Acts 26:14
Parallel Verses
New International Version
We all fell to the ground, and I heard a voice saying to me in Aramaic, 'Saul, Saul, why do you persecute me? It is hard for you to kick against the goads.'

New Living Translation
We all fell down, and I heard a voice saying to me in Aramaic, 'Saul, Saul, why are you persecuting me? It is useless for you to fight against my will.'

English Standard Version
And when we had all fallen to the ground, I heard a voice saying to me in the Hebrew language, ‘Saul, Saul, why are you persecuting me? It is hard for you to kick against the goads.’

New American Standard Bible
"And when we had all fallen to the ground, I heard a voice saying to me in the Hebrew dialect, 'Saul, Saul, why are you persecuting Me? It is hard for you to kick against the goads.'

King James Bible
And when we were all fallen to the earth, I heard a voice speaking unto me, and saying in the Hebrew tongue, Saul, Saul, why persecutest thou me? it is hard for thee to kick against the pricks.

Holman Christian Standard Bible
We all fell to the ground, and I heard a voice speaking to me in the Hebrew language, Saul, Saul, why are you persecuting Me? It is hard for you to kick against the goads.'"

International Standard Version
"All of us fell to the ground, and I heard a voice asking me in the Hebrew language, 'Saul! Saul! Why are you persecuting me? It is hurting you to keep on kicking against the cattle prods.'

NET Bible
When we had all fallen to the ground, I heard a voice saying to me in Aramaic, 'Saul, Saul, why are you persecuting me? You are hurting yourself by kicking against the goads.'

Aramaic Bible in Plain English
And we all fell upon the ground, and I heard a voice, which said to me in Judean Aramaic, “Shaul, Shaul, why do you persecute me? It is hard for you to kick the goads.”

GOD'S WORD® Translation
All of us fell to the ground, and I heard a voice asking me in Hebrew, 'Saul, Saul! Why are you persecuting me? It's hard for [a mortal like] you to resist God.'

Jubilee Bible 2000
And when we were all fallen to the earth, I heard a voice speaking unto me and saying in the Hebrew tongue, Saul, Saul, why dost thou persecute me? It is hard for thee to kick against the pricks.

King James 2000 Bible
And when we were all fallen to the earth, I heard a voice speaking unto me, and saying in the Hebrew tongue, Saul, Saul, why do you persecute me? it is hard for you to kick against the goads.

American King James Version
And when we were all fallen to the earth, I heard a voice speaking to me, and saying in the Hebrew tongue, Saul, Saul, why persecute you me? it is hard for you to kick against the pricks.

American Standard Version
And when we were all fallen to the earth, I heard a voice saying unto me in the Hebrew language, Saul, Saul, why persecutest thou me? it is hard for thee to kick against the goad.

Douay-Rheims Bible
And when we were all fallen down on the ground, I heard a voice speaking to me in the Hebrew tongue: Saul, Saul, why persecutest thou me? It is hard for thee to kick against the goad.

Darby Bible Translation
And, when we were all fallen to the ground, I heard a voice saying to me in the Hebrew tongue, Saul, Saul, why persecutest thou me? [it is] hard for thee to kick against goads.

English Revised Version
And when we were all fallen to the earth, I heard a voice saying unto me in the Hebrew language, Saul, Saul, why persecutest thou me? it is hard for thee to kick against the goad.

Webster's Bible Translation
And when we had all fallen to the earth, I heard a voice speaking to me, and saying in the Hebrew language, Saul, Saul, why persecutest thou me? It is hard for thee to kick against the goads.

Weymouth New Testament
We all fell to the ground; and I heard a voice which said to me in Hebrew, "'Saul, Saul, why are you persecuting Me? You are finding it painful to kick against the ox-goad.'

World English Bible
When we had all fallen to the earth, I heard a voice saying to me in the Hebrew language, 'Saul, Saul, why are you persecuting me? It is hard for you to kick against the goads.'

Young's Literal Translation
and we all having fallen to the earth, I heard a voice speaking unto me, and saying in the Hebrew dialect, Saul, Saul, why me dost thou persecute? hard for thee against pricks to kick!
Parallel Commentaries
Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary

26:12-23 Paul was made a Christian by Divine power; by a revelation of Christ both to him and in him; when in the full career of his sin. He was made a minister by Divine authority: the same Jesus who appeared to him in that glorious light, ordered him to preach the gospel to the Gentiles. A world that sits in darkness must be enlightened; those must be brought to know the things that belong to their everlasting peace, who are yet ignorant of them. A world that lies in wickedness must be sanctified and reformed; it is not enough for them to have their eyes opened, they must have their hearts renewed; not enough to be turned from darkness to light, but they must be turned from the power of Satan unto God. All who are turned from sin to God, are not only pardoned, but have a grant of a rich inheritance. The forgiveness of sins makes way for this. None can be happy who are not holy; and to be saints in heaven we must be first saints on earth. We are made holy, and saved by faith in Christ; by which we rely upon Christ as the Lord our Righteousness, and give up ourselves to him as the Lord our Ruler; by this we receive the remission of sins, the gift of the Holy Ghost, and eternal life. The cross of Christ was a stumbling-block to the Jews, and they were in a rage at Paul's preaching the fulfilling of the Old Testament predictions. Christ should be the first that should rise from the dead; the Head or principal One. Also, it was foretold by the prophets, that the Gentiles should be brought to the knowledge of God by the Messiah; and what in this could the Jews justly be displeased at? Thus the true convert can give a reason of his hope, and a good account of the change manifest in him. Yet for going about and calling on men thus to repent and to be converted, vast numbers have been blamed and persecuted.

