Acts 24:2
And when he was called forth, Tertullus began to accuse him, saying, Seeing that by thee we enjoy great quietness, and that very worthy deeds are done unto this nation by thy providence,
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(2) Seeing that by thee we enjoy great quietness.—The orator had, it would seem, learnt the trick of his class, and begins with propitiating the judge by flattery. The administration of Felix did not present much opening for panegyric, but he had at least taken strong measures to put down the gangs of sicarii and brigands by whom Palestine was infested (Jos. Ant. xx. 8, § 5; Wars, ii. 13, § 2), and Tertullus shows his skill in the emphasis which he lays on “quietness.” By a somewhat interesting coincidence, Tacitus (Ann. xii. 54), after narrating the disturbances caused by a quarrel between Felix, backed by the Samaritans, and Ventidius Cumanus, who had been appointed as governor of Galilee, ends his statement by relating that Felix was supported by Quadratus, the president of Syria, “et quies provinciæ reddita.”

That very worthy deeds . . .—Better, reforms, or improvements; the better MSS. giving a word which expresses this meaning, and the others one which implies it. This, as before, represents one aspect of the procurator’s administration. On the other hand, within two years of this time, he was recalled from his province, accused by the Jews at Rome, and only escaped punishment by the intervention of his brother Pallas, then as high in favour with Nero as he had been with Claudius (Jos. Ant. xx. 8, § 10).

By thy providence . . .—The Greek word had at this time, like the English, a somewhat higher sense than “prudence” or “forethought.” Men spoke then, as now, of the “providence” of God, and the tendency to clothe the emperors with quasi-divine attributes led to the appearance of this word—“the providence of Cæsar”—on their coins and on medals struck in their honour. Tertullus, after his manner, goes one step further, and extends the term to the procurator of Judæa.



Acts 24:2 - Acts 24:3

These words were addressed by a professional flatterer to one of the worst of the many bad Roman governors of Syria. The speaker knew that he was lying, the listeners knew that the eulogium was undeserved; and among all the crowd of bystanders there was perhaps not a man who did not hate the governor, and would not have been glad to see him lying dead with a dagger in his breast.

But both the fawning Tertullus and the oppressor Felix knew in their heart of hearts that the words described what a governor ought to be. And though they are touched with the servility which is not loyalty, and embrace a conception of the royal function attributing far more to the personal influence of a monarch than our State permits, still we may venture to take them as the starting-point for two or three considerations suggested to us, by the celebrations of the past week.

I almost feel that I owe an apology for turning to that subject, for everything that can be said about it has been said far better than I can say it. But still, partly because my silence might be misunderstood, and partly because an opportunity is thereby afforded for looking from a Christian point of view at one or two subjects that do not ordinarily come within the scope of one’s ministry, I venture to choose such a text now.

I. The first thing that I would take it as suggesting is the grateful acknowledgment of personal worth.

I suppose the world never saw a national rejoicing like that through which we have passed. For the reigns that have been long enough to admit of it have been few, and those in which intelligently and sincerely a whole nation of freemen could participate have been fewer still. But now all England has been one; whatever our divisions of opinion, there have been no divisions here. Not only have the bonfires flared from hill to hill in this little island of ours, but all over the world, into every out of the way corner where our widely-spread race has penetrated, the same sentiment has extended. All have yielded to the common impulse, the rejoicing of a free people in a good Queen.

That common sentiment has embraced two things, the office and the person. There was a pathetic contrast between these two when that sad-hearted widow walked alone up the nave of Westminster Abbey, and took her seat on the stone of destiny on which for a millennium kings have been crowned. The contrast heightened both the reverence due to the office and the sympathy due to the woman. The Sovereign is the visible expression of national power, the incarnation of England, living history, the outcome of all the past, the representative of harmonised and blended freedom and law, a powerful social influence from which much good might flow, a moderating and uniting power amidst fierce partisan bitterness and hate, a check against rash change. There is no nobler office upon earth.

And when, as is the case in this long reign, that office has been filled with some consciousness of its responsibilities, the recognition of the fact is no flattery but simple duty. We cannot attribute to the personal initiative of the Queen the great and beneficent changes which have coincided with her reign. Thank God, no monarch can make or mar England now. But this we can say,

‘Her court was pure, her life serene.’

