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Acts 26:23

    Acts 26:23 Translations

    King James Version (KJV)

    That Christ should suffer, and that he should be the first that should rise from the dead, and should shew light unto the people, and to the Gentiles.

    American King James Version (AKJV)

    That Christ should suffer, and that he should be the first that should rise from the dead, and should show light to the people, and to the Gentiles.

    American Standard Version (ASV)

    how that the Christ must suffer, and how that he first by the resurrection of the dead should proclaim light both to the people and to the Gentiles.

    Basic English Translation (BBE)

    That the Christ would go through pain, and being the first to come back from the dead, would give light to the people and to the Gentiles.

    Webster's Revision

    how that the Christ must suffer, and how that he first by the resurrection of the dead should proclaim light both to the people and to the Gentiles.

    World English Bible

    how the Christ must suffer, and how, by the resurrection of the dead, he would be first to proclaim light both to these people and to the Gentiles."

    English Revised Version (ERV)

    how that the Christ must suffer, and how that he first by the resurrection of the dead should proclaim light both to the people and to the Gentiles.

    Definitions for Acts 26:23

    Gentiles - A people; nations other than Israel.

    Clarke's Commentary on Acts 26:23

    That Christ should suffer - That the Christ, or Messiah, should suffer. This, though fully revealed in the prophets, the prejudices of the Jews would not permit them to receive: they expected their Messiah to be a glorious secular prince; and, to reconcile the fifty-third of Isaiah with their system, they formed the childish notion of two Messiahs - Messiah ben David, who should reign, conquer, and triumph; and Messiah ben Ephraim, who should suffer and be put to death. A distinction which has not the smallest foundation in the whole Bible.

    As the apostle says he preached none other things than those which Moses and the prophets said should come, therefore he understood that both Moses and the prophets spoke of the resurrection of the dead, as well as of the passion and resurrection of Christ. If this be so, the favourite system of a learned bishop cannot be true; viz. that the doctrine of the immortality of the soul was unknown to the ancient Jews.

    That he should be the first that should rise from the dead - That is, that he should be the first who should rise from the dead so as to die no more; and to give, in his own person, the proof of the resurrection of the human body, no more to return under the empire of death. In no other sense can Jesus Christ be said to be the first that rose again from the dead; for Elisha raised the son of the Shunammite. A dead man, put into the sepulchre of the Prophet Elisha, was restored to life as soon as he touched the prophet's bones. Christ himself had raised the widow's son at Nain; and he had also raised Lazarus, and several others. All these died again; but the human nature of our Lord was raised from the dead, and can die no more. Thus he was the first who rose again from the dead to return no more into the empire of death.

    And should show light unto the people - Should give the true knowledge of the law and the prophets to the Jews; for these are meant by the term people, as in Acts 26:17. And to the Gentiles, who had no revelation, and who sat in the valley of the shadow of death: these also, through Christ, should be brought to the knowledge of the truth, and be made a glorious Church, without spot, or wrinkle, or any such thing. That the Messiah should be the light both of the Jews and Gentiles, the prophets had clearly foretold: see Isaiah 60:1 : Arise and shine, or be illuminated, for thy Light is come, and the glory of the Lord is risen upon thee. And again, Isaiah 49:6 : I will give thee for a Light to the Gentiles, that thou mayest be my salvation unto the ends of the earth. With such sayings as these Agrippa was well acquainted, from his education as a Jew.

    Barnes' Notes on Acts 26:23

    That Christ - That the Messiah expected by the Jews should be a suffering Messiah.

    Should suffer - Should lead a painful life, and be put to death. See the notes on Acts 17:3; compare Daniel 9:27; Isaiah 53:1-12.

    And that he should be the first ... - This declaration contains two points:

    (1) That it was taught in the prophets that the Messiah Would rise from the dead. On this, see the proof alleged in Acts 2:24-32; Acts 13:32-37.

    (2) that he would be the first that should rise. This cannot mean that the Messiah would be the first dead person who should be restored to life, for Elijah had raised the son of the Shunammite, and Jesus himself had raised Lazarus, and the widow's son at Nain. It does not mean that he would be the first in the order of time that should rise, but first in eminence; the most distinguished, the chief, the head of those who should rise from the dead - πρῶτος ἐξ ἀναστάσεως νεκρῶν prōtos ex anastaseōs nekrōn. In accordance with this he is called Colossians 1:18 "the beginning, the first-born from the dead," having among all the dead who should be raised up the pre-eminence of primogeniture, or what pertained to the first-born. In 1 Corinthians 15:20 he is called "the first fruits of them that slept. This declaration is therefore made of him by way of eminence:

    (1) As being chief, a prince among those raised from the dead;

    (2) As being raised by his own power John 10:18;

    (3) As, by his rising, securing a dominion over death and the grave 1 Corinthians 15:25-26; and,

    (4) As bringing, by his rising, life and immortality to light. He rose to return to death no more. And he thus secured an ascendency over death and the grave, and was thus, by way of eminence, first among those raised from the dead.

    And should show light unto the people - To the Jews. Would be their instructor and prophet. This Moses had predicted, Deuteronomy 18:15.

    And to the Gentiles - This had often been foretold by the prophets, and particularly by Isaiah, Isaiah 9:1-2; compare Matthew 4:14-16; Isaiah 11:10; Isaiah 42:1, Isaiah 42:6; Isaiah 54:3; Isaiah 60:3, Isaiah 60:5,Isaiah 60:11; Isaiah 61:6; Isaiah 62:2; Isaiah 66:12.