Acts 12:23
Parallel Verses
New American Standard Bible
And immediately an angel of the Lord struck him because he did not give God the glory, and he was eaten by worms and died.

King James Bible
And immediately the angel of the Lord smote him, because he gave not God the glory: and he was eaten of worms, and gave up the ghost.

Darby Bible Translation
And immediately an angel of the Lord smote him, because he did not give the glory to God, and he expired, eaten of worms.

World English Bible
Immediately an angel of the Lord struck him, because he didn't give God the glory, and he was eaten by worms and died.

Young's Literal Translation
and presently there smote him a messenger of the Lord, because he did not give the glory to God, and having been eaten of worms, he expired.

Acts 12:23 Parallel
Commentary
Barnes' Notes on the Bible

And immediately the angel of the Lord - Diseases and death axe in the Scriptures often attributed to an angel. See 2 Samuel 24:16; 1 Chronicles 21:12, 1 Chronicles 21:15, 1 Chronicles 21:20, 1 Chronicles 21:27; 2 Chronicles 32:21. It is not intended that there was a miracle in this case, but it certainly is intended by the sacred writer that his death was a divine judgment on him for his receiving homage as a god. Josephus says of him that he "did neither rebuke them the people nor reject their impious flattery. A severe pain arose in his belly, and began in a most violent manner. And when he was quite worn out by the pain in his belly for five days, he departed this life, in the 54th year of his age, and the 7th year of his reign." Josephus does not mention that it was done by an angel, but says that when he looked up, he saw an owl sitting on a rope over his head, and judging it to be an evil omen, he immediately became melancholy, and was seized with the pain.

Because he gave not God the glory - Because he was willing to receive the worship due to God. It was the more sinful in him as he was a Jew, and was acquainted with the true God, and with the evils of idolatry. He was proud, and willing to be flattered, and even adored. He had sought their applause; he had arrayed himself in this splendid manner to excite admiration; and when they carried it even so far as to offer divine homage, he did not reject the impious flattery, but listened stir to their praises. Hence, he was judged; and God vindicated his own insulted honor by inflicting severe pains on him, and by a most awful death.

And he was eaten of worms - The word used here is not found elsewhere in the New Testament. A similar disease is recorded of Antiochus Epiphanes, in the Apocrypha, 2 Macc. 9:5, "But the Lord Almighty, the God of Israel, smote him with an invisible and incurable plague; for a pain in the bowels that was remediless came upon him, and sore torments of the inner parts Acts 12:9, so that worms rose up out of the body of this wicked man," etc. Probably this was the disease known as morbus pedicularis. It is loathsome, offensive, and most painful. See the death of Antiochus Epiphanes described in 2 Macc. 9. With this disease also Herod the Great, grandfather of Herod Agrippa, died (Josephus, Antiq., book 17, chapter 6, section 5). Such a death, so painful, so sudden, and so loathsome, was an appropriate judgment on the pride of Herod. We may here learn:

(1) That sudden and violent deaths are often acts of direct divine judgment on wicked people.

(2) that people, when they seek praise and flattery, expose themselves to the displeasure of God. His glory he will not give to another, Isaiah 42:8.

(3) that the most proud, and mighty, and magnificent princes have no security of their lives. God can in a moment - even when they are surrounded by their worshippers and flatterers - touch the seat of life, and turn them to loathsomeness and putrefaction. What a pitiable being is a man of pride receiving from his fellow-men that homage which is due to God alone! See Isaiah 14.

(4) pride and vanity, in any station of life, are hateful in the sight of God. Nothing is more inappropriate to our situation as lost, dying sinners, and nothing will more certainly meet the wrath of heaven.

(5) we have here a strong confirmation of the truth of the sacred narrative. In all essential particulars Luke coincides in his account of the death of Herod with Josephus. This is one of the many circumstances which show that the sacred Scriptures were written at the time when they professed to be, and that they accord with the truth. See Lardner's Credibility, part 1, chapter 1, section 6.

Acts 12:23 Parallel Commentaries

Library
'Sober Certainty'
'And when Peter was come to himself, he said, Now I know of a surety, that the Lord hath sent His angel, and hath delivered me out of the hand of Herod, and from all the expectation of the people of the Jews.'--ACTS xii. 11. Where did Luke get his information of Peter's thoughts in that hour? This verse sounds like first-hand knowledge. Not impossibly John Mark may have been his informant, for we know that both were in Rome together at a later period. In any case, it is clear that, through whatever
Alexander Maclaren—Expositions of Holy Scripture: The Acts

Peter's Deliverance from Prison
'Peter therefore was kept in the prison: but prayer was made earnestly of the Church unto God for him.'--ACTS xii. 5 (R.V.) The narrative of Peter's miraculous deliverance from prison is full of little vivid touches which can only have come from himself. The whole tone of it reminds us of the Gospel according to St. Mark, which is in like manner stamped with peculiar minuteness and abundance of detail. One remembers that at a late period in the life of the Apostle Paul, Mark and Luke were together
Alexander Maclaren—Expositions of Holy Scripture: The Acts

Great Preparations for a Great Work
'And Hiram king of Tyre sent his servants unto Solomon; for he had heard that they had anointed him king in the room of his father: for Hiram was ever a lover of David. 2. And Solomon sent to Hiram, saying, 3. Thou knowest how that David my father could not build an house unto the name of the Lord his God for the wars which were about him on every side, until the Lord put them under the soles of his feet. 4. But now the Lord my God hath given me rest on every side, so that there is neither adversary
Alexander Maclaren—Expositions of Holy Scripture

Third Sunday after Trinity Humility, Trust, Watchfulness, Suffering
Text: 1 Peter 5, 5-11. 5 Likewise, ye younger, be subject unto the elder. Yea, all of you gird yourselves with humility, to serve one another: for God resisteth the proud, but giveth grace to the humble. 6 Humble yourselves therefore under the mighty hand of God, that he may exalt you in due time; 7 casting all your anxiety upon him, because he careth for you. 8 Be sober, be watchful: your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour: 9 whom withstand stedfast
Martin Luther—Epistle Sermons, Vol. III

Cross References
2 Samuel 24:16
When the angel stretched out his hand toward Jerusalem to destroy it, the LORD relented from the calamity and said to the angel who destroyed the people, "It is enough! Now relax your hand!" And the angel of the LORD was by the threshing floor of Araunah the Jebusite.

2 Kings 19:35
Then it happened that night that the angel of the LORD went out and struck 185,000 in the camp of the Assyrians; and when men rose early in the morning, behold, all of them were dead.

Acts 5:19
But during the night an angel of the Lord opened the gates of the prison, and taking them out he said,

Acts 12:22
The people kept crying out, "The voice of a god and not of a man!"

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