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THE ACTS OF THE APOSTLES - Chapter 3 - Verse 25

Verse 25. Ye are the children of the prophets. Greek, "Ye are the sons of the prophets." The meaning is, not that they were literally the descendants of the prophets, but that they were their disciples, pupils, followers. They professed to follow the prophets as their teachers and guides. Teachers among the Jews were often spoken of under the appellation of fathers, and disciples as sons, Mt 12:27. See Barnes "Mt 1:1".

As they were the professed disciples of the prophets, they should listen to them. As they lived among the people to whom the prophets were sent, and to whom the promises were made, they should avail themselves of the offer of mercy, and embrace the Messiah.

And of the covenant. Ye are the sons of the covenant; that is, you are of the posterity of Abraham, with whom the covenant was made. The word "sons" was often thus used to denote those to whom any favour appertained, whether by inheritance, or in any other way. Thus, Mt 8:12, "the children (sons) of the kingdom." Joh 17:12: "The son of perdition." The word covenant denotes, properly, a compact or agreement between equals, or those who have a right to make such a compact, and to choose or refuse the terms. When applied to God and man, it denotes a firm promise on the part of God; a pledge to be regarded with all the sacredness of a compact, that he will do certain things on certain conditions. It is called a covenant only to designate its sacredness and the certainty of its fulfillment; not that man had any right to reject any of the terms or stipulations. As man has no such right—as he is bound to receive all that his Maker proposes—so, strictly and literally, there has been no compact or covenant between God and man. The promise to which Peter refers in the passage before us is in Ge 22:18; 12:3.

In thy seed. Thy posterity. See Ro 4:13,16. This promise, the apostle Paul affirms, had express reference to the Messiah, Ga 3:16. The word seed is used sometimes to denote an individual, Ge 4:25 and the apostle Ga 3:16 affirms that there was special reference to Christ in the promise made to Abraham.

All the kindreds. The word translated kindreds patriai denotes those who have a common father or ancestor, and is applied to families. It is also referred to those larger communities which descended from the same ancestor, and thus refers to nations, Eph 3:15. Here it evidently refers to all nations.

Be blessed. Be made happy.

{a} "are the children" Ro 9:4; 15:8 {*} "children" "sons" {b} "in thy seed" Ge 22:18

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