Acts 1:15 And in those days Peter stood up in the midst of the disciples, and said, (the number of names together were about an hundred and twenty,)

Acts 1:16 Men [and] brethren, this scripture must needs have been fulfilled, which the Holy Ghost by the mouth of David spake before concerning Judas, which was guide to them that took Jesus.

Acts 1:17 For he was numbered with us, and had obtained part of this ministry.

Acts 1:18 Now this man purchased a field with the reward of iniquity; and falling headlong, he burst asunder in the midst, and all his bowels gushed out.

Acts 1:19 And it was known unto all the dwellers at Jerusalem; insomuch as that field is called in their proper tongue, Aceldama, that is to say, The field of blood.

Acts 1:20 For it is written in the book of Psalms, Let his habitation be desolate, and let no man dwell therein: and his bishoprick let another take.

Acts 1:21 Wherefore of these men which have companied with us all the time that the Lord Jesus went in and out among us,

As far as I know there are two views on the verse 19 in the passage above:

  1. Verse 19 is the words spoken by Peter
  2. Verse 19 is the insertion by Luke, and, therefore, they don't belong to Peter and should be taken in parentheses

I wonder what arguments do the supporters of the first view put forth.

I guess one of the arguments must be something like Peter refers to the dwellers of Jerusalem in the third person here because he himself was originally a dweller of Bethsaida of Galilee:

John 1:43 The day following Jesus would go forth into Galilee, and findeth Philip, and saith unto him, Follow me

John 1:44 Now Philip was of Bethsaida, the city of Andrew and Peter.

and, therefore, his native dialect was different from theirs:

Mark 14:70 And he denied it again. And a little after, they that stood by said again to Peter, Surely thou art [one] of them: for thou art a Galilaean, and thy speech agreeth [thereto].

However, the fact that he was talking about the dwellers of Jerusalem in the third person should also mean then that those 120 men that were listening to Peter were not the dwellers of Jerusalem either. Was it the case?

Are there any other arguments supporting the first view?

1 Answer 1


According to Vincent word studies the word  'Akeldamach' is Aramaic, the language then spoken in Palestine.

The reason why it seems legitamate to consider verses 18 and 19 to be within brackets as a comment of Luke, as in the ESV, is because the aduience to whom Peter is speaking to would have understood Aramaic as Peter was addressing a crowd in Jerusalem.

(Now this man acquired a field with the reward of his wickedness, and falling headlong he burst open in the middle and all his bowels gushed out. 19 And it became known to all the inhabitants of Jerusalem, so that the field was called in their own language Akeldama, that is, Field of Blood.) (ESV  Acts 1:18-19)

  • "The other view is that Luke added to the words..." - but that's exactly the view # 2 in my question!
    – brilliant
    Commented Jul 12, 2012 at 5:34
  • "I do not think you will scrape much up because of the Aramaic match" - Can you, please, explain what you mean here? I don't understand.
    – brilliant
    Commented Jul 12, 2012 at 5:40
  • "this seems just to be a mistake not knowing the meaning of it in Aramaic" - You mean it's a mistake by Luke?
    – brilliant
    Commented Jul 12, 2012 at 5:59
  • @brilliant - sorry about the confusion. I had not properly explained anything. Please re-read.
    – Mike
    Commented Jul 12, 2012 at 6:30
  • "Peter was addressing a crowd in Jerusalem" - Mike, I have some uneasiness with this argument. I mean the fact that those 120 were at that moment in Jerusalem doesn't automatically mean that they were the dwellers of Jerusalem. Acts 2:7 gives us quite a strong basis to think not only that all of the 120 were not the dwellers of Jerusalem, but even to suppose that it was evident (perhaps, from their physical appearance) that they were all from Galilee ("they were ... marvelled, saying one to another, Behold, are not all these which speak Galilaeans? ") and thus spoke the same dialect as Peter.
    – brilliant
    Commented Jul 12, 2012 at 8:04

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