that he would give them a mouth and wisdom, such as all their adversaries should not be able to gainsay nor resist.

    1. They could not deny the cure of the lame man to be both a good deed and a miracle. He was there standing with Peter and John, ready to attest the cure, if there were occasion, and they had nothing to say against it (v. 14), either to disprove it or to disparage it. It was well that it was not the sabbath day, else they would have had that to say against it.

    2. They could not, with all their pomp and power, face down Peter and John. This was a miracle not inferior to the cure of the lame man, considering both what cruel bloody enemies these priests had been to the name of Christ (enough to make any one tremble that appeared for him), and considering what cowardly faint-hearted advocates those disciples had lately been for him, Peter particularly, who denied him for fear of a silly maid; yet now they see the boldness of Peter and John, v. 13. Probably there was something extraordinary and very surprising in their looks; they appeared not only undaunted by the rulers, but daring and daunting to them; they had something majestic in their foreheads, sparkling in their eyes, and commanding, if not terrifying, in their voice. They set their faces like a flint, as the prophet, Isa. l. 7; Ezek. iii. 9. The courage of Christ's faithful confessors has often been the confusion of their cruel persecutors. Now, (1.) We are here told what increased their wonder: They perceived that they were unlearned and ignorant men. They enquired either of the apostles or themselves or of others, and found that they were of mean extraction, born in Galilee, that they were bred fishermen, and had no learned education, had never been at any university, were not brought up at the feet of any of the rabbin, had never been conversant in courts, camps, or colleges; nay, perhaps, talk to them at this time upon any point in natural philosophy, mathematics, or politics, and you will find they know nothing of the matter; and yet speak to them of the Messiah and his kingdom, and they speak with so much clearness, evidence, and assurance, so pertinently and so fluently, and are so ready in the scriptures of the Old Testament relating to it, that the most learned judge upon the bench is not able to answer them, nor to enter the lists with them. They were ignorant men--idiotai, private men, men that had not any public character nor employment; and therefore they wondered they should have such high pretensions. They were idiots (so the word signifies): they looked upon them with as much contempt as if they had been mere naturals, and expected no more from them, which made them wonder to see what freedom they took. (2.) We are told what made their wonder in a great measure to cease: they took knowledge of them that they had been with Jesus; they, themselves, it is probable, had seen them with him in the temple, and now recollected that they had seen them; or some of their servants or those about them informed them of it, for they would not be thought themselves to have taken notice of such inferior people. But when they understood that they had been with Jesus, had been conversant with him, attendant on him, and trained up under him, they knew what to impute their boldness to; nay, their boldness in divine things was enough to show with whom they had had their education. Note, Those that have been with Jesus, in converse and communion with him, have been attending on his word, praying in his name, and celebrating the memorials of his death and resurrection, should conduct themselves, in every thing, so that those who converse with them may take knowledge of them that they have been with Jesus; and this makes them so holy, and heavenly, and spiritual, and cheerful; this has raised them so much above this world, and filled them with another. One may know that they have been in the mount by the shining of their faces.
    We have here the issue of the trial of Peter and John before the council. They came off now with flying colours, because they must be trained up to sufferings by degrees, and by less trials be prepared for greater. They now but run with the footmen; hereafter we shall have them contending with horses, Jer. xii. 5.

    I. Here is the consultation and resolution of the court about this matter, and their proceeding thereupon.

    1. The prisoners were ordered to withdraw (v. 15): They commanded them to go aside out of the council, willing enough to get clear of them (they spoke so home to their consciences), and not willing they should hear the acknowledgements that were extorted from them; but, though they might not hear from them, we have them here upon record. The designs of Christ's enemies are carried on in close cabals, and they dig deep, as if they would hide their counsels from the Lord.

    2. A debate arose upon this matter: They conferred among themselves; every one is desired to speak his mind freely, and to give advice upon this important affair. Now the scripture was fulfilled that the rulers would take counsel together against the Lord, and against his anointed, Ps. ii. 2. The question proposed was, What shall we do to these men? v. 16. If they would have yielded to the convincing commanding power of truth, it had been easy to say what they should do to these men. They should have placed them at the head of their council, and received their doctrine, and been baptized by them in the name of the Lord Jesus, and joined in fellowship with them. But, when men will not be persuaded to do what they should do, it is no marvel that they are ever and anon at a loss what to do. The truths of Christ, if men would but entertain them as they should, would give them no manner of trouble or uneasiness; but, if they hold them or imprison them in unrighteousness (Rom. i. 18), they will find them a burdensome stone that they will not know what to do with, Zech. xii. 3.

    3. They came at last to a resolution, in two things:--

    (1.) That it was not safe to punish the apostles for what they had done. Very willingly would they have done it, but they had not courage to do it, because the people espoused their cause, and cried up the miracle; and they stood now in as much awe of them as they had done formerly, when they durst not lay hands of Christ for fear of the people. By this it appears that the outcry of the mob against our Saviour was a forced or managed thing, the stream soon returned to its former channel. Now they could not find how they might punish Peter and John, what colour they might have for it, because of the people. They knew it would be an unrighteous thing to punish them, and therefore should have been restrained from it by the fear of God; but they considered it only as a dangerous thing, and therefore were held in from it only by the fear of the people. For, [1.] The people were convinced of the truth of the miracle; it was a notable miracle, gnoston semeion--a known miracle; it was known that they did it in Christ's name, and that Christ himself had often the like before. This was a known instance of the power of Christ, and a proof of his doctrine. That it was a great miracle, and wrought for the confirmation of the doctrine they preached (for it was a sign), was manifest to all that dwelt in Jerusalem: it was an opinion universally received, and, the miracle being wrought at the gate of the temple, universal notice was taken of it; and they themselves, with all the craftiness and all the effrontery they had, could not deny it to be a true miracle; every body would have hooted at them if they had. They could easily deny it to their own consciences, but not to the world. The proofs of the gospel were undeniable. [2.] They went further, and were not only convinced of the truth of the miracle, but all men glorified God for that which was done. Even those that were not persuaded by it to believe in Christ were yet so affected with it, as a mercy to a poor man and an honour to their country, that they could not but give praise to God for it; even natural religion taught them to do this. And, if the priests had punished Peter and John for that for which all men glorified God, they would have lost all their interest in the people, and been abandoned as enemies both to God and man. Thus therefore their wrath shall be made to praise God, and the remainder thereof shall be restrained.

