Rose up together (sunepestē). Second aorist (ingressive) active of the double compound sunephistēmi, intransitive, old verb, but only here in the N.T. (cf. katepestēsan in Act 18:12). There was no actual attack of the mob as Paul and Silas were in the hands of the officers, but a sudden and violent uprising of the people, the appeal to race and national prejudice having raised a ferment.
Rent their garments off them (perirēxantes autōn ta himatia). First aorist active participle of perirēgnumi, old verb, to break off all around, to strip or rend all round. Here only in the N.T. The duumvirs probably gave orders for Paul and Silas to be stripped of their outer garments (himatia), though not actually doing it with their own hands, least of all not stripping off their own garments in horror as Ramsay thinks. That would call for the middle voice. In II Macc. 4:38 the active voice is used as here of stripping off the garments of others. Paul in 1Th 2:2 refers to the shameful treatment received in Philippi, “insulted” (hubristhentas). As a Roman citizen this was unlawful, but the duumvirs looked on Paul and Silas as vagabond and seditious Jews and “acted with the highhandedness characteristic of the fussy provincial authorities” (Knowling).
Commanded (ekeleuon). Imperfect active, repeatedly ordered. The usual formula of command was: “Go, lictors; strip off their garments; let them be scourged.”
To beat them with rods (rhabdizein). Present active infinitive of rhabdizō, old verb, but in the N.T.=virgis caedere only here and 2Co 11:25 where Paul alludes to this incident and two others not given by Luke (tris erhabdisthēn). He came near getting another in Jerusalem (Act 22:25). Why did not Paul say here that he was a Roman citizen as he does later (Act 16:37) and in Jerusalem (Act 22:26.)? It might have done no good in this hubbub and no opportunity was allowed for defence of any kind.