Acts 26:26
For the king knows of these things, before whom also I speak freely: for I am persuaded that none of these things are hidden from him; for this thing was not done in a corner.
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(26) I am persuaded that none of these things are hidden from him.—The appeal to Agrippa’s knowledge is two-fold. He knew that Moses and the prophets had spoken of the great Prophet and Deliverer whom the Jews knew as the Christ. He knew also that for more than a quarter of a century there had been communities of Jews in Judæa and Galilee and Samaria (see Note on Acts 9:31) resting on the belief that the Christ had come, and that He had suffered and risen from the dead. The congregations of those whom the Jews knew as Nazarenes were as far as possible from being an obscure sect lurking in holes and corners.

26:24-32 It becomes us, on all occasions, to speak the words of truth and soberness, and then we need not be troubled at the unjust censures of men. Active and laborious followers of the gospel often have been despised as dreamers or madmen, for believing such doctrines and such wonderful facts; and for attesting that the same faith and diligence, and an experience like their own, are necessary to all men, whatever their rank, in order to their salvation. But apostles and prophets, and the Son of God himself, were exposed to this charge; and none need be moved thereby, when Divine grace has made them wise unto salvation. Agrippa saw a great deal of reason for Christianity. His understanding and judgment were for the time convinced, but his heart was not changed. And his conduct and temper were widely different from the humility and spirituality of the gospel. Many are almost persuaded to be religious, who are not quite persuaded; they are under strong convictions of their duty, and of the excellence of the ways of God, yet do not pursue their convictions. Paul urged that it was the concern of every one to become a true Christian; that there is grace enough in Christ for all. He expressed his full conviction of the truth of the gospel, the absolute necessity of faith in Christ in order to salvation. Such salvation from such bondage, the gospel of Christ offers to the Gentiles; to a lost world. Yet it is with much difficulty that any person can be persuaded he needs a work of grace on his heart, like that which was needful for the conversion of the Gentiles. Let us beware of fatal hesitation in our own conduct; and recollect how far the being almost persuaded to be a Christian, is from being altogether such a one as every true believer is.For the king - King Agrippa.

Knoweth - He had been many years in that region, and the fame of Jesus and of Paul's conversion were probably well known to him.

These things - The things pertaining to the early persecutions of Christians; the spread of the gospel; and the remarkable conversion of Paul. Though Agrippa might not have been fully informed respecting these things, yet he had an acquaintance with Moses and the prophets; he knew the Jewish expectation respecting the Messiah; and he could not be ignorant respecting the remarkable public events in the life of Jesus of Nazareth, and of his having been put to death by order of Pontius Pilate on the cross.

I speak freely - I speak openly - boldly. I use no disguise; and I speak the more confidently before him, because, from his situation, he must be acquainted with the truth of what I say. Truth is always bold and free, and it is an evidence of honesty when a man is willing to declare everything without reserve before those who are qualified to detect him if he is an impostor. Such evidence of truth and honesty was given by Paul.

For I am persuaded - I am convinced; I doubt not that he is well acquainted with these things.

Are hidden from him - That he is unacquainted with them.

For this thing - The thing to which Paul had mainly referred in this defense, his own conversion to the Christian religion.

Was not done in a corner - Did not occur secretly and obscurely, but was public, and was of such a character as to attract attention. The conversion of a leading persecutor, such as Paul had been, and in the manner in which that conversion had taken place, could not but attract attention and remark; and although the Jews would endeavor as much as possible to conceal it, yet Paul might presume that it could not be entirely unknown to Agrippa.

26. the king knoweth, &c.—(See on [2121]Ac 26:1-3). Agrippa, being educated in Judea, could not but hear of the life and doctrine, death and resurrection, of our Saviour; as also of the miracles done by him, and by his disciples; for, as our Saviour says, he ever taught openly, John 18:20. For the king knoweth of these things,.... Something of them, of the sufferings and resurrection of the Messiah, and of his showing light to Jews and Gentiles, as they are spoken of by Moses and the prophets, whose writings Agrippa was conversant with, and of these things as fulfilled in Jesus of Nazareth; at least he had heard the report of them, how that they were said to be accomplished in him.

Before whom also I speak freely; because of the knowledge he had of these things:

for I am persuaded that none of these things are hidden from him; as that Moses and the prophets have foretold then, and that they have had their fulfilment in Jesus;

for this thing was not done in a corner: the ministry of Jesus was, public, his miracles were done openly, his suffering the death of the cross under Pontius Pilate was generally known, and his resurrection from the dead was a well attested fact, and the ministration of his Gospel to Jews and Gentiles was notorious. The Arabic and Ethiopic versions refer this to Paul's words and actions, that what he had said and done were not private but public, and of which Agrippa had had, by one means or another, a full account; but the other sense is best.

