Acts 8:27 Parallel Verses [⇓ See commentary ⇓]

Acts 8:27, NIV: So he started out, and on his way he met an Ethiopian eunuch, an important official in charge of all the treasury of the Kandake (which means 'queen of the Ethiopians'). This man had gone to Jerusalem to worship,

Acts 8:27, ESV: And he rose and went. And there was an Ethiopian, a eunuch, a court official of Candace, queen of the Ethiopians, who was in charge of all her treasure. He had come to Jerusalem to worship

Acts 8:27, KJV: And he arose and went: and, behold, a man of Ethiopia, an eunuch of great authority under Candace queen of the Ethiopians, who had the charge of all her treasure, and had come to Jerusalem for to worship,

Acts 8:27, NASB: So he got ready and went; and there was an Ethiopian eunuch, a court official of Candace, queen of the Ethiopians, who was in charge of all her treasure; and he had come to Jerusalem to worship,

Acts 8:27, NLT: So he started out, and he met the treasurer of Ethiopia, a eunuch of great authority under the Kandake, the queen of Ethiopia. The eunuch had gone to Jerusalem to worship,

Acts 8:27, CSB: So he got up and went. There was an Ethiopian man, a eunuch and high official of Candace, queen of the Ethiopians, who was in charge of her entire treasury. He had come to worship in Jerusalem

What does Acts 8:27 mean? [⇑ See verse text ⇑]

An angel has told the deacon and evangelist Philip to go to the road in Judea that connects Jerusalem and the city of Gaza on the coast of the Mediterranean Sea (Acts 8:26). "Candace" is a title, from the Greek Kandakē, not a name, similar to the use of "Pharaoh." The territory called "Ethiopia" in the Bible is Nubia, which includes parts of modern-day southern Egypt and northern Sudan. In Ethiopia, the king was thought to be the child of the sun—far too important to do the work of running a country. His mother, the Candace, performed the royal duties.

It was common for royal court officials to be castrated. This was partly meant to curb the man's ability to be tempted by sex. It was also thought that if a man was incapable of having his own heirs, he would be more loyal to his master and not try to leave his own legacy. The money of the kingdom would be safe with a man who could not have sons.

The royal court of Ethiopia had long-time relations with Israel and Israel's God. It's believed the Queen of Sheba was Ethiopian (1 Kings 10:1–13), and an Ethiopian eunuch rescued the prophet Jeremiah (Jeremiah 38:7–13). This official is following the Mosaic law to worship only in the place God establishes (Deuteronomy 12:5–7; 2 Chronicles 7:12, 16), despite the distance. It's unclear how much he was allowed to worship. Deuteronomy 23:1 prohibits a eunuch from entering "the assembly of the LORD," but in Isaiah 56:1–8 God welcomes the foreigners and the eunuchs. Today, the Ethiopian Orthodox Church is the largest branch within Oriental Orthodoxy, the group that split from the unified church after the Council of Chalcedon, long before the Eastern Orthodox Churches split from the Roman Catholics.