And this continued by the space of two years; so that all they which dwelled in Asia heard the word of the Lord Jesus, both Jews and Greeks.
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)So that all they which dwelt in Asia heard the word of the Lord Jesus, both Jews and Greeks.—Here also there is a gap which can only be partially filled up by inference or conjecture. Ephesus, probably, came to be the centre of St. Paul’s activity, from which journeys were made to neighbouring cities; and hence we may legitimately think of the other six churches of Revelation 2, 3 as owing their origin to him. The growth of the new community among both sections of the population became a conspicuous fact, and began to tell upon the number of pilgrims who brought their offerings to the shrine of Artemis, or carried away memorials from it.
By the space ... - For two whole years.
So that all - That is, the great mass of the people.
Which dwelt in Asia - In that province of Asia Minor of which Ephesus was the principal city. The name Asia was used sometimes to denote that single province. See the notes on Acts 2:9. Ephesus was the capital; and there was, of course, a constant and large influx of people there for the purposes of commerce and worship.
so that all they which dwelt in—the Roman province of
Asia heard the word of the Lord Jesus, both Jews and Greeks—This is the "great door and effectual opened unto him" while resident at Ephesus (1Co 16:9), which induced him to make it his headquarters for so long a period. The unwearied and varied character of his labors here are best seen in his own subsequent address to the elders of Ephesus (Ac 20:17, &c.). And thus Ephesus became the "ecclesiastical center for the entire region, as indeed it remained for a very long period" [Baumgarten]. Churches arose at Colosse, Laodicea, and Hierapolis eastward, either through his own labors or those of his faithful helpers whom he sent out in different directions, Epaphras, Archippus, Philemon (Col 1:7; 4:12-17; Phm 23).All they; many of all sorts.
Asia; Asia the Lesser, or Asia strictly so called, lying about Ephesus: the heathens came thither to worship their Diana; the Jews came thither about their affairs, either in their trades, or law suits.
The word of the Lord Jesus; the gospel, which is the word concerning the Lord Jesus; or, the word which he appointed to be preached and published.
so that all they which dwelt in Asia; in the lesser Asia, called the proconsular Asia, of which Ephesus was the chief city:
heard the word of the Lord Jesus, both Jews and Greeks; these, as they came to Ephesus, whether on account of religion, the Asiatic Jews to their synagogue, and the Greeks or Gentiles to the famous temple of Diana, or on account of trade and business, or for the sake of seeing this place, had the opportunity of hearing the Apostle Paul preach, concerning the person, offices, and grace of Christ; and dispute and reason concerning the more abstruse and difficult points of the Christian religion, in the above school, for two years together; so that the word of the Lord went out from hence, and was spread in all the cities and towns in Asia.And this continued by the space of two years; so that all they which dwelt in Asia heard the word of the Lord Jesus, both Jews and Greeks.
EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)Acts 19:10. ʼΕπὶ ἔτη δύο] for two years (as Acts 19:8; Acts 18:20, and frequently). The three months, Acts 19:8, are to be reckoned in addition to this for the whole residence at Ephesus. This statement of the time is not at variance with Acts 20:31, if only we take the διετία in our passage, and the τριετία in Acts 20:31, not as documentarily strict, but as approximate statements. Comp. Anger, de temp. rat. p. 59. There is not, therefore, sufficient reason to suppose, nor is there any hint in the narrative, that we are to reckon the ἔτη δύο as not extending further than Acts 19:20 (Schrader, Wieseler, and others).
ὥστε πάντας κ.τ.λ.] a hyperbolical expression. In Ephesus, flourishing by commerce and art, with its famous temple of Diana and festivals (ʼΕφεσία, Locella, ad Xen. Eph. p. 132), strangers were continually coming and going from all parts of Asia Minor, Jews and Gentiles, the latter particularly for the sake of worship. The sensation which Paul made excited very many to hear him; a great sphere of labour was opened up to him, 1 Corinthians 16:9.
Ἕλληνας] comprehends here both proselytes of the gate and complete Gentiles. Comp. on Acts 11:20. The private school, which Tyrannus had granted to Paul, was made accessible by the latter also to the Gentiles, which could not have been the case with a public synagogue.Acts 19:10. ἐπὶ ἔτη δύο: exclusive of the quarter of a year in Acts 19:8 and in Acts 20:31 the Apostle speaks of three years’ residence in Ephesus, “in the usual ancient style of reckoning an intermediate period by the superior round number,” Turner, “Chron. of N. T.,” Hastings’ B. D., see also Page and Wendt, in loco.—πάντας: not only the position of Ephesus, but the fact that it was just the place which would be frequented for its famous temple and festivals by crowds of strangers, both Jew and Greek, from all parts of proconsular Asia, “Ephesus,” Hastings’ B. D., i., 720. Nor must we suppose that St. Paul and his fellow-workers confined themselves literally to Ephesus. The seven Churches of Asia may reasonably be referred for their foundation to this period—all of which were centres of trade, and all within reach of Ephesus. Timothy, moreover, may well have been working at Colosse, since in the Epistle to the Colossians he is mentioned with Paul in the inscription of the letter, although the latter had not been personally known to the Churches of Colosse and Laodicea, Ramsay, “Colossæ,” Hastings’ B.D., and St. Paul, p. 274.—Ἕλληνας: comprising no doubt Hellenists and Greeks, cf. Acts 11:20.10. And this continued by the space of two years] The Rev. Ver. changes “by” into “for.” As Englishmen still take a house at so much “by the week, or the year,” the older phrase might well be retained, as the Revisers do in Acts 10:31. Speaking to the Ephesian elders at Miletus the Apostle says he ceased not to admonish the church there for “three years.” The two statements need not be conflicting. To the two years mentioned here when the three months of Acts 19:8 are added, and the time which may have preceded his teaching in the synagogue (see on Acts 19:8), the duration of the Apostle’s stay in Ephesus would be described in Jewish reckoning as “three years,” which in their mode of speech need only consist of one whole year, and parts of that which preceded, and that which followed it. Cp. The reckoning of three days between the crucifixion and the resurrection.
so that all they which dwelt in Asia heard, &c.] The oldest authorities omit “Jesus” from this clause. By Asia is meant “proconsular Asia” (see note on Acts 2:10). The seed of the seven churches of the Apocalypse was sown in these two years. It is evident from the tumult described in this chapter that the Christian teaching was making as much way among the Gentiles as among the Jews. The language of St Luke here implies that the audience of St Paul was made up not of the settled inhabitants of Ephesus only, but of those who visited the city for business or pleasure, and carried news of the preacher and his message to all corners of the district. Philemon from Colossæ may have been one of St Paul’s converts during this time.Verse 10. - For for by, A.V.; Lord for Lord Jesus, A.V. and T.R. Two years (see Acts 20:31, note). Both Jews and Greeks. This mention of Jews is rather in favor of Tyrannus being a Jew; but not decisive.
See on Acts 2:9.
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