And when the Jews were gone out of the synagogue
The time of worship there being over; or being offended at the apostle's discourse concerning Jesus: the words will bear to be rendered, "when they were gone out of the synagogue of the Jews"; and the sense be, when Paul and Barnabas were come out from thence, Paul having finished his discourse: the word "Jews", and the phrase, "out of the synagogue", are left out in Beza's ancient copy, and in the Alexandrian copy, and in the Vulgate Latin, and Syriac versions; and so may be interpreted either of the Jews, or of Paul and Barnabas; the Ethiopic version leaves out the whole clause: "the Gentiles besought that these words might be spoken unto them the next sabbath"; that is, the proselytes from among the Gentiles, who attended on the synagogue of the Jews, and who stayed behind when the Jews were gone out, being exceedingly delighted with the apostle's doctrine, most earnestly entreated that the same subject might be insisted upon the next sabbath: or, as Dr. Lightfoot observes, the words may be rendered, "they besought the Gentiles"; that is, the apostles, when they saw the Jews go out, being offended, addressed the Gentiles, and entreated them to come the next sabbath day, and patiently hear these doctrines: though in the above copies and versions there is no mention made of the Gentiles, any more than of the Jews; so that this may be understood either of the rulers of the synagogue, who first invited them to speak a word of exhortation to the people, or of the whole body, Jews and proselytes, who, when they were departing, entreated they might hear them again the next sabbath; about which "next sabbath", there is some difficulty; the words may be rendered, "between the sabbath", and so may regard what we call weekdays, or working days; and which the Jews call (Myytnbv Mymy) , "the intermediate days", or the days between one sabbath and another F19; and on some one of these days it was desired that the apostles would give them another discourse on the same subject; and it may be particularly, that either Monday or Thursday, the second or fifth day of the week, might be pitched upon; since on these days the Jews met together in the synagogue, and read the law, according to the order of Ezra, that they might not be three days without the law F20; and these were the days on which they fasted, ( Luke 18:12 ) . Others choose to render the words, "on the sabbath day after"; and so the Syriac version renders it, "on the other sabbath"; and the Ethiopic version, "the sabbath following"; and so the Vulgate Latin, with which ours, and others agree; and to this reading and sense, ( Acts 13:44 ) greatly inclines; though they might meet together on one of the days between, when being so delighted with what they heard, and of which they so much talked, that the next sabbath almost the whole city came together to hear: but what pleases me best, and which, I think, has never been observed by any, is, that there was one sabbath in the year which was called (Mytnb tbv) ; which may be rendered by (to metaxu sabbaton) , "the sabbath between", or the intermediate sabbath; and this sabbath was on one of the ten days before the day of atonement; and was so called, because it was between the first of Tisri, which answers to part of our September, and was the beginning of the year, and the tenth of the same month, which was the day of atonement; and was a sabbath very much taken notice of by the Jews F21: and now this might be the sabbath following, and so all agrees; and a reason may be given for the different phrases in this verse, and ( Acts 13:44 ) and if so, this also points out the time of the year that Paul and Barnabas were at Antioch in Pisidia, and when that remarkable period began, that the apostles turned from the Jews, and preached to the Gentiles.
F19 T. Hieros. Gittin, fol. 49. 1. & Bab. Ceritot, fol. 16. 1, 2. & 17. 1.
F20 T. Hieros. Megilla, fol. 75. 1. & Bab. Bava Kama, fol. 32. 1.
F21 Tzeror Hammor, fol. 85. 4. & 86. 1, 2.