Bible Names N-Z: Sceva
Sceva in Easton's Bible Dictionary
an implement, a Jew, chief of the priests at Ephesus (Acts
19:13-16); i.e., the head of one of the twenty-four
the house of Levi. He had seven sons, who "took upon
call over them which had evil spirits the name of the
Jesus," in imitation of Paul. They tried their method
exorcism on a fierce demoniac, and failed. His answer
was to this effect (19:15): "The Jesus whom you invoke
whose authority I acknowledge; and the Paul whom you
recognize to be a servant or messenger of God; but
what sort of
men are ye who have been empowered to act as you do by
(Lindsay on the Acts of the Apostles.)
Sceva in Fausset's Bible Dictionary
A "chief priest", i.e. once having been high priest, or else
chief of the priests at Ephesus, or of one of the 24 courses.
His seven sons, Jews, exorcised demons in Jesus' name,
whereupon the demon-possessed leaped on two of them, and
prevailed against them, so that they fled out of the house
naked and wounded: (Acts 19:14-16; the Sinaiticus, Vaticanus,
and Alexandrinus manuscripts read "prevailed against both".)
Sceva in Hitchcock's Bible Names
Sceva in Naves Topical Bible
-A charlatan Jewish "exorcist" at Ephesus
Sceva in Smiths Bible Dictionary
a Jew residing at Ephesus at the time of St. Paul's second
visit to that town. Ac 19:14-16 (A.D. 52.)
Sceva in the Bible Encyclopedia - ISBE
se'-va (Skeua): A Jew, a chief priest, resident in Ephesus,
whose seven sons were exorcists (Acts 19:14 ff). Ewald
regards the name as being Hebrew shekhabhyah. He was not an
officiating priest, as there were only synagogues in Asia
Minor. He may have belonged to a high-priestly family, or
perhaps at one time he had been at the head of one of the 24
courses in the temple.
In the narrative the construction is loose. There were seven
sons (Acts 19:14), and it would appear (Acts 19:16) that in
this particular case all were present. But (Acts 19:16) the
demon-possessed man over-powered "both of them." Textus
Receptus of the New Testament gets over the difficulty by
omitting "both," but Codices Sinaiticus, Alexandrinus,
Vaticanus, Bezae, so Tischendorf, Westcott and Hort, von
Soden, and the best critics, retain the difficult reading.
The explanation is that Acts 19:14 states the custom: "who
did this" being hoi touto poiountes, "who used to do this."
Acts 19:15 and 16 state a particular case in which two took
part, but the incident is introduced in a careless manner.
Ewald would translate amphoteron as "in both sides," but
this is impossible. Baur understood "disciples" for "sons."
Codex Bezae and Syriac have an interesting expansion which
Blass considers original (Acts 19:14): "Among whom also the
sons (Syriac `seven') of a certain Sceva, a priest, wished
to do the same, (who) were in the custom of exorcising such.
And entering into the demon-possessed man they began to call
upon the Name, saying, `We charge you by Jesus whom Paul
preaches to come out.' "
S. F. Hunter
Sceva in Wikipedia
Sceva, or Scevas, apparently related to the Greek word skeuos
meaning a vessel or implement, a Jew called a "chief priest"
(archiereus in Greek) in Acts 19:14 . There was no high priest
in Jerusalem by this name--some speculate that he was the head
of one of the twenty-four courses of the house of Levi. He had
seven sons, who in Ephesus "took upon them to call over them
which had evil spirits the name of the Lord Jesus," in
imitation of Paul. They tried their method of exorcism on a
fierce demon, and failed. His answer to them was "Jesus I
know, and Paul I know; but who are ye?" (Acts 19:15 ) This has
been interpreted as, "The Jesus whom you invoke is One whose
authority I acknowledge; and the Paul whom you name I
recognize to be a servant or messenger of God; but what sort
of men are ye who have been empowered to act as you do by
neither?" (Thomas Lindsay on the Acts of the Apostles.)
Sceva Scripture - Acts 19:14
And there were seven sons of [one] Sceva, a Jew, [and] chief
of the priests, which did so.
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