paul Summary and Overview
paul in Easton's Bible Dictionary
=Saul (q.v.) was born about the same time as our Lord. His circumcision-name was Saul, and probably the name Paul was also given to him in infancy "for use in the Gentile world," as "Saul" would be his Hebrew home-name. He was a native of Tarsus, the capital of Cilicia, a Roman province in the south-east of Asia Minor. That city stood on the banks of the river Cydnus, which was navigable thus far; hence it became a centre of extensive commercial traffic with many countries along the shores of the Mediterranean, as well as with the countries of central Asia Minor. It thus became a city distinguished for the wealth of its inhabitants. Tarsus was also the seat of a famous university, higher in reputation even than the universities of Athens and Alexandria, the only others that then existed. Here Saul was born, and here he spent his youth, doubtless enjoying the best education his native city could afford. His father was of the straitest sect of the Jews, a Pharisee, of the tribe of Benjamin, of pure and unmixed Jewish blood (Acts 23:6; Phil. 3:5). We learn nothing regarding his mother; but there is reason to conclude that she was a pious woman, and that, like-minded with her husband, she exercised all a mother influence in moulding the character of her son, so that he could afterwards speak of himself as being, from his youth up, "touching the righteousness which is in the law, blameless" (Phil. 3:6). We read of his sister and his sister's son (Acts 23:16), and of other relatives (Rom. 16:7, 11, 12). Though a Jew, his father was a Roman citizen. How he obtained this privilege we are not informed. "It might be bought, or won by distinguished service to the state, or acquired in several other ways; at all events, his son was freeborn. It was a valuable privilege, and one that was to prove of great use to Paul, although not in the way in which his father might have been expected to desire him to make use of it." Perhaps the most natural career for the youth to follow was that of a merchant. "But it was decided that...he should go to college and become a rabbi, that is, a minister, a teacher, and a lawyer all in one." According to Jewish custom, however, he learned a trade before entering on the more direct preparation for the sacred profession. The trade he acquired was the making of tents from goats' hair cloth, a trade which was one of the commonest in Tarsus. His preliminary education having been completed, Saul was sent, when about thirteen years of age probably, to the great Jewish school of sacred learning at Jerusalem as a student of the law. Here he became a pupil of the celebrated rabbi Gamaliel, and here he spent many years in an elaborate study of the Scriptures and of the many questions concerning them with which the rabbis exercised themselves. During these years of diligent study he lived "in all good conscience," unstained by the vices of that great city. After the period of his student-life expired, he probably left Jerusalem for Tarsus, where he may have been engaged in connection with some synagogue for some years. But we find him back again at Jerusalem very soon after the death of our Lord. Here he now learned the particulars regarding the crucifixion, and the rise of the new sect of the "Nazarenes." For some two years after Pentecost, Christianity was quietly spreading its influence in Jerusalem. At length Stephen, one of the seven deacons, gave forth more public and aggressive testimony that Jesus was the Messiah, and this led to much excitement among the Jews and much disputation in their synagogues. Persecution arose against Stephen and the followers of Christ generally, in which Saul of Tarsus took a prominent part. He was at this time probably a member of the great Sanhedrin, and became the active leader in the furious persecution by which the rulers then sought to exterminate Christianity. But the object of this persecution also failed. "They that were scattered abroad went everywhere preaching the word." The anger of the persecutor was thereby kindled into a fiercer flame. Hearing that fugitives had taken refuge in Damascus, he obtained from the chief priest letters authorizing him to proceed thither on his persecuting career. This was a long journey of about 130 miles, which would occupy perhaps six days, during which, with his few attendants, he steadily went onward, "breathing out threatenings and slaughter." But the crisis of his life was at hand. He had reached the last stage of his journey, and was within sight of Damascus. As he and his companions rode on, suddenly at mid-day a brilliant light shone round them, and Saul was laid prostrate in terror on the ground, a voice sounding in his ears, "Saul, Saul, why persecutest thou