Acts 5:41
Parallel Verses
New American Standard Bible
So they went on their way from the presence of the Council, rejoicing that they had been considered worthy to suffer shame for His name.

King James Bible
And they departed from the presence of the council, rejoicing that they were counted worthy to suffer shame for his name.

Darby Bible Translation
They therefore went their way from the presence of the council, rejoicing that they were counted worthy to be dishonoured for the name.

World English Bible
They therefore departed from the presence of the council, rejoicing that they were counted worthy to suffer dishonor for Jesus' name.

Young's Literal Translation
they, indeed, then, departed from the presence of the sanhedrim, rejoicing that for his name they were counted worthy to suffer dishonour,

Acts 5:41 Parallel
Barnes' Notes on the Bible

Rejoicing - Nothing to most people would seem more disgraceful than a public whipping. It is a punishment inflicted usually not so much because it gives "pain," as because it is esteemed to be attended with disgrace. The Jewish rulers doubtless desired that the apostles might be so affected with the sense of this disgrace as to be unwilling to appear again in public, or to preach the gospel anymore. Yet in this they were disappointed. The effect was just the reverse. If it be asked why they rejoiced in this manner, we may reply:

(1) Because they were permitted thus to imitate the example of the Lord Jesus. He had been scourged and reviled, and they were glad that they were permitted to be treated as he was. Compare Philippians 3:10; Colossians 1:24; 1 Peter 4:13, "Rejoice inasmuch as ye are partakers of Christ's sufferings."

(2) because, by this, they had evidence that they were the friends and followers of Christ. It was clear they were engaged in the same cause that he was. They were enduring the same sufferings, and striving to advance the same interests. As they loved the "cause," they would rejoice in enduring even the shame and sufferings which the cause, of necessity, involved. The kingdom of the Redeemer was an object so transcendently important, that for it they were willing to endure all the afflictions and disgrace which it might involve.

(3) they had been told to "expect" this, and they now rejoiced that they had This evidence that they were engaged in the cause of truth. Matthew 5:11-12; Matthew 10:17, Matthew 10:22; 2 Corinthians 12:10; Philippians 1:29; James 1:2.

(4) Religion appears to a Christian so excellent and lovely, that he is willing, for its sake, to endure trial, persecution, and death. With "all" this, it is infinite gain; and we should be willing to endure these trials, if, by them, we may gain a crown of glory. Compare Mark 10:30.

(5) Christians are the professed friends of Christ. We show attachment for friends by being willing to suffer for them; to bear contempt and reproach on their account; and to share "their" persecutions, sorrows, and calamities.

(6) the apostles were engaged in a cause of innocence, truth, and benevolence. They had "done" nothing of which to be ashamed; and they rejoiced, therefore, in a conscience void of offence, and in the consciousness of integrity and benevolence. When other people "disgrace" themselves by harsh, or vile, or opprobrious language or conduct toward "us," we should not feel that the disgrace belongs to "us." It is "theirs"; and we should not be ashamed or distressed, though their rage should fall on us. See 1 Peter 4:14-16.

Counted worthy - Esteemed to be deserving. That is, esteemed "fit" for it "by the Sanhedrin." It does not mean that "God" esteemed them worthy, but that the Jewish council judged them fit to suffer shame in this cause. They evinced so much zeal and determination of purpose that they were judged fit objects to be treated as the Lord Jesus had himself been.

To suffer shame - To be "dishonored" or "disgraced" in the estimation of the Jewish rulers. The "particular" disgrace to which reference is made here was "whipping." To various other kinds of shame they were also exposed. They were persecuted, reviled, and finally put to death. Here we may remark that a profession of the Christian religion has been in all ages esteemed by many to be a "disgrace." The "reasons" are:

(1) That Jesus is himself despised;

(2) That his precepts are opposed to the gaiety and follies of the world;

(3) That it attacks that on which the people of the world pride themselves;

(4) That it requires a "spirit" which the world esteems mean and grovelling - meekness, humility, self-denial, patience, forgiveness of injuries; and,

