v1: Prophets received revelation from G-d and they spoke it out (this revelation was based on the Word of G-d and always agreed with Scripture)
· Teachers took G-d’s revelation from the prophets and taught it in a way that people could respond to it/apply it to their lives.
· A tetrarch was a governor of a quarter of a region.
v2: In the early congregation fasting was a large part of worship. They fasted in order to be ready to worship G-d.
v3: Barnabas and Saul had been an integral part of this congregation. They were released from it by the Holy Spirits instruction.
v5: Salamis is still a city in Cyprus today.
· Teaching the Word of G-d is foundational for the spreading of the gospel.
· Note that they went to the Jewish synagogue FIRST (Roms 1:16). We are going to see that this is the pattern established throughout Acts.
v6: Bar -Yeshua (His name means ‘Son of salvation’) was a man steeped in falsehood and lies. A false prophet stands in opposition to the Word of G-d.
v7: A proconsul, a high official in the Roman empire, was an advisor to Caesar.
· The proconsul had been friends with the magician who was anti the Word of G-d but the proconsul (intelligent/wise) discerned a more excellent way then this falsehood when Saul and Barnabas came on the scene.
v9: “Full of the Holy Spirit” – The Holy Spirit brings order from chaos. Saul (when looking intently at Elymas) discerned who this man really was, what he was doing and who he truly belonged to.
v10: Through the revelation of the Holy Spirit a man/woman of G-d needs to speak boldly and clearly into any problems.
· A son of the devil – Elymas uses ingenious ways to deceive others – making it sound right, good and proper when in fact it is evil and ungodly.
· Full of deceit – even a little bit of falsehood corrupts.
· He perverted the way of the L-rd – Elymas wanted to take what is true and distort it.
v11: G-d’s authority/hand was over Elymas – the hand of G-d can bless or curse (Deut 28)
· Elymas was spiritually blind already so here Paul is talking about a physical blindness. When we disobey G-d there are physical consequences. As believers we go through discipline (Gal 3:13) but unbelievers live under a curse.
· To not even see light meant he was completely blind – completely in the dark. This parallels the plague of darkness in Ex 10:22-23. This was a punishment that brought great fear to the Egyptians. Those who reject the message of salvation will also be thrown into utter darkness (Matt 25:30)
v12: Judgement is so important. It is a manifestation of G-d’s power. When His power is manifested so is His glory. G-d’s righteous and just judgements lead to worship. The proconsul was amazed by the miracle, but he was just as amazed by the WORD of the L-rd. Sergius was able to discern the power of G-d from the false power of the magician.
Because people heard the Word of the L-rd they were able to have a new perspective (saw things differently), they were able to exercise discernment and identify that which was of the L-rd.