For the king knoweth of these things, before whom also I speak freely: for I am persuaded that none of these things are hidden from him; for this thing was not done in a {k} corner.

(k) Secretly and privately.

Acts 26:26. In proof (γάρ) that he spoke truly, and in his sound mind, Paul appeals to the knowledge of the king (in quo plus erat spei, Calvin).

περὶ τούτων and τι τούτων refer to what Paul had last said concerning the Messiah, which had overpowered the patience of Felix and drawn from him the μαίνῃ (comp. on ταῦτα, Acts 26:24). τοῦτο is the same, but viewed together as an historical unity. ἐπίσταμαι with περί is not found elsewhere in the N.T., but often in Greek writers.

οὐδέν] like nihil, in no respect; Kühner, ad Xen. Anab. vi. 6. 12. Taken as accusative of object, it would be inappropriate (on account of τί); hence A E א** min. omit it (so Lachmann and Bornemann), while, on the other hand, B has not τί.

Observe also the correlates ἐπίσταται and λανθάνειν placed at the beginning.

οὐἐν γωνίᾳ] A litotes: not in a corner (ἐν κρυπτῷ), but publicly in the sacred capital of the nation. See examples in Wetstein.Acts 26:26. ἐπίσταται γὰρ: here only with περί: in proof that his words were words of soberness, and that he was basing his statements on facts, St. Paul appeals to the knowledge of Agrippa, a knowledge which he would have gained from his close connection with the Jewish religion, but also to some extent perhaps from the events of his father’s reign, for Herod Agrippa had beheaded James with a sword, and had cast Peter into prison: “patet hoc,” says Bengel, “nam etiam Christianum nomen sciebat”.—If καὶ is retained, “to whom also,” i.e., because of his knowledge just mentioned.—παῤῥησιασ.: “freely,” R.V., everywhere else R.V. renders “boldly”; verb only in Luke and Paul, see on Acts 9:27; the Apostle spoke freely because of the king’s full knowledge, but his boldness is also shown in his question to the king, and to the reply which he makes to it in the king’s name, Acts 26:27.—λανθάνειν γὰρ αὐτόν κ.τ.λ.: if οὐδέν and τι are both retained, see critical note, τι may be taken adverbially, “in any degree,” but see Winer-Moulton, Leviticus , 9, b., and Wendt’s note, in loco, p. 399 (1899).—ἐν γωνίᾳ πεπραγ., cf. Luke 7:17; Luke 23:8. Blass notes this expression, Gram., p. 4, as a proof that Paul used more literary expressions than usual in addressing his audience, and no doubt the expression was used by classical writers, cf. Plato, Gorg., 485 D; Epict., Diss., ii., 12, 17, and other instances in Wetstein, cf. angulus, Ter., Adelph., v., 2, 10.26. none of these things are hidden from him] i.e. the history of the life and works of Jesus, of His death and resurrection, of the marvellous gifts of Pentecost, and the preaching of the Gospel since Jesus had been crucified.

for this thing was not done in a corner] Of the truth of this we can be sure from the excitement caused both in the religious and political world by the work of Jesus during his life, by the efforts put forth to stop his teaching, which culminated in a trial in which both Jewish and Roman magistrates were consulted, and by the exclamation of the Pharisees (John 12:19) “The world is gone after him,” and the declaration (Acts 17:6) “These that have turned the world upside down.”Acts 26:26. Ἐπίσταται, knoweth) This is evident: for he even knew the Christian name, Acts 26:28. Having refuted the objection of Festus, Paul urges the truth which he aimed at setting forth, appropriately and gradually, step by step, returning from Festus to Agrippa.—παρρησιαζόμενος, using all freedom of speech) He had free confidence, which Festus called madness.—οὐκ ἐν γωνίᾳ) not in a corner, but under the view of mankind.Verse 26. - Unto for before, A.V.; is hidden for are hidden, A.V.; this hath not been for this thing was not, A.V. For the king, etc. Something in Agrippa's manner showed St. Paul that he was not unaffected by what he had heard. And so with his usual quickness and tact he appeals to him to confirm the "words of truth and soberness" which he had just addressed to the skeptical Festus. I speak freely. He was indeed a prisoner and in chains, as he so touchingly said (in ver. 29), but the word of God in his mouth was not bound. Παρρησιαζόμενος (see Acts 9:27; Acts 13:46; Acts 14:3; Acts 18:26; Acts 19:8; and the frequent use of παρρησία).
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