Acts 7:37
This is that Moses, which said unto the children of Israel, A prophet shall the Lord your God raise up unto you of your brethren, like unto me; him shall ye hear.
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(37) A prophet shall the Lord your God raise up.—The parallelism previously suggested is now distinctly proclaimed, and shown to be a fulfilment of the prediction of Deuteronomy 18:18. The prediction itself is cited freely, as before. (See Note on Acts 3:22.) The definite application of the words by St. Peter determined their bearing here. At this point we may reasonably think of the members of the Sanhedrin as catching the drift of his discourse, and showing signs of excitement, the effect of which is, perhaps, traceable in the greater compression of the narrative that follows.

Acts 7:37-38. This is that Moses which said, A prophet, &c. — Here Stephen shows that there is no opposition between Moses and Christ. And it is mentioned as one of the greatest honours God put upon Moses; nay, as that which exceeded all the rest, that by him God gave notice to the Israelites of the great prophet that should come into the world, raised their expectation of him, and required them to receive him on pain of utter destruction. Now this was very full to Stephen’s purpose, supposing him to have intimated, as his accusers affirmed, that Jesus should change the customs of the ceremonial law. And he is so far from blaspheming Moses, that he really does him the greatest honour imaginable, by showing how one of the most important of his prophecies was fulfilled. This is he (Moses) that was in the church in the wilderness — Presiding in all the affairs of it for forty years, and being king as well as prophet: in Jeshurun, Deuteronomy 33:5. Here we see the camp of Israel is called the church in the wilderness; and with good reason, for it was a sacred society, incorporated by a divine charter, under a divine government, and blessed with a divine revelation. It was a church, though not yet so perfectly formed as it was to be when they should come to Canaan. It was the honour of Moses that he was in that church; and many a time it would have been destroyed, if Moses had not been in it to intercede for it. But Christ is the president and guide of a more excellent and glorious church than that in the wilderness; and is more in it than Moses could be in that, as being the life and soul of it. With the angel that spake to him — The Angel of the covenant, even of the old as well as of the new. The angel that went before him and was a guide to him, otherwise he could not have been a guide to Israel. Of this God speaks, (Exodus 23:20,) I send an angel before thee to keep thee in the way, &c., beware of him, and obey his voice, for my name is in him. He was in the church with the angel, without whom he could have done no service to the church: but Christ is himself that angel which was with the church in the wilderness, and therefore has an authority above Moses. Who (Moses) received the lively oracles — Not only the ten commandments, but the other instructions, which the Lord spake unto Moses, saying, Speak them to the children of Israel. Observe, reader, 1st, The words of God are oracles, certain and infallible, and of unquestionable authority and obligation: they are to be consulted as oracles, and by them all controversies must be determined. 2d, They are lively oracles, for they are the oracles of the living God, not of the dumb and dead idols of the heathen. They are full of divine life and energy; quick and powerful, (Hebrews 4:12,) enlightening the eyes, rejoicing the heart, converting the soul, raising the dead: for the word that God speaks is spirit and life: they were delivered in an awakening and impressive manner, and instruct us in the way to life and happiness. Not that the law of Moses could give life of itself, but it showed the way to life, especially as exhibiting, in types and shadows, good things to come. 3d, It was the principal privilege of the Jews that unto them were committed these oracles, and it was by the hand of Moses that they were committed. Moses was not the author of them, nor of the law contained in them: he was merely the medium, or instrument, of their communication. And he that gave those customs by his servant Moses, might, no doubt, when he pleased, change them by his Son Jesus, who has received more lively oracles to give unto us than Moses gave.