    (2.) That it was nevertheless necessary to silence them for the future, v. 17, 18. They could not prove that they had said or done any thing amiss, and yet they must no more say nor do what they have done. All their care is that the doctrine of Christ spread no further among the people; as if that healing institution were a plague begun, the contagion of which must be stopped. See how the malice of hell fights against the counsels of heaven; God will have the knowledge of Christ to spread all the world over, but the chief priests would have it spread no further, which he that sits in heaven laughs at. Now, to prevent the further spreading of this doctrine, [1.] They charge the apostles never to preach it any more. Be it enacted by their authority (which they think every Israelite is bound in conscience to submit to) that no man speak at all nor teach in the name of Jesus, v. 18. We do not find that they give them any reason why the doctrine of Christ must be suppressed; they cannot say it is false or dangerous, or of any ill tendency, and they are ashamed to own the true reason, that it testifies against their hypocrisy and wickedness, and shocks their tyranny. But, Stat pro ratione voluntas--They can assign no reason but their will. "We strictly charge and command you, not only that you do not preach this doctrine publicly, but that you speak henceforth to no man, not to any particular person privately, in this name," v. 17. There is not a greater service done to the devil's kingdom than the silencing of faithful ministers; and putting those under a bushel that are the lights of the world. [2.] They threaten them if they do, strictly threaten them: it is at their peril. This court will reckon itself highly affronted if they do, and they shall fall under its displeasure. Christ had not only charged them to preach the gospel to every creature, but had promised to bear them out in it, and reward them for it. Now these priests not only forbid the preaching of the gospel, but threaten to punish it as a heinous crime; but those who know how to put a just value upon the world's threatenings, though they be threatenings of slaughter that it breathes out, ch. ix. 1.

    II. Here is the courageous resolution of the prisoners to go on in their work, notwithstanding the resolutions of this court, and their declaration of this resolution, v. 19, 20. Peter and John needed not confer together to know one another's minds (for they were both actuated by one and the same Spirit), but agree presently in the same sentiments, and jointly put in the answer: "Whether it be right in the sight of God, to whom both you and we are accountable, to hearken unto you more than unto God, we appeal to yourselves, judge you; for we cannot forbear speaking to every body the things which we have seen and heard, and are ourselves full of, and are charged to publish." The prudence of the serpent would have directed them to be silent, and, though they could not with a good conscience promise that they would not preach the gospel any more, yet they needed not tell the rulers that they would. But the boldness of the lion directed them thus to set both the authority and the malignity of their persecutors at defiance. They do, in effect, tell them that they are resolved to go on in preaching, and justify themselves in it with two things:-- 1. The command of God: "You charge us not to preach the gospel; he has charged us to preach it, has committed it to us as a trust, requiring us upon our allegiance faithfully to dispense it; now whom must we obey, God or you?" Here they appeal to one of the communes notitiæ--to a settled and acknowledged maxim in the law of nature, that if men's commands and God's interfere God's commands must take place. It is a rule in the common law of England that if any statute be made contrary to the law of God it is null and void. Nothing can be more absurd than to hearken unto weak and fallible men, that are fellow-creatures and fellow-subjects, more than unto a God that is infinitely wise and holy, our Creator and sovereign Lord, and the Judge to whom we are all accountable. The case is so plain, so uncontroverted and self-evident, that we will venture to leave it to yourselves to judge of it, though you are biassed and prejudiced. Can you think it right in the sight of God to break a divine command in obedience to a human injunction? That is right indeed which is right in the sight of God; for his judgment, we are sure, is according to truth, and therefore by that we ought to govern ourselves. 2. The convictions of their consciences. Even if they had not had such an express command from heaven to preach the doctrine of Christ, yet they could not but speak, and speak publicly, those things which they had seen and heard. Like Elihu, they were full of this matter, and the Spirit within them constrained them, they must speak, that they might be refreshed, Job xxxii. 18, 20. (1.) They felt the influence of it upon themselves, what a blessed change it had wrought upon them, had brought them into a new world, and therefore they could not but speak of it: and those speak the doctrine of Christ best that have felt the power of it, and tasted the sweetness of it, and have themselves been deeply affected with it; it is as a fire in their bones, Jer. xx. 9. (2.) They knew the importance of it to others. They look with concern upon perishing souls, and know that they cannot escape eternal ruin
    King James Bible - Acts Chapter: 4
    King James Bible Acts Chapter: 4

    45:1The word that Jeremiah the prophet spake unto Baruch the son of Neriah, when he had written these words in a book at the mouth of Jeremiah, in the fourth year of Jehoiakim the son of Josiah king of Judah, saying,
    45:2Thus saith the LORD, the God of Israel, unto thee, O Baruch;
    45:3Thou didst say, Woe is me now! for the LORD hath added grief to my sorrow; I fainted in my sighing, and I find no rest. 45:4Thus shalt thou say unto him, The LORD saith thus; Behold, *that* which I have built will I break down, and that which I have planted I will pluck up, even this whole land. 45:5And seekest thou great things for thyself? seek *them* not: for, behold, I will bring evil upon all flesh, saith the LORD: but thy life will I give unto thee for a prey in all places whither thou goest.