me?" The risen Saviour was there, clothed in the vesture of his glorified humanity. In answer to the anxious inquiry of the stricken persecutor, "Who art thou, Lord?" he said, "I am Jesus whom thou persecutest" (Acts 9:5; 22:8; 26:15). This was the moment of his conversion, the most solemn in all his life. Blinded by the dazzling light (Acts 9:8), his companions led him into the city, where, absorbed in deep thought for three days, he neither ate nor drank (9:11). Ananias, a disciple living in Damascus, was informed by a vision of the change that had happened to Saul, and was sent to him to open his eyes and admit him by baptism into the Christian church (9:11-16). The whole purpose of his life was now permanently changed. Immediately after his conversion he retired into the solitudes of Arabia (Gal. 1:17), perhaps of "Sinai in Arabia," for the purpose, probably, of devout study and meditation on the marvellous revelation that had been made to him. "A veil of thick darkness hangs over this visit to Arabia. Of the scenes among which he moved, of the thoughts and occupations which engaged him while there, of all the circumstances of a crisis which must have shaped the whole tenor of his after-life, absolutely nothing is known. 'Immediately,' says St. Paul, 'I went away into Arabia.' The historian passes over the incident [compare Acts 9:23 and 1 Kings 11:38, 39]. It is a mysterious pause, a moment of suspense, in the apostle's history, a breathless calm, which ushers in the tumultuous storm of his active missionary life." Coming back, after three years, to Damascus, he began to preach the gospel "boldly in the name of Jesus" (Acts 9:27), but was soon obliged to flee (9:25; 2 Cor. 11:33) from the Jews and betake himself to Jerusalem. Here he tarried for three weeks, but was again forced to flee (Acts 9:28, 29) from persecution. He now returned to his native Tarsus (Gal. 1:21), where, for probably about three years, we lose sight of him. The time had not yet come for his entering on his great life-work of preaching the gospel to the Gentiles. At length the city of Antioch, the capital of Syria, became the scene of great Christian activity. There the gospel gained a firm footing, and the cause of Christ prospered. Barnabas (q.v.), who had been sent from Jerusalem to superintend the work at Antioch, found it too much for him, and remembering Saul, he set out to Tarsus to seek for him. He readily responded to the call thus addressed to him, and came down to Antioch, which for "a whole year" became the scene of his labors, which were crowned with great success. The disciples now, for the first time, were called "Christians" (Acts 11:26). The church at Antioch now proposed to send out missionaries to the Gentiles, and Saul and Barnabas, with John Mark as their attendant, were chosen for this work. This was a great epoch in the history of the church. Now the disciples began to give effect to the Master's command: "Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature." The three missionaries went forth on the first missionary tour. They sailed from Seleucia, the seaport of Antioch, across to Cyprus, some 80 miles to the south-west. Here at Paphos, Sergius Paulus, the Roman proconsul, was converted, and now Saul took the lead, and was ever afterwards called Paul. The missionaries now crossed to the mainland, and then proceeded 6 or 7 miles up the river Cestrus to Perga (Acts 13:13), where John Mark deserted the work and returned to Jerusalem. The two then proceeded about 100 miles inland, passing through Pamphylia, Pisidia, and Lycaonia. The towns mentioned in this tour are the Pisidian Antioch, where Paul delivered his first address of which we have any record (13:16-51; compare 10:30-43), Iconium, Lystra, and Derbe. They returned by the same route to see and encourage the converts they had made, and ordain elders in every city to watch over the churches which had been gathered. From Perga they sailed direct for Antioch, from which they had set out. After remaining "a long time", probably till A.D. 50 or 51, in Antioch, a great controversy broke out in the church there regarding the relation of the Gentiles to the Mosaic law. For the purpose of obtaining a settlement of this question, Paul and Barnabas were sent as deputies to consult the church at Jerusalem. The council or synod which was there held (Acts 15) decided against the Judaizing party; and the deputies, accompanied by Judas and Silas, returned to Antioch, bringing with them the decree of the council. After a short rest at Antioch, Paul said to Barnabas: "Let us go again and visit our brethren in every city where we have preached the word of the Lord, and see how they do." Mark proposed again to accompany them; but Paul refused to allow him to go. Barnabas