Pulpit Commentary

Verse 14. - Saying unto me in the Hebrew language for speaking unto me, and saying in the Hebrew tongue, A.V. and T.R.; goad for pricks, A.V. I heard a voice saying, etc. (see Acts 9:7, note). In the Hebrew language. This is an additional detail not mentioned in Acts 9:4 or Acts 22:8; but recalled here, as tending to confirm St. Paul's claim to be a thorough Jew, a Hebrew of the Hebrews, and, moreover, to represent Christianity as a thing not alien from, but rather in thorough harmony with, the true national life and spirit of Israel. It is hard for thee to kick, etc. This, also, according to the best manuscripts, is an additional detail not mentioned before. The proverb Πρὸς κέντρα λακτίζειν, to kick against the ox-goads, as the unbroken bullock does to his own hurt, instead of quietly submitting, as he must do at last, to go the way and the pace his master chooses he should go, is found in Pindar, AEschylus, Euripides, Plautus, Terence, etc. The passages are given in Bochart, 'Hierozoicon.,' part 1. lib. it. Acts 39; in Kninoel, and in Bishop Wordsworth. The passage in Eurip., 'Baach,' 1. 793, 794 (750, 751), brings out the force of the proverb, viz. fruitless resistance to a superior power, most distinctly: "Better to sacrifice to him, than, being mortal, by vainly raging against God, to kick against the goads." Saul had better yield at once to the constraining grace of God, and no longer do despite to the Spirit of grace. It does not appear clearly that the proverb was used by the Hebrews. Dr. Donaldson ('Christian Orthodoxy,' p. 293) affirms that" there is no Jewish use of this proverbial expression." And this is borne out by Lightfoot, who adduces the two passages, Deuteronomy 32:15 and 1 Samuel 2:9, as the only evidences of the existence of such a proverb, together with a rabbinical saying, "R. Bibai sat and taught, and R. Isaac Ben Cahna kicked against him" ('Exereit. on Acts,' 9:5). It is, therefore, a curious question how this classical phrase came to be used here. Bishop Wordsworth says, "Even in heaven our Lord did not disdain to use a proverb familiar to the heathen world." But, perhaps, we may assume that such a proverb was substantially in use among the Jews, though no distinct evidence of it has been preserved; and that St. Paul, in rendering the Hebrew words of Jesus into Greek, made use of the language of Euripides, with which he was familiar, in a case bearing a strong analogy to his own, viz. the resistance of Pentheus to the claims of Bacchus. This is to a certain extent borne out by the use of the words θεομάχος and θεομαχεῖν (Acts 5:39; Acts 23:9); the latter of which is twice used in the 'Bacchae' of Euripides, though not common elsewhere. It is, however, found in 2 Macc. 7:19.

Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible

And when we were all fallen to the earth,.... Saul, and the men that were with him, for fear of the divine Majesty, who by this extraordinary light was thought to be present: the other narratives only relate Saul's falling to the earth; how this is to be reconciled to their standing speechless, in Acts 9:7; see Gill on Acts 9:7.

I heard a voice speaking unto me, &c. See Gill on Acts 10:4. See Gill on Acts 10:5.



Acts 26:14 Additional Commentaries
Context
Paul's Testimony to Agrippa
13at midday, O King, I saw on the way a light from heaven, brighter than the sun, shining all around me and those who were journeying with me. 14"And when we had all fallen to the ground, I heard a voice saying to me in the Hebrew dialect, 'Saul, Saul, why are you persecuting Me? It is hard for you to kick against the goads.' 15"And I said, 'Who are You, Lord?' And the Lord said, 'I am Jesus whom you are persecuting.…
Cross References
Acts 9:4
He fell to the ground and heard a voice say to him, "Saul, Saul, why do you persecute me?"

Acts 9:7
The men traveling with Saul stood there speechless; they heard the sound but did not see anyone.

Acts 21:40
After receiving the commander's permission, Paul stood on the steps and motioned to the crowd. When they were all silent, he said to them in Aramaic:

Acts 26:13
About noon, King Agrippa, as I was on the road, I saw a light from heaven, brighter than the sun, blazing around me and my companions.

Acts 26:15
"Then I asked, 'Who are you, Lord?' " 'I am Jesus, whom you are persecuting,' the Lord replied.
Treasury of Scripture

And when we were all fallen to the earth, I heard a voice speaking to me, and saying in the Hebrew tongue, Saul, Saul, why persecute you me? it is hard for you to kick against the pricks.

in.

Acts 21:40 And when he had given him license, Paul stood on the stairs, and …

Acts 22:2 (And when they heard that he spoke in the Hebrew tongue to them, …

Saul.

Acts 9:4,5 And he fell to the earth, and heard a voice saying to him, Saul, …

Acts 22:7-9 And I fell to the ground, and heard a voice saying to me, Saul, Saul, …

hard.

Proverbs 13:15 Good understanding gives favor: but the way of transgressors is hard.

Zechariah 2:8 For thus said the LORD of hosts; After the glory has he sent me to …

Zechariah 12:2 Behold, I will make Jerusalem a cup of trembling to all the people …

1 Corinthians 10:22 Do we provoke the Lord to jealousy? are we stronger than he?

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