Acts 8:1

Was consenting (hn suneudokwn). Periphrastic imperfect of suneudokew, a late double compound (sun, eu, dokew) that well describes Saul's pleasure in the death (anairesi, taking off, only here in the N.T., though old word) of Stephen. For the verb see on "Lu 23:32". Paul himself will later confess that he felt so ( Acts 22:20 ), coolly applauding the murder of Stephen, a heinous sin ( Romans 1:32 ). It is a gruesome picture. Chapter 7 should have ended here. On that day (en ekeinh th hmerai). On that definite day, that same day as in Romans 2:41 . A great persecution (diwgmo mega). It was at first persecution from the Sadducees, but this attack on Stephen was from the Pharisees so that both parties are now united in a general persecution that deserves the adjective "great." See on "Mt 13:21" for the old word diwgmo from diwkw, to chase, hunt, pursue, persecute. Were all scattered abroad (pante diesparhsan). Second aorist passive indicative of diaspeirw, to scatter like grain, to disperse, old word, in the N.T. only in Acts 8:1 Acts 8:4 ; Acts 11:19 . Except the apostles (plhn twn apostolwn). Preposition plhn (adverb from pleon, more) with the ablative often in Luke. It remains a bit of a puzzle why the Pharisees spared the apostles. Was it due to the advice of Gamaliel in Acts 5:34-40 ? Or was it the courage of the apostles? Or was it a combination of both with the popularity of the apostles in addition?