2 (And when they heard that he spake in the Hebrew tongue to them, they kept the more silence: and he saith,)
In itself, speaking in Hebrew was "a defence" indicating his reverence for the things of God. His opponents accused him of Gentilism, claiming that he ignored the teachings of Moses, but he now demonstrates that he remains a Jew, though one completely regenerated by a revealed understanding of the Scriptures in relation to the ministry of the Lord Jesus.
The Christadelphian Expositor
3 I am verily a man which am a Jew, born in Tarsus, a city in Cilicia, yet brought up in this city at the feet of Gamaliel, and taught according to the perfect manner of the law of the fathers, and was zealous toward God, as ye all are this day.
I am verily a man which am a Jew
— His first point identifies the crucial issue with the people: he was a member of the
born in Tarsus a city in Cilicia, yet brought up in this city
— Paul's second point, indicating that he benefited in education from both Gentile and Jewish sources (v. 25; 23:1).
at the feet of Gamaliel
— Paul's third point draws attention to the credentials of his education. Gamaliel's name signifies My Recompence is in El. He was a Pharisee and a celebrated doctor of the Law, of reputed learning and wisdom, renowned as the greatest teacher of the day. His advice previously saved the apostles' lives (Acts 5:34-40).
The ability Saul must have manifested as a young student is indicated by the fact that he was chosen to attend the School of Gamaliel.
and taught according to the perfect manner of the law of the fathers
— His fourth point. The word "perfect" is from the Gr. akribeian, accuracy. The RV. has "strict manner." Roth, and Diag. has "the strictness of our ancestral law." The young Saul had a very accurate and detailed understanding of the Mosaic law.
and was zealous toward God
— Paul's fifth point. He draws their attention to his earnestness in the things of the Jewish law. To the Galatians, Paul claimed that he "profited in the Jews' religion above many my equals in mine own nation, being more exceedingly zealous of the traditions of my fathers" (Gal. 1:14).
as ye all are this day
— The Concordant Version translates "as ye" with "according"; i.e., in the same manner. Thus, Paul implies that these facts should not be disputed. He lays the basis for an outline of his earlier antagonism against the believers, and the events leading to his conversion to the gospel of Christ.
The Christadelphian Expositor
16 And now why tarriest thou? arise, and be baptized, and wash away thy sins, calling on the name of the Lord.
And how is this One Yahweh-Name apostolically and Scripturally invoked? Answer: In the way illustrated by Paul in his own person (Acts 22:16): by the believing sinner, in obedience to the command of the Spirit, being immersed into the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit-the One Name of Deity-manifestation-the Eternal Father manifested through the Flesh Veil by Holy Spirit-the Christship of Deity.
Bro Thomas - The Ambassador of the Coming Age April, 1869
... there is a precise and definite point of time at which a sinner's disposition and faith are granted to him for a change of mind or heart, and for remission; and this is in the act of obedience. Ananias said to Saul "Arise, be baptized and wash away thy sins, attaching thyself* to the name of the Lord" (Acts xxii. 16). In the act of doing this, in rising from the water, Saul's state of heart was granted to him for repentance, and his belief of the truth was counted to him for remission of sins -- both in the act which effected his attachment to the name.
[* epikalesamenos, calling upon, invoking the name; and hence attaching oneself to the name].
Eureka - The Name
Ought a Person Being Immersed to Orally "Call on the Name of the Lord?"
Jesus is the only
"name given among men whereby we must be saved."-(Acts 4:12.)
How do we enter into this name? Not by cabalistic invocation, but by an act prescribed:
"As many of you as have been baptized into (the name of) Christ, have put on Christ."-(Gal. 3:27.)
For a believer to be immersed is for that believer to call upon (or take upon himself) the name of the Lord. This truly involves a prior "confession with the mouth;" that is to say, the subject before immersion must have acknowledged the truth of Christ, by word of mouth, or (if dumb or absent) by writing or other sign.
But there is nothing in the Scriptures to require this confession to be made ritualistically, as a part of the ceremony of immersion. In all the cases recorded, the subjects are represented as passive in the hands of the operator, which a dead man ought to be.
In no case does anything in the shape of a speech, or even utterance appear, except in the case of Christ, and that was in the way of natural reply to John's scruples about immersing the sinless one.
In the case of Philip (Acts 8:37), the statement was part of the preceding conversation, and not of the ceremony. The direction to the apostles was to "baptize into" (ets) the name of the Lord."
Baptism is the door of entrance. Submission here is "calling on the name of the Lord." Action is better than speech. The custom among the ecclesias is to ask the individual if he believe in the things concerning the kingdom of God and the name of Jesus Christ," to which an affirmative "Yes," constitutes that "confession of the mouth" required.
The Christadelphian, Dec 1870