A life touched with many gracious womanly charities, delighting in simple country pleasures, not strange to the homes of the poor, quick to sympathise with sorrow, especially the humblest, as many a weeping widow at a pit mouth has thankfully felt; sternly repressive of some forms of vice in high places, and, as we may believe, not ignorant of the great Comforter nor disobedient to the King of kings,-for such a royal life a nation may well be thankful. We outsiders do not know how far personal influence from the throne has in any case restrained or furthered national action, but if it be true, as is alleged, that twice in her reign the Queen has kept England from the sin and folly of war, once from a fratricidal conflict with the great new England across the Atlantic, then we owe her much. If in later years that life has somewhat shrunk into itself and sat silent, with Grief for a companion, those who know a like desolation will understand, and even the happy may honour an undying love and respect the seclusion of an undying sorrow. So I say: ‘Forasmuch as under thee we enjoy great quietness, we accept it with all thankfulness.’

II. My text may suggest for us a wider view of progress which, although not initiated by the Queen, has coincided with her fifty years’ reign.

In the Revised Version, instead of ‘worthy deeds are done,’ we read ‘evils are corrected’; and that is the true rendering. The double function which is here attributed falsely to an oppressive tyrant is the ancient ideal of monarchy-first, that it shall repress disorders and secure tranquillity within the borders and across the frontiers; and second, that abuses and evils shall be corrected by the foresight of the monarch.

Now, in regard to both these functions we have learned that a nation can do them a great deal better than a sovereign. And so when we speak of progress during this fifty years’ reign, we largely mean the progress which England in its toiling millions and in its thinking few has won for itself. Let me in very brief words try to touch upon the salient points of that progress for which as members of the nation it becomes us as Christian people to be thankful. Enough hosannas have been sung already, and I need not add my poor voice to them, about material progress and commercial prosperity and the growth of manufacturing industry and inventions and all the rest of it. I do not for a moment mean to depreciate these, but it is of more importance that a telegraph should have something to say than that it should be able to speak across the waters, and ‘man doth not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God.’ We who live in a great commercial community and know how solid comfort and hope and gladness are all contingent, in millions of humble homes, upon the manufacturing industry of these districts, shall never be likely to underrate the enormous expansion in national industry, and the consequent enormous increase in national wealth, which belongs to this last half century. I need say nothing about these.

Let me remind you, and I can only do it in a sentence or two, of more important changes in these fifty years. English manners and morals have been bettered, much of savagery and coarseness has been got rid of; low, cruel amusements have been abandoned. Thanks to the great Total Abstinence movement very largely, the national conscience has been stirred in regard to the great national sin of intoxication. A national system of education has come into operation and is working wonders in this land. Newspapers and books are cheapened; political freedom has been extended and ‘broadened slowly down,’ as is safe, ‘from precedent to precedent,’ so that no party thinks now of reversing any of the changes, howsoever fiercely they were contested ere they were won. Religious thought has widened, the sects have come nearer each other, men have passed from out of a hard doctrinal Christianity, in which the person of Christ was buried beneath the cobwebs of theology, into a far freer and a far more Christ-regarding and Christ-centred faith. And if we are to adopt such a point of view as the brave Apostle Paul took, the antagonism against religion, which is a marked feature of our generation, and contrasts singularly with the sleepy acquiescence of fifty years ago, is to be put down to the credit side of the account. ‘For,’ he said, like a bold man believing that he had an irrefragable truth in his hands, ‘I will tarry here, for a great door and an effectual is opened, and there are many adversaries.’ Wherever a whole nation is interested and stirred about religious subjects, even though it may be in contradiction and antagonism, God’s truth can fight opposition far better than it can contend with indifference. Then if we look upon our churches, whilst there is amongst them all abounding worldliness much to be deplored, there is also, thank God, springing up amongst us a new consciousness of responsibility, which is not confined to Christian people, for the condition of the poor and the degraded around us; and everywhere we see good men and women trying to stretch their hands across these awful gulfs in our social system which make such a danger in our modern life, and to reclaim the outcasts of our cities, the most hopeless of all the heathen on the face of the earth. These things, on which I have touched with the lightest hand, all taken together do make a picture for which we may be heartily thankful.

Only, brethren, let us remember that that sort of talk about England’s progress may very speedily become offensive self-conceit, and a measuring of ourselves with ludicrous self-satisfaction against all other nations. There is a bastard patriotism which has been very loud-mouthed in these last days, of which wise men should beware.

