Cretes - Crete, now called Candia, is an island in the Mediterranean, about 200 miles in length and 50 in breadth, about 500 miles southwest of Constantinople, and about the same distance west of Syria or Palestine. The climate is mild and delightful, the sky unclouded and serene. By some this island is supposed to be the Caphtor of the Hebrews, Genesis 10:14. It is mentioned in the Acts as the place touched at by Paul, Acts 27:7-8, Acts 27:13. This was the residence of Titus, who was left there by Paul" to set in order the things that were missing," etc., Titus 1:5. The Cretans among the Greeks were famous for deceit and falsehood. See the notes on Titus 1:12-13. The language spoken there was probably the Greek.
Arabians - Arabia is the great peninsula which is bounded north by part of Syria, east by the Euphrates and the Persian Gulf, south by the Indian Ocean, and west by the Red Sea. It is often mentioned in the Scriptures; and there were doubtless there many Jews. The language spoken there was the Arabic.
In our tongues - The languages spoken by the apostles could not have been less than seven or eight, besides different dialects of the same languages. It is not certain that the Jews present from foreign nations spoke those languages perfectly, but they had doubtless so used them as to make them the common tongue in which they conversed. No miracle could be more decided than this. There was no way in which the apostles could impose on them, and make them suppose they spoke foreign languages, if they really did not; for these foreigners were abundantly able to determine that. It may be remarked that this miracle had most important effects besides that witnessed on the day of Pentecost. The gospel would be carried by those who were converted to all these places, and the way would be prepared for the labors of the apostles there. Accordingly, most of these places became afterward celebrated by the establishment of Christian churches and the conversion of great multitudes to the Christian faith.
The wonderful works of God - ̀ ́ ͂ ͂ ta megaleia tou Theou . The great things of God; that is, the great things that God had done in the gift of his Son; in raising him from the dead; in his miracles, ascension, etc. Compare Luke 1:49; Psalms 71:19; Psalms 26:7; Psalms 66:3; Psalms 92:5; Psalms 104:24; etc.
Other Barnes' Notes entries containing Acts 2:11:
1 Corinthians 12:10
1 Corinthians 14:22
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