Acts 14:18
And with these sayings scarce restrained they the people, that they had not done sacrifice unto them.
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)
(18) with these sayings scarce restrained they the people.—On some of those who were thus restrained the effect may well have been that they were roused to a higher life and did turn from “vanities” to the living God. We must, at any rate, think of St. Paul’s work at Lystra as lasting long enough to allow time for the foundation of a church there. Among the more conspicuous converts were the devout Jewesses, Lois and her daughter Eunice (more accurately, Eunike), and the young Timotheus (2Timothy 1:5). No mention is made of his father, and Eunice may have been a widow; but the fact that the boy had grown up uncircumcised rather suggests the influence of a living father. (See Note on Acts 16:3.)

14:8-18 All things are possible to those that believe. When we have faith, that most precious gift of God, we shall be delivered from the spiritual helplessness in which we were born, and from the dominion of sinful habits since formed; we shall be made able to stand upright and walk cheerfully in the ways of the Lord. When Christ, the Son of God, appeared in the likeness of men, and did many miracles, men were so far from doing sacrifice to him, that they made him a sacrifice to their pride and malice; but Paul and Barnabas, upon their working one miracle, were treated as gods. The same power of the god of this world, which closes the carnal mind against truth, makes errors and mistakes find easy admission. We do not learn that they rent their clothes when the people spake of stoning them; but when they spake of worshipping them; they could not bear it, being more concerned for God's honour than their own. God's truth needs not the services of man's falsehood. The servants of God might easily obtain undue honours if they would wink at men's errors and vices; but they must dread and detest such respect more than any reproach. When the apostles preached to the Jews, who hated idolatry, they had only to preach the grace of God in Christ; but when they had to do with the Gentiles, they must set right their mistakes in natural religion. Compare their conduct and declaration with the false opinions of those who think the worship of a God, under any name, or in any manner, is equally acceptable to the Lord Almighty. The most powerful arguments, the most earnest and affectionate addresses, even with miracles, are scarcely enough to keep men from absurdities and abominations; much less can they, without special grace, turn the hearts of sinners to God and to holiness.And with these sayings - With these arguments.

Scarce restrained they the people - They were so fully satisfied that the gods had appeared, and were so full of zeal to do them honor.

18. with these sayings scarce restrained they the people that they had not done sacrifice to them—In spite of this,and Peter's repudiation of all such honor (Ac 10:26), how soon idolatrous tendencies began to show themselves in the Christian Church, at length to be systematized and enjoined in the Church of Rome! So hard a matter it is to persuade any to leave off these sins they are accustomed unto, or to rectify such errors in religion which men are brought up in.

And with these sayings,.... Concerning themselves, and concerning the living God, his creation of all things, and his providential goodness:

scarce restrained they the people, that they had not done sacrifice unto them; so resolute were they upon it, that it was with great difficulty that they persuaded them from it: in four of Beza's manuscripts, and in some other copies, it is added, "but everyone went to his own house", &c.

And with these sayings scarce restrained they the people, that they had not done sacrifice unto them.
EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)
Acts 14:18. μόλις: used only by Luke and Paul (with one exception of a quotation, 1 Peter 4:18), Luke 9:39, W.H[270]; four times in Acts, and Romans 5:7.—κατέπαυσαν τοῦ μὴ, Acts 10:47, Burton, N. T. Moods and Tenses, pp. 159, 184.

[270] Westcott and Hort’s The New Testament in Greek: Critical Text and Notes.

18. that they had not done sacrifice unto them] i.e. “from doing sacrifice,” &c.

Acts 14:18-19. Τοὺς ὄχλους, the multitudes) These were driven by impulse from one extreme to the opposite. [There are persons who cannot conceive such a sudden leap (transition) in the state of the feelings. But it was not on that very day that the Jews are said to have interfered against the apostles (Acts 14:19): nor indeed is so sudden a change among the Gentiles to be deemed as impossible; comp. ch. Acts 28:4; Acts 28:6.—V. g.]

Verse 18. - The multitudes for the people, A.V.; from doing for that they had not done, A.V. Acts 14:18
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