Further, such a contemplation of the elements of national progress, which we owe to no monarch and to no legislature, but largely to the indomitable pluck and energy of our people, to Anglo-Saxon persistence not knowing when it is beaten, and to the patient meditation of thoughtful minds and the self-denying efforts of good philanthropical and religious people-such a contemplation, I say, may come between us and the recognition of the highest source from which it flows, and be corrupted into forgetfulness of God. ‘Beware lest when thou hast eaten and art full, and thy silver and thy gold is multiplied, and all that thou hast is multiplied, then thine heart be lifted up, and thou forget the Lord thy God. . . and thou say in thine heart, My power, and the might of mine hand, hath gotten me this wealth. But thou shalt remember the Lord thy God, for it is He that giveth thee power to get wealth.’

And the last caution that I would put in here is, let us beware lest the hosannas over national progress shall be turned into ‘Rest and be thankful,’ or shall ever come in the way of the strenuous and persistent reaching forth to the fair ideal that lies so far before us.

III. That leads me to the last point on which I would say a word, viz., that my text with its reference to the correction of evils, as one of the twin functions of the monarch, naturally suggests to us the thought which should follow all recognition of progress in the past-the consideration of what yet remains to be done.

A great controversy has been going on, or at least a remarkable difference of opinion has been expressed in recent months by two of the greatest minds and clearest heads in England; one of our greatest poets and one of our greatest statesmen. The one looking back over sixty years sees but foiled aspirations and present devildom and misery. The other looking back over the same period sees accomplished dreams and the prophecy of further progress. It is not for me to enter upon the strife between such authorities. Both are right. Much has been achieved. ‘There remaineth yet very much land to be possessed.’ Whatever have been the victories and the blessings of the past, there are rotten places in our social state which, if not cauterised and healed, will break out into widespread and virulent sores. There are dangers in the near future which may well task the skill of the bravest and the faith of the most trustful. There are clouds on the horizon which may speedily turn jubilations into lamentations, and the best security against these is that each of us in his place, as a unit however insignificant in the great body politic, should use our little influence on the side that makes for righteousness, and see to it that we leave some small corner of this England, which God has given us in charge, sweeter and holier because of our lives. The ideal for you Christian men and women is the organisation of society on Christian principles. Have we got to that yet, or within sight of it, do you suppose? Look round you. Does anybody believe that the present arrangements in connection with unrestricted competition and the distribution of wealth coincide accurately with the principles of the New Testament? Will anybody tell me that the state of a hundred streets within a mile of this spot is what it would be if the Christian men of this nation lived the lives that they ought to live? Could there be such rottenness and corruption if the ‘salt’ had not ‘lost his savour’? Will anybody tell me that the disgusting vice which our newspapers do not think themselves degraded by printing in loathsome detail, and so bringing the foulness of a common sewer on to every breakfast-table in the kingdom, is in accordance with the organisation of society on Christian principles? Intemperance, social impurity, wide, dreary tracts of ignorance, degradation, bestiality, the awful condition of the lowest layer in our great cities, crushed like some crumbling bricks beneath the ponderous weight of the splendid superstructure, the bitter partisan spirit of politics, where the followers of each chief think themselves bound to believe that he is immaculate and that the other side has no honour or truth belonging to it-these things testify against English society, and make one almost despair when one thinks that, after a thousand years and more of professing Christianity, that is all that we can show for it.

O brethren! we may be thankful for what has been accomplished, but surely there had need also to be penitent recognition of failure and defect. And I lay it on the consciences of all that listen to me now to see to it that they do their parts as members of this body politic of England. A great heritage has come down from our fathers; pass it on bettered by your self-denial and your efforts. And remember that the way to mend a kingdom is to begin by mending yourselves, and letting Christ’s kingdom come in your own hearts. Next we are bound to try to further its coming in the hearts of others, and so to promote its leavening society and national life. No Christian is clear from the blood of men and the guilt of souls who does not, according to opportunity and capacity, repair before his own door, and seek to make some one know the unsearchable riches of the Gospel of Christ.

There is no finality for a Christian patriot until his country be organised on Christian principles, and so from being merely a ‘kingdom of the world’ become ‘a Kingdom of our God and of His Christ.’ To help forward that consummation, by however little, is the noblest service that prince or peasant can render to his country. By conformity to the will of God and not by material progress or intellectual enlightenment is a state prosperous and strong. To keep His statutes and judgments is ‘your wisdom and understanding in the sight of the nations, which shall hear all these statutes and say, Surely this great nation is a wise and understanding people.’

