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Geneva Study Notes
Acts Chapter 6

Acts 6:1
6:1 And {1} in those days, when the number of the disciples was
    multiplied, there arose a murmuring of the {a} Grecians
    against the Hebrews, because their widows were neglected in
    the {b} daily ministration.

 (1) When Satan has assailed the Church on the outside, and with
     little result and in vain, he assails it on the inside,
     with civil dissension and strife between themselves: but
     the apostles take occasion by this to set order in the
     Church.
     (a) From among their own members, who became religious Jews
         from among the Greeks.
     (b) In the bestowing of alms according to their need.

Acts 6:2
6:2 {2} Then the twelve called the multitude of the disciples
    [unto them], and said, It is not {c} reason that we should
    leave the word of God, and serve {d} tables.

 (2) The office of preaching the word, and dispensing the goods
     of the Church, are different from one another, and not
     rashly to be joined together, as the apostles institute
     here.  And the deacons must seek the consent of the Church
     more than the apostles.
     (c) It is such a matter that we may in no way accept it.
     (d) Banquets: though by the name of tables other offices
         are also meant, which are added to it, such as those
         which pertain to the care of the poor.

Acts 6:3
6:3 {3} Wherefore, brethren, look ye out among you seven men of
    honest report, full of the Holy Ghost and wisdom, whom we
    may appoint over this business.

 (3) In choosing deacons (and much more in choosing ministers)
     there must be an examination of both their learning and
     their manners of life.

Acts 6:6
6:6 {4} Whom they set before the apostles: and when they had
    prayed, they {e} laid [their] hands on them.

 (4) The ancient Church, with the laying on of hands, as it were
     consecrated to the Lord those who were lawfully elected.
     (e) This ceremony of the laying on of hands came from the
         Jews, who used this ceremony both in public affairs,
         and in the offering of sacrifices, and also in private
         prayers and blessings, as appears in Genesis 48:13-22;
         and the Church also observed this ceremony, as is evident
         from 1 Timothy 5:22; Acts 8:17.  However, there is no
         mention made here either of cream, or shaving, or
         razing, or crossing, etc.

Acts 6:7
6:7 {5} And the word of God increased; and the number of the
    disciples multiplied in Jerusalem greatly; and a great
    company of the priests were obedient to the {f} faith.

 (5) A happy result of temptation.
     (f) This is the figure of speech metonymy, meaning by
         "faith" the doctrine of the Gospel which brings about
         faith.

Acts 6:8
6:8 {6} And Stephen, full of faith and {g} power, did great
    wonders and miracles among the people.

 (6) God trains his Church first with evil words and slanders,
     then with imprisonments, afterwards with scourgings, and
     by these means prepares it in such a way that at length he
     causes it to meet in combat with Satan and the world, even
     to bloodshed and death.
     (g) Excellent and singular gifts.

Acts 6:9
6:9 {7} Then there arose certain of the {h} synagogue, which is
    called [the synagogue] of the Libertines, and Cyrenians,
    and Alexandrians, and of them of Cilicia and of Asia,
    disputing with Stephen.

 (7) Schools and universities in ancient times were addicted to
     false pastors, and were the instruments of Satan to spread
     abroad and defend false doctrines.
     (h) Of the people and the school, as it were.

Acts 6:10
6:10 {8} And they were not able to resist the wisdom and the
     spirit by which he spake.

 (8) False teachers, because they will not be overcome, flee
     from disputations and resort to manifest and open
     slandering and false accusations.

Acts 6:12
6:12 {9} And they stirred up the people, and the elders, and the
     scribes, and came upon [him], and caught him, and brought
     [him] to the council,

 (9) The first bloody persecution of the Church of Christ, began
     and sprang from a council of priests, by the suggestion of
     the university teachers.

Acts 6:13
6:13 {10} And set up false witnesses, which said, This man
     ceaseth not to speak blasphemous words against this holy
     place, and the law:

 (10) An example of frivolous objectors or false accusers, who
      gather false conclusions from things that are well uttered
      and spoken.

Acts 6:15
6:15 And all that sat in the council, looking stedfastly on him,
     {i} saw his face as it had been the face of an angel.

      (i) By this it appears that Steven had an excellent and
          wholesome countenance, having a quiet and settled
          mind, a good conscience, and certain conviction that
          his cause was just: for seeing as he was to speak
          before the people, God beautified his countenance, so
          that by the very beholding of him the Jews' minds
          might be penetrated and amazed.



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