Once when He was eating with them, He commanded them, “Do not leave Jerusalem until the Father sends you the gift He promised, as I told you before. John baptized with water, but in just a few days you will be baptized with the Holy Spirit.” So when the apostles were with Jesus, they kept asking Him, “Lord, has the time come for You to free Israel and restore our kingdom?”Acts 1:4-6
In the last Gem I asked three questions which I didn’t address in that Gem.
- “Once when He was eating with them” – why “once”?
- Is that day in question not linked sequentially?
- Why does Jesus place the element “with water” in the emphatic position in the sentence?
Let’s now deal with the first.
Συναλιζομενος from [sunalizō] – to gather together; to assemble with: – gathering…together.
- (ASV) and, being assembled together with them, he charged them . . .
- (BBE) And when they were all together, with him, he gave them orders . . .
- (CEV) While he was still withthem, he said: . . .
- (GNB) And when they came together, he gave them this order: . . .
- (GW) Once, while he was meeting withthem, he ordered them . . .
- (ISV) While he was meeting withthem, he ordered them . . .
- (LITV) And having met withthem, He charged them . . .
- (MSG) As they met and ate meals together, he told them . . .
- (NASB) Gathering them together, He commanded them . . .
- (NLT) Oncewhen He was eating withthem, He commanded them . . .
Notice the similarity between verse 4 and verse 6
Συνελθοντες from [sunerchomai] to come together, to accompany, assemble, gathered together , meet
- (ASV) They therefore, when they were come together, asked him, saying, Lord, dost thou at this time restore the kingdom to Israel?
- (BBE) So, when they were together, they said to him, Lord, will you at this time give back the kingdom to Israel?
- (CEV) While the apostles were still withJesus, they asked him, “Lord, are you now going to give Israel its own king again?”
- (GNB) When the apostles met together with Jesus, they asked him, “Lord, will you at this time give the Kingdom back to Israel?”
- GW) So when the apostles came together, they asked him, “Lord, is this the time when you’re going to restore the kingdom to Israel?”
- (ISV) Now those who had come together began to ask him, “Lord, is this the time when you will restore the kingdom to I
- (LITV) Then, indeed, coming together they questioned Him, saying, Lord, do You restore the kingdom to Israel at this time?
- (MSG) When they were together for the last time they asked, “Master, are you going to restore the kingdom to Israel now? Is this the time?”
- (NASB) So when they had come together, they were asking Him, saying, “Lord, is it at this time You are restoring the kingdom to Israel?”
- (NLT) So when the apostles were withJesus, they kept asking Him, “Lord, has the time come for You to free Israel and restore our kingdom?”
Συναλιζομενος is a very interesting word which has caused much debate. The standard conclusion is that it comes from sunalizoas defined above. Thus, it means something similar to sunerchomai, as the comparison of each individual translation on this verse above shows. Some suggest the derivation comes from halizein meaning to “salt” but could also mean “eating salt together” or simply “eating together”. Still others suggest it is an alternative spelling of sunaulizomenos which means “to lodge” or “pass the night together”.
Are we dealing with two different occasions when Jesus met with the disciples, one indicated by verse 4 and the other seen in verse 6? Many assume that the meeting in verse 4 is the same meeting described in Luke 24:33-49 because of the words used to close the time. If that is the case, then does that mean verse 6 of Acts 1 indicates a subsequent meeting? Or is there another alternative? The imperfect verb for “asked” infers the disciples asked the question repeatedly. My conclusion is that Jesus and the disciples were together over a period of time, not just meeting from time to time. Hence my focus on the translations “once” and “for the last time”. I think it is more likely that Jesus stayed with the disciples over a period of time. During that time, they asked many times about the timing of the Kingdom. We will look at the Kingdom focus in the next Gems.
I hasten to remind you, in terms of this discussion, that there is much debate about the meaning of [sunalizō]. My hunch is just that, a hunch. It fits the facts and allows for a longer time for the disciples to persist in their questioning about the timing of the Kingdom. It also fits the more natural scenario of Jesus spending the last days with the disciples rather than just meeting from time to time. But either way, we ought to be focused more on the words spoken that the nature of the time spent. Let’s keep the main thing the main thing.
Now for my second question – Why does Jesus place the element “with water” in the emphatic position in the sentence?
John baptised with (in) water. You will be baptised with (in) the Holy Spirit. Notice the contrasts going on. John’s baptism compared with this new Holy Spirit baptism. An interesting contrast – John’s Baptism versus Holy Spirit Baptism. It is like these two entities are the source of the baptism or the baptiser. But there is also the possibility that “with water” and “with Holy Spirit” are the means or the instrument by which the baptism is achieved. There is another way of looking at it, that the water and the Spirit are the location or “the place/location” where the baptism takes place. Thus “in water” and “in Holy Spirit”. But whatever the conclusion in this case, and believe me, much has been said about it, Jesus is unmistakably drawing a comparison between John’s baptism and Holy Spirit baptism, between water baptism and Holy Spirit baptism. There is more to come on this as we track the details and nature of these two baptisms through the Book of Acts. After all, it is in Luke’s second book that we find the practice and the doctrine of the two baptisms for the individual believer and for the church. More interesting things to come.
Choose to make the rest of your life, the best of your life.Jamie Dunn
If You Don’t Give God Your Time, Hell Is More Than Happy To Steal It From You.Robb Thompson
What you do today can improve all your tomorrows.Ralph Marston
Do it with all your heart, or don’t do it at all.Anon
If you are lucky enough to find a way of life you love, you have to find the courage to live it.John Irving