|Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary|
15:1-6 Some from Judea taught the Gentile converts at Antioch, that they could not be saved, unless they observed the whole ceremonial law as given by Moses; and thus they sought to destroy Christian liberty. There is a strange proneness in us to think that all do wrong who do not just as we do. Their doctrine was very discouraging. Wise and good men desire to avoid contests and disputes as far as they can; yet when false teachers oppose the main truths of the gospel, or bring in hurtful doctrines, we must not decline to oppose them.
Verse 2. - And when for when therefore, A.V.; questioning for disputation, A.V.; the brethren (in italics) appointed for they determined, A.V. Certain other of them. One of these would be Titus (Galatians 2:1). The circumstance that, on this occasion, St. Paul did go up to those who were apostles before him, to consult with them on a matter of doctrine, shows at once why he refers so pointedly to this visit in Galatians 2:1, etc., and is almost conclusive evidence that this visit is the one there referred to. The companionship of Barnabas; the agreement of the expression, "I went up by revelation," with the fact that he was sent by the Church, doubtless in obedience to some voice of the Spirit, like that mentioned in Acts 13:2; the occasion, a dispute about the circumcision of Gentile converts; the line taken by Paul and Barnabas in declaring the conversion of the Gentiles (Acts 15:4, 12; Galatians 2:27), and the result (Acts 15:19; Galatians 2:5, 7, 9), are all strong, not to say conclusive, marks of the identity of the two visits. The apostles and elders. This phrase marks the constitution of the governing part of the Church of Jerusalem. The addition in vers. 22 and 23 of "the whole Church," and (according to the T.R.) of "the brethren," shows the part the body of the believers had in approving and sanctioning the decisions of the elders. The transaction marks the position of the Church of Jerusalem as the metropolitan Church of Christendom.
Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible
When therefore Paul and Barnabas,.... Who were the ministers of the uncircumcision, and were just returned from preaching the Gospel among the Gentiles, with success, and were advocates for them, being witnesses of the grace that was bestowed on them, and therefore opposed the sentiments of these men:
and had no small dissension and disputation with them; which was attended with much heat and sharpness, and continued some time, and occasioned much disturbance and uneasiness; nor could the affair be decided and issued: wherefore
they determined that Paul and Barnabas, and certain other of them; that is, the members of the church at Antioch, taking this matter into consideration, and finding that the difference could not be composed, for the peace of the church, wisely came to a resolution, and made an order, that Paul and Barnabas, with others, as Titus, who went with Paul at this time, as appears from Galatians 2:1 and some others of the brethren, and it may be also certain, on, the other side of the question; that these
should go up to Jerusalem, unto the apostles and elders, about this question; concerning circumcision, and the necessity of it to salvation, that they might have the sense of James, and Peter, and John, who particularly were at Jerusalem at this time, as appears from Acts 15:7 and other apostles that might be there; and also of other ministers of the word, who are called elders. And the church of Jerusalem being the most ancient church, and several of the apostles residing here, who had seen Christ in the flesh, and had received their mission and commission from him, and had been extraordinarily endowed with the Holy Ghost; and here being many other preachers of the Gospel, and there being in a multitude of counsellors safety, the church at Antioch judged it advisable to send to them for counsel and direction; and it becomes churches to assist each other in this way.
Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary
2. Paul and Barnabas—now the recognized heads of the Church at Antioch.
had no small dissension and disputation with them, they determined—that is, the church did.
that Paul and Barnabas, and certain others of them—Titus was one (Ga 2:1); probably as an uncircumcised Gentile convert endowed with the gifts of the Spirit. He is not mentioned in the Acts, but only in Second Corinthians, Galatians, Second Timothy, and the Epistle addressed to him [Alford].
should go up to Jerusalem … about this question—That such a deputation should be formally despatched by the Church of Antioch was natural, as it might be called the mother church of Gentile Christianity.
Acts 15:2 Parallel Commentaries
Acts 15:2 NIV
Acts 15:2 NLT
Acts 15:2 ESV
Acts 15:2 NASB
Acts 15:2 KJV
Bible Hub: Online Parallel Bible