May I say something unto thee? (Ei exestin moi eipein tōi pros sė). On this use of ei in a direct question, see note on Act 1:6. The calm self-control of Paul in the presence of this mob is amazing. His courteous request to Lysias was in Greek to the chiliarch’s amazement.
Dost thou know Greek? (Hellēnisti ginōskeiṡ). Old Greek adverb in ̇i from Hellēnizō, meaning “in Greek.” “Do you know it in Greek?” In the N.T. only here and Joh 19:20.
Art thou not then the Egyptian? (Ouk ara su ei ho Aiguptioṡ). Expects the answer Yes and ara argues the matter (therefore). The well-known (ho) Egyptian who had given the Romans so much trouble.
Stirred up to sedition (anastatōsas). First aorist active participle of anastatoō, a late verb from anastatos, outcast, and so to unsettle, to stir up, to excite, once known only in lxx and Act 17:6 (which see); Act 21:38; Gal 5:12, but now found in several papyri examples with precisely this sense to upset.
Of the Assassins (tōn sikariōn). Latin word sicarius, one who carried a short sword sica under his cloak, a cutthroat. Josephus uses this very word for bands of robbers under this Egyptian (War II. 17, 6 and 13, 5; Ant. XX. 8, 10). Josephus says that there were 30,000 who gathered on the Mount of Olives to see the walls of Jerusalem fall down and not merely 4,000 as Lysias does here. But Lysias may refer to the group that were armed thus (banditti) the core of the mob of 30,000. Lysias at once saw by Paul’s knowledge of Greek that he was not the famous Egyptian who led the Assassins and escaped himself when Felix attacked and slew the most of them.