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THE ACTS OF THE APOSTLES - Chapter 7 - Verse 38

Verse 38. In the church. The word church means, literally, the people called out; and is applied with great propriety to the assembly or multitude called out of Egypt, and separated from the world. It has not, however, of necessity our idea of a church; but means the assembly, or people called out of Egypt, and placed under the conduct of Moses,

With the angel. In this place there is undoubted reference to the giving of the law on Mount Sinai. Yet that was done by God himself, Ex 20. It is clear, therefore, that by the angel here Stephen intends to designate him who was God. It may be observed, however, that the law is represented as having been given by the ministry of an angel (in this place,) and by the ministry of angels, Ac 7:53 Heb 2:2. The essential idea is, that God did it by a messenger, or by mediators. The character and rank of the messengers, or of the principal messenger, must be learned by looking at all the circumstances of the case.

The lively oracles. See Ro 3:2. The word oracles here means commands or laws of God, The word lively, or livingzwnta—stands in opposition to that which is dead, or useless, and means that which is vigorous, efficacious; and in this place it means that the commands were of such a nature, and given in such circumstances, as to secure attention; to produce obedience; to excite them to act for God—in opposition to laws which would fall powerless, and produce no effect.

{h} "This is he" Heb 2:2 {+} "church" "Congregation" {i} "angel" Isa 63:9; Ga 3:19 {k} "in the mount Sina" Ex 19:3,17 {l} "who received" De 5:27,31; Joh 1:17

{m} "received" Ro 3:2 {*) "lively" "Life giving"

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