was resolved to take Mark, and thus he and Paul had a sharp contention. They separated, and never again met. Paul, however, afterwards speaks with honour of Barnabas, and sends for Mark to come to him at Rome (Col. 4:10; 2 Tim. 4:11). Paul took with him Silas, instead of Barnabas, and began his second missionary journey about A.D. 51. This time he went by land, revisiting the churches he had already founded in Asia. But he longed to enter into "regions beyond," and still went forward through Phrygia and Galatia (16:6). Contrary to his intention, he was constrained to linger in Galatia (q.v.), on account of some bodily affliction (Gal. 4:13, 14). Bithynia, a populous province on the shore of the Black Sea, lay now before him, and he wished to enter it; but the way was shut, the Spirit in some manner guiding him in another direction, till he came down to the shores of the AEgean and arrived at Troas, on the north-western coast of Asia Minor (Acts 16:8). Of this long journey from Antioch to Troas we have no account except some references to it in his Epistle to the Galatians (4:13). As he waited at Troas for indications of the will of God as to his future movements, he saw, in the vision of the night, a man from the opposite shores of Macedonia standing before him, and heard him cry, "Come over, and help us" (Acts 16:9). Paul recognized in this vision a message from the Lord, and the very next day set sail across the Hellespont, which separated him from Europe, and carried the tidings of the gospel into the Western world. In Macedonia, churches were planted in Philippi, Thessalonica, and Berea. Leaving this province, Paul passed into Achaia, "the paradise of genius and renown." He reached Athens, but quitted it after, probably, a brief sojourn (17:17-31). The Athenians had received him with cold disdain, and he never visited that city again. He passed over to Corinth, the seat of the Roman government of Achaia, and remained there a year and a half, labouring with much success. While at Corinth, he wrote his two epistles to the church of Thessalonica, his earliest apostolic letters, and then sailed for Syria, that he might be in time to keep the feast of Pentecost at Jerusalem. He was accompanied by Aquila and Priscilla, whom he left at Ephesus, at which he touched, after a voyage of thirteen or fifteen days. He landed at Caesarea, and went up to Jerusalem, and having "saluted the church" there, and kept the feast, he left for Antioch, where he abode "some time" (Acts 18:20-23). He then began his third missionary tour. He journeyed by land in the "upper coasts" (the more eastern parts) of Asia Minor, and at length made his way to Ephesus, where he tarried for no less than three years, engaged in ceaseless Christian labour. "This city was at the time the Liverpool of the Mediterranean. It possessed a splendid harbour, in which was concentrated the traffic of the sea which was then the highway of the nations; and as Liverpool has behind her the great towns of Lancashire, so had Ephesus behind and around her such cities as those mentioned along with her in the epistles to the churches in the book of Revelation, Smyrna, Pergamos, Thyatira, Sardis, Philadelphia, and Laodicea. It was a city of vast wealth, and it was given over to every kind of pleasure, the fame of its theatres and race-course being world-wide" (Stalker's Life of St. Paul). Here a "great door and effectual" was opened to the apostle. His fellow-labourers aided him in his work, carrying the gospel to Colosse and Laodicea and other places which they could reach. Very shortly before his departure from Ephesus, the apostle wrote his First Epistle to the Corinthians (q.v.). The silversmiths, whose traffic in the little images which they made was in danger (see DEMETRIUS T0001013), organized a riot against Paul, and he left the city, and proceeded to Troas (2 Cor. 2:12), whence after some time he went to meet Titus in Macedonia. Here, in consequence of the report Titus brought from Corinth, he wrote his second epistle to that church. Having spent probably most of the summer and autumn in Macedonia, visiting the churches there, specially the churches of Philippi, Thessalonica, and Berea, probably penetrating into the interior, to the shores of the Adriatic (Rom. 15:19), he then came into Greece, where he abode three month, spending probably the greater part of this time in Corinth (Acts 20:2). During his stay in this city he wrote his Epistle to the Galatians, and also the great Epistle to the Romans. At the end of the three months he left Achaia for Macedonia, thence crossed into Asia Minor, and touching at Miletus, there addressed the Ephesian presbyters, whom he had sent for to meet him (Acts 20:17), and then sailed for Tyre, finally reaching Jerusalem, probably