The Promise of the Holy Spirit

11 The first account I [1]composed , Theophilus , about all that Jesus began to do and teach , 2 until the day when He was taken up to heaven, after He had [2]by the Holy Spirit given orders to the apostles whom He had chosen . 3 To [3]these He also presented Himself alive after His suffering , by many convincing proofs , appearing to them over a period of forty days and speaking of the things concerning the kingdom of God . 4 [4]Gathering them together , He commanded them not to leave Jerusalem , but to wait for [5] what the Father had promised , "Which ," He said, "you heard of from Me; 5 for John baptized with water , but you will be baptized [6]with the Holy Spirit [7] not many days from now e ."

The Ascension

6 So when they had come together , they were asking Him, saying , "Lord , is it at this time You are restoring the kingdom to Israel ?" 7 He said to them, "It is not for you to know times or epochs which the Father has fixed by His own authority ; 8 but you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you shall be My witnesses both in Jerusalem , and in all Judea and Samaria , and even to the remotest part of the earth ." 9 And after He had said these things , He was lifted up while they were looking on, and a cloud received Him out of their sight . 10 And as they were gazing intently into [8]the sky while He was going , behold , two men in white clothing stood beside them. 11 They also said , " Men of Galilee , why do you stand looking into [9]the sky ? This Jesus , who has been taken up from you into heaven , will come in just the same way as you have watched Him go into heaven ."

Judas' Successor Chosen

12 Then they returned to Jerusalem from the [10] mount called [11]Olivet , which is near Jerusalem , a [12]Sabbath day's journey away. 13 When they had entered the city, they went up to the upper room where they were staying ; that is, Peter and John and [13]James and Andrew , Philip and Thomas , Bartholomew and Matthew , [13]James the son of Alphaeus , and Simon the Zealot , and Judas the [15]son of [13]James . 14 These all with one mind were continually devoting themselves to prayer , along with the women , and Mary the mother of Jesus , and with His brothers .

15 [17]At this time Peter stood up in the midst of the brethren (a gathering of about one hundred and twenty [18]persons was there together e e ), and said , 16 "Brethren e , the Scripture had to be fulfilled , which the Holy Spirit foretold by the mouth of David concerning Judas , who became a guide to those who arrested Jesus . 17 "For he was counted among us and received his share in this ministry ." 18 (Now this man acquired a field with the price of his wickedness , and falling headlong , he burst open in the middle and all his intestines gushed out. 19 And it became known to all who were living in Jerusalem ; so that in their own language that field was called Hakeldama , that is, Field of Blood .) 20 "For it is written in the book of Psalms , ' LET HIS HOMESTEAD BE MADE DESOLATE , AND LET NO ONE DWELL IN IT'; and, ' LET ANOTHER MAN TAKE HIS [19]OFFICE .' 21 "Therefore it is necessary that of the men who have accompanied us all the time that the Lord Jesus went in and out [20]among us-

Matthew Henry's Commentary on Acts 1:1-21

Commentary on Acts 1:1-5

(Read Acts 1:1-5)

Our Lord told the disciples the work they were to do. The apostles met together at Jerusalem; Christ having ordered them not to depart thence, but to wait for the pouring out of the Holy Spirit. This would be a baptism by the Holy Ghost, giving them power to work miracles, and enlightening and sanctifying their souls. This confirms the Divine promise, and encourages us to depend upon it, that we have heard it from Christ; for in Him all the promises of God are yea and amen.

Commentary on Acts 1:6-11

(Read Acts 1:6-11)

They were earnest in asking about that which their Master never had directed or encouraged them to seek. Our Lord knew that his ascension and the teaching of the Holy Spirit would soon end these expectations, and therefore only gave them a rebuke; but it is a caution to his church in all ages, to take heed of a desire of forbidden knowledge. He had given his disciples instructions for the discharge of their duty, both before his death and since his resurrection, and this knowledge is enough for a Christian. It is enough that He has engaged to give believers strength equal to their trials and services; that under the influence of the Holy Spirit they may, in one way or other, be witnesses for Christ on earth, while in heaven he manages their concerns with perfect wisdom, truth, and love. When we stand gazing and trifling, the thoughts of our Master's second coming should quicken and awaken us: when we stand gazing and trembling, they should comfort and encourage us. May our expectation of it be stedfast and joyful, giving diligence to be found of him blameless.

Commentary on Acts 1:12-14

(Read Acts 1:12-14)

God can find hiding-places for his people. They made supplication. All God's people are praying people. It was now a time of trouble and danger with the disciples of Christ; but if any is afflicted, let him pray; that will silence cares and fears. They had now a great work to do, and before they entered upon it, they were earnest in prayer to God for his presence. They were waiting for the descent of the Spirit, and abounded in prayer. Those are in the best frame to receive spiritual blessings, who are in a praying frame. Christ had promised shortly to send the Holy Ghost; that promise was not to do away prayer, but to quicken and encourage it. A little company united in love, exemplary in their conduct, fervent in prayer, and wisely zealous to promote the cause of Christ, are likely to increase rapidly.

Commentary on Acts 1:15-26

(Read Acts 1:15-26)

The great thing the apostles were to attest to the world, was, Christ's resurrection; for that was the great proof of his being the Messiah, and the foundation of our hope in him. The apostles were ordained, not to wordly dignity and dominion, but to preach Christ, and the power of his resurrection. An appeal was made to God; "Thou, Lord, who knowest the hearts of all men," which we do not; and better than they know their own. It is fit that God should choose his own servants; and so far as he, by the disposals of his providence, or the gifts of his Spirit, shows whom he was chosen, or what he has chosen for us, we ought to fall in with his will. Let us own his hand in the determining everything which befalls us, especially in those by which any trust may be committed to us.