Acts 20:36
And when he had thus spoken, he kneeled down, and prayed with them all.
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(36) He kneeled down, and prayed with them all.—The historian who has recorded what we may call the “charge” of St. Paul, shrinks, with a natural reverence, from reporting his prayer. Ephesians 3:14-21 will enable the thoughtful reader to represent to himself its substance, perhaps even its very thoughts and words.

Acts 20:36-38. When he had thus spoken, he kneeled down — The posture generally used by the apostles and first Christians in prayer, as it had been also by our Lord himself, and by holy men of old; see the margin. And it is a posture peculiarly proper, as being expressive of humility before God, of reverence for him, and submission to him. And prayed with them all — Doubtless in the most fervent and affectionate manner. And they all wept sore — The old as well as the young, the men as well as the women. Anciently men, yea, the best and bravest of men, were easily melted into tears; a thousand instances of which might be produced, from profane as well as sacred writers. But now, notwithstanding the effeminacy which almost universally prevails, we leave those tears to women and children. Sorrowing most of all for the words which he spake, that they should see his face no more — In those parts where they had so long enjoyed the benefits of his ministry, inspection, and converse. Think, reader, what sorrow will be in the great day when God shall say to all who are found on the left hand, that they shall see his face no more! And they accompanied him unto the ship — Commending his person to the protection, and his labours to the blessing, of his great Master. 20:28-38 If the Holy Ghost has made ministers overseers of the flock, that is, shepherds, they must be true to their trust. Let them consider their Master's concern for the flock committed to their charge. It is the church He has purchased with his own blood. The blood was his as Man; yet so close is the union between the Divine and human nature, that it is there called the blood of God, for it was the blood of Him who is God. This put such dignity and worth into it, as to ransom believers from all evil, and purchase all good. Paul spake about their souls with affection and concern. They were full of care what would become of them. Paul directs them to look up to God with faith, and commends them to the word of God's grace, not only as the foundation of their hope and the fountain of their joy, but as the rule of their walking. The most advanced Christians are capable of growing, and will find the word of grace help their growth. As those cannot be welcome guests to the holy God who are unsanctified; so heaven would be no heaven to them; but to all who are born again, and on whom the image of God is renewed, it is sure, as almighty power and eternal truth make it so. He recommends himself to them as an example of not caring as to things of the present world; this they would find help forward their comfortable passage through it. It might seem a hard saying, therefore Paul adds to it a saying of their Master's, which he would have them always remember; It is more blessed to give than to receive: it seems they were words often used to his disciples. The opinion of the children of this world, is contrary to this; they are afraid of giving, unless in hope of getting. Clear gain, is with them the most blessed thing that can be; but Christ tell us what is more blessed, more excellent. It makes us more like to God, who gives to all, and receives from none; and to the Lord Jesus, who went about doing good. This mind was in Christ Jesus, may it be in us also. It is good for friends, when they part, to part with prayer. Those who exhort and pray for one another, may have many weeping seasons and painful separations, but they will meet before the throne of God, to part no more. It was a comfort to all, that the presence of Christ both went with him and stayed with them.He kneeled down - The usual attitude of prayer. It is the proper posture of a suppliant. It indicates reverence and humility; and is represented in the Scriptures as the usual attitude of devotion, 2 Chronicles 6:13; Daniel 6:10; Luke 22:41; Acts 7:60; Acts 9:40; Acts 21:5; Romans 11:4; Philippians 2:10; Ephesians 3:14; Mark 1:40. 36-38. he kneeled down and prayed with them all, &c.—Nothing can be more touching than these three concluding verses, leaving an indelible impression of rare ministerial fidelity and affection on the apostle's part, and of warm admiration and attachment on the part of these Ephesian presbyters. Would to God that such scenes were more frequent in the Church! He kneeled down; a posture of great humility, becoming prayer, and frequently used on such occasions, especially in a time of great trouble and distress. Although bodily exercise alone do not profit, 1 Timothy 4:8, yet we may, and must on occasion, in prayer bow the knee, lift up the hand and eye;

1. Because it is a reasonable thing to give our bodies in his service to God that made them.

2. By this we may show that we are not ashamed to serve and own God before men. And:

3. These outward signs do sometimes stir up our own and others’ devotion. And when he had thus spoken,.... And finished his speech to the elders: he kneeled down: upon the floor, which was a prayer gesture, used by Christ, and others; for, it seems, the disuse of kneeling in prayer, between the passover and pentecost, which Tertullian (k), and other writers, speak of, had not yet obtained, which was in memory of Christ's resurrection from the dead, for this was now the time: see Acts 20:6 and

prayed with them all: and no doubt for them all; the Syriac version renders it, "and he prayed, and all the men with him"; the apostle, and the elders, joined together in prayer.

(k) De Corona Militis, c. 3.

And when he had thus spoken, he kneeled down, and prayed with them all.
Acts 20:36-38. What a simple, true,[116] tender, and affecting description!

κατεφίλουν] denotes frequent and fervent kissing. Comp. on Matthew 26:49; Luke 15:20.

ΘΕΩΡΕῖΝ] to behold, is chosen from the standpoint of the ὀδυνώμενοι. On the other hand, in Acts 20:25, ὌΨΕΣΘΕ.

] of giving a convoy, as in Acts 15:3, Acts 21:5.

[116] It borders on wantonness to affirm that this impression of the speech is not so much that which the presbyters received from it, as that which “the reader of the Book of Acts is meant to receive from the previous narrative,” Zeller, p. 274.Acts 20:36. θεὶς τὰ γόν., see above on p. 203.36. The kneeling posture marks the special character and solemnity of the prayer. We find the Apostle doing the same in his parting from the brethren at Tyre (Acts 21:5). On the usual custom of standing in prayer, cp. Mark 11:25 and the account of the Pharisee and publican (Luke 18:11-13). It has often been noticed that the historian, who gives the speech with unusual fulness, does not venture to record the prayer.Acts 20:36. Θεὶς γόνατα, having knelt down) His spirit kindling into a glow, in public, ch. Acts 21:5.
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