Acts 10:39
And we are witnesses of all things which he did both in the land of the Jews, and in Jerusalem; whom they slew and hanged on a tree:
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)
(39) And we are witnesses of all things.—The Apostle still keeps before him the main idea of his mission as laid down in the command given by his Lord (Acts 1:8).

Both in the land of the Jews.—Speaking as St. Peter did at Cæsarea, and as a Galilean, we must probably take the word in its narrower sense as meaning the inhabitants of Judæa. So taken, the words have the interest of implying the ministry in Judæa, of which the first three Gospels record so little, but which comes out into full prominence in the fourth. (See Introduction to St. John’s Gospel.)

Whom they slew and hanged on a tree.—As in Acts 2:23, Peter represents the Crucifixion as virtually the act of the rulers and people of Jerusalem and not of the Roman governor. The mode of death is described as in the Greek of Deuteronomy 28:26 and in Galatians 3:10, rather than in the more technical language of the Gospels.

Acts 10:39-42. And we — His apostles, of whom I have the honour and happiness to be one; are witnesses of all things which he did — Having been present when he did them; both in the land of the Jews — In all parts of Judea; and particularly in Jerusalem — Their capital city; for we attended him in all the progress which he made, beholding with astonishment his miracles, and hearing with delight his discourses; whom — Nevertheless, this unbelieving and ungrateful people were so far from receiving with a becoming regard, that, in a most infamous manner, they slew and hanged him on a tree — Crucifying him, as if he had been the vilest of malefactors and slaves. Their crucifying Christ is here spoken of, the rather, to show how justly the Jews were now to be abandoned of God, and that they had no cause to complain of their rejection and the calling of the Gentiles, seeing that they had in such a manner rejected Christ. Him — This very same person, though so injuriously treated by men; God raised up the third day — According to the repeated predictions of the prophets. Peter thus preaches unto them the resurrection which immediately followed his crucifixion, lest the Gentiles should be deterred from believing in him, and should take offence at the scandal of the cross. And showed him openly — Greek, εδωκεν αυτον εμφανη γενεσθαι, gave him to become manifest, namely, after his resurrection; and evidently to appear. As if he had said, That he rose is unquestionable, it having been evidenced in all the ways by which any thing can be proved. For Christ was seen, and heard, and felt by many after his resurrection; he appeared not now indeed to all the people — As before his death; but unto witnesses — Persons appointed to be witnesses of this fact; chosen before of God — For this purpose; even to us, who did eat and drink — And converse frequently and familiarly with him, after he arose from the dead — As we had done during the time of his ministry; so that we can, and do, with the greatest certainty, bear witness to the truth of these important matters. And he commanded us — Gave it us in charge in a most solemn manner; to preach unto the people — The glad tidings of salvation, present and eternal; and to testify — Wherever we come; that it is he — This very Jesus of Nazareth; who is ordained of God to be the judge of quick and dead — That is, of all mankind, whether they be alive at his coming, or had died before it. This was declaring to them, in the strongest terms, how entirely their happiness depended on a timely and humble subjection to him, who was to be their final Judge.10:34-43 Acceptance cannot be obtained on any other ground than that of the covenant of mercy, through the atonement of Christ; but wherever true religion is found, God will accept it without regarding names or sects. The fear of God and works of righteousness are the substance of true religion, the effects of special grace. Though these are not the cause of a man's acceptance, yet they show it; and whatever may be wanting in knowledge or faith, will in due time be given by Him who has begun it. They knew in general the word, that is, the gospel, which God sent to the children of Israel. The purport of this word was, that God by it published the good tidings of peace by Jesus Christ. They knew the several matters of fact relating to the gospel. They knew the baptism of repentance which John preached. Let them know that this Jesus Christ, by whom peace is made between God and man, is Lord of all; not only as over all, God blessed for evermore, but as Mediator. All power, both in heaven and in earth, is put into his hand, and all judgment committed to him. God will go with those whom he anoints; he will be with those to whom he has given his Spirit. Peter then declares Christ's resurrection from the dead, and the proofs of it. Faith has reference to a testimony, and the Christian faith is built upon the foundation of the apostles and prophets, on the testimony given by them. See what must be believed concerning him. That we are all accountable to Christ as our Judge; so every one must seek his favour, and to have him as our Friend. And if we believe in him, we shall all be justified by him as our Righteousness. The remission of sins lays a foundation for all other favours and blessings, by taking that out of the way which hinders the bestowing of them. If sin be pardoned, all is well, and shall end well for ever.And we are witnesses - We who are apostles. See the notes on Luke 24:48.

In the land of the Jews - In the country of Judea.

Whom they slew ... - Our translation would seem to imply that there were two separate acts - first executing him, and then suspending him. But this is neither according to truth nor to the Greek text. The original is simply, "whom they put to death, suspending him on a tree."

On a tree - On a cross. See the notes on Acts 5:30.

39-43. we are witnesses of all … he did—not objects of superstitious reverence, but simply witnesses to the great historical facts on which the Gospel is founded.

slew and hanged—that is, slew by hanging.

on a tree—So Ac 5:30 (and see on [1989]Ga 3:13).

