Acts 6 Commentary

Acts 6 commentary Bible study

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Acts 6 commentary Bible study

Acts 6:1 Commentary

Acts 6:1-2 Commentary: Hellenists
Acts 6:3-7 Commentary: Seven Men
Acts 6:8-15 Commentary: Synagogue of the Freedmen
Acts 6 Bible Study Questions (Handout)
ACTS 6:1  1 Now in those days, when the number of the disciples was multiplying, there arose a complaint against the Hebrews by the Hellenists, because their widows were neglected in the daily distribution.

What is meant by "the number of the disciples was multiplying" (Acts 6:1)?
Acts 2:47 reads, "And the Lord added - προσετιθει (prosetithei) - to the church daily those who were being saved," but by this time, the number of disciples was "multiplying" - πληθυνοντων (plethunonton) - (Acts 6:1), so the Lord had accelerated the church's growth rate.

What is meant by "their widows were neglected in the daily distribution" (Acts 6:1)?
In those days, women didn't inherit property, so their livelihood depended on what their father, husband and/or son(s) brought home. If none of them existed, widows could "glean" and pick up the leftovers after others' crop fields had been harvested. This wasn't considered stealing or begging, as it was a God-ordained way to provide for those who couldn't provide for themselves: "When you reap your harvest in your field, and forget a sheaf in the field, you shall not go back to get it; it shall be for the stranger, the fatherless, and the widow, that the LORD your God may bless you in all the work of your hands. When you beat your olive trees, you shall not go over the boughs again; it shall be for the stranger, the fatherless, and the widow. When you gather the grapes of your vineyard, you shall not glean it afterward; it shall be for the stranger, the fatherless, and the widow" (Deuteronomy 24:19-21). And when a widow became too old to glean, her other relatives were to provide for her. Here, the Christians were providing "daily" for the widows among them but the widows among the Hellenists apparently had been neglected.

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