New International Version
Now an angel of the Lord said to Philip, "Go south to the road--the desert road--that goes down from Jerusalem to Gaza."
King James Bible
And the angel of the Lord spake unto Philip, saying, Arise, and go toward the south unto the way that goeth down from Jerusalem unto Gaza, which is desert.
Darby Bible Translation
But [the] angel of [the] Lord spoke to Philip, saying, Rise up and go southward on the way which goes down from Jerusalem to Gaza: the same is desert.
World English Bible
But an angel of the Lord spoke to Philip, saying, "Arise, and go toward the south to the way that goes down from Jerusalem to Gaza. This is a desert."
Young's Literal Translation
And a messenger of the Lord spake unto Philip, saying, 'Arise, and go on toward the south, on the way that is going down from Jerusalem to Gaza,' -- this is desert.
Acts 8:26 Parallel
CommentaryClarke's Commentary on the Bible
Arise, and go toward the south - How circumstantially particular are these directions! Every thing is so precisely marked that there is no danger of the apostle missing his way. He is to perform some great duty; but what, he is not informed. The road which he is to take is marked out; but what he is to do in that road, or how far he is to proceed, he is not told! It is God who employs him, and requires of him implicit obedience. If he do his will, according to the present direction, he shall know, by the issue, that God hath sent him on an errand worthy of his wisdom and goodness. We have a similar instance of circumstantial direction from God in Acts 9:11 : Arise, go into the street called Straight, and inquire in the house of Judas for one Saul of Tarsus, etc. And another instance, still more particular, in Acts 10:5, Acts 10:6 : Send men to Joppa, and call for one Simon, whose surname is Peter; he lodgeth with one Simon, a tanner, whose house is by the sea side. God never sends any man on a message, without giving him such directions as shall prevent all mistakes and miscarriages, if simply and implicitly followed. This is also strictly true of the doctrines contained in his word: no soul ever missed salvation that simply followed the directions given in the word of God. Those who will refine upon every thing, question the Divine testimony, and dispute with their Maker, cannot be saved. And how many of this stamp are found, even among Christians, professing strict godliness!
Gaza, which is desert - Αὑτη εϚιν ερημος, This it the desert, or this is in the desert. Gaza was a town about two miles and a half from the sea-side; it was the last town which a traveler passed through, when he went from Phoenicia to Egypt, and was at the entrance into a wilderness, according to the account given by Arrian in Exped. Alex. lib. ii. cap. 26, p. 102. [Ed. Gronov.]
That it was the last inhabited town, as a man goes from Phoenicia to Egypt, επι τῃ αρχῃ της Ερημου, on the commencement of the desert. See Bp. Pearce.
Dr. Lightfoot supposes that the word desert is added here, because at that time the ancient Gaza was actually desert, having been destroyed by Alexander, and μενουσα ερημος, remaining desert, as Strabo, lib. xvi. p. 1102, says; and that the angel mentioned this desert Gaza to distinguish it from another city of the same name, in the tribe of Ephraim, not far from the place where Philip now was. On this we may observe that, although Gaza was desolated by Alexander the Great, as were several other cities, yet it was afterwards rebuilt by Gabinius. See Josephus, Ant. lib. xv. cap. 5, sect. 3. And writers of the first century represent it as being flourishing and populous in their times. See Wetstein.
Schoettgen thinks that ερημος, desert, should be referred, not to Gaza, but to ὁδος, the way; and that it signifies a road that was less frequented. If there were two roads to Gaza from Jerusalem, as some have imagined, (see Rosenmuller), the eunuch might have chosen that which was desert, or less frequented, for the sake of privacy in his journeying religious exercises.
Treasury of Scripture Knowledge
desert. It is probable, that we should refer [eremos,] desert, not to Gaza, but to [hodos,] the way; though Gaza was situated at the entrance of the desert, and the ancient city was in ruins, being destroyed by Alexander.
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?
and the borders of Canaan reached from Sidon toward Gerar as far as Gaza, and then toward Sodom, Gomorrah, Admah and Zeboyim, as far as Lasha.
But during the night an angel of the Lord opened the doors of the jail and brought them out.
Philip went down to a city in Samaria and proclaimed the Messiah there.
The Spirit told Philip, "Go to that chariot and stay near it."
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