    **J E R E M I A H.** CHAP. XLV.

    The prophecy we have in this chapter concerns Baruch only, yet is intended for the support and encouragement of all the Lord's people that serve him faithfully and keep closely to him in difficult trying times. It is placed here after the story of the destruction of Jerusalem and the dispersion of the Jews, but was delivered long before, in the fourth year of Jehoiakim, as was the prophecy in the next chapter, and probably those that follow. We here find, I. How Baruch was terrified when he was brought into trouble for writing and reading Jeremiah's roll, [ver. 1-3]. II. How his fears were checked with a reproof for his great expectations and silenced with a promise of special preservation, [ver. 4, 5]. Though Baruch was only Jeremiah's scribe, yet this notice is taken of his frights, and this provision made for his comfort; for God despises not any of his servants, but graciously concerns himself for the meanest and weakest, for Baruch the scribe as well as for Jeremiah the prophet.

    *Jeremiah's Address to Baruch.*
    B. C. 607.
    How Baruch was employed in writing Jeremiah's prophecies, and reading them, we had an account *[ch xxxvi]., and how he was threatened for it by the king, warrants being out for him and he forced to abscond, and how narrowly he escaped under a divine protection, to which story this chapter should have been subjoined, but that, having reference to a private person, it is here thrown into the latter end of the book, as St. Paul's epistle to Philemon is put after his other epistles. Observe, I. The consternation that poor Baruch was in when he was sought for by the king's messengers and obliged to hide his head, and the notice which God took of it. He cried out, Woe is me now! v.3. He was a young man setting out in the world; he was well affected to the things of God, and was willing to serve God and his prophet; but, when it came to suffering, he was desirous to be excused. Being an ingenious man, and a scholar, he stood fair for preferment, and now to be driven into a corner, and in danger of a prison, or worse, was a great disappointment to him. When he read the roll publicly he hoped to gain reputation by it, that it would make him to be taken notice of and employed; but when he found that, instead of that, it exposed him to contempt, and brought him into disgrace, he cried out, "I am undone; I shall fall into the pursuers' hands, and be imprisoned, and put to death, or banished: The Lord has added grief to my sorrow, has loaded me with one trouble after another. After the grief of writing and reading the prophecies of my country's ruin, I have the sorrow of being treated as a criminal; for so doing; and, though another might make nothing of this, yet for my part I cannot bear it; it is a burden too heavy for me. I fainted in my sighing (or I am faint with my sighing; it just kills me) and I find no rest, no satisfaction in my own mind. I cannot compose myself as I should and would to bear it, not have I any prospect of relief or comfort." Baruch was a good man, but, we must say, this was his infirmity. Note, 1. Young beginners in religion, like fresh-water soldiers, are apt to be discouraged with the little difficulties which they commonly meet with at first in the service of God. They do but run with the footmen, and it wearies them; they faint upon the very dawning of the day of adversity, and it is an evidence that their strength is small (**Prov. xxiv. 10), that their faith is weak, and that they are yet but babes, who cry for every hurt and every fright. 2. Some of the best and dearest of God's saints and servants, when they have seen storms rising, have been in frights, and apt to make the worst of things, and to disquiet themselves with melancholy apprehensions more than there was cause for. 3. God takes notice of the frets and discontents of his people and is displeased with them. Baruch should have rejoiced that he was counted worthy to suffer in such a good cause and with such good company, but, instead of that, he is vexed at it, and blames his lot, nay, and reflects upon his God, as if he had dealt hardly with him; what he said was spoken in a heat and passion, but God was offended, as he was with Moses, who paid dearly for it, when, his spirit being provoked, he spoke unadvisedly with his lips. Thou didst say so and so, and it was not well said. God keeps account what we say, even when we speak in haste.

    II. The reproof that God gave him for talking at this rate. Jeremiah was troubled to see him in such an agitation, and knew not well what to say to him. He was loth to chide him, and yet thought he deserved it, was willing to comfort him, and yet knew not which way to go about it; but God tells him what he shall say to him, v.4. Jeremiah could not be certain what was at the bottom of these complaints and fear, but God sees it. They came from his corruptions. That the hurt might therefore not be healed slightly, he searches the wound, and shows him that he had raised his expectations too high in this world and had promised himself too much from it, and that made the distress and trouble he was in so very grievous to him and so hard to be borne. Note, The frowns of the world would not disquiet us as they do if we did not foolishly flatter ourselves with the hopes of its smiles and court and covet them too much. It is our over-fondness for the good things of this present time that makes us impatient under its evil things. Now God shows him that it was his fault and folly, at this time of day especially, either to desire or to look for an abundance of the wealth and honour of this world. For, 1. The ship was sinking. Ruin was coming upon the Jewish nation, an utter and universal ruin: "That which I have built, to be a house for myself, I am breaking down, and that which I have planted, to be a vineyard for myself, I am plucking up, even this whole land, the Jewish church and state; and dost thou now seek great things for thyself? Dost thou expect to be rich and honourable and to make a figure now? No." 2. "It is absurd for thee to be now painting thy own cabin. Canst thou expect to be high when all are brought low, to be full when all about thee are empty?" To seek ourselves more than the public welfare, especially to seek great things to ourselves when the public is in danger, is very unbecoming Israelites. We may apply it to this world, and our state in it; God in his providence is breaking down and pulling up; every thing is uncertain and perishing; we cannot expect any continuing city here. What folly is it then to seek great things for ourselves here, where every thing is little and nothing certain! III. The encouragement that God gave him to hope that though he should not be great, yet he should be safe: "I will bring evil upon all flesh, all nations of men, all orders and degrees of men, but thy life will I give to thee for a prey" (thy soul, so the word is) "in all places whither thou goest. Thou must expect to be hurried from place to place, and, wherever thou goest, to be in danger, but thou shalt escape, though often very narrowly, shalt have thy life, but it shall be as a prey, which is got with much difficulty and danger; thou shalt be saved as by fire." Note, The preservation and continuance of life are very great mercies, and we are bound to account them such, as they are the prolonging of our opportunity to glorify God in this world and to get ready for a better; and at some times, especially when the arrows of death fly thickly about us, life is a signal favour, and what we ought to be very thankful for, and while we have it must not complain though we be disappointed of the great things we expected. Is not the life more than meat?
    *Jeremiah 36:4-6

