1 The former treatise have I made, O Theophilus, of all that Jesus began both to do and teach,

2 Until the day in which he was taken up, after that he through the Holy Ghost had given commandments unto the apostles whom he had chosen:

3 To whom also he shewed himself alive after his passion by many infallible proofs, being seen of them forty days, and speaking of the things pertaining to the kingdom of God:

4 And, being assembled together with them, commanded them that they should not depart from Jerusalem, but wait for the promise of the Father, which, saith he, ye have heard of me.

5 For John truly baptized with water; but ye shall be baptized with the Holy Ghost not many days hence.

6 When they therefore were come together, they asked of him, saying, Lord, wilt thou at this time restore again the kingdom to Israel?

7 And he said unto them, It is not for you to know the times or the seasons, which the Father hath put in his own power.

8 But ye shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you: and ye shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judaea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth.

9 And when he had spoken these things, while they beheld, he was taken up; and a cloud received him out of their sight.

10 And while they looked stedfastly toward heaven as he went up, behold, two men stood by them in white apparel;

11 Which also said, Ye men of Galilee, why stand ye gazing up into heaven? this same Jesus, which is taken up from you into heaven, shall so come in like manner as ye have seen him go into heaven.

12 Then returned they unto Jerusalem from the mount called Olivet, which is from Jerusalem a sabbath day's journey.

13 And when they were come in, they went up into an upper room, where abode both Peter, and James, and John, and Andrew, Philip, and Thomas, Bartholomew, and Matthew, James the son of Alphaeus, and Simon Zelotes, and Judas the brother of James.

14 These all continued with one accord in prayer and supplication, with the women, and Mary the mother of Jesus, and with his brethren.

15 And in those days Peter stood up in the midst of the disciples, and said, (the number of names together were about an hundred and twenty,)

16 Men and brethren, this scripture must needs have been fulfilled, which the Holy Ghost by the mouth of David spake before concerning Judas, which was guide to them that took Jesus.

17 For he was numbered with us, and had obtained part of this ministry.

18 Now this man purchased a field with the reward of iniquity; and falling headlong, he burst asunder in the midst, and all his bowels gushed out.

19 And it was known unto all the dwellers at Jerusalem; insomuch as that field is called in their proper tongue, Aceldama, that is to say, The field of blood.

20 For it is written in the book of Psalms, Let his habitation be desolate, and let no man dwell therein: and his bishoprick let another take.

21 Wherefore of these men which have companied with us all the time that the Lord Jesus went in and out among us,

22 Beginning from the baptism of John, unto that same day that he was taken up from us, must one be ordained to be a witness with us of his resurrection.

23 And they appointed two, Joseph called Barsabas, who was surnamed Justus, and Matthias.

24 And they prayed, and said, Thou, Lord, which knowest the hearts of all men, shew whether of these two thou hast chosen,

25 That he may take part of this ministry and apostleship, from which Judas by transgression fell, that he might go to his own place.

26 And they gave forth their lots; and the lot fell upon Matthias; and he was numbered with the eleven apostles.

Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary on the Whole Bible
back to: Acts
Book: Acts
Chapter: 1

Proofs of Christ's resurrection. (1-5) Christ's Ascension.
(6-11) The apostles unite in Prayer. (12-14) Matthias Chosen in
the place of Judas. (15-26)

1-5 Our Lord told the disciples the work they were to do. The
apostles met together at Jerusalem; Christ having ordered them
not to depart thence, but to wait for the pouring out of the
Holy Spirit. This would be a Baptism By the Holy Ghost, giving
them power to work miracles, and enlightening and sanctifying
their souls. This confirms the Divine promise, and encourages us
to depend upon it, that we have heard it from Christ; for in Him
all the promises of God are yea and Amen.

6-11 They were Earnest in asking about that which their Master
never had directed or encouraged them to seek. Our Lord knew
that his Ascension and the teaching of the Holy Spirit would
soon End these expectations, and therefore only gave them a
rebuke; but it is a caution to his Church in all ages, to take
heed of a desire of forbidden knowledge. He had given his
disciples instructions for the discharge of their duty, both
before his Death and since his resurrection, and this knowledge
is enough for a Christian. It is enough that He has engaged to
give believers strength equal to their trials and services; that
under the influence of the Holy Spirit they may, in one way or
other, be witnesses for Christ On Earth, while in Heaven he
manages their concerns with perfect Wisdom, Truth, and Love.
When we stand gazing and trifling, the thoughts of our Master's
second coming should quicken and awaken us: when we stand gazing
and trembling, they should comfort and encourage us. May our
expectation of it be stedfast and joyful, giving diligence to be
found of him blameless.

12-14 God can find hiding-places for his people. They made
supplication. All God's people are praying people. It was now a
time of trouble and danger with the disciples of Christ; but if
any is afflicted, let him pray; that will silence cares and
fears. They had now a great work to do, and before they entered
upon it, they were Earnest in Prayer to God for his presence.
They were waiting for the descent of the Spirit, and abounded in
Prayer. Those are in the best frame to receive spiritual
blessings, who are in a praying frame. Christ had promised
shortly to send the Holy Ghost; that promise was not to do away
Prayer, but to quicken and encourage it. A little company united
in Love, exemplary in their conduct, fervent in Prayer, and
wisely zealous to promote the cause of Christ, are likely to
increase rapidly.

15-26 The great thing the apostles were to attest to the world,
was, Christ's resurrection; for that was the great proof of his
being the Messiah, and the foundation of our Hope in him. The
apostles were ordained, not to worldly dignity and dominion, but
to preach Christ, and the power of his resurrection. An Appeal
was made to God; "Thou, Lord, who knowest the hearts of all
men," which we do not; and better than they know their own. It
is fit that God should choose his own servants; and So far as
he, By the disposals of his Providence, or the Gifts of his
Spirit, shows whom he was Chosen, or what he has Chosen for us,
we ought to fall in with his will. Let us own his Hand in the
determining everything which befalls us, especially in those By
which any trust may be committed to us.

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