Acts 14:9
The same heard Paul speak: who steadfastly beholding him, and perceiving that he had faith to be healed,
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(9) Who stedfastly beholding him.—We note once more the recurrence of the characteristic word and look. (See Note on Acts 13:9.)

Perceiving that he had faith to be healed.—Here, as so often, as if it were the general, though not the universal, law of miraculous working (see Notes on Mark 10:23), faith is pre-supposed as the condition. It follows from this, no less than from the tense of the verb, “used to listen to Paul as he spoke,” that he had for some days been among St. Paul’s hearers, had heard the gospel of the death and resurrection of Jesus, and had found that such a Saviour met his every need. All this the Apostle read, with that earnest gaze of his, in the man’s upward look.

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.Who stedfastly beholding him - Fixing his eyes intently on him. See the notes on Acts 1:10.

And perceiving - How he perceived this is not said. Perhaps it was indicated by the ardor, humility, and strong desire depicted in his countenance. He had heard Paul, and perhaps the apostle had dwelt particularly on the miracles with which the gospel had been attested. The miracles performed also in Icontium had doubtless also been heard of in Lystra.

Had faith to be healed - Compare Matthew 9:21-22, Matthew 9:28-29; Luke 7:50; Luke 17:19; Luke 18:42.

9. who steadfastly beholding him—as he did Elymas the sorcerer when about to work a miracle on him.

and perceiving that he had faith to be healed—Paul may have been led by the sight of this cripple to dwell on the Saviour's miracles of healing, and His present power; and perceiving from the eagerness with which the patient drank in his words, that he was prepared to put his own case into the Redeemer's hands, the Spirit of the glorified Physician came all upon Paul, and "with a loud voice" he bade him "stand upright upon his feet." The effect was instantaneous—he sprang to his feet "and walked."

This Paul might know by a prophetical Spirit; and that extraordinary gift of discerning of spirits might be in this case bestowed upon him. But withal, it is not unlikely but this lame man’s attention to the word, eyes, gesture, and countenance, might speak as much. The same heard Paul speak,.... That is, preach the Gospel; he was one of his hearers, and faith came to hint by hearing; the Arabic version adds, "he cried unto him"; that is, to Paul, whom he heard:

who steadfastly beholding him; not the lame man beholding Paul, but Paul beholding the lame man, as the Syriac and Ethiopic versions both express it, as also Beza's ancient copy and others; so Peter looked on the man he cured, Acts 3:4.

And perceiving that he had faith to be healed; as he might by his looks, his gestures, his attention in hearing, and it may be by somewhat that he said, as well as by revelation, or a spirit of discerning, which he had.

The same heard Paul speak: who stedfastly beholding him, and perceiving that he had faith to be healed,
Acts 14:9. οὗτος; a genuine Lucan mark of connection, Friedrich, p. 10.—ἤκουε; “used to hear,” or “was listening to,” i.e., was an habitual hearer of Paul’s preaching, see critical notes on D. Ramsay, St, Paul, pp. 114, 116, regards the man as a proselyte, cf. additions in Bezan text, but for another view of the additions here and in Acts 14:10, Page, Classical Review, July, 1899.—ἀτεν., see above, Acts 1:10.—τοῦ σ., Burton, Moods and Tenses, p. 158.9. the same heard Paul speak] The verb in the Text. recept. is here the imperfect, but some MSS. have the aorist The former seems to be the more suitable. What happened was that the Apostles preached on several occasions, and that the lame man was at his station and heard repeatedly the teaching of the Gospel, and by his earnest attention and manner indicated that what was spoken had been accepted by him with faith. This attracted the attention of St Paul.

who stedfastly beholding him (fastening his eyes upon him)] The verb is common with St Luke, and is used several times of St Paul, as in Acts 13:9, where he fixes his gaze on Elymas, and Acts 23:1, where he attentively beholds the council. From the context of the latter passage, in which we learn that the Apostle did not recognize the high-priest, some have thought that this straining earnest gaze, so frequently ascribed to St Paul, was due to some weakness of sight remaining ever since his blindness at the time of his conversion.

and perceiving (seeing) that he had faith to be healed] The man’s heart shone out in his face, and the Spirit within the Apostle recognized that here was a fit object to be made, by his cure, a sign unto the men of Lystra.Acts 14:9. Ἀτενίσας, having stedfastly looked upon) It is the part of spiritual prudence, to observe the motions of the hearers, especially such as are afflicted.—πίστιν, faith) passive faith with regard to the miracle. Whilst the cripple hears the word, he feels its power in his soul: whence he is moved inwardly, so as to draw the conclusion with respect to his body (being cured).Verse 9. - Speaking for speak, A.V.; fastening his eyes upon for stedfastly beholding, A.V. (see above, Acts 1:10; Acts 3:4, etc.); seeing for perceiving, A.V.; made whole for healed, A.V. Heard. The force of the imperfect ἤκουε would, perhaps, be better given by "listened" to Paul speaking. There is great resemblance between this miracle of healing, and that of the lame man laid at the gate of the temple, who was healed by Peter (Acts 3:2-10), and, not unnaturally, considerable identity of expression in the narratives. Both men were lame from their birth; the apostles fastened their eyes upon both; both, when healed, leaped and walked; and in both cases the miracle 'had a great effect upon the multitudes who beheld it. Zeller (vol. it. p. 6), with characteristic recklessness, infers that "this narrative was, merely in imitation of the early miraculous story of Peter;" and so relegates both it and the subsequent narrative to the regions of fable. Heard (ἤκουε)

The force of the imperfect should be given here. He was hearing while Paul preached.

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