Acts 4:23
And being let go, they went to their own company, and reported all that the chief priests and elders had said unto them.
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(23) They went to their own company.—Literally, their own people. The statement implies a recognised place of meeting, where the members of the new society met at fixed times.

All that the chief priests.—The word is probably used in its more extended meaning, as including, not only Annas and Caiaphas, but the heads of the four-and-twenty courses (see Note on Matthew 2:4), and others who were members of the Sanhedrin.

Acts 4:23-28. And being let go — Being dismissed from their examination by the rulers; they went to their own company — Who, probably, were at this time met together, praying for them; and reported all that the chief priests had said — Adding, no doubt, what they were enabled by the grace of God to reply to them, and how their trial issued. And when they heard that — A divine inspiration coming upon all that were present in an extraordinary manner; they lifted up their voice to God with one accord — All unanimously joining in the following petition, as being all influenced by the same spirit, though, perhaps, only one speaking in the name of the rest: or, as Dr. Doddridge supposes, all their voices joining by immediate inspiration, a circumstance which he thinks was graciously adapted to encourage them to suffer the greatest extremities in this cause. And said, Lord, thou art God, &c. — The sense is, Lord, thou hast all power, and thy word is fulfilled: men rage against thee, but it is in vain. See notes on Psalm 2:1-5. For of a truth, &c. — For we now see the prediction of thy servant David truly and literally accomplished; since against thy holy child Jesus, whom thou hast anointed — With the Holy Ghost and with power, to accomplish the glorious work of erecting thy kingdom among men; both Herod, &c., with the Gentiles — The idolatrous heathen; and the people of Israel — Professing to worship thee, the true God; were gathered together — Combined in the impious attempt of opposing thy designs. For to do whatsoever thy hand, &c., determined before to be done — That is, says Dr. Hammond, “the Roman governors and Jewish sanhedrim have joined their malicious counsels against thy holy Son; to act in the crucifying of him, and so (though little meaning it) to be the instruments of thy gracious providence and disposal, who didst determine to give thy only Son to die for us.” The sense evidently is, But they (the enemies of God and Christ) could do no more than thou wast pleased to permit, according to thy determinate counsel, to save mankind by the sufferings of thy Son. And what was needful for this end, thou didst before determine to permit to be done. Limborch, and some others, contend for a transposition of the words thus: They have combined against thy holy child Jesus, whom thou hast anointed to do what thy hand and thy counsel had determined, &c.; but it is so expressly said elsewhere, (see Matthew 26:24; Luke 22:22,) that the Son of man went (to suffer and die) as it was determined; and it so plainly appears, in fact, that these circumstances were foretold, or marked out, in the prophecies of the Old Testament, that I see not, says Dr. Doddridge, “what end the admission of such a transposition would answer. It is much more rational to explain this determination in such a manner as to make it consistent with the free agency of the persons concerned. When God’s hand and his counsel are said to have determined these things, it may signify his having pointed out this great event, so wisely concerted in his eternal counsels, and marked beforehand, as it were, all the boundaries of it, (as the word προωρισε may well signify,) in the prophetic writings.” Certainly the word properly and literally signifies, to define, describe, or mark out beforehand, rather than to decree, or predestinate. “The hand of God,” says Dr. Whitby, “most frequently, in the Old Testament, relates not so much to his power, as to his wisdom, and providential dispensations; and being here joined with his counsel, and applied to what was done by Pontius Pilate and the Jews toward the crucifixion of the holy Jesus, to which actions, so highly displeasing to God, his power could not actually concur or effectively incline them, the import of these words will be no more than this, that Jews and Gentiles were assembled to accomplish those sufferings of our Saviour for mankind which God had foretold, and by foretelling had determined should come to pass: according to those words of St. Paul, Acts 13:27, They who dwelt at Jerusalem, &c., not knowing the voices of the prophets, have fulfilled them by condemning him, doing all things which were written of him. As therefore St. Peter and Paul, by calling the Jews to repentance for crucifying the Lord of life, do evidence that their sin was not the less, because they did by it fulfil the counsel of God’s holy will, and kind intentions to mankind, so do they consequently evidence, that God’s foreknowledge of a thing future, does not impair the liberty of men’s wills in the accomplishment of it; as all the ancient fathers have declared in this particular.” See this further explained in the note on Acts 2:23.

4:23-31 Christ's followers do best in company, provided it is their own company. It encourages God's servants, both in doing work, and suffering work, that they serve the God who made all things, and therefore has the disposal of all events; and the Scriptures must be fulfilled. Jesus was anointed to be a Saviour, therefore it was determined he should be a sacrifice, to make atonement for sin. But sin is not the less evil for God's bringing good out of it. In threatening times, our care should not be so much that troubles may be prevented, as that we may go on with cheerfulness and courage in our work and duty. They do not pray, Lord let us go away from our work, now that it is become dangerous, but, Lord, give us thy grace to go on stedfastly in our work, and not to fear the face of man. Those who desire Divine aid and encouragement, may depend upon having them, and they ought to go forth, and go on, in the strength of the Lord God. God gave a sign of acceptance of their prayers. The place was shaken, that their faith might be established and unshaken. God gave them greater degrees of his Spirit; and they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, more than ever; by which they were not only encouraged, but enabled to speak the word of God with boldness. When they find the Lord God help them by his Spirit, they know they shall not be confounded, Isa 1.7.Their own company - They joined the other apostles and Christians, Acts 2:44-45.

And reported ... - It doubtless became a subject of interesting inquiry what they should do in this case. They had been threatened by the highest authority of the nation, and commanded not to preach again in the name of Jesus. Whether they should obey them and be silent, or whether they should leave Jerusalem and preach elsewhere, could not but be an interesting subject of inquiry, and they very properly sought the counsel of their brethren, and looked to God for direction, an example which all should follow who are exposed to persecution, or who are in any perplexity about the path of duty.

