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THE ACTS OF THE APOSTLES - Chapter 5 - Verse 6

Verse 6. And the young men. The youth of the congregation; very probably young men who were in attendance as servants, or those whose business it was to attend on the congregation, and perform various offices when Christians celebrated their worship, (Mosheim.) The word used here sometimes denotes a servant. It is used also Ac 5:10, to denote soldiers, as they were commonly enlisted of the vigorous and young. The fact that they took up Ananias voluntarily, implies that they were accustomed to perform offices of servitude to the congregation.

Wound him up. It was the usual custom with the Jews to wind the body up in many folds of linen before it was buried; commonly also with spices, to preserve it from putrefaction. See Barnes "Joh 11:44".

It may be asked why he was so soon buried; and especially why he was hurried away without giving information to his wife. In reply to this, it may be remarked,

(1.) that it does not appear from the narrative that it was known that Sapphira was privy to the transaction, or was near at hand, or even that he had a wife. Ananias came himself and offered the money; and the judgment fell at once on him.

(2.) It was customary among the ancient Persians to bury the body almost immediately after death, (Jahn;) and it seems probable that the Jews, when the body was not embalmed, imitated the custom. It would also appear that this was an ancient custom among the Jews. See Ge 23:19; 25:9; 35:29; 48:7; 1 Ki 13:30.

Different nations differ in their customs in burying the dead; and there is no impropriety in committing a body soon after death to the tomb.

(3.) There might have been some danger of an excitement and tumult in regard to this scene, if the corpse had not soon been removed; and as no valuable purpose could be answered by delaying the burial, the body was decently committed to the dust.

{b} "wound him" Joh 19:40

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