Acts 2:22 MEANING

Acts 2:22
(22) Jesus of Nazareth.--We hardly estimate, as we read them, the boldness implied in the utterance of that Name. Barely seven weeks had passed since He who bore it had died the death of a slave and of a robber. The speaker himself had denied all knowledge of Him of whom he now spoke.

A man approved of God.--The verb is used in its older English sense, as proved, or pointed out, not as we now use the word, as meeting with the approval of God.

Miracles and wonders and signs.--Better, mighty works . . . The words are three synonyms, expressing different aspects of the same facts, rather than a classification of phenomena. The leading thought, in the first word, is the power displayed in the act; in the second, the marvel of it as a portent: in the third, its character as a token or note of something beyond itself.

Verse 22. - Unto you for among you, A.V.; mighty works for miracles, A.V. ; even as ye yourselves know for as ye yourselves also know, A.V. Ye men of Israel. This title includes both the Jews of Judaea and all those of the dispersion, to whatever tribe they belonged. Approved of God. Observe the distinct reference to the miracles of Christ, as the proofs that he came from God, the authenticating evidences of his Divine mission. So St. Peter again, in his address to Cornelius, declares how God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Ghost and with power, who went about doing good, and healing all that were oppressed of the devil; for God was with him (Acts 10:38). The miracles of the gospel are, and were intended to be, a demonstration of the truth of Christianity, and it is at their peril that Christians allow themselves to give up this argument at the bidding of the skeptic. Mighty works and wonders and signs. Δυναμεῖς are powers, acts of healing and such like, done by the supernatural power of the Holy Spirit (see the above reference to Acts 10:38); τέρατα are wonders or portents, such as are spoken of by the Prophet Joel, "wonders in heaven above," the darkening of the sun, the discoloration or the moon, or any ether wonder considered only with reference to its portentous character; σημεῖα are signs, not necessarily miraculous, but things which are proofs, either by their miraculous character or from the time or mode of their occurrence, of the truth of the things spoken. "Miracles, wonders, and signs" occur together in 2 Corinthians 12:12. The three seem to include every kind of miracle, or, as Meyer says, miracles viewed

(1) according to their nature,

(2) according to their appearance,

(3) according to their destination or proposed end. Which God did by him. So we read Hebrews 1:2, "Through [or 'by'] whom also he made the worlds." And so our Lord said of himself, "My Father worketh hitherto, and I work;" and "The Son can do nothing of himself, but what he seeth the Father do" (John 5:17, 19; comp. Matthew 28:18). On the other hand, our Lord often speaks of his own power, as John 2:19; John 10:18 (comp. John 2:11). As Mediator, Christ did all things by his Father's appointment, and for his Father's glory, Even as ye yours, elves know. Mark the confidence with which Peter appeals to their personal knowledge of the miracles of Christ. This was a fitting preparation for the announcement of that mighty power, wonder, and sign which he was now about to proclaim to them - the resurrection of the Lord Jesus from the dead.

2:22-36 From this gift of the Holy Ghost, Peter preaches unto them Jesus: and here is the history of Christ. Here is an account of his death and sufferings, which they witnessed but a few weeks before. His death is considered as God's act; and of wonderful grace and wisdom. Thus Divine justice must be satisfied, God and man brought together again, and Christ himself glorified, according to an eternal counsel, which could not be altered. And as the people's act; in them it was an act of awful sin and folly. Christ's resurrection did away the reproach of his death; Peter speaks largely upon this. Christ was God's Holy One, sanctified and set apart to his service in the work of redemption. His death and sufferings should be, not to him only, but to all his, the entrance to a blessed life for evermore. This event had taken place as foretold, and the apostles were witnesses. Nor did the resurrection rest upon this alone; Christ had poured upon his disciples the miraculous gifts and Divine influences, of which they witnessed the effects. Through the Saviour, the ways of life are made known; and we are encouraged to expect God's presence, and his favour for evermore. All this springs from assured belief that Jesus is the Lord, and the anointed Saviour.Ye men of Israel hear these words,.... The Arabic version prefaces this passage with these words, "in those days Peter stood and said unto the people"; as if it was not on the same day, and the following oration was a new one, and not a continued discourse with the former; whereas it was delivered at the same time, and is in connection with what goes before. Only the apostle having finished the vindication of his brethren, and the whole society, and set that matter in a clear light; and being willing to take this opportunity of preaching Christ to the Jews, addresses them under another character in a new form of words, though to the same sense as in Acts 2:14 in order to soften their minds, and raise their attention, and proceeds to describe the person, the subject of his following discourse:

Jesus of Nazareth; first by his name Jesus, which the angel gave him before his birth; and that for this reason, because he is the Saviour of his people from their sins, and which his name signifies; and next by the place, not where he was born, for that was Bethlehem, but where he was educated and brought up, and where he lived the greatest part of his life, Nazareth, a city in Galilee; whence he was so called, generally by way of contempt, and not so much to distinguish him from any of the same name:

a man approved of God; he was truly and really a man, who in his incarnation assumed a true body, and a reasonable soul; but he was not a mere man, and much less a common and ordinary man: he was the famous son of man the Scriptures speak of; the man of God's right hand, the man his fellow, a great, mighty, and wonderful man: "approved by God"; or shown, declared, and demonstrated by him, to be sent by him in human nature, to be the true Messiah and Saviour of the world, who was the chosen of God, loved and honoured by him, whom he sealed, and bore a testimony to; and that not privately, but openly and publicly:

among you; in the face of all the people in Jerusalem, and in the temple, and at the time of public feasts:

by miracles, and wonders, and signs; by dispossessing devils, cleansing lepers, restoring sight to the blind, causing the deaf to hear, the dumb to speak, and the lame to walk, and by raising the dead:

which God did by him in the midst of you; not but that he did the miracles himself, as and the Son of God; but as he was man, God did them, by his human nature, as the instrument: the meaning is, that his miracles were wrought by a divine power, and not by a diabolical influence, by Beelzebub the prince of devils, as the Pharisees blasphemously said of him; and these were done, not in a corner, but in the midst of them:

as ye yourselves also know; for they must be sensible and convicted in their own consciences, not only that these things were done by him, but that they could not be done by him, unless God was with him, or he was from God; and so were testimonies both of the divine approbation of him, and of his deity and Messiahship.

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