And when he had considered - When he had weighed every thing, and was fully satisfied of the Divine interposition, he went to the house of Mary, the mother of John Mark, the author of the Gospel, where it appears many were gathered together making prayer and supplication, and probably for Peter's release.
And when he had considered - Thinking on the subject; considering what he should do in these circumstances.
He came to the house of Mary - Probably this house was near him; and he would naturally seek the dwelling of a Christian friend.
The mother of John - Probably this was the John Mark who wrote the gospel. But this is not certain.
Whose surname - Greek: who was called Mark. It does not mean that he had two names conferred, as with us, both of which were used at the same time, but he was called by either, the Greeks probably using the name Mark, and the Jews the name John. He is frequently mentioned afterward as having been the attendant of Paul and Barnabas in their travels, Acts 12:25; Acts 15:39; 2 Timothy 4:11. He was a nephew of Barnabas, Colossians 4:10.
Where many were gathered together, praying - This was in the night, and it shows the propriety of observing extraordinary seasons of prayer, even in the night. Peter was to have been put to death the next day; and they assembled to pray for his release, and did not intermit their prayers. When dangers increase around us and our friends, we should become more fervent in prayer. While life remains we may pray; and even when there is no human hope, and we have no power to heal or deliver, still God may interpose, as he did here, in answer to prayer.
When, a few years afterward, I was speaking in general meetings, I met this man again, and at the close of my discourse he asked, “How did you get that wonderful voice?” I told him that the Lord had given it to me. When I began my public labors, I had no voice, except when I stood before the congregations to speak. At other times I could not speak above a whisper. “And,” I added, “I have often thought of what you said to the people when someone asked you how you became a minister. You told them that your friends said you could never be a minister, because you could not speak properly; but that you went away by yourself and talked to the trees in the woods; and then when driving the oxen, you would talk to them just as if you were in meeting. ‘This,’ you said, ‘is the way I learned to speak in public. “”—Manuscript 91, 1903. VSS 393.1
Divine Aid in Speaking—The following day I was ill, and very weak. The cold had taken a firm hold on my system. I doubted if I should be able to speak on the morrow. However, I ventured to allow the brethren to make an appointment for me to address the people Sabbath forenoon. I made the Lord my entire dependence; for I knew that unless He should be my helper, I could not speak more than a few words. My throat and head were greatly troubled. I was so hoarse that I could scarcely speak aloud. VSS 393.2
Sabbath morning I felt no better. At the appointed hour, I went over to the chapel, and found it crowded. I feared I should fail, but began talking. The moment I began to speak, strength was imparted. I was relieved of hoarseness, and spoke without difficulty for nearly an hour. My illness seemed to disappear, and my mind was clear. As soon as I finished speaking, the hoarseness came upon me again, and I began coughing and sneezing as before. VSS 394.1Read in context »
This chapter is based on Acts 12:1-23.
“Now about that time Herod the king stretched forth his hands to vex certain of the church.” The government of Judea was then in the hands of Herod Agrippa, subject to Claudius, the Roman emperor. Herod also held the position of tetrarch of Galilee. He was professedly a proselyte to the Jewish faith, and apparently very zealous in carrying out the ceremonies of the Jewish law. Desirous of obtaining the favor of the Jews, hoping thus to make secure his offices and honors, he proceeded to carry out their desires by persecuting the church of Christ, spoiling the houses and goods of the believers, and imprisoning the leading members of the church. He cast James, the brother of John, into prison, and sent an executioner to kill him with the sword, as another Herod had caused the prophet John to be beheaded. Seeing that the Jews were well pleased with these efforts, he imprisoned Peter also. AA 143.1Read in context »
Now from the light given me of God, I know that as a people we have not improved our opportunities for educating and training the youth. We should teach them how to read and understand the Scriptures. Wherever there is a Biblical institute for ministers and people, we should, in connection with it, organize a class for the youth. Their names should be registered. All should feel the importance of the scheme of educating the youth to understand the Scriptures. Let the work be taken hold of in the very simplicity of the truth itself. Lead the minds of the youth from truth to truth, up higher and higher, showing them how scripture interprets scripture, one passage being the key to other passages. Thus the Scripture itself will be the educating power, holding the thoughts in captivity to Christ.—Letter 27a, 1892. Ev 581.1
Children's Meetings in Evangelistic Efforts—The third angel is flying in the midst of heaven and bears on his banner the inscription, “The commandments of God and the faith of Jesus.” In every place where the tent is pitched earnest efforts should be made from the first to preach the gospel to the poor and to heal the sick. The work of giving spiritual sight to the blind has added many souls to our number of such as shall be saved. Ev 581.2
Meetings for the children should be held, not merely to educate and entertain them, but that they may be converted. And this will come to pass. If we exercise faith in God we shall be enabled to point them to the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world. All who attend our large gatherings are to be labored for. The high and the low, the rich and the poor, are to be reached by this class of labor.—Manuscript 6, 1900. Ev 582.1Read in context »
This chapter is based on Acts 12:1-23.
Herod was professedly a proselyte to the Jewish faith, and apparently very zealous in perpetuating the ceremonies of the law. The government of Judea was in his hands, subject to Claudius, the Roman emperor; he also held the position of tetrarch of Galilee. Herod was anxious to obtain the favor of the Jews, hoping thus to make secure his offices and honors. He therefore proceeded to carry out the desires of the Jews in persecuting the church of Christ. He began his work by spoiling the houses and goods of the believers; he then began to imprison the leading ones. He seized upon James and cast him into prison, and there sent an executioner to kill him with a sword, as another Herod had caused the prophet John to be beheaded. He then became bolder, seeing that the Jews were well pleased with his acts, and imprisoned Peter. These cruelties were performed during the sacred occasion of the Passover. SR 292.1Read in context »