Acts 21:14
And when he would not be persuaded, we ceased, saying, The will of the Lord be done.
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)
(14) The will of the Lord be done.—It is, perhaps, too much to see in these words an acceptance of his purpose as being in accordance with the will of the Lord. They were the natural expressions of resignation to what was seen to be inevitable, possibly used as a quotation from the prayer which the Lord had taught the disciples, and which He had used Himself (Luke 22:42).

21:8-18 Paul had express warning of his troubles, that when they came, they might be no surprise or terror to him. The general notice given us, that through much tribulation we must enter into the kingdom of God, should be of the same use to us. Their weeping began to weaken and slacken his resolution Has not our Master told us to take up our cross? It was a trouble to him, that they should so earnestly press him to do that in which he could not gratify them without wronging his conscience. When we see trouble coming, it becomes us to say, not only, The will of the Lord must be done, and there is no remedy; but, Let the will of the Lord be done; for his will is his wisdom, and he doeth all according to the counsel of it. When a trouble is come, this must allay our griefs, that the will of the Lord is done; when we see it coming, this must silence our fears, that the will of the Lord shall be done; and we ought to say, Amen, let it be done. It is honourable to be an old disciple of Jesus Christ, to have been enabled by the grace of God to continue long in a course of duty, stedfast in the faith, growing more and more experienced, to a good old age. And with these old disciples one would choose to lodge; for the multitude of their years shall teach wisdom. Many brethren at Jerusalem received Paul gladly. We think, perhaps, that if we had him among us, we should gladly receive him; but we should not, if, having his doctrine, we do not gladly receive that.Would not be persuaded - To remain. He was resolved to go.

We ceased - We ceased remonstrating with him, and urging him to remain.

The will of the Lord be done - They were now assured that it was the will of God that he should go, and they were now ready to submit to that will. This is an instance and an evidence of true piety. It was the expression of a wish that whatever God might judge to be necessary for the advancement of his cause might take place, even though it should be attended with many trials. They commended their friend to the protection of God, confident that whatever should occur would be right. Compare the notes on Matthew 6:10; Matthew 26:42.

13. Then Paul answered, What mean ye to weep and to break mine heart—Beautiful union of manly resoluteness and womanly tenderness, alike removed from mawkishness and stoicism!

I am ready not to be bound only—"If that is all, let it come."

but to die, &c.—It was well he could add this, for he had that also to do.

We ceased; as having done their utmost, and what became them.

Saying, The will of the Lord be done; they commit the event unto God: thus we pray daily, that God’s will may be done, Matthew 6:10 Luke 11:2; and thus our Saviour, not only by his precept, but by his example, hath taught us, Matthew 26:42 Luke 22:42; and when God’s will is done, our will is done also, if the mind and spirit be in us that was in Christ, Philippians 2:5, and otherwise we are none of his, Revelation 8:9.

And when he would not be persuaded,.... But was determined to go to Jerusalem at all events:

we ceased; both from tears and arguments:

saying, the will of the Lord be done; which was right, and to which they ought to have submitted, and acquiesced in at first, without using any arguments to have dissuaded the apostle from going to Jerusalem; since they might have concluded from Agabus's prophecy, that it was the will of the Lord he should go thither, and be bound; and the revelation was made to him, not to deter him from it, and to take methods for his own safety, which his friends would have put him upon, but to acquaint him with the will of God, and make him still more certain of it, and to prepare for it, and this effect it had upon him. This will of the Lord, is not the will of the Lord revealed in his word, either respecting the salvation, sanctification, and final perseverance of the saints, which is always accomplished; "for who hath resisted his will", or can resist it, so as to frustrate his designs, or hinder these things taking place? or the duty which is to be performed by them, the good, perfect, and acceptable will of God, which every gracious soul desires may be perfectly done, even as it is done in heaven: but here the secret will of God relating to the events of providence is designed, and which is the rule of all the divine proceedings; and though it is unknown to men, until facts make it appear, it is ever fulfilled, and sometimes by persons who have no regard to the revealed will of God; and should be continually thought of; and everything that is determined, or attempted to be done, should be resolved upon, and undertaken in submission to it; and whilst it is performing should be patiently bore, even in things not so agreeable to the minds and wills of men: it becomes saints to be still and acquiesce in it, when things are not so well with them in spiritual affairs as to be wished for; and when their worldly circumstances are not so thriving and flourishing; yea, though they may be attended with much poverty and meanness, and be reduced to so low a condition as Job was; as also when they part with their near and dear friends and relations by death, and with the ministers of the Gospel, who have been their spiritual fathers, instructors, and comforters; and even when they are called to suffer in the severest manner, for the sake of Christ and his Gospel: not that they are to be indolent, unconcerned, and unaffected, with things of this nature; nor should they neglect the means of having things otherwise with them; but it becomes them to exercise patience, faith, and courage, under every dispensation of providence; as knowing that what is done by the Lord is done well and wisely, and is for the good of them; and when the people of God are helped, to act such a part, they are the most comfortable in themselves, and to all that are about them; such a spirit and disposition is very commendable, and what makes men like to Christ, who in the most disagreeable circumstances submitted his will to his Father's. Beza's ancient copy reads, "the will of God"; and so the Arabic and Ethiopic versions.

{2} And when he would not be persuaded, we ceased, saying, The will of the Lord be done.

(2) The will of God bridles all affections in those who earnestly seek the glory of God.

EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)
Acts 21:14. ἡσυχάσαμεν: only in Luke and Paul, cf. Luke 14:3, Acts 11:18. In LXX, Job 32:6, Nehemiah 5:8.—τὸ θέλ. τοῦ Κ., cf. Matthew 6:10, Luke 22:42, and also St. Paul’s own expression in Acts 18:21, 1 Corinthians 4:19; 1 Corinthians 16:7 (Hebrews 6:3), cf. Mayor’s note on Jam 4:15 for similar phrases amongst Greeks and Romans, as also amongst Jews and Arabians, Taylor’s Sayings of the Jewish Fathers, pp. 29, 95, 128, 2nd edit.

14. And … be done] They gathered from the language of St Paul that he had a higher leading than theirs in what he was doing, and feeling that Christ’s guidance was better than any other, they quieted their minds with the thought that the work was “for the name of the Lord Jesus,” who would strengthen His servant to do His will.

Acts 21:14. Μὴ πειθομένου, when he would not be persuaded) Often a person is moved for the sake of others, who is not moved on his own account. Hence we may perceive the stedfastness of Paul.—ἡσυχάσαμεν, we acquiesced) With pious modesty.—τὸ θέλημα, the will) This, they acknowledged hereby, was known to Paul.

Verse 14. - The will of the Lord, etc. A beautiful application of the petition in the Lord's prayer, "Thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven" (comp. Luke 22:42). Acts 21:14
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