Fifteen years in the making, this comprehensive commentary by David Peterson offers thorough exegesis and exposition of the Acts of the Apostles, drawing on recent scholarship in the fields of narrative criticism and theological analysis. It incorporates insights into historical-social background, and investigates why Luke presents his material in the way he does.
In view of how long the book of Acts is—over a thousand verses—Peterson’s commentary is admirably economical yet meaty. His judgments, according to Don Carson, are always "sane, evenhanded, and judicious." Even while unpacking exegetical details, Peterson constantly scans the horizon, keeping the larger picture in mind. With its solid exegesis, astute theological analysis, and practical contemporary application, Peterson's Acts of the Apostles is a commentary that preachers, teachers, and students everywhere will want and need.
“Christians in every age and social context need to be aware of the threat that cultural and racial differences can pose to their unity in Christ.” (Page 231)
“The best explanation is that God himself withheld the Spirit until the coming of Peter and John, ‘in order that the Samaritans might be seen to be fully incorporated into the community of Jerusalem Christians who had received the Spirit at Pentecost’.51 God withheld the gift for his own revelatory and salvific purpose, not because of an inadequate response on the part of the Samaritans. The apostles needed to be there as reliable witnesses on behalf of the Jerusalem church, not to impart the Spirit because of their office.” (Page 287)
“Yet this sharing was clearly a practical expression of the new relationship experienced together through a common faith in Christ (cf. vv. 38–41).” (Page 160)
“Most importantly, however, the present context suggests that, if decisive action had not been taken to deal with the social issue disturbing the church, ‘growth’ of the word may not have continued.” (Page 229)
“Luke does not hide its weaknesses (cf. 5:1–10; 6:1), but he implies that the church in Jerusalem was a model of what could happen when people were bound together by a belief in the gospel, an understanding of its implications, and an enjoyment of its blessings.” (Page 159)
Here in one convenient volume is the basic introductory information and verse-by-verse exegesis that New Testament students and preachers need in order to understand the second part of Luke’s account of Christian beginnings. This commentary is noteworthy for its incorporation of a full essay on the theology of Acts and its careful attention to theological issues in the course of the exposition, at the same time it does not neglect historical and literary matters. I warmly commend this useful tool for study.
—I. Howard Marshall, University of Aberdeen
David Peterson interacts with Acts scholarship fairly and in an up-to-date way. His literary and historical conclusions are well informed and sound. His introduction airs issues thoroughly, yet the entire work is easy to follow. Peterson consistently engages the cohesive larger picture and the theological message of the book.
—Craig S. Keener, Palmer Theological Seminary
One of the most complex books of the Bible, the Acts of the Apostles, presents readers with formidable historical, literary, and theological challenges. In recent decades scores of researchers have deepened our understanding of the book in each of these areas. David Peterson’s excellent exposition of Acts interacts insightfully with those studies and offers a lucid, compelling, and satisfying interpretation of the book. Like its subject, this commentary is informative, edifying, and challenging. Pastors and teachers will find it to be an invaluable guide to reading Acts with profit.
—Brian S. Rosner, Moore Theological College and Macquarie University