Acts 21:20
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New International Version
When they heard this, they praised God. Then they said to Paul: "You see, brother, how many thousands of Jews have believed, and all of them are zealous for the law.

New Living Translation
After hearing this, they praised God. And then they said, "You know, dear brother, how many thousands of Jews have also believed, and they all follow the law of Moses very seriously.

English Standard Version
And when they heard it, they glorified God. And they said to him, “You see, brother, how many thousands there are among the Jews of those who have believed. They are all zealous for the law,

Berean Study Bible
When they heard this, they glorified God. Then they said to Paul, "You see, brother, how many thousands of Jews have believed, and all of them are zealous for the Law.

Berean Literal Bible
And those having heard began glorifying God, and they said to him, "You see, brother, how many myriads there are among the Jews having believed, and are all zealous ones for the Law.

New American Standard Bible
And when they heard it they began glorifying God; and they said to him, "You see, brother, how many thousands there are among the Jews of those who have believed, and they are all zealous for the Law;

King James Bible
And when they heard it, they glorified the Lord, and said unto him, Thou seest, brother, how many thousands of Jews there are which believe; and they are all zealous of the law:

Holman Christian Standard Bible
When they heard it, they glorified God and said, "You see, brother, how many thousands of Jews there are who have believed, and they are all zealous for the law.

International Standard Version
When they heard about it, they praised God and told him, "You see, brother, how many tens of thousands of believers there are among the Jews, and all of them are zealous for the Law.

NET Bible
When they heard this, they praised God. Then they said to him, "You see, brother, how many thousands of Jews there are who have believed, and they are all ardent observers of the law.

New Heart English Bible
They, when they heard it, glorified God. They said to him, "You see, brother, how many thousands there are among the Jews of those who have believed, and they are all zealous for the Law.

Aramaic Bible in Plain English
And when they had heard, they praised God and said to him: “You see our brother, how many tens of thousands are in Judea who have believed, and they are all zealous of The Law.”

GOD'S WORD® Translation
When the spiritual leaders heard about everything, they praised God. They said to Paul, "You see, brother, how many thousands of Jews are now believers, and all of them are deeply committed to Moses' Teachings.

New American Standard 1977
And when they heard it they began glorifying God; and they said to him, “You see, brother, how many thousands there are among the Jews of those who have believed, and they are all zealous for the Law;

Jubilee Bible 2000
And when they heard it, they glorified the Lord and said unto him, Thou seest, brother, how many thousands of Jews there are who have believed, and they are all zealous of the law;

King James 2000 Bible
And when they heard it, they glorified the Lord, and said unto him, You see, brother, how many thousands of Jews there are who believe; and they are all zealous of the law:

American King James Version
And when they heard it, they glorified the Lord, and said to him, You see, brother, how many thousands of Jews there are which believe; and they are all zealous of the law:

American Standard Version
And they, when they heard it, glorified God; and they said unto him, Thou seest, brother, how many thousands there are among the Jews of them that have believed; and they are all zealous for the law:

Douay-Rheims Bible
But they hearing it, glorified God, and said to him: Thou seest, brother, how many thousands there are among the Jews that have believed: and they are all zealous for the law.

Darby Bible Translation
And they having heard [it] glorified God, and said to him, Thou seest, brother, how many myriads there are of the Jews who have believed, and all are zealous of the law.

English Revised Version
And they, when they heard it, glorified God; and they said unto him, Thou seest, brother, how many thousands there are among the Jews of them which have believed; and they are all zealous for the law:

Webster's Bible Translation
And when they heard it, they glorified the Lord, and said to him, Thou seest, brother, how many thousands of Jews there are who believe; and they are all zealous of the law:

Weymouth New Testament
And they, when they had heard his statement, gave the glory to God. Then they said, "You see, brother, how many tens of thousands of Jews there are among those who have accepted the faith, and they are all zealous upholders of the Law.

World English Bible
They, when they heard it, glorified God. They said to him, "You see, brother, how many thousands there are among the Jews of those who have believed, and they are all zealous for the law.

