and ye took up the tabernacle of Moloch, and the star of your god Remphan -- the figures that ye made to bow before them, and I will remove your dwelling beyond Babylon.
Acts 7:43 Additional TranslationsClarke's Commentary on the Bible
Ye took up the tabernacle of Moloch, and the star of your god Remphan, figures which ye made to worship them - This is a literal translation of the place, as it stands in the Septuagint; but in the Hebrew text it stands thus: But ye have borne the tabernacle of your Molech, and Chiun, your images, the star of your god which ye made to yourselves. This is the simple version of the place, unless we should translate ונסאתם את סכות מלככם venasatem eth Siccuth malkekem, ye took Sikuth your king, (instead of ye took up the tabernacle of your Molek), as some have done. The place is indeed very obscure, and the two texts do not tend to cast light on each other. The rabbins say siccuth, which we translate tabernacle, is the name of an idol. Molech is generally understood to mean the sun; and several persons of good judgment think that by Remphan or Raiphan is meant the planet Saturn, which the Copts call Ῥηφαν, Rephan. It will be seen above that instead of Remphan, or, as some of the best MSS. have it, Rephan, the Hebrew text has כיון Chiun, which might possibly be a corruption of ריפן Reiphan, as it would be very easy to mistake the כ caph for ר resh, and the vau shurek ו for פ pe. This emendation would bring the Hebrew, Septuagint, and the text of Luke, nearer together; but there is no authority either from MSS. or versions for this correction: however, as Chiun is mentioned in no other place, though Molech often occurs, it is the more likely that there might have been some very early mistake in the text, and that the Septuagint has preserved the true reading.
It was customary for the idolaters of all nations to carry images of their gods about them in their journeys, military expeditions, etc.; and these, being very small, were enclosed in little boxes, perhaps some of them in the shape of temples, called tabernacles; or, as we have it, Acts 19:24, shrines. These little gods were the penates and lares among the Romans, and the tselems or talismans among the ancient eastern idolaters. The Hebrew text seems to refer to these when it says, the tabernacle of your Molech, and Chiun, your images, צלמיכם tsalmeycem, your tselems, τους τυπους, the types or simulachres of your gods. See the note on Genesis 31:19. Many of those small portable images are now in my own collection, all of copper or brass; some of them the identical penates of the ancient Romans, and others the offspring of the Hindoo idolatry; they are from an ounce weight to half a pound. Such images as these I suppose the idolatrous Israelites, in imitation of their neighbors, the Moabites, Ammonites, etc., to have carried about with them; and to such the prophet appears to me unquestionably to allude.
I will carry you away beyond Babylon - You have carried your idolatrous images about; and I will carry you into captivity, and see if the gods in whom ye have trusted can deliver you from my hands. Instead of beyond Babylon, Amos, from whom the quotation is made, says, I will carry you beyond Damascus. Where they were carried was into Assyria and Media, see 2 Kings 17:6 : now, this was not only beyond Damascus, but beyond Babylon itself; and, as Stephen knew this to be the fact, he states it here, and thus more precisely fixes the place of their captivity. The Holy Spirit, in his farther revelations, has undoubted right to extend or illustrate those which he had given before. This case frequently occurs when a former prophecy is quoted in later times.
Treasury of Scripture Knowledge
Leviticus 18:21 And you shall not let any of your seed pass through the fire to Molech, neither shall you profane the name of your God: I am the LORD.
Leviticus 20:2-5 Again, you shall say to the children of Israel, Whoever he be of the children of Israel, or of the strangers that sojourn in Israel...
2 Kings 17:16-18 And they left all the commandments of the LORD their God, and made them molten images, even two calves, and made a grove...
2 Kings 21:6 And he made his son pass through the fire, and observed times, and used enchantments, and dealt with familiar spirits and wizards...
Exodus 20:4,5 You shall not make to you any graven image, or any likeness of any thing that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath...
Deuteronomy 4:16-18 Lest you corrupt yourselves, and make you a graven image, the similitude of any figure, the likeness of male or female...
Deuteronomy 5:8,9 You shall not make you any graven image, or any likeness of any thing that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath...
2 Kings 17:6 In the ninth year of Hoshea the king of Assyria took Samaria, and carried Israel away into Assyria...
2 Kings 18:11 And the king of Assyria did carry away Israel to Assyria, and put them in Halah and in Habor by the river of Gozan...
Amos 5:27 Therefore will I cause you to go into captivity beyond Damascus, said the LORD, whose name is The God of hosts.
Babylon. In the passage of Amos, to which Stephen refers, it is beyond Damascus; but as Assyria and Media, to which they were carried, were not only beyond Damascus, but beyond Babylon itself, he states that fact, and thus fixes more precisely the place of their captivity.
Acts 7:43 Parallel CommentariesBabylon Carry Exile Farther Figures Idols Images Lifted Molech Moloch Order Remove Shrine Star Tabernacle Tent WorshipBabylon Carry Exile Farther Figures Idols Images Lifted Molech Moloch Order Remove Shrine Star Tabernacle Tent WorshipTHE HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION®, NIV® Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica®.
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