|Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary|
25:13-27 Agrippa had the government of Galilee. How many unjust and hasty judgments the Roman maxim, ver. 16, condemn! This heathen, guided only by the light of nature, followed law and custom exactly, yet how many Christians will not follow the rules of truth, justice, and charity, in judging their brethren! The questions about God's worship, the way of salvation, and the truths of the gospel, may appear doubtful and without interest, to worldly men and mere politicians. See how slightly this Roman speaks of Christ, and of the great controversy between the Jews and the Christians. But the day is at hand when Festus and the whole world will see, that all the concerns of the Roman empire were but trifles and of no consequence, compared with this question of Christ's resurrection. Those who have had means of instruction, and have despised them, will be awfully convinced of their sin and folly. Here was a noble assembly brought together to hear the truths of the gospel, though they only meant to gratify their curiosity by attending to the defence of a prisoner. Many, even now, attend at the places of hearing the word of God with great pomp, and too often with no better motive than curiosity. And though ministers do not now stand as prisoners to make a defence for their lives, yet numbers affect to sit in judgment upon them, desirous to make them offenders for a word, rather than to learn from them the truth and will of God, for the salvation of their souls But the pomp of this appearance was outshone by the real glory of the poor prisoner at the bar. What was the honour of their fine appearance, compared with that of Paul's wisdom, and grace, and holiness; his courage and constancy in suffering for Christ! It is no small mercy to have God clear up our righteousness as the light, and our just dealing as the noon-day; to have nothing certain laid to our charge. And God makes even the enemies of his people to do them right.
Verse 19. - Religion for superstition, A.V.; who for which, A.V. Certain questions ζήτηματα); Acts 15:2; Acts 18:15; Acts 23:29, etc. Religion (δεισιδαιμονία); see Acts 17:22, δεισιδαιμονεστέρους, where there is the same doubt as here whether to take it in a good sense or a bad one. Here, as Festus, a man of the world, was speaking to a king who was a Jew, he is not likely to have intended to use an offensive phrase. So it is best to render it "religion," as the R.V. does. But Bishop Wordsworth renders τῆς ἰδίας δεισιδαιμονίας his own superstition, Paul's, which agrees with the context. These details must have been among those "complaints" spoken of in ver. 7. Whom Paul affirmed to be alive. Notice the stress constantly laid by the apostle upon the resurrection of the Lord Jesus. If his own superstition is the right rendering, we have here the nature of it, in Festus's view, belief in the resurrection of Jesus.
Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible
But had certain questions against him of their own superstition,.... Or religion; as about their law, which they said Paul had spoke against; and about their temple, which they pretended he had polluted; and about the resurrection of the dead, which he asserted, and some denied:
and of one Jesus which was dead, whom Paul affirmed to be alive; for it seems more was said on each side, than is recorded by Luke: the Jews objected to him among other things, his belief in Jesus of Nazareth, whom they traduced as an impostor and deceiver; Paul on the other hand argued, that he was the true Messiah; and in proof of it, affirmed that though they had put him to death, he was risen from the dead, and so was declared to be the Son of God with power: Festus, it is very likely, had never heard of Jesus before, and therefore speaks of him in this manner; or if he had, he had entertained a contemptible opinion of him, as well as of the Jewish religion; and which he expresses, even in the presence of the king, who had outwardly at least embraced it.
Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary
19. questions … of their own superstition—rather, "religion" (see on Ac 17:22). It cannot be supposed that Festus would use the word in any discourteous sense in addressing his Jewish guest.
one Jesus—"Thus speaks this miserable Festus of Him to whom every knee shall bow" [Bengel].
whom Paul affirmed—"kept affirming."
to be alive—showing that the resurrection of the Crucified One had been the burden, as usual, of Paul's pleading. The insignificance of the whole affair in the eyes of Festus is manifest.
Acts 25:19 Parallel Commentaries
Acts 25:19 NIV
Acts 25:19 NLT
Acts 25:19 ESV
Acts 25:19 NASB
Acts 25:19 KJV
Bible Hub: Online Parallel Bible