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Chapter 12

Acts 12 Commentary

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Acts 12:1-5 meaning

Herod Agrippa I begins persecuting the believers in Jerusalem. He executes James, one of the twelve Apostles. This violence makes the Pharisees and Sadducees happy, so Herod arrests Peter with the intention of executing him after Passover. The believers pray for Peter diligently.

Acts 12:6-11 meaning

While in prison, Peter is chained to two guards and has many more standing watch over him in his cell. While he is sleeping, an angel arrives in the cell and wakes him. The chains fall from Peter's wrists and the angel leads him out of the prison. Peter thinks he is dreaming, until he finds that he is genuinely free and standing in the street.

Acts 12:12-17 meaning

Peter goes to a woman named Mary’s house, where a prayer meeting is taking place. Believers have stayed awake praying for him all night. Peter knocks at the gate and a servant-girl hears his voice.

Acts 12:18-23 meaning

The next day, Herod and his men cannot find Peter. The king orders Peter's guards to be executed. Herod departs Jerusalem for Caesarea. Later, while standing before a crowd in his kingliest clothing, the people shout that he is a god. Herod welcomes their praise. God sends an angel to strike Herod dead soon after.

Acts 12:24-25 meaning

The good news about Christ Jesus's death and resurrection continues to spread. More and more people believe in it. Barnabas and Saul (Paul) leave Jerusalem and take Barnabas' cousin, John Mark, with them.