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Acts 11:20
by Don Costello  
6/05/2009 / Bible Studies

Acts 11:20

And some of them were men of Cyprus and Cyrene, which, when they were come to Antioch, spake unto the Grecians, preaching the Lord Jesus.

a. Grecians [1675 * Hellenistes] [Zodhiates: a Jew by birth or religion who speaks Greek, used chiefly of foreign Jews"

1). The Book of Acts, Stanley M. Horton, p140, Note 4.: "Many ancient manuscripts have the word here for "Greek speakers" which is sometimes used for Greek speaking Jews, but in the context it clearly means Greek-speaking Gentiles."

2). The Acts of the Apostles, Robert E. Tourville, p.217. "Some believers were so zealous for Christ that they could not limit their witness to Jews alone. These were from Cyprus and Cyrene. They "began speaking to the Greeks (Hellenas) also." There are variants to this reading among the MSS but this is doubtless the correct text from manuscript evidence; also because the text would be pointless if these believers spoke to Greek-speaking Jews (hellenistas, 6:1). It is evident that this witnessing was a departure from the "Jews only" of the preceeding verse."

b. Note DC: I have to believe as the two above scholars have written. Not only that, but it is here that Barnabas after seeing what was happening in Antioch, went to Tarsus to find Saul. Why? Because he knew that Saul's ministry was to the Gentiles.

1). Bruce M. Metzger, in his book, A Textual Commentary On The Greek New Testament, favors the word for Greek speaking Jews, but believes it should "be understood in the broad sense of "Greek-speaking persons," meaning thereby the mixed population of Antioch in contrast to the [Jews] of verse 19."

My name is Don Costello. Ever since I received Christ in November of 1976 I have had a passion to study and know God's word.My wife Melissa and I have 5 children.

My e-mail address is

I have a blog located at:

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