in the spring of A.D. 58. While at Jerusalem, at the feast of Pentecost, he was almost murdered by a Jewish mob in the temple. (See TEMPLE, HEROD'S T0003611.) Rescued from their violence by the Roman commandant, he was conveyed as a prisoner to Caesarea, where, from various causes, he was detained a prisoner for two years in Herod's praetorium (Acts 23:35). "Paul was not kept in close confinement; he had at least the range of the barracks in which he was detained. There we can imagine him pacing the ramparts on the edge of the Mediterranean, and gazing wistfully across the blue waters in the direction of Macedonia, Achaia, and Ephesus, where his spiritual children were pining for him, or perhaps encountering dangers in which they sorely needed his presence. It was a mysterious providence which thus arrested his energies and condemned the ardent worker to inactivity; yet we can now see the reason for it. Paul was needing rest. After twenty years of incessant evangelization, he required leisure to garner the harvest of experience...During these two years he wrote nothing; it was a time of internal mental activity and silent progress" (Stalker's Life of St. Paul). At the end of these two years Felix (q.v.) was succeeded in the governorship of Israel by Porcius Festus, before whom the apostle was again heard. But judging it right at this crisis to claim the privilege of a Roman citizen, he appealed to the emperor (Acts 25:11). Such an appeal could not be disregarded, and Paul was at once sent on to Rome under the charge of one Julius, a centurion of the "Augustan cohort." After a long and perilous voyage, he at length reached the imperial city in the early spring, probably, of A.D. 61. Here he was permitted to occupy his own hired house, under constant military custody. This privilege was accorded to him, no doubt, because he was a Roman citizen, and as such could not be put into prison without a trial. The soldiers who kept guard over Paul were of course changed at frequent intervals, and thus he had the opportunity of preaching the gospel to many of them during these "two whole years," and with the blessed result of spreading among the imperial guards, and even in Caesar's household, an interest in the truth (Phil. 1:13). His rooms were resorted to by many anxious inquirers, both Jews and Gentiles (Acts 28:23, 30, 31), and thus his imprisonment "turned rather to the furtherance of the gospel," and his "hired house" became the centre of a gracious influence which spread over the whole city. According to a Jewish tradition, it was situated on the borders of the modern Ghetto, which has been the Jewish quarters in Rome from the time of Pompey to the present day. During this period the apostle wrote his epistles to the Colossians, Ephesians, Philippians, and to Philemon, and probably also to the Hebrews. This first imprisonment came at length to a close, Paul having been acquitted, probably because no witnesses appeared against him. Once more he set out on his missionary labors, probably visiting western and eastern Europe and Asia Minor. During this period of freedom he wrote his First Epistle to Timothy and his Epistle to Titus. The year of his release was signalized by the burning of Rome, which Nero saw fit to attribute to the Christians. A fierce persecution now broke out against the Christians. Paul was siezed, and once more conveyed to Rome a prisoner. During this imprisonment he probably wrote the Second Epistle to Timothy, the last he ever wrote. "There can be little doubt that he appered again at Nero's bar, and this time the charge did not break down. In all history there is not a more startling illustration of the irony of human life than this scene of Paul at the bar of Nero. On the judgment-seat, clad in the imperial purple, sat a man who, in a bad world, had attained the eminence of being the very worst and meanest being in it, a man stained with every crime, a man whose whole being was so steeped in every nameable and unnameable vice, that body and soul of him were, as some one said at the time, nothing but a compound of mud and blood; and in the prisoner's dock stood the best man the world possessed, his hair whitened with labors for the good of men and the glory of God. The trial ended: Paul was condemned, and delivered over to the executioner. He was led out of the city, with a crowd of the lowest rabble at his heels. The fatal spot was reached; he knelt beside the block; the headsman's axe gleamed in the sun and fell; and the head of the apostle of the world rolled down in the dust" (probably A.D. 66), four years before the fall of Jerusalem.
paul in Smith's Bible Dictionary
(small, little). Nearly all the original materials for the life St. Paul are contained in the Acts of the Apostles and in the