Ac 4:23-37. Peter and John Dismissed from the Samhedrim, Report the Proceedings to the Assembled Disciples—They Engage in Prayer—The Astonishing Answer and Results.

23-30. being let go, they went to their own company—Observe the two opposite classes, representing the two interests which were about to come into deadly conflict.

They went to their own company, the rest of the apostles and believers, who have a special propriety and delight in one another; sheep with sheep, and goats with goats: though the separation will be made at the last day, the foundation of it is laid here.

And reported all; to forewarn them of what they might expect, and encourage them to hope for the like deliverance.

Chief priests; to what hath been said concerning them might be added, that these, it may be, were the first or chief in the courses, which David divided the priests into, which division was observed till our Saviour’s time, Luke 1:5.

And being let go,.... Or dismissed from custody, by the order of the sanhedrim:

they went to their own company; or "to their own men", as the Ethiopic version reads; or "to their own brethren", as the Syriac; either to the other ten apostles; or to the hundred and twenty, who first met together; or the whole multitude of them that believed, Acts 4:32 the eight thousand that had been added to them, the whole church. Saints love to be together, and delight in the company of each other; and especially when they have anything to communicate, that may be for their mutual good, or for the honour of God:

and reported all that the chief priests and elders had said unto them; what commands and injunctions they had lain upon them, and what threatenings they had given them, and, no doubt likewise, what answers they had returned to them.

{9} And being let go, they went to their own company, and reported all that the chief priests and elders had said unto them.

(9) The apostles share their troubles with the congregation.

Acts 4:23-24. Πρὸς τοὺς ἰδίους] to those belonging to them, i.e. to their fellow-apostles. This explanation (Syr. Beza) is verified partly by Acts 4:31, where it is said of all, that they proclaimed the doctrine of God; partly by Acts 4:32, where the multitude of believers are contrasted with these. Hence neither are we to understand, with Kuinoel, Baumgarten, and others, the Christian church in general, nor, with Olshausen, the church in the house of the apostles, or an assembly as in Acts 12:12 (van Hengel, Gave d. talen, p. 68).

ὁμοθυμαδὸν ἦραν] Thus all with one accord spoke aloud the following prayer; and not possibly Peter alone. The attempts to explain this away (Kuinoel, comp. Bengel: that the rest accompanied the speaker with a subdued voice; de Wette: that they spoke after him mentally; Olshausen: either that one prayed in the name of all, or that in these words is presented the collective feeling of all) are at variance with the clear text.[160] It is therefore to be assumed (comp. also Hildebrand) that in Acts 4:24-30 there is already a stated prayer of the apostolic church at Jerusalem, which under the fresh impression of the last events of the life of Jesus, and under the mighty influence of the Spirit received by them, had shaped and moulded itself naturally and as if involuntarily, according to the exigency which engrossed their hearts; and which at this time, because its contents presented to the pious feeling of the suppliants a most appropriate application to what had just happened, the assembled apostles joined in with united inspiration, and uttered aloud. With this view the contents of the prayer quite accord, as it expresses the memories of that time (Acts 4:25 ff.) and the exigencies (vv 29, 30) of the threatened church in general with energetic precision, but yet takes no special notice of what had just happened to Peter and John.

The address continues to the end of Acts 4:26. Others (Vulgate, Beza, Castalio, Calvin, de Wette, and many) supply εἶ after ΣΎ, or before ΕἸΠΏΝ (Bengel), but less in keeping with the inspired fervour of the prayer. The designation of God by ΔΈΣΠΟΤΑ and Ὁ ΠΟΙΉΣΑς Κ.Τ.Λ., serves as a background to the triumphant thought of the necessary unsuccessfulness of human opposition. Comp. Nehemiah 9:6; Revelation 14:7, al.

This holds also in opposition to Baumgarten’s view, that the whole assembly sang together the second Psalm, and then Peter made an application of it to the present circumstances in the words here given.

Acts 4:23. τοὺς ἰδίους: not necessarily limited to their fellow-Apostles (so Meyer, Blass, Weiss), but as including the members of the Christian community (so Overbeck, Wendt, Hilgenfeld, Zöckler), cf. Acts 24:23, John 13:1, 1 Timothy 5:8, and also of one’s fellow-countrymen, associates, John 1:11, 2Ma 12:22.

23–31. The Apostles released. Their Prayer and its Answer

23. to their own company] Perhaps still abiding in the upper room which they had occupied before Pentecost. Because St Peter on a later occasion (Acts 12:12) made his way, after his deliverance from prison, to the house of Mary the mother of John Mark where many were gathered together praying, some have thought that this was the house where the Apostles had dwelt from the first. Such men at such a time would have neither means (see Acts 3:6) nor inclination to change from house to house. And Christ’s injunction (Luke 10:7), “Go not from house to house,” was given with a purpose which the Apostles would be likely to bear in mind and act upon.

Acts 4:23. Ἀπήγγειλαν, they reported) Although the rulers were opposed to their doing so, yet it was no sin on the part of the apostles.—οἱ ἀρχιερεῖς καὶ οἱ πρεσβύτεροι, the chief priests and elders) The Sadducees are not named, who partly are contained under them, ch. Acts 5:17, partly were not assessors in the council.

Verse 23. - Came for went, A.V.; the elders for elders, A.V. To their own company (comp. Malachi 3:16). The chief priests (οἱ ἀρχειρεῖς); evidently the same as those who were described as being "of the kindred of the high priest," in ver. 6 (where see note). Acts 4:23
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