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14A certain woman named Lydia, a worshiper of God, was listening to us; she was from the city of Thyatira and a dealer in purple cloth. The Lord opened her heart to listen eagerly to what was said by Paul. 15When she and her household were baptized, she urged us, saying, “If you have judged me to be faithful to the Lord, come and stay at my home.” And she prevailed upon us.


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14, 15. Lydia—a common name among the Greeks and Romans.

a seller of purple, of the city of Thyatira—on the confines of Lydia and Phrygia. The Lydians, particularly the inhabitants of Thyatira, were celebrated for their dyeing, in which they inherited the reputation of the Tyrians. Inscriptions to this effect, yet remaining, confirm the accuracy of our historian. This woman appears to have been in good circumstances, having an establishment at Philippi large enough to accommodate the missionary party (Ac 16:15), and receiving her goods from her native town.

which worshipped God—that is, was a proselyte to the Jewish faith, and as such present at this meeting.

whose heart the Lord opened—that is, the Lord Jesus (see Ac 16:15; and compare Lu 24:45; Mt 11:27).

that she attended to the things … spoken by Paul—"showing that the inclination of the heart towards the truth originates not in the will of man. The first disposition to turn to the Gospel is a work of grace" [Olshausen]. Observe here the place assigned to "giving attention" or "heed" to the truth—that species of attention which consists in having the whole mind engrossed with it, and in apprehending and drinking it in, in its vital and saving character.

15. And when … baptized … and her household—probably without much delay. The mention of baptism here for the first time in connection with the labors of Paul, while it was doubtless performed on all his former converts, indicates a special importance in this first European baptism. Here also is the first mention of a Christian household. Whether it included children, also in that case baptized, is not explicitly stated; but the presumption, as in other cases of household baptism, is that it did. Yet the question of infant baptism must be determined on other grounds; and such incidental allusions form only part of the historical materials for ascertaining the practice of the Church.

she besought us, saying, If ye have judged me to be faithful to the Lord—the Lord Jesus; that is, "By the faith on Him which ye have recognized in me by baptism." There is a beautiful modesty in the expression.

And she constrained us—The word seems to imply that they were reluctant, but were overborne.




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