    36:4Then Jeremiah called Baruch the son of Neriah: and Baruch wrote from the mouth of Jeremiah all the words of the LORD, which he had spoken unto him, upon a roll of a book.
    36:5And Jeremiah commanded Baruch, saying, I am shut up; I cannot go into the house of the LORD:
    36:6Therefore go thou, and read in the roll, which thou hast written from my mouth, the words of the LORD in the ears of the people in the LORD'S house upon the fasting day: and also thou shalt read them in the ears of all Judah that come out of their cities.
    **Proverbs 24:10

    24:10If thou faint in the day of adversity, thy strength is small.
    King James Bible - Jeremiah Chapter: 45
    King James Bible Jeremiah Chapter: 45

    3:1 Now Peter and John went up together into the temple at the hour of prayer, being the ninth hour.
    3:2 And a certain man lame from his mother's womb was carried, whom they laid daily at the gate of the temple which is called Beautiful, to ask alms of them that entered into the temple;
    3:3 Who seeing Peter and John about to go into the temple asked an alms.
    3:4 And Peter, fastening his eyes upon him with John, said, Look on us.
    3:5 And he gave heed unto them, expecting to receive something of them.
    3:6 Then Peter said, Silver and gold have I none; but such as I have give I thee: In the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth rise up and walk.
    3:7 And he took him by the right hand, and lifted him up: and immediately his feet and ankle bones received strength.
    3:8 And he leaping up stood, and walked, and entered with them into the temple, walking, and leaping, and praising God.
    3:9 And all the people saw him walking and praising God:
    3:10 And they knew that it was he which sat for alms at the Beautiful gate of the temple: and they were filled with wonder and amazement at that which had happened unto him.
    3:11 And as the lame man which was healed held Peter and John, all the people ran together unto them in the porch that is called Solomon's, greatly wondering.
    3:12 And when Peter saw it, he answered unto the people, Ye men of Israel, why marvel ye at this? or why look ye so earnestly on us, as though by our own power or holiness we had made this man to walk?
    3:13 The God of Abraham, and of Isaac, and of Jacob, the God of our fathers, hath glorified his Son Jesus; whom ye delivered up, and denied him in the presence of Pilate, when he was determined to let him go.
    3:14 But ye denied the Holy One and the Just, and desired a murderer to be granted unto you;
    3:15 And killed the Prince of life, whom God hath raised from the dead; whereof we are witnesses.
    3:16 And his name through faith in his name hath made this man strong, whom ye see and know: yea, the faith which is by him hath given him this perfect soundness in the presence of you all.
    3:17 And now, brethren, I wot that through ignorance ye did it, as did also your rulers.
    3:18 But those things, which God before had shewed by the mouth of all his prophets, that Christ should suffer, he hath so fulfilled.
    3:19 Repent ye therefore, and be converted, that your sins may be blotted out, when the times of refreshing shall come from the presence of the Lord;
    3:20 And he shall send Jesus Christ, which before was preached unto you:
    3:21 Whom the heaven must receive until the times of restitution of all things, which God hath spoken by the mouth of all his holy prophets since the world began.
    3:22 For Moses truly said unto the fathers, A prophet shall the Lord your God raise up unto you of your brethren, like unto me; him shall ye hear in all things whatsoever he shall say unto you.
    3:23 And it shall come to pass, that every soul, which will not hear that prophet, shall be destroyed from among the people.
    3:24 Yea, and all the prophets from Samuel and those that follow after, as many as have spoken, have likewise foretold of these days.
    3:25 Ye are the children of the prophets, and of the covenant which God made with our fathers, saying unto Abraham, And in thy seed shall all the kindreds of the earth be blessed.
    3:26 Unto you first God, having raised up his Son Jesus, sent him to bless you, in turning away every one of you from his iniquities.
    King James Bible - Acts Chapter: 3
    King James Bible Acts Chapter: 3

