Lydia, a seller of purple - She probably had her name from the province of Lydia, in which the city of Thyatira was situated. The Lydian women have been celebrated for their beautiful purple manufactures.
Which worshipped God - That is, she was a proselyte to the Jewish religion; as were probably all the women that resorted hither.
Whose heart the Lord opened - As she was a sincere worshipper of God, she was prepared to receive the heavenly truths spoken by Paul and his companions; and, as she was faithful to the grace she had received, so God gave her more grace, and gave her now a Divine conviction that what was spoken by Paul was true; and therefore she attended unto the things - she believed them and received them as the doctrines of God; and in this faith she was joined by her whole family, and in it they were all baptized.
A seller of purple - Purple was a most valuable color, obtained usually from shellfish. It was chiefly worn by princes and by the rich, and the traffic in it might be very profitable. Compare the Isaiah 1:18 note; Luke 16:19 note.
The city of Thyatira - This was a city of Lydia, in Asia Minor, now called Akhisar. The art of dyeing was early cultivated in the neighborhood of Thyatira, as we learn from Homer (Iliad, iv. 141), and as is confirmed by inscriptions found in that city - a circumstance which may be referred to as confirming the veracity of the statements of Luke even in his casual allusions. Several of these inscriptions have been published. See the Life and Epistles of Paul, i. 295.
Which worshipped God - A religious woman, a proselyte. See the note at Acts 13:16.
Whose heart the Lord opened - See the note at Luke 24:45.
The language of the meek is never that of boasting. Like the child Samuel, they pray, “Speak, Lord; for thy servant heareth” (1 Samuel 3:9). When Joshua was placed in the highest position of honor, as commander of Israel, he bade defiance to all the enemies of God. His heart was filled with noble thoughts of his great mission. Yet upon the intimation of a message from Heaven he placed himself in the position of a little child to be directed. “What saith my Lord unto his servant?” (Joshua 5:14), was his response. The first words of Paul after Christ was revealed to him were, “Lord, what wilt thou have me to do?” (Acts 9:6). SL 15.1
Meekness in the school of Christ is one of the marked fruits of the Spirit. It is a grace wrought by the Holy Spirit as a sanctifier, and enables its possessor at all times to control a rash and impetuous temper. When the grace of meekness is cherished by those who are naturally sour or hasty in disposition, they will put forth the most earnest efforts to subdue their unhappy temper. Every day they will gain self-control, until that which is unlovely and unlike Jesus is conquered. They become assimilated to the Divine Pattern, until they can obey the inspired injunction, “Be swift to hear, slow to speak, slow to wrath” (James 1:19). SL 15.2Read in context »
This chapter is based on Acts 16:7-40.
The time had come for the gospel to be proclaimed beyond the confines of Asia Minor. The way was preparing for Paul and his fellow workers to cross over into Europe. At Troas, on the borders of the Mediterranean Sea, “a vision appeared to Paul in the night: There stood a man of Macedonia, and prayed him, saying, Come over into Macedonia, and help us.” AA 211.1Read in context »
After spending some time in ministry at Antioch, Paul proposed to his fellow worker that they set forth on another missionary journey. “Let us go again,” he said to Barnabas, “and visit our brethren in every city where we have preached the word of the Lord, and see how they do.” AA 201.1Read in context »