(5) That it requires "duties" - prayer, praise, seriousness, benevolence. All these things the people of the world esteem degrading and mean, and hence, they endeavor to subject those who practice them to disgrace. The "kinds" of disgrace to which Christians have been subjected are too numerous to be mentioned here. In former times they were subjected to the loss of property, of reputation, and to all the shame of public punishment, and to the terrors of the dungeon, the stake, or the rack. One main design of persecution was to select a kind of punishment so "disgraceful" as to deter others from professing religion. Disgrace even yet may attend it. It may subject one to the ridicule of friends - of even a father, mother, or brother. Christians hear their opinions abused; their names vilified; their Bible travestied; the name of their God profaned, and of their Redeemer blasphemed. Their feelings are often wantonly and rudely torn by the cutting sarcasm or the bitter sneer. Books and songs revile them; their specialties are made the occasion of indecent merriment on the stage and in novels; and in this way they are still subjected to shame for the name of Jesus. Every one who becomes a Christian should remember that this is a part of his inheritance, and should not esteem it dishonorable to be treated as his Master was before him, John 15:18-20; Matthew 10:25.


Acts 5:41 Parallel Commentaries

Whom to Obey, --Annas or Angel?
'Then the high priest rose up, and all they that were with him, (which is the sect of the Sadducees,) and were filled with indignation, 18. And laid their hands on the apostles, and put them in the common prison. 19. But the angel of the Lord by night opened the prison doors, and brought them forth, and said, 20. Go, stand and speak in the temple to the people all the words of this life. 21. And when they heard that, they entered into the temple early in the morning, and taught. But the high priest
Alexander Maclaren—Expositions of Holy Scripture: The Acts

On Zeal
"It is good to be always zealously affected in a good thing." Gal. 4:18. 1. There are few subjects in the whole compass of religion, that are of greater importance than this. For without zeal it is impossible, either to make any considerable progress in religion ourselves, or to do any considerable service to our neighbour, whether in temporal or spiritual things. And yet nothing has done more disservice to religion, or more mischief to mankind, than a sort of zeal which has for several ages prevailed,
John Wesley—Sermons on Several Occasions

Whether Human Law Binds a Man in Conscience?
Objection 1: It would seem that human law does not bind man in conscience. For an inferior power has no jurisdiction in a court of higher power. But the power of man, which frames human law, is beneath the Divine power. Therefore human law cannot impose its precept in a Divine court, such as is the court of conscience. Objection 2: Further, the judgment of conscience depends chiefly on the commandments of God. But sometimes God's commandments are made void by human laws, according to Mat. 15:6: "You
Saint Thomas Aquinas—Summa Theologica

Whether the Devil is Directly the Cause of Man's Sinning?
Objection 1: It would seem that the devil is directly the cause of man's sinning. For sin consists directly in an act of the appetite. Now Augustine says (De Trin. iv, 12) that "the devil inspires his friends with evil desires"; and Bede, commenting on Acts 5:3, says that the devil "draws the mind to evil desires"; and Isidore says (De Summo Bono ii, 41; iii, 5) that the devil "fills men's hearts with secret lusts." Therefore the devil is directly the cause of sin. Objection 2: Further, Jerome says
Saint Thomas Aquinas—Summa Theologica

Cross References
Isaiah 51:7
"Listen to Me, you who know righteousness, A people in whose heart is My law; Do not fear the reproach of man, Nor be dismayed at their revilings.

John 15:21
"But all these things they will do to you for My name's sake, because they do not know the One who sent Me.

Acts 5:21
Upon hearing this, they entered into the temple about daybreak and began to teach. Now when the high priest and his associates came, they called the Council together, even all the Senate of the sons of Israel, and sent orders to the prison house for them to be brought.

Acts 21:13
Then Paul answered, "What are you doing, weeping and breaking my heart? For I am ready not only to be bound, but even to die at Jerusalem for the name of the Lord Jesus."

1 Peter 4:14
If you are reviled for the name of Christ, you are blessed, because the Spirit of glory and of God rests on you.

1 Peter 4:16
but if anyone suffers as a Christian, he is not to be ashamed, but is to glorify God in this name.

3 John 1:7
For they went out for the sake of the Name, accepting nothing from the Gentiles.

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