We are witnesses; the apostles, whom Christ had chosen to go in and out with him, and to be eye and ear witnesses of all that was done by him, or against him.

Whom they slew: their killing of our Saviour is the rather here spoken of, to show how rightfully the Jews were now to be forsaken, and that they had no cause to complain of the calling in of the Gentiles, being themselves had in such a manner rejected Christ; but especially, that they who were here met, and we, all might consider, how much it cost our blessed Saviour to deliver us from sin and hell. He was made a curse for us, Galatians 3:13, as Deu 21:23 that the blessing of Abraham might come upon us, Galatians 3:14. And we are witnesses of all things,.... That is, Peter, and the rest of the apostles, were witnesses, even eyewitnesses, of Christ's going about from place to place, and of the good he did every where, and of the miracles which he wrought; and even of every thing

which he did both in the land of the Jews; which takes in not only Judea, but Galilee, and beyond Jordan;

and in Jerusalem; the metropolis of Judea:

whom they slew and hanged on a tree; whom the Jews put to death; for since it was by their instigation, and at their request, it is ascribed to them; and who not content with any death, desired he might be crucified, or hanged on a tree; partly because of the pain and torture of it, and partly because of the shame and ignominy that attended it; as well as to throw off the scandal of his death from themselves to the Romans, crucifixion being a Roman punishment.

And we are witnesses of all things which he did both in the land of the Jews, and in Jerusalem; whom they slew and hanged on a tree:
EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)
Acts 10:39-41. Ὃν καὶ ἀνεῖλον] namely, οἱ Ἰουδαῖοι. Ὃν refers to the subject of ἐποίησεν. There lies at the bottom of the καί, also, the conception of the other persecutions, etc., to which even the ἀνεῖλον was added. See on the climactic idea indicated by καί after relatives, Hartung, Partikell. I. p. 136.

ἀνεῖλ. κρεμάσ.] as in Acts 2:23.

ἐπὶ ξύλου] as in Acts 5:30.

καὶ ἔδωκεν κ.τ.λ.] and granted (comp. Acts 2:27) that He should become manifest (by visible appearances, Acts 1:3; John 21:1), not to all the people, but to witnesses who (quippe qui) are chosen before of God, (namely) to us, who, etc.

τοῖς προκεχειρ. ὑπὸ τοῦ Θεοῦ] Peter with correct view regards the previous election of the apostles to be witnesses of the resurrection of Jesus (Acts 1:3, Acts 2:22, Acts 3:22, al.) as done by God (John 17:6; John 17:9; John 17:11; John 6:37); they are apostles διὰ θελήματος Θεοῦ (1 Corinthians 1:1; Galatians 1:1, al.), ἀφωρισμένοι εἰς εὐαγγ. Θεοῦ (Romans 1:1; Galatians 1:15). And with the προ in προκεχειρ. he points back to the time of the previous choice as disciples, by which their election to be the future witnesses of the resurrection in reality took place. On προχειροτονεῖν (only here in the N. T.), comp. Plat. Legg. vi. p. 765 B.

μετὰ τὸ ἀναστ. αὐτὸν ἐκ νεκρῶν] is not, with Cameron and Bengel, to be connected with ἐμφανῆ γενέσθαι, Acts 10:40,[260] so that Οὐ ΠΑΝΤῚΑὐΤῷ would have to be arbitrarily and violently converted into a parenthesis; but with ΟἽΤΙΝΕς ΣΥΝΕΦ. Κ. ΣΥΝΕΠ. ΑὐΤῷ, which even without the passages, Acts 1:4, Luke 24:41; Luke 24:43, John 21:12, would have nothing against it, as the body of the Risen One was not yet a glorified body. See on Luke 24:51, note; Ignat. ad Smyrn. 5; Constitt. Ap. vi. 30. 5. The words clearly exhibit the certainty of the attested bodily resurrection, but annexed to Acts 10:40 they would contain an unimportant self-evident remark. The apparent inconsistency of the passage with Luke 22:18 is removed by the more exact statement to Matthew 26:29; see on that passage.

[260] So also Baur, I. p. 101, ed. 2, who, at the same time, simply passes over, with quite an arbitrary evasion, the difficulty that the criterion of apostleship in this passage is as little suitable for the alleged object of vindicating Paul as it is in Acts 1:21-22.Acts 10:39. ἀνεῖλον, see above, p. 155.—κρεμάσαντες, p. 154.39. And we are witnesses of all things] Because they had been with Jesus from the beginning of His ministerial life (Luke 24:48).

whom they slew and hanged on a tree] Rather (with the oldest MSS.) “whom also they slew, hanging him on a tree.” For the latter part of the expression cp. Acts 10:30 note.Acts 10:39. Καὶ ἡμεῖς, and we) This has the force of Epitasis (emphatic addition). It answers to the ye in Acts 10:37.Verse 39. - Country for land, A.V.; whom also for whom, A.V. and T.R.; hanging him for and hanged, A.V. They slew

The best texts insert καὶ, also: "whom also they slew;" also having an incressive force. They added this crowning atrocity to other persecutions.

Tree

See on Luke 23:31.

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