1  Preached on the occasion of the Jubilee of Queen Victoria.

Acts 24:2-3. And when he — Paul; was called forth — To hear the charge preferred against him, and make his defence; Tertullus began to accuse him — In an oration, almost every word of which was false; the accusation of Paul; the encomium on the government of Felix; and the declaration of a lawful intention in what they had done and attempted. Seeing that by thee we enjoy great quietness — Thus this orator, to induce the governor to give countenance to their cause, and to punish Paul as the disturber of the public peace, compliments him on the wisdom and vigour of his administration; but in so doing he is guilty of using the most barefaced flattery; for although Felix had repressed the Sicarii, and other robbers, he was himself a great oppressor of the nation, by the cruelty and injustice of his administration, all historians agreeing, that he was a man of so bad a character, that his government was a plague to all the provinces over which he presided. And as for Judea, its state under him was so far from being what Tertullus here represents, that Josephus (besides what he says of the barbarous and cowardly assassination of Jonathan the high-priest by his means) declares, that the Jews accused him before Nero of insufferable oppressions, and had certainly ruined him if his brother Pallas had not interposed in his favour. (Antiq., Acts 20:8.) And that very worthy deeds — Greek, κατορθωματων γινομενον, illustrious deeds; are done unto this nation — The whole Jewish nation; by thy providence — The continual care and vigilance of thy prudent administration. See here, reader; 1st, The unhappiness of great men who have their services magnified beyond measure, and are seldom or never faithfully told of their faults; in consequence of which they are encouraged and hardened in evil. 2d, The policy of bad men; who flatter princes in what they do amiss, to draw them in to act still worse. The bishops of Rome obtained their exorbitant power, and have been assisted in persecuting the servants of Christ, by flattering and caressing usurpers and tyrants, and making them such tools of their malice, as the high-priest, by his compliments, designed to make Felix here! We accept it always, and in all places — Everywhere and at all times we embrace it; most noble Felix with all thankfulness — If it had been true, that Felix was such a governor, it would have been just that they should have thus accepted his good offices, with all thankfulness. The benefits which we enjoy by government, especially when administered by wise and good governors, is what we ought to be thankful for both to God and man; this is part of the honour due to magistrates, to acknowledge the quietness we enjoy under their protection, and the worthy deeds done by their prudence.

24:1-9 See here the unhappiness of great men, and a great unhappiness it is, to have their services praised beyond measure, and never to be faithfully told of their faults; hereby they are hardened and encouraged in evil, like Felix. God's prophets were charged with being troublers of the land, and our Lord Jesus Christ, that he perverted the nation; the very same charges were brought against Paul. The selfish and evil passions of men urge them forward, and the graces and power of speech, too often have been used to mislead and prejudice men against the truth. How different will the characters of Paul and Felix appear at the day of judgement, from what they are represented in the speech of Tertullus! Let not Christians value the applause, or be troubled at the revilings of ungodly men, who represent the vilest of the human race almost as gods, and the excellent of the earth as pestilences and movers of sedition.And when he was called forth - When Paul was called forth from prison. See Acts 23:35.

We enjoy great quietness - This was said in the customary style of flatterers and orators, to conciliate the favor of the judge, and is strikingly in contrast with the more honest and straight forward introduction in reply of Paul, Acts 24:10. Though it was said for flattery, and though Felix was in many respects an unprincipled man, yet it was true that his administration had been the means of producing much peace and order in Judea, and that he had done many things that tended to promote the welfare of the nation. In particular, he had arrested a band of robbers, with Eleazar at their head, whom he had sent to Rome to be punished (Josephus, Antiq., book 20, chapter 8); he had arrested the Egyptian false prophet who had led out 4,000 men into the wilderness, and who threatened the peace of Judea (see the note on Acts 21:38); and he had repressed a sedition which arose between the inhabitants of Caesarea and of Syria (Josephus, Jewish Wars, book 2, chapter 13, section 2).

Very worthy deeds - Acts that tended much to promote the peace and security of the people. He referred to those which have just been mentioned as having been accomplished by Felix, particularly his success in suppressing riots and seditions; and as, in the view of the Jews, the case of Paul was another instance of a similar kind, he appealed to him with the more confidence that he would suppress that also.

By thy providence - By thy foresight," skill, vigilance, prudence.

