15:22-35 Being warranted to declare themselves directed by the immediate influence of the Holy Ghost, the apostles and disciples were assured that it seemed good unto God the Holy Spirit, as well as to them, to lay upon the converts no other burden than the things before mentioned, which were necessary, either on their own account, or from present circumstances. It was a comfort to hear that carnal ordinances were no longer imposed on them, which perplexed the conscience, but could not purify or pacify it; and that those who troubled their minds were silenced, so that the peace of the church was restored, and that which threatened division was removed. All this was consolation for which they blessed God. Many others were at Antioch. Where many labour in the word and doctrine, yet there may be opportunity for us: the zeal and usefulness of others should stir us up, not lay us asleep.
23. And they wrote … by them—This is the first mention in the New Testament history of writing as an element in its development. And the combination here of written and oral transmission of an important decision reminds us of the first occasion of writing mentioned in the Old Testament, where a similar combination occurs (Ex 17:14). But whereas there it is the deep difference between Israel and the Gentiles which is proclaimed, here it is the obliteration of that difference through faith in the Lord Jesus [Baumgarten].
greeting—The only other place in the New Testament where this word occurs (except in the letter of Lysias, Ac 23:26) is Jas 1:1, which seems to show that both letters were drawn up by the same hand [Bengel].
the Gentiles in Antioch, and Syria, and Cilicia—showing that churches then existed in Cilicia as well as Syria, which owed their existence, in all likelihood, to Paul's labors during the interval between his return to Tarsus (Ac 9:30) and his departure in company with Barnabas for Antioch (see on Ac 11:25).