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Acts 4:31

    Acts 4:31 Translations

    King James Version (KJV)

    And when they had prayed, the place was shaken where they were assembled together; and they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and they spake the word of God with boldness.

    American King James Version (AKJV)

    And when they had prayed, the place was shaken where they were assembled together; and they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and they spoke the word of God with boldness.

    American Standard Version (ASV)

    And when they had prayed, the place was shaken wherein they were gathered together; and they were all filled with the Holy Spirit, and they spake the word of God with boldness.

    Basic English Translation (BBE)

    And when their prayer was ended, the place where they were was violently moved, and they all became full of the Holy Spirit, preaching the word of God without fear.

    Webster's Revision

    And when they had prayed, the place was shaken wherein they were gathered together; and they were all filled with the Holy Spirit, and they spake the word of God with boldness.

    World English Bible

    When they had prayed, the place was shaken where they were gathered together. They were all filled with the Holy Spirit, and they spoke the word of God with boldness.

    English Revised Version (ERV)

    And when they had prayed, the place was shaken wherein they were gathered together; and they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and they spake the word of God with boldness.

    Clarke's Commentary on Acts 4:31

    The place was shaken - This earthquake was an evidence of the presence of God, and a most direct answer to their prayer, as far as that prayer concerned themselves. The earthquake proclaimed the stretched-out arm of God, and showed them that resistance against his counsels and determinations must come to nought.

    And they were all filled with the Holy Ghost - And, in consequence of this, they spake the word of God with boldness; a pointed answer to a second part of their request, Acts 4:29. A right prayer will always have a right and ready answer. Though these disciples had received the Holy Spirit on the day of pentecost, yet they were capable of larger communications; and what they had then received did not preclude the necessity of frequent supplies, on emergent occasions. Indeed, one communication of this Spirit always makes way and disposes for another. Neither apostle nor private Christian can subsist in the Divine life without frequent influences from on high. Had these disciples depended on their pentecostal grace, they might have sunk now under the terror and menaces of their combined and powerful foes. God gives grace for the time being, but no stock for futurity, because he will keep all his followers continually dependent on himself.

    With boldness - Παντι τῳ θελοντι πιστευειν, To all who were willing to believe, is added by DE, two others, Augustin, Irenaeus, and Bede.

    Barnes' Notes on Acts 4:31

    And when they had prayed - The event which followed was regarded by them as an evidence that God heard their prayer.

    The place was shaken - The word which is translated "was shaken" commonly denotes "violent agitation," as the raging of the sea, the convulsion of an earthquake, or trees shaken by the wind, Matthew 11:7; Acts 16:26; Hebrews 12:26. The language here is suited to express the idea of an earthquake. Whether the motion was confined to the house where they were is not said. They probably regarded this as an answer to their prayer, or as an evidence that God would be with them:

    (1) Because it was sudden and violent, and was not produced by any natural causes;

    (2) Because it occurred immediately, while they were seeking divine direction;

    (3) Because it was an exhibition of great power, and was an evidence that God could protect them; and,

    (4) Because a convulsion so great, sudden, and mighty was suited at that time to awe them with a proof of the presence and power of God. A similar instance of an answer to prayer by an earthquake is recorded in Acts 16:25-26. Compare Acts 2:1-2. It may be added, that among the Jews an earthquake was very properly regarded as a striking and impressive proof of the presence of Yahweh, Isaiah 29:6; Psalm 68:8, "The earth shook, the heavens also dropped at the presence of God; even Sinai itself was moved at the presence of God, the God of Israel." See also the sublime description in Habakkuk 3, particularly Acts 4:6-11. Compare Matthew 27:54. Among the pagan, an earthquake was regarded as proof of the presence and favor of the Deity. (See Virgil, Aeneid, 3:89.)

    They were all filled ... - See the notes on Acts 2:4. Their being filled with the Holy Spirit here rather denotes their being inspired with confidence or boldness than being endowed with new powers, as in Acts 2:4.

    Wesley's Notes on Acts 4:31

    4:31 They were all filled - Afresh; and spake the word with boldness - So their petition was granted.