New International Version
And Saul approved of their killing him. On that day a great persecution broke out against the church in Jerusalem, and all except the apostles were scattered throughout Judea and Samaria.
King James Bible
And Saul was consenting unto his death. And at that time there was a great persecution against the church which was at Jerusalem; and they were all scattered abroad throughout the regions of Judaea and Samaria, except the apostles.
Darby Bible Translation
And Saul was consenting to his being killed. And on that day there arose a great persecution against the assembly which was in Jerusalem, and all were scattered into the countries of Judaea and Samaria except the apostles.
World English Bible
Saul was consenting to his death. A great persecution arose against the assembly which was in Jerusalem in that day. They were all scattered abroad throughout the regions of Judea and Samaria, except for the apostles.
Young's Literal Translation
And Saul was assenting to his death, and there came in that day a great persecution upon the assembly in Jerusalem, all also were scattered abroad in the regions of Judea and Samaria, except the apostles;
Acts 8:1 Parallel
CommentaryClarke's Commentary on the Bible
Saul was consenting unto his death - So inveterate was the hatred that this man bore to Christ and his followers that he delighted in their destruction. So blind was his heart with superstitious zeal that he thought he did God service by offering him the blood of a fellow creature, whose creed he supposed to be erroneous. The word συνευδοκων signifies gladly consenting, being pleased with his murderous work! How dangerous is a party spirit; and how destructive may zeal even for the true worship of God prove, if not inspired and regulated by the spirit of Christ!
It has already been remarked that this clause belongs to the conclusion of the preceding chapter; so it stands in the Vulgate, and so it should stand in every version.
There was a great persecution - The Jews could not bear the doctrine of Christ's resurrection; for this point being proved demonstrated his innocence and their enormous guilt in his crucifixion; as therefore the apostles continued to insist strongly on the resurrection of Christ, the persecution against them became hot and general.
They were all scattered abroad - except the apostles - Their Lord had commanded them, when persecuted in one city, to flee to another: this they did, but, wherever they went, they proclaimed the same doctrines, though at the risk and hazard of their lives. It is evident, therefore, that they did not flee from persecution, or the death it threatened; but merely in obedience to their Lord's command. Had they fled through the fear of death, they would have taken care not to provoke persecution to follow them, by continuing to proclaim the same truths that provoked it in the first instance.
That the apostles were not also exiled is a very remarkable fact: they continued in Jerusalem, to found and organize the infant Church; and it is marvellous that the hand of persecution was not permitted to touch them. Why this should be we cannot tell; but so it pleased the great Head of the Church. Bp. Pearce justly suspects those accounts, in Eusebius and others, that state that the apostles went very shortly after Christ's ascension into different countries, preaching and founding Churches. He thinks this is inconsistent with the various intimations we have of the continuance of the apostles in Jerusalem; and refers particularly to the following texts: Acts 8:1, Acts 8:14, Acts 8:25; Acts 9:26, Acts 9:27; Acts 11:1, Acts 11:2; Acts 12:1-4; Acts 15:2, Acts 15:4, Acts 15:6, Acts 15:22, Acts 15:23; Acts 21:17, Acts 21:18; Galatians 1:17-19; Galatians 2:1, Galatians 2:9. The Church at Jerusalem was the first Christian Church; and consequently, the boast of the Church of Rome is vain and unfounded. From this time a new era of the Church arose. Hitherto the apostles and disciples confined their labors among their countrymen in Jerusalem. Now persecution drove the latter into different parts of Judea, and through Samaria; and those who had received the doctrine of Christ at the pentecost, who had come up to Jerusalem from different countries to be present at the feast, would naturally return, especially at the commencement of the persecution, to their respective countries, and proclaim to their countrymen the Gospel of the grace of God. To effect this grand purpose, the Spirit was poured out at the day of pentecost; that the multitudes from different quarters, partaking of the word of life, might carry it back to the different nations among whom they had their residence. One of the fathers has well observed, that "these holy fugitives were like so many lamps, lighted by the fire of the Holy Spirit, spreading every where the sacred flame by which they themselves had been illuminated."
Treasury of Scripture Knowledge
And Saul. This clause evidently belongs to the conclusion of the previous chapter; there is scarcely a worse division of chapters than this.
LibrarySimon the Sorcerer
'Thou hast neither part nor lot in this matter: for thy heart is not right in the sight of God.'--ACTS viii. 21. The era of the birth of Christianity was one of fermenting opinion and decaying faith. Then, as now, men's minds were seething and unsettled, and that unrest which is the precursor of great changes in intellectual and spiritual habitudes affected the civilised world. Such a period is ever one of predisposition to superstition. The one true bond which unites God and man being obscured, …
Alexander Maclaren—Expositions of Holy Scripture: The Acts
A Meeting in the Desert
Whether the Imposition of the Priest's Hands is Necessary for this Sacrament?
Whether Penance is a Sacrament?
But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you; and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth."
dragged him out of the city and began to stone him. Meanwhile, the witnesses laid their coats at the feet of a young man named Saul.
Godly men buried Stephen and mourned deeply for him.
Those who had been scattered preached the word wherever they went.
Philip went down to a city in Samaria and proclaimed the Messiah there.
When the apostles in Jerusalem heard that Samaria had accepted the word of God, they sent Peter and John to Samaria.
Then the church throughout Judea, Galilee and Samaria enjoyed a time of peace and was strengthened. Living in the fear of the Lord and encouraged by the Holy Spirit, it increased in numbers.
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