7:30-41 Men deceive themselves, if they think God cannot do what he sees to be good any where; he can bring his people into a wilderness, and there speak comfortably to them. He appeared to Moses in a flame of fire, yet the bush was not consumed; which represented the state of Israel in Egypt, where, though they were in the fire of affliction, yet they were not consumed. It may also be looked upon as a type of Christ's taking upon him the nature of man, and the union between the Divine and human nature. The death of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, cannot break the covenant relation between God and them. Our Saviour by this proves the future state, Mt 22:31. Abraham is dead, yet God is still his God, therefore Abraham is still alive. Now, this is that life and immortality which are brought to light by the gospel. Stephen here shows that Moses was an eminent type of Christ, as he was Israel's deliverer. God has compassion for the troubles of his church, and the groans of his persecuted people; and their deliverance takes rise from his pity. And that deliverance was typical of what Christ did, when, for us men, and for our salvation, he came down from heaven. This Jesus, whom they now refused, as their fathers did Moses, even this same has God advanced to be a Prince and Saviour. It does not at all take from the just honour of Moses to say, that he was but an instrument, and that he is infinitely outshone by Jesus. In asserting that Jesus should change the customs of the ceremonial law. Stephen was so far from blaspheming Moses, that really he honoured him, by showing how the prophecy of Moses was come to pass, which was so clear. God who gave them those customs by his servant Moses, might, no doubt, change the custom by his Son Jesus. But Israel thrust Moses from them, and would have returned to their bondage; so men in general will not obey Jesus, because they love this present evil world, and rejoice in their own works and devices.Which said ... - Deuteronomy 18:15, Deuteronomy 18:18. See this explained, Acts 3:22. Stephen introduced this to remind them of the promise of a Messiah; to show his faith in that promise; and "particularly" to remind them of their obligation to hear and obey him. 37. This is that Moses which said … A prophet … him shall ye hear—This is quoted to remind his Moses-worshipping audience of the grand testimony of their faithful lawgiver, that he himself was not the last and proper object of the Church's faith, but only a humble precursor and small model of Him to whom their absolute submission was due. St. Stephen would show, that he was so far from speaking against Moses, as they falsely imagined, that he recommended none but him, whom Moses had so long before spoken of.

A prophet; Christ the Messiah, and Head of the prophets: see Acts 3:22.

Him shall ye hear; or obey.

This is that Moses which said unto the children of Israel,.... What is recorded in Deuteronomy 18:15.

a prophet, &c. See Gill on Acts 3:22.

{4} This is that Moses, which said unto the children of Israel, A prophet shall the Lord your God raise up unto you of your brethren, like unto me; him shall ye hear.

(4) He acknowledges Moses as the Lawgiver, but in such a way that he proves by his own witness that the Law had respect to a more perfect thing, that is to say, to the prophetical office which accompanied Christ, the head of all Prophets.

Acts 7:37. οὗτός, cf. Acts 7:35, cf. Deuteronomy 18:15; Deuteronomy 3:22, above. The introduction of the prophecy may mean that St. Stephen wished in this as in the preceding and following verse to emphasise the position and the work of Moses, and to mark more strongly the disobedience of the people. Blass regards οὗτός ἐστιν ὁ Μ. κ.τ.λ. as intended to show that Moses, whom the Jews accused. Stephen of injuring, was himself by his own words a supporter of the claims of Christ: “hic est ille . qui dixit”.

37. The prophecy is in Deuteronomy 18:15, and has been already quoted by St Peter (Acts 3:12) as referring ultimately to the Messiah. Its quotation to those who had rejected Jesus is the key-note of what is more openly expressed in Acts 7:51, “as your fathers did, so do ye.”

Acts 7:37. Προφήτην, a prophet) Stephen shows that he does not put in collision with one another Moses and Christ, and that his accusers ought not to do so. The same passage is quoted in ch. Acts 3:22, where see the note.

Verse 37. - God for the Lord your God, A.V. and T.R.; from among for of, A.V. The R.T. omits the words him shall ye hear, which follow in Dent. 18:15, and seem to be referred to in Matthew 17:5 (αὐτοῦ ἀκούσεσθε αὐτοῦ ἀκούετε). The addition of the words adds much to the point of Stephen's application (see above, Acts 3:22). Acts 7:37
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