    44:1The word that came to Jeremiah concerning all the Jews which dwell in the land of Egypt, which dwell at Migdol, and at Tahpanhes, and at Noph, and in the country of Pathros, saying,
    44:2Thus saith the LORD of hosts, the God of Israel; Ye have seen all the evil that I have brought upon Jerusalem, and upon all the cities of Judah; and, behold, this day they *are* a desolation, and no man dwelleth therein,
    44:3Because of their wickedness which they have committed to provoke me to anger, in that they went to burn incense, *and* to serve other gods, whom they knew not, *neither* they, ye, nor your fathers.
    44:4Howbeit I sent unto you all my servants the prophets, rising early and sending *them*, saying, Oh, do not this abominable thing that I hate.
    44:5But they hearkened not, nor inclined their ear to turn from their wickedness, to burn no incense unto other gods.
    44:6Wherefore my fury and mine anger was poured forth, and was kindled in the cities of Judah and in the streets of Jerusalem; and they are wasted *and* desolate, as at this day.
    44:7Therefore now thus saith the LORD, the God of hosts, the God of Israel; Wherefore commit ye *this* great evil against your souls, to cut off from you man and woman, child and suckling, out of Judah, to leave you none to remain;
    44:8In that ye provoke me unto wrath with the works of your hands, burning incense unto other gods in the land of Egypt, whither ye be gone to dwell, that ye might cut yourselves off, and that ye might be a curse and a reproach among all the nations of the earth?
    44:9Have ye forgotten the wickedness of your fathers, and the wickedness of the kings of Judah, and the wickedness of their wives, and your own wickedness, and the wickedness of your wives, which they have committed in the land of Judah, and in the streets of Jerusalem?
    44:10They are not humbled *even* unto this day, neither have they feared, nor walked in my law, nor in my statutes, that I set before you and before your fathers.
    44:11Therefore thus saith the LORD of hosts, the God of Israel; Behold, I will set my face against you for evil, and to cut off all Judah.
    44:12And I will take the remnant of Judah, that have set their faces to go into the land of Egypt to sojourn there, and they shall all be consumed, *and* fall in the land of Egypt; they shall *even* be consumed by the sword *and* by the famine: they shall die, from the least even unto the greatest, by the sword and by the famine: and they shall be an execration, *and* an astonishment, and a curse, and a reproach.
    44:13For I will punish them that dwell in the land of Egypt, as I have punished Jerusalem, by the sword, by the famine, and by the pestilence:
    44:14So that none of the remnant of Judah, which are gone into the land of Egypt to sojourn there, shall escape or remain, that they should return into the land of Judah, to the which they have a desire to return to dwell there: for none shall return but such as shall escape.
    44:15Then all the men which knew that their wives had burned incense unto other gods, and all the women that stood by, a great multitude, even all the people that dwelt in the land of Egypt, in Pathros, answered Jeremiah, saying,
    44:16*As for* the word that thou hast spoken unto us in the name of the LORD, we will not hearken unto thee.
    44:17But we will certainly do whatsoever thing goeth forth out of our own mouth, to burn incense unto the queen of heaven, and to pour out drink offerings unto her, as we have done, we, and our fathers, our kings, and our princes, in the cities of Judah, and in the streets of Jerusalem: for *then* had we plenty of victuals, and were well, and saw no evil.
    44:18But since we left off to burn incense to the queen of heaven, and to pour out drink offerings unto her, we have wanted all *things*, and have been consumed by the sword and by the famine.
    44:19And when we burned incense to the queen of heaven, and poured out drink offerings unto her, did we make her cakes to worship her, and pour out drink offerings unto her, without our men?
    44:20Then Jeremiah said unto all the people, to the men, and to the women, and to all the people which had given him *that* answer, saying,
    44:21The incense that ye burned in the cities of Judah, and in the streets of Jerusalem, ye, and your fathers, your kings, and your princes, and the people of the land, did not the LORD remember them, and came it *not* into his mind?
    44:22So that the LORD could no longer bear, because of the evil of your doings, *and* because of the abominations which ye have committed; therefore is your land a desolation, and an astonishment, and a curse, without an inhabitant, as at this day.
    44:23Because ye have burned incense, and because ye have sinned against the LORD, and have not obeyed the voice of the LORD, nor walked in his law, nor in his statutes, nor in his testimonies; therefore this evil is happened unto you, as at this day.
    44:24Moreover Jeremiah said unto all the people, and to all the women, Hear the word of the LORD, all Judah that *are* in the land of Egypt:
    44:25Thus saith the LORD of hosts, the God of Israel, saying; Ye and your wives have both spoken with your mouths, and fulfilled with your hand, saying, We will surely perform our vows that we have vowed, to burn incense to the queen of heaven, and to pour out drink offerings unto her: ye will surely accomplish your vows, and surely perform your vows.
    44:26Therefore hear ye the word of the LORD, all Judah that dwell in the land of Egypt; Behold, I have sworn by my great name, saith the LORD, that my name shall no more be named in the mouth of any man of Judah in all the land of Egypt, saying, The Lord GOD liveth.
    44:27Behold, I will watch over them for evil, and not for good: and all the men of Judah that *are* in the land of Egypt shall be consumed by the sword and by the famine, until there be an end of them.
    44:28Yet a small number that escape the sword shall return out of the land of Egypt into the land of Judah, and all the remnant of Judah, that are gone into the land of Egypt to sojourn there, shall know whose words shall stand, mine, or theirs.
    44:29And this *shall be* a sign unto you, saith the LORD, that I will punish you in this place, that ye may know that my words shall surely stand against you for evil:
    44:30Thus saith the LORD; Behold, I will give Pharaohhophra king of Egypt into the hand of his enemies, and into the hand of them that seek his life; as I gave Zedekiah king of Judah into the hand of Nebuchadrezzar king of Babylon, his enemy, and that sought his life.
    King James Bible - Jeremiah Chapter: 44
    King James Bible Jeremiah Chapter: 44

