New International Version
So Paul asked, "Then what baptism did you receive?" "John's baptism," they replied.
King James Bible
And he said unto them, Unto what then were ye baptized? And they said, Unto John's baptism.
Darby Bible Translation
And he said, To what then were ye baptised? And they said, To the baptism of John.
World English Bible
He said, "Into what then were you baptized?" They said, "Into John's baptism."
Young's Literal Translation
and he said unto them, 'To what, then, were ye baptized?' and they said, 'To John's baptism.'
Acts 19:3 Parallel
CommentaryClarke's Commentary on the Bible
Have ye received the Holy Ghost - It is likely that these were Asiatic Jews, who, having been at Jerusalem about twenty-six years before this, had heard the preaching of John, and received his baptism, believing in the coming Christ, whom John had proclaimed; but it appears that till this time they had got no farther instruction in the Christian religion. Paul, perceiving this, asked them if they had received the Holy Ghost since they believed? For it was the common privilege of the disciples of Christ to receive, not only the ordinary graces, but also the extraordinary gifts of the Holy Spirit; and thus the disciples of Christ differed from those of John, and of all others. John baptized with water; Jesus baptized with the Holy Ghost. And to this day the genuine disciples of Christ are distinguished from all false religionists, and from nominal Christians, by being made partakers of this Spirit, which enlightens their minds, and convinces of sin, righteousness, and judgment; quickens their souls, witnesses to their conscience that they are the children of God, and purifies their hearts. Those who have not received these blessings from the Holy Spirit, whatever their profession may be, know nothing better than John's baptism: good, excellent in its kind, but ineffectual to the salvation of those who live under the meridian of Christianity.
We have not so much as heard whether, etc. - That is, they had not heard that there were particular gifts and graces of the Holy Spirit to be received. They could not mean that they had not heard of the Holy Spirit; for John, in his baptism, announced Christ as about to baptize with the Holy Ghost, Matthew 3:11; Luke 3:16; but they simply meant that they had not heard that this Spirit, in his gifts, had been given to or received by any one.
Treasury of Scripture Knowledge
'...Jesus I know, and Paul I know; but who are ye?' --ACTS xix. 15. These exorcists had no personal union with Jesus. To them He was only 'Jesus whom Paul preached.' They spoke His name tentatively, as an experiment, and imitatively. To command 'in the name of Jesus' was an appeal to Jesus to glorify His name and exert His power, and so when the speaker had no real faith in the name or the power, there was no answer, because there was really no appeal. I. The only power which can cast out the evil …
Alexander Maclaren—Expositions of Holy Scripture: The Acts
Confessing their sins, they were baptized by him in the Jordan River.
(All the people, even the tax collectors, when they heard Jesus' words, acknowledged that God's way was right, because they had been baptized by John.
He had been instructed in the way of the Lord, and he spoke with great fervor and taught about Jesus accurately, though he knew only the baptism of John.
instruction about cleansing rites, the laying on of hands, the resurrection of the dead, and eternal judgment.
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