Theme Number 38 The Opening of Lydia’s heart and Her Conversion.
Act 16:11 Accordingly we put out to sea from Troas, and ran a straight course to Samothrace. The next day we came to Neapolis,
|Neapolis Bay where Paul and Silas and Timothy landed|
Act 16:12 and thence to Philippi, which is a city in Macedonia, the first in its district, a Roman colony. And there we stayed some little time.
Act 16:13 On the Sabbath we went beyond the city gate to the riverside, where we had reason to believe that there was a place for prayer; and sitting down we talked with the women who had come together.
And on the sabbath - There is no doubt that in this city there were Jews; In the time of the apostles they were scattered extensively throughout the known world.
By a river side - What river this was is not known. It is known, however, that the Jews were accustomed to provide water, or to build their synagogues and oratories near water, for the convenience of the numerous washings before and during their religious services.Barnes
Where prayer - Where there was a place of prayer, or where prayer was commonly offered. The Greek will bear either, but the sense is the same. Places for prayer were erected by the Jews in the vicinity of cities and towns, and particularly where there were not Jewish families enough, or where they were forbidden by the magistrate to erect a synagogue. These proseuchoe, or places of prayer, were simple enclosures made of stones, in a grove or under a tree, where there would be a retired and convenient place for worship.
|From Toas to Neapolis and PHILIPPI|
Act 16:14 Among our hearers was one named Lydia, a dealer in purple goods. She belonged to the city of Thyateira, and was a worshipper of the true God. The Lord opened her heart, so that she gave attention to what Paul was saying.
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. 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.AC
Heard us (ēkouen). Imperfect active of akouō, was listening, really listening and she kept it up, listening to each of these new and strange preachers.
Opened (diēnoixen). First aorist active indicative of dianoigō, old word, double compound (dia, ana, oigō) to open up wide or completely like a folding door (both sides, dia, two). Only the Lord could do that. Jesus had opened (the same verb) the mind of the disciples to understand the Scriptures (Luk_24:45).
To give heed (prosechein). To hold the mind (ton noun understood), present active infinitive. She kept her mind centred on the things spoken by Paul whose words gripped her attention.
Act 16:15 When she and her household had been baptized, she urged us, saying, "If in your judgement I am a believer in the Lord, come and stay at my house." And she made us go there.
And when she was baptized,.... In water, in the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Ghost, according to the commission of Christ, by the apostle, or some one of his companions; by whom she was instructed into the nature and use of this ordinance; and very likely it was performed in that river, by the side of which the oratory stood, where they were assembled:
and her household; they were baptized also, being converted at the same time; these seem to be her menial servants, who came along with her from her native place upon business, and who attended on her; accordingly the Ethiopic version renders it, "and she was baptized with all her men"; and these were believers, and are called "the brethren", Act_16:40 hence this passage will by no means serve the cause of infant baptism: whether Lydia was a maid, a wife, or widow, cannot be said; it looks, however, as if she had no husband now, since she is mentioned as a trader herself;J.Gill
|The River where Lydia and her household were Baptised|