    2:1And when the day of Pentecost was fully come, they were all with one accord in one place.  
    2:2And suddenly there came a sound from heaven as of a rushing mighty wind, and it filled all the house where they were sitting.  
    2:3And there appeared unto them cloven tongues like as of fire, and it sat upon each of them.  
    2:4And they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance.  
    2:5And there were dwelling at Jerusalem Jews, devout men, out of every nation under heaven. 
    2:6Now when this was noised abroad, the multitude came together, and were confounded, because that every man heard them speak in his own language. 
    2:7And they were all amazed and marvelled, saying one to another, Behold, are not all these which speak Galilaeans?  
    2:8And how hear we every man in our own tongue, wherein we were born?  
    2:9Parthians, and Medes, and Elamites, and the dwellers in Mesopotamia, and in Judaea, and Cappadocia, in Pontus, and Asia, 
    2:10Phrygia, and Pamphylia, in Egypt, and in the parts of Libya about Cyrene, and strangers of Rome, Jews and proselytes, 
    2:11Cretes and Arabians, we do hear them speak in our tongues the wonderful works of God.  
    2:12And they were all amazed, and were in doubt, saying one to another, What meaneth this?  
    2:13Others mocking said, These men are full of new wine.  
    2:14But Peter, standing up with the eleven, lifted up his voice, and said unto them, Ye men of Judaea, and all ye that dwell at Jerusalem, be this known unto you, and hearken to my words: 
    2:15For these are not drunken, as ye suppose, seeing it is but the third hour of the day.  
    2:16But this is that which was spoken by the prophet Joel;  
    2:17And it shall come to pass in the last days, saith God, I will pour out of my Spirit upon all flesh: and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, and your young men shall see visions, and your old men shall dream dreams:  
    2:18And on my servants and on my handmaidens I will pour out in those days of my Spirit; and they shall prophesy:  
    2:19And I will shew wonders in heaven above, and signs in the earth beneath; blood, and fire, and vapour of smoke:  
    2:20The sun shall be turned into darkness, and the moon into blood, before that great and notable day of the Lord come:  
    2:21And it shall come to pass, that whosoever shall call on the name of the Lord shall be saved.  
    2:22Ye men of Israel, hear these words; Jesus of Nazareth, a man approved of God among you by miracles and wonders and signs, which God did by him in the midst of you, as ye yourselves also know: 
    2:23Him, being delivered by the determinate counsel and foreknowledge of God, ye have taken, and by wicked hands have crucified and slain:  
    2:24Whom God hath raised up, having loosed the pains of death: because it was not possible that he should be holden of it.  
    2:25For David speaketh concerning him, I foresaw the Lord always before my face, for he is on my right hand, that I should not be moved:  
    2:26Therefore did my heart rejoice, and my tongue was glad; moreover also my flesh shall rest in hope:  
    2:27Because thou wilt not leave my soul in hell, neither wilt thou suffer thine Holy One to see corruption.  
    2:28Thou hast made known to me the ways of life; thou shalt make me full of joy with thy countenance.  
    2:29Men and brethren, let me freely speak unto you of the patriarch David, that he is both dead and buried, and his sepulchre is with us unto this day. 
    2:30Therefore being a prophet, and knowing that God had sworn with an oath to him, that of the fruit of his loins, according to the flesh, he would raise up Christ to sit on his throne;  
    2:31He seeing this before spake of the resurrection of Christ, that his soul was not left in hell, neither his flesh did see corruption.  
    2:32This Jesus hath God raised up, whereof we all are witnesses.  
    2:33Therefore being by the right hand of God exalted, and having received of the Father the promise of the Holy Ghost, he hath shed forth this, which ye now see and hear.  
    2:34For David is not ascended into the heavens: but he saith himself, The Lord said unto my Lord, Sit thou on my right hand,  
    2:35Until I make thy foes thy footstool.  
    2:36Therefore let all the house of Israel know assuredly, that God hath made that same Jesus, whom ye have crucified, both Lord and Christ.  
    2:37Now when they heard this, they were pricked in their heart, and said unto Peter and to the rest of the apostles, Men and brethren, what shall we do?  
    2:38Then Peter said unto them, Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost.  
    2:39For the promise is unto you, and to your children, and to all that are afar off, even as many as the Lord our God shall call.  
    2:40And with many other words did he testify and exhort, saying, Save yourselves from this untoward generation.  
    2:41Then they that gladly received his word were baptized: and the same day there were added unto them about three thousand souls.  
    2:42And they continued stedfastly in the apostles' doctrine and fellowship, and in breaking of bread, and in prayers.  
    2:43And fear came upon every soul: and many wonders and signs were done by the apostles.  
    2:44And all that believed were together, and had all things common;  
    2:45And sold their possessions and goods, and parted them to all men, as every man had need.  
    2:46And they, continuing daily with one accord in the temple, and breaking bread from house to house, did eat their meat with gladness and singleness of heart, 
    2:47Praising God, and having favour with all the people. And the Lord added to the church daily such as should be saved.
    King James Bible - Acts Chapter: 2
    King James Bible Acts Chapter: 2

    43:1And it came to pass, *that* when Jeremiah had made an end of speaking unto all the people all the words of the LORD their God, for which the LORD their God had sent him to them, *even* all these words,
    43:2Then spake Azariah the son of Hoshaiah, and Johanan the son of Kareah, and all the proud men, saying unto Jeremiah, Thou speakest falsely: the LORD our God hath not sent thee to say, Go not into Egypt to sojourn there:
    43:3But Baruch the son of Neriah setteth thee on against us, for to deliver us into the hand of the Chaldeans, that they might put us to death, and carry us away captives into Babylon.
    43:4So Johanan the son of Kareah, and all the captains of the forces, and all the people, obeyed not the voice of the LORD, to dwell in the land of Judah.
    43:5But Johanan the son of Kareah, and all the captains of the forces, took all the remnant of Judah, that were returned from all nations, whither they had been driven, to dwell in the land of Judah;
    43:6*Even* men, and women, and children, and the king's daughters, and every person that Nebuzaradan the captain of the guard had left with Gedaliah the son of Ahikam the son of Shaphan, and Jeremiah the prophet, and Baruch the son of Neriah.
    43:7So they came into the land of Egypt: for they obeyed not the voice of the LORD: thus came they *even* to Tahpanhes.
    43:8Then came the word of the LORD unto Jeremiah in Tahpanhes, saying,
    43:9Take great stones in thine hand, and hide them in the clay in the brickkiln, which *is* at the entry of Pharaoh's house in Tahpanhes, in the sight of the men of Judah;
    43:10And say unto them, Thus saith the LORD of hosts, the God of Israel; Behold, I will send and take Nebuchadrezzar the king of Babylon, my servant, and will set his throne upon these stones that I have hid; and he shall spread his royal pavilion over them.
    43:11And when he cometh, he shall smite the land of Egypt, *and deliver* such *as are* for death to death; and such *as are* for captivity to captivity; and such *as are* for the sword to the sword.
    43:12And I will kindle a fire in the houses of the gods of Egypt; and he shall burn them, and carry them away captives: and he shall array himself with the land of Egypt, as a shepherd putteth on his garment; and he shall go forth from thence in peace.
    43:13He shall break also the images of Bethshemesh, that *is* in the land of Egypt; and the houses of the gods of the Egyptians shall he burn with fire.
    King James Bible - Jeremiah Chapter: 43
    King James Bible Jeremiah Chapter: 43
  • Daily Word of God: Genesis to Revelation
    Gen.2:10a/A River Went Out