2-4. Seeing that by thee we enjoy great quietness, &c.—In this fulsome flattery there was a semblance of truth: nothing more. Felix acted with a degree of vigor and success in suppressing lawless violence [Josephus, Antiquities, 20.8.4; confirmed by Tacitus, Annals, 12.54].

by thy providence—a phrase applied to the administration of the emperors.

When he was called forth; when Paul was sent for to appear, being under the custody of the soldiers who brought him to Caesarea.

Seeing that by thee, &c.: it being one of the rules of art, which an orator seldom forgets, to endeavour to obtain the judge’s favour, Tertullus commends Felix, who indeed had delivered that country from some robbers (like banditti, or moss troopers) that did infest it; but is commended for little else amongst the historians, who brand him for extraordinary covetousness and cruelty.

And when he was called forth,.... Not Tertullus the orator; for this is not to be understood of him, and of his being admitted to speak, as is thought by some, but the Apostle Paul; which is put out of doubt by the Vulgate Latin version, which reads, "and Paul being cited"; he was ordered to be brought out of custody into the court, to hear his indictment, and answer for himself:

Tertullus began to accuse him; to set forth his crimes, which he introduced with a flattering preface to Felix:

saying, seeing that by thee we enjoy great quietness, and that very worthy deeds are done unto this nation by thy providence; very likely he might refer to his purging the country of robbers; he took Eleazar, the chief of them, who had infested the country for twenty years, and many others with him, whom he sent bound to Rome, and others of them he crucified; and whereas there arose up another set of men, under a pretence of religion, who led people into the wilderness, signifying, that God would show them some signs of liberty; these seemed, to Felix, to sow the seeds, and lay the foundation of division and defection, which showed his sagacity, and which Tertullus here calls "providence"; wherefore, foreseeing what would be the consequence of these things, if not timely prevented, he sent armed men, horse and foot, and destroyed great numbers of them; and particularly he put to flight the Egyptian false prophet, who had collected thirty thousand men together, and dispersed them (n); and yet his government was attended with cruelty and avarice; witness the murder of Jonathan the high priest, by a sort of cut throats, who were connived at by him; particularly by the means of Dora his friend, whom he corrupted; and the pillaging of many of the inhabitants of Caesarea (o): so that this was a piece of flattery, used by Tertullus, to catch his ear, and gain attention, and insinuate himself into his affections.

(n) Joseph. Antiqu. l. 20. c. 7. (o) De Bello, l. 2. c. 13. sect. 7.

And when he was called forth, Tertullus began to accuse him, saying, Seeing that {a} by thee we enjoy great quietness, and that very {b} worthy deeds are done unto this nation by thy providence,

(a) Felix ruled that province with great cruelty and covetousness, and yet Josephus records that he did many worthy things, such as taking Eleazar the captain of certain cutthroats, and put that deceiving wretch the Egyptian to flight, who caused great troubles in Judea.

(b) He uses a word which the Stoics defined as a perfect duty and perfect behaviour.

Acts 24:2-3. After the accusation brought against Paul the accused is summoned to appear, and now Tertullus commences the address of accusation itself, and that (after the manner of orators, see Grotius in loc.) with a captatio benevolentiae (yet basely flattering) to the judge.

The speech, embellished with rhetorical elegance, is to be rendered thus: As we are partaking (continuously) of much peace through thee, and as improvements have taken place for this people on all sides and in all places through thy care, we acknowledge it, most excellent Felix, with all thanksgiving. Observe here, (1) that the orator with πολλῆς εἰρήνης κ.τ.λ. praises Felix as pacator provinciae, which it was a peculiar glory of procurators to be, see Wetstein; (2) that the object of ἀποδεχόμεθα is evident of itself from what precedes; (3) that πάντῃ τε καὶ πανταχοῦ is not to be referred, as usually, to ἀποδεχ., but, with Lachmann, to γινομένων, because, according to the flattering character of the speech, διορθωμ. γινομ. requires a definition of degree, and it is arbitrary mentally to supply πολλῶν.

διορθώματα (see the critical remarks) are improved arrangements in the state and nation. Comp. Polyb. iii. 118. 12 : αἱ τῶν πολιτευμάτων διορθώσεις, Arist. Pol. iii. 13; Plut. Numbers 17, al. On the Greek idiom of the word, see Lobeck, ad Phryn. p. 250 f. κατορθώματα would be successes, successful accomplishments; see Raphel, Polyb. in loc.; Lobeck, l.c.

