- Acts 14:11-15
- Acts 14:11 (KJB)
- And when the people saw what Paul had done, they lifted up their voices,
saying in the speech of Lycaonia, The gods are come down to us in the
likeness of men.
- Since many people were in this location, they saw what happened when
this man became healed and was able to walk. Instead of giving God the glory
for this miracle, the area was steeped in the false gods of Greece. They
thought that some of the Greek gods had come down to visit Lystra. Paul and
Barnabas probably did not understand the language of the Lycaonia area and
although they saw the happiness of the people and probably thought they were
rejoicing with the healing of the man but were unprepared for what they were
about to encounter once they found out what these people were really saying.
It was probably some type of Greek dialect but is unknown as what it exactly
- Acts 14:12 (KJB)
- And they called Barnabas, Jupiter; and Paul, Mercurius, because he was
the chief speaker.
- Once they started naming names, Paul and Barnabas then understood what
they were doing. They had called Barnabas, Jupiter which was the Roman equal
to Zeus. Then since Paul was the chief speaker, he was called, Mercurius or
Mercury who was the Roman equivalent of the false god Hermes who was the
chief speaker for Zeus. Now Paul and Barnabas knew what the townspeople were
- Acts 14:13 (KJB)
- Then the priest of Jupiter, which was before their city, brought oxen
and garlands unto the gates, and would have done sacrifice with the people.
- The priest of Zeus had been notified that the gods had come down and now
they were ready to put a wreath upon them and they brought some oxen to them
and were planning on making a sacrifice to them. The people of Lystra were
acting according to their religion by believing the false gods had come down
to them. It was probably going to be a big feast.
- Acts 14:14 (KJB)
- Which when the apostles, Barnabas and Paul, heard of, they
rent their clothes, and ran in among the people, crying out,
- Crying - Called or screamed
- Paul and Barnabas now finally realized what these people were doing as
someone had probably interpreted the language for them. As soon as they
found out what was happening, they had immediately tore their clothes as a
sign of grief or dismay. They then immediately rushed into the crowd and
began to speak in very loud voices.
- Acts 14:15 (KJB)
- And saying, Sirs, why do ye these things? We also are men of like
passions with you, and preach unto you that ye should turn from these
vanities unto the living God, which made heaven, and earth, and the sea,
and all things that are therein:
- Vanities - Empty, futility, worthlessness
- Paul and Barnabas had tried to the best of their ability to stop this
ceremony. They had told the people that they are not gods but they are men
who are just like the rest of them. There was nothing supernatural about
them. They completely misunderstood Paulís message in that they were not
preaching about themselves but were bringing the true Gospel of the Lord
Jesus Christ to them. He desired them to turn from the vanity of false gods
unto the true and living God who was the creator of the earth, its fullness,
and also the entire universe. Paul wanted to disabuse them of the idea that
they were somehow more than human. He wanted them to know that they were
representatives of the Lord Jesus Christ bringing the Gospel to them.