    10a. And a river went out of Eden to water the garden;

    *Observe, That which God plants he will take care to keep watered. The trees of righteousness are set by the rivers, (Ps. i. 3).  **In the heavenly paradise there is a river infinitely surpassing these; for it is a river of the water of life, not coming out of Eden, as this, but proceeding out of the throne of God and of the Lamb (Rev. xxii. 1), ***a river that makes glad the city of our God, (Ps. xlvi. 4).

    *Ps.1:3 And he shall be like a tree planted by the rivers of water, that bringeth forth his fruit in his season; his leaf also shall not wither; and whatsoever he doeth shall prosper.

    Goodness and holiness are not only the way to happiness (Rev. xxii. 1) but happiness itself; supposing there were not another life after this, yet that man is a happy man that keeps in the way of his duty. 2. His blessedness is here illustrated by a similitude (v. 3):
    He shall be like a tree, fruitful and flourishing. This is the effect,
    (1.) Of his pious practice; he meditates in the law of God, turns that in succum et sanguinem--into juice and blood, and that makes him like a tree. The more we converse with the word of God the better furnished we are for every good word and work.
    Or, (2.) Of the promised blessing; he is blessed of the Lord, and therefore he shall be like a tree. The divine blessing produces real effects. It is the happiness of a godly man,
    [1.] That he is planted by the grace of God. These trees were by nature wild olives, and will continue so till they are grafted anew, and so planted by a power from above. Never any good tree grew of itself; it is the planting of the Lord, and therefore he must in it be glorified. [Isa. lxi. 3], The trees of the Lord are full of sap.
    [2.] That he is placed by the means of grace, here called the rivers of water, those rivers which make glad the city of our God* (Ps.xlvi. 4)

    **Rev.22:1 And he shewed me a pure river of water of life, clear as crystal, proceeding out of the throne of God and of the Lamb.

    The heavenly state which was before described as a city, and called the new Jerusalem, is here described as a paradise, alluding to the earthly paradise which was lost by the sin of the first Adam; here is another paradise restored by the second Adam. A paradise in a city, or a whole city in a paradise! In the first paradise there were only two persons to behold the beauty and taste the pleasures of it; but in this second paradise whole cities and nations shall find abundant delight and satisfaction. And here observe,

    I. The river of paradise. The earthly paradise was well watered: no place can be pleasant or fruitful that is not so. This river is described,
    1. By its fountain-head--the throne of God and the Lamb. All our springs of grace, comfort, and glory, are in God; and all our streams from him are through the mediation of the Lamb.
    2. By its quality--pure and clear as crystal. All the streams of earthly comfort are muddy; but these are clear, salutary, and refreshing, giving life, and preserving life, to those who drink of them.

    ***Ps.46.4 There is a river, the streams whereof shall make glad the city of God, the holy place of the tabernacles of the most High.

    But this must be understood spiritually; the covenant of grace is the river, the promises of which are the streams; or the Spirit of grace is the river (John vii. 38, 39), the comforts of which are the streams, that make glad the city of our God. God's word and ordinances are rivers and streams with which God makes his saints glad in cloudy and dark days. God himself is to his church a place of broad rivers and streams, Isa. xxxiii. 2
    1. The streams that make glad the city of God are not rapid, but gentle, like those of Siloam.
    Note, The spiritual comforts which are conveyed to the saints by soft and silent whispers, and which come not with observation, are sufficient to counterbalance the most loud and noisy threatenings of an angry and malicious world.

