The Jews - were filled with envy - See on Acts 5:17; (note). These could not bear the Gentiles, who believed in Christ, to be equal with them; and yet; according to the Gospel, it was really the case.
Contradicting - The arguments and statements brought forward by the disciples; and blaspheming, speaking impiously and injuriously of Jesus Christ. This is probably what is meant.
They were filled with envy - Greek: “zeal.” The word here denotes “wrath in dignation,” that such multitudes should be disposed to hear a message which they rejected, and which threatened to overthrow their religion.
Spake against - Opposed the doctrine that Jesus was the Messiah; that the Messiah would be humble, lowly, despised, and put to death.
Contradicting - Contradicting the apostles. This was evidently done in their presence, Acts 13:46, and would cause great tumult and disorder.
And blaspheming - See the notes on Matthew 9:3. The sense evidently is, that they reproached and vilified Jesus of Nazareth; they spake of him with contempt and scorn. To speak thus of him is denominated blasphemy, Luke 22:65. When people are enraged, they have little regard for the words which they utter, and care little how they may be regarded by God. When people attached themselves to a sect or a party, in religion or politics, and they have no good arguments to employ, they attempt to overwhelm their adversaries by bitter and reproachful words. People in the heat of strife, and in professed zeal for special doctrines, more frequently utter blasphemy than they are aware. Precious and pure doctrines are often thus vilified fled because we do not believe them; and the heart of the Saviour is pierced anew, and his cause bleeds, by the wrath and wickedness of his professed friends. Compare Acts 18:6.
This desertion caused Paul to judge Mark unfavorably, and even severely, for a time. Barnabas, on the other hand, was inclined to excuse him because of his inexperience. He felt anxious that Mark should not abandon the ministry, for he saw in him qualifications that would fit him to be a useful worker for Christ. In after years his solicitude in Mark's behalf was richly rewarded, for the young man gave himself unreservedly to the Lord and to the work of proclaiming the gospel message in difficult fields. Under the blessing of God, and the wise training of Barnabas, he developed into a valuable worker. AA 170.1
Paul was afterward reconciled to Mark and received him as a fellow laborer. He also recommended him to the Colossians as one who was a fellow worker “unto the kingdom of God,” and “a comfort unto me.” Colossians 4:11. Again, not long before his own death, he spoke of Mark as “profitable” to him “for the ministry.” 2 Timothy 4:11. AA 170.2
After the departure of Mark, Paul and Barnabas visited Antioch in Pisidia and on the Sabbath day went into the Jewish synagogue and sat down. “After the reading of the law and the prophets the rulers of the synagogue sent unto them, saying, Ye men and brethren, if ye have any word of exhortation for the people, say on.” Being thus invited to speak, “Paul stood up, and beckoning with his hand said, Men of Israel, and ye that fear God, give audience.” Then followed a wonderful discourse. He proceeded to give a history of the manner in which the Lord had dealt with the Jews from the time of their deliverance from Egyptian bondage, and how a Saviour had been promised, of the seed of David, and he boldly declared that “of this man's seed hath God according to His promise raised unto Israel a Saviour, Jesus: when John had first preached before His coming the baptism of repentance to all the people of Israel. And as John fulfilled his course, he said, Whom think ye that I am? I am not He. But, behold, there cometh One after me, whose shoes of His feet I am not worthy to loose.” Thus with power he preached Jesus as the Saviour of men, the Messiah of prophecy. AA 170.3Read in context »