|Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary|
3:12-18 Observe the difference in the manner of working the miracles. Our Lord always spoke as having Almighty power, never hesitated to receive the greatest honour that was given to him on account of his Divine miracles. But the apostles referred all to their Lord, and refused to receive any honour, except as his undeserving instruments. This shows that Jesus was one with the Father, and co-equal with Him; while the apostles knew that they were weak, sinful men, and dependent for every thing on Jesus, whose power effected the cure. Useful men must be very humble. Not unto us, O Lord, not unto us, but to thy name, give glory. Every crown must be cast at the feet of Christ. The apostle showed the Jews the greatness of their crime, but would not anger or drive them to despair. Assuredly, those who reject, refuse, or deny Christ, do it through ignorance; but this can in no case be an excuse.
Verse 15. - Raised for bath raised, A.V. The Prince of life; a remarkable title here given to our Lord, to bring out the contrast between him whom they preferred and him whom they rejected. Barabbas was a murderer, one who took away human life for his own base ends; the other was the Prince and Author of life, who was come into the world, not to destroy men's lives, but to save them. This title, taken in connection with the preceding declaration, "God hath glorified his Servant Jesus," seems almost to be a reminiscence of our Savior's prayer," Father,... glorify thy Son, that thy Son also may glorify thee: as thou hast given him power over all flesh, that he should give eternal life to as many as thou hast given him" (John 17:1, 2). Jesus himself in very many places dwells upon his own great prerogative of giving life: "I am come that they might have life, and.., have it more abundantly" (John 10:10); "I am that Bread of life;" "I am the living Bread ... if any man cat of this bread, he shall live for ever;" "I give... my flesh for the life of the world;" "Ye will not come unto me that ye might have life;" "They that hear shall live;" "As the Father hath life in himself, so hath he given to the Son to have life in himself;" "The Son of man be lifted up: that whosoever believeth in him should... have eternal life;" "The water that I shall give him shall be in him a well of water springing up into everlasting life." The word ἀρχηγός applied to Christ is found also in Acts 5:31, and in Hebrews 2:10; Hebrews 12:2, rendered the "Author or Captain of their salvation," "of our faith." Whereof we are witnesses (see Acts 2:22, note). The marginal rendering of whom is equally literal, and may be defended by reference to Acts 1:8; Acts 13:31; but the rendering whereof is in accordance with the more frequent phrases (Acts 5:32; Acts 10:39, etc.). The meaning is practically the same.
Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible
And killed the Prince of life,.... Or author of life, natural, spiritual, and eternal; who not only is the living God, and has life in himself; and as man, had such a power over his own life, as no man ever had; but he is the author of a spiritual resurrection from the death of sin, to a life of grace, and has procured eternal life for his people, and gives it to them. Now this Lord of life and glory they crucified. His death is laid to them because it was at their request, and through their instigation, and at their earnest solicitations, that Pilate condemned him, and delivered, him to his soldiers to crucify him.
Whom God hath raised from the dead; notwithstanding all their spite and malice; so that they had not their whole will, and all their end, not being able to retain him under the power of death, and under the shame and reproach of the cross; and this the apostle the rather mentions, as being the reason why such gifts, and such power were bestowed on them to do the miracles they did.
Whereof we are witnesses; either of Christ, for it may be rendered, "whose witnesses we are"; they testifying of his person, office, grace, and righteousness; or of the resurrection of Christ, of which they were eyewitnesses; and of which they had the fullest proof, and were capable of bearing a sufficient testimony, and for which they were chosen and appointed.
Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary
15. killed the Prince of life—Glorious paradox, but how piercing to the conscience of the auditors.
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