Young's Literal Translation
and they having heard, were glorifying the Lord. They said also to him, 'Thou seest, brother, how many myriads there are of Jews who have believed, and all are zealous of the law,
Study Bible
Paul's Arrival at Jerusalem
19Paul greeted them and recounted one by one the things God had done among the Gentiles through his ministry. 20When they heard this, they glorified God. Then they said to Paul, “You see, brother, how many thousands of Jews have believed, and all of them are zealous for the Law. 21But they are under the impression that you teach all the Jews who live among the Gentiles to forsake Moses, telling them not to circumcise their children or observe our customs.…
Cross References
Matthew 9:8
When the crowds saw this, they were filled with awe and glorified God, who had given such authority to men.

Acts 15:1
Then some men came down from Judea and were teaching the brothers, "Unless you are circumcised according to the custom of Moses, you cannot be saved."

Acts 22:3
"I am a Jew, born in Tarsus of Cilicia, but raised in this city. I was educated at the feet of Gamaliel in strict conformity to the Law of our Fathers. I am just as zealous for God as any of you here today.

Romans 10:2
For I testify about them that they are zealous for God, but not on the basis of knowledge.

Galatians 1:14
I was advancing in Judaism beyond many of my contemporaries and was extremely zealous for the traditions of my fathers.
Treasury of Scripture

And when they heard it, they glorified the Lord, and said to him, You see, brother, how many thousands of Jews there are which believe; and they are all zealous of the law:

they glorified.

Acts 4:21 So when they had further threatened them, they let them go, finding …

Acts 11:18 When they heard these things, they held their peace, and glorified …

Psalm 22:23,27 You that fear the LORD, praise him; all you the seed of Jacob, glorify …

Psalm 72:17-19 His name shall endure for ever: his name shall be continued as long …

Psalm 98:1-3 O sing to the LORD a new song; for he has done marvelous things: …

Isaiah 55:10-13 For as the rain comes down, and the snow from heaven, and returns …

Isaiah 66:9-14 Shall I bring to the birth, and not cause to bring forth? said the …

Luke 15:3-10,32 And he spoke this parable to them, saying…

Romans 15:6,7,9-13 That you may with one mind and one mouth glorify God, even the Father …

Galatians 1:24 And they glorified God in me.

2 Thessalonians 1:10 When he shall come to be glorified in his saints…

Revelation 19:6,7 And I heard as it were the voice of a great multitude, and as the …

how.

Acts 2:41 Then they that gladly received his word were baptized: and the same …

Acts 4:4 However, many of them which heard the word believed; and the number …

Acts 6:7 And the word of God increased; and the number of the disciples multiplied …

Matthew 13:31-33 Another parable put he forth to them, saying, The kingdom of heaven …

John 12:24 Truly, truly, I say to you, Except a corn of wheat fall into the …

thousands.

Luke 12:1 In the mean time, when there were gathered together an innumerable …

and they.

Acts 15:1,5,24 And certain men which came down from Judaea taught the brothers, …

Acts 22:3 I am truly a man which am a Jew, born in Tarsus, a city in Cilicia, …

Romans 10:2 For I bear them record that they have a zeal of God, but not according …

Galatians 1:14 And profited in the Jews' religion above many my equals in my own …

(20) They glorified the Lord.--The better MSS. give, "they glorified God." The tense implies continued action, and although its meaning would be satisfied by assuming mere ejaculations of wonder and praise, it is, at least, not improbable that there was a more formal thanksgiving.

How many thousands of Jews there are which believe.--Literally, how many myriads--i.e., tens of thousands. The numbers seem large if we think of the population of Jerusalem only, but the crowds that came from all quarters to the Feast of Pentecost (see Note on Acts 2:1) would fully justify the statement. The speaker here is obviously St. James, as the president of the assembly. There is no trace of the presence of any of the Apostles.

They are all zealous of the law.--Better, the word being a substantive and not an adjective, zealots for the law. The term was an almost technical one for the most rigid class of Pharisees. (See Note on Simon the Canaanite, Matthew 10:4.) So St. Paul describes himself as in this sense a "zealot" (Acts 22:3; Galatians 1:14).