    1:1 The former treatise have I made, O Theophilus, of all that Jesus began both to do and teach,
    1:2 Until the day in which he was taken up, after that he through the Holy Ghost had given commandments unto the apostles whom he had chosen:
    1:3 To whom also he shewed himself alive after his passion by many infallible proofs, being seen of them forty days, and speaking of the things pertaining to the kingdom of God:
    1:4 And, being assembled together with them, commanded them that they should not depart from Jerusalem, but wait for the promise of the Father, which, saith he, ye have heard of me.
    1:5 For John truly baptized with water; but ye shall be baptized with the Holy Ghost not many days hence.
    1:6 When they therefore were come together, they asked of him, saying, Lord, wilt thou at this time restore again the kingdom to Israel?
    1:7 And he said unto them, It is not for you to know the times or the seasons, which the Father hath put in his own power.
    1:8 But ye shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you: and ye shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judaea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth.
    1:9 And when he had spoken these things, while they beheld, he was taken up; and a cloud received him out of their sight.
    1:10 And while they looked stedfastly toward heaven as he went up, behold, two men stood by them in white apparel;
    1:11 Which also said, Ye men of Galilee, why stand ye gazing up into heaven? this same Jesus, which is taken up from you into heaven, shall so come in like manner as ye have seen him go into heaven.
    1:12 Then returned they unto Jerusalem from the mount called Olivet, which is from Jerusalem a sabbath day's journey.
    1:13 And when they were come in, they went up into an upper room, where abode both Peter, and James, and John, and Andrew, Philip, and Thomas, Bartholomew, and Matthew, James the son of Alphaeus, and Simon Zelotes, and Judas the brother of James.
    1:14 These all continued with one accord in prayer and supplication, with the women, and Mary the mother of Jesus, and with his brethren.
    1:15 And in those days Peter stood up in the midst of the disciples, and said, (the number of names together were about an hundred and twenty,)
    1:16 Men and brethren, this scripture must needs have been fulfilled, which the Holy Ghost by the mouth of David spake before concerning Judas, which was guide to them that took Jesus.
    1:17 For he was numbered with us, and had obtained part of this ministry.
    1:18 Now this man purchased a field with the reward of iniquity; and falling headlong, he burst asunder in the midst, and all his bowels gushed out.
    1:19 And it was known unto all the dwellers at Jerusalem; insomuch as that field is called in their proper tongue, Aceldama, that is to say, The field of blood.
    1:20 For it is written in the book of Psalms, Let his habitation be desolate, and let no man dwell therein: and his bishoprick let another take.
    1:21 Wherefore of these men which have companied with us all the time that the Lord Jesus went in and out among us,
    1:22 Beginning from the baptism of John, unto that same day that he was taken up from us, must one be ordained to be a witness with us of his resurrection.
    1:23 And they appointed two, Joseph called Barsabas, who was surnamed Justus, and Matthias.
    1:24 And they prayed, and said, Thou, Lord, which knowest the hearts of all men, shew whether of these two thou hast chosen,
    1:25 That he may take part of this ministry and apostleship, from which Judas by transgression fell, that he might go to his own place.
    1:26 And they gave forth their lots; and the lot fell upon Matthias; and he was numbered with the eleven apostles.
    King James Bible - Acts Chapter: 1
    King James Bible Acts Chapter: 1

    42:1 Then all the captains of the forces, and Johanan the son of Kareah, and Jezaniah the son of Hoshaiah, and all the people from the least even unto the greatest, came near,
    42:2 And said unto Jeremiah the prophet, Let, we beseech thee, our supplication be accepted before thee, and pray for us unto the LORD thy God, even for all this remnant; (for we are left but a few of many, as thine eyes do behold us:)
    42:3 That the LORD thy God may shew us the way wherein we may walk, and the thing that we may do.
    42:4 Then Jeremiah the prophet said unto them, I have heard you; behold, I will pray unto the LORD your God according to your words; and it shall come to pass, that whatsoever thing the LORD shall answer you, I will declare it unto you; I will keep nothing back from you.
    42:5 Then they said to Jeremiah, The LORD be a true and faithful witness between us, if we do not even according to all things for the which the LORD thy God shall send thee to us.
    42:6 Whether it be good, or whether it be evil, we will obey the voice of the LORD our God, to whom we send thee; that it may be well with us, when we obey the voice of the LORD our God.
    42:7 And it came to pass after ten days, that the word of the LORD came unto Jeremiah.
    42:8 Then called he Johanan the son of Kareah, and all the captains of the forces which were with him, and all the people from the least even to the greatest,
    42:9 And said unto them, Thus saith the LORD, the God of Israel, unto whom ye sent me to present your supplication before him;
    42:10 If ye will still abide in this land, then will I build you, and not pull you down, and I will plant you, and not pluck you up: for I repent me of the evil that I have done unto you.
    42:11 Be not afraid of the king of Babylon, of whom ye are afraid; be not afraid of him, saith the LORD: for I am with you to save you, and to deliver you from his hand.
    42:12 And I will shew mercies unto you, that he may have mercy upon you, and cause you to return to your own land.
    42:13 But if ye say, We will not dwell in this land, neither obey the voice of the LORD your God,
    42:14 Saying, No; but we will go into the land of Egypt, where we shall see no war, nor hear the sound of the trumpet, nor have hunger of bread; and there will we dwell:
    42:15 And now therefore hear the word of the LORD, ye remnant of Judah; Thus saith the LORD of hosts, the God of Israel; If ye wholly set your faces to enter into Egypt, and go to sojourn there;
    42:16 Then it shall come to pass, that the sword, which ye feared, shall overtake you there in the land of Egypt, and the famine, whereof ye were afraid, shall follow close after you there in Egypt; and there ye shall die.
    42:17 So shall it be with all the men that set their faces to go into Egypt to sojourn there; they shall die by the sword, by the famine, and by the pestilence: and none of them shall remain or escape from the evil that I will bring upon them.
    42:18 For thus saith the LORD of hosts, the God of Israel; As mine anger and my fury hath been poured forth upon the inhabitants of Jerusalem; so shall my fury be poured forth upon you, when ye shall enter into Egypt: and ye shall be an execration, and an astonishment, and a curse, and a reproach; and ye shall see this place no more.
    42:19 The LORD hath said concerning you, O ye remnant of Judah; Go ye not into Egypt: know certainly that I have admonished you this day.
    42:20 For ye dissembled in your hearts, when ye sent me unto the LORD your God, saying, Pray for us unto the LORD our God; and according unto all that the LORD our God shall say, so declare unto us, and we will do it.
    42:21 And now I have this day declared it to you; but ye have not obeyed the voice of the LORD your God, nor any thing for the which he hath sent me unto you.
    42:22 Now therefore know certainly that ye shall die by the sword, by the famine, and by the pestilence, in the place whither ye desire to go and to sojourn.
    King James Bible - Jeremiah Chapter: 42
    King James Bible Jeremiah Chapter: 42
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