πάντῃ] only here in the N.T., not semper (Vulgate and others), but towards all sides, quoquoversus, as in all classical writers; with iota subscriptum (in opposition to Buttmann and others), see Ellendt Lex. Soph. II. p. 493.

On ἀποδέχεσθαι, probare, “admittere cum assensu, gaudio, congratulatione,” Reiske, Ind. Dem. p. 66; see Loesner, p. 229; Krebs in loc.

How little, we may add, Felix, although he waged various conflicts with sicarii, sorcerers, and rebels (Joseph. Bell. ii. 13. 2, Antt. xx. 8. 5 f.), merited this praise on the whole, may be seen in Tac. Hist. v. 9, Ann. xii. 54; and what a contrast to it was the complaint raised against him after his departure by the Jews before the emperor (Joseph. Antt. xx. 8. 9 f.)!

Acts 24:2. ἤρξατο: he began with a captatio benevolentiæ after the usual oratorical style, cf. Cicero, De Oratore, ii., 78, 79, on the exordium and its rules.—If obtaining such artificial support was not as Calvin calls it “signum malæ conscientiæ,” it may well indicate the weakness of the Jews’ cause, and their determination to leave nothing untried against Paul.

2. And when he was called forth] There is nothing in the original to represent “forth” which is consequently omitted by the Rev. Ver. The “calling” referred to is that of the crier of the court calling on the case.

Tertullus began to accuse him] St Luke has given us but the digest of the advocate’s speech. The seven verses, in which it is included, and a large part of which is occupied with compliments to the judge, would not have occupied three minutes in the delivery.

Seeing that by thee we enjoy great quietness] [much peace] The orator seizes on almost the only point in the government of Felix on which he could hang any praise. By severity he had put down false Messiahs, and the partizans of an Egyptian magician, as well as riots in Cæsarea and Jerusalem, so that the country was in a more peaceful condition than it had been for a long time past.

and that very worthy deeds are done unto this nation by thy providence] Better (with Rev. Ver. and in accordance with the oldest MSS.) “and that by thy providence evils are corrected for this nation.” The word rendered “providence” is found 2Ma 4:6 where what is literally “without the king’s providence” is rendered “unless the king did look thereto.” It was by the severe looking thereto of Felix that disorders were corrected, though we learn from Tacitus (Hist. Acts 24:9; Ann. xii. 54) that his severity in the end bore evil fruit, and it seems probable that his main motive in suppressing other plunderers was that there might be the more left for himself.

Acts 24:2. Κληθέντος, when he was called forth) courteously. He was not brought (in the manner of a prisoner, as Paul was commanded ἀχθῆναι), ch. Acts 25:6.

Verse 2. - Called for called forth, A.V.; much peace for great quietness, A.V.; evils are corrected for for very worthy deeds are done unto, A.V. and T.R.; there is also a change in the order of the words, by thy providence is placed at the beginning instead of at the end of the sentence. When he was called. We see here the order of the trial. As soon as the charge is laid against, the prisoner, he is called into court, to hear what his accusers have to say against him, and as it follows at ver. 10, to make his defense (see Acts 25:16). We enjoy much peace. The groan flattery of this address of the hired orator, placed at the beginning of his speech, in order to win the favor of the judge, is brought into full light by comparing Tacitus's account of the misconduct of Felix in Samaria in the reign of Claudius, who he says, thought he might commit any crime with impunity, and by his proceedings nearly caused a civil war ('Annah,' 12:54); and his character of him as a ruler of boundless cruelty and profligacy, using the power of a king with the temper of a slave ('Hist' 5. 9.); and Josephus s statement that no sooner was Felix recalled from his government than the chief men among the Jews at Caesarea went up to Rome to accuse him before Nero, when he narrowly escaped punishment through the influence of his brother Pallas. By thy providence. "Providentia Caesaris" is a common legend on Roman coins (Alford). Evils are corrected. The reading of the R.T., διορθώματα, meaning "reforms," occurs only here, but, like the kindred κατορθώματα of the T.R., is a medical term. Διόρθωσις, reformation, is found in Hebrews 9:10. The κατορθώματα of the T.R. (which also occurs nowhere else in the New Testament) means, in its classical use, either "successful actions" or "right actions;" κατορθόω is to "bring things to a successful issue." Possibly Tertullus may have had in view the successful attack on the Egyptian impostor (see Acts 21:38, note), or the wholesale crucifixion of Sicarii and other disturbers of the public peace. Acts 24:2
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