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John Wesley's notes on the Acts of the Apostles


Chapter II 

1  At the pentecost of Sinai, in the Old Testament, and the pentecost of Jerusalem, in the New, where the two grand manifestations of God, the legal and the evangelical; the one from the mountain, and the other from heaven; the terrible, and the merciful one. They were all with one accord in one place - So here was a conjunction of company, minds, and place; the whole hundred and twenty being present. 

2  And suddenly there came a sound from heaven - So will the Son of man come to judgment. And it filled all the house - That is, all that part of the temple where they were sitting. 

3  And there appeared distinct tongues, as of fire - That is, small flames of fire. This is all which the phrase, tongues of fire, means in the language of the seventy. Yet it might intimate God's touching their tongues as it were (together with their hearts) with Divine fire: his giving them such words as were active and penetrating, even as flaming fire. 

4  And they began to speak with other tongues - The miracle was not in the ears of the hearers, (as some have unaccountably supposed,) but in the mouth of the speakers. And this family praising God together, with the tongues of all the world, was an earnest that the whole world should in due time praise God in their various tongues. As the Spirit gave them utterance - Moses, the type of the law, was of a slow tongue; but the Gospel speaks with a fiery and flaming one. 

5  And there were dwelling in Jerusalem Jews - Gathered from all parts by the peculiar providence of God. 

6  The multitude came together, and were confounded - The motions of their minds were swift and various. 

9  Judea - The dialect of which greatly differed from that of Galilee. Asia - The country strictly so called. 

10  Roman sojourners - Born at Rome, but now living at Jerusalem. These seem to have come to Jerusalem after those who are above mentioned. All of them were partly Jews by birth, and partly proselytes. 

11  Cretans - One island seems to be mentioned for all. The wonderful works of God - Probably those which related to the miracles, death, resurrection, and ascension of Christ, together with the effusion of his Spirit, as a fulfilment of his promises, and the glorious dispensations of Gospel grace.