Verse 20. - They, when they heard it for when they heard it, they, A.V.; God for the Lord, A.V. and T.R.; they said for said, A.V.; there are among the Jews of them which have believed for of Jews there are which believe, A.V. and T.R.; for the Law for of the Law, A.V. They... glorified God. There is not the slightest symptom on the part of James and the elders of unfriendliness towards St. Paul, or jealousy or opposition to his work among the Gentiles (comp. Galatians 2:7-9). The appellation brother is another indication of friendly feeling. Thousands (Greek μυριάδες, tens of thousands). These need not be deemed to be all Jerusalem Jews; if applied to the Church at Jerusalem only, such a word would be probably a gross exaggeration; but there were great numbers of Jews of the dispersion assembled at Jerusalem for Pentecost - probably all the Christian Jews of Judaea, and many from Syria, Galatia, Pontus, and the various countries enumerated in Acts 2:9-11. So that there might be several myriads of converted Jews altogether. All zealous for the Law. This is a remarkable testimony to the unanimity of the Christian Jews in their attachment to the Law of Moses, and throws light upon the Epistle to the Galatians and many other passages in St. Paul's Epistles. It explains the great difficulty experienced in the early Church in dealing with converts from Judaism. Zealous (ζηλωταὶ). So the fierce sect of Zealots were called at the time of the Jewish wars (see Josephus, ' Bell. Jud.,' 4. 6:1, and elsewhere). And when they heard it,.... The narrative of the wonderful spread of the Gospel among the Gentiles, and the numerous conversions of them:

they glorified the Lord; or "God", as the Alexandrian copy, the Vulgate Latin, and Ethiopic versions read; as Paul ascribed all to God, so they give the glory of it to him, and in this they were both agreed:

and said unto him; perhaps James in the name of them all, and as their mouth:

thou seest, brother; for so he was to James, both as a believer, and a minister of the word, and as an apostle:

how many thousands of Jews there are which believe; there were many thousands converted at Jerusalem upon the first preaching of the Gospel, after Christ's ascension; see Acts 2:41 and the number might be much increased since; though it may be, that reference is had not only to the number of the members of the church at Jerusalem, but to all the believing Jews in Judea, who were now come up to Jerusalem, to keep the feast of Pentecost; since it is in the Greek, "how many myriads there are", and one myriad contains ten thousand:

and they are all zealous of the law; of the law of Moses, of the ceremonial law, as Paul might see by their being at Jerusalem, to keep this feast; for though they believed in Jesus of Nazareth as the true Messiah, yet they had not light enough to see, that he was the sum and substance of all the ceremonies of the law, and that they all ended in him; and therefore were zealous in the observance of them, and could not bear to hear of their abrogation. 20-25. they glorified the Lord, etc.—constrained to justify his course, notwithstanding the Jewish complexion of the Christianity of Jerusalem.21:19-26 Paul ascribed all his success to God, and to God they gave the praise. God had honoured him more than any of the apostles, yet they did not envy him; but on the contrary, glorified the Lord. They could not do more to encourage Paul to go on cheerfully in his work. James and the elders of the church at Jerusalem, asked Paul to gratify the believing Jews, by some compliance with the ceremonial law. They thought it was prudent in him to conform thus far. It was great weakness to be so fond of the shadows, when the substance was come. The religion Paul preached, tended not to destroy the law, but to fulfil it. He preached Christ, the end of the law for righteousness, and repentance and faith, in which we are to make great use of the law. The weakness and evil of the human heart strongly appear, when we consider how many, even of the disciples of Christ, had not due regard to the most eminent minister that even lived. Not the excellence of his character, nor the success with which God blessed his labours, could gain their esteem and affection, seeing that he did not render the same respect as themselves to mere ceremonial observances. How watchful should we be against prejudices! The apostles were not free from blame in all they did; and it would be hard to defend Paul from the charge of giving way too much in this matter. It is vain to attempt to court the favour of zealots, or bigots to a party. This compliance of Paul did not answer, for the very thing by which he hoped to pacify the Jews, provoked them, and brought him into trouble. But the all-wise God overruled both their advice and Paul's compliance with it, to serve a better purpose than was intended. It was in vain to think of pleasing men who would be pleased with nothing but the rooting out of Christianity. Integrity and uprightness will be more likely to preserve us than insincere compliances. And it should warn us not to press men to doing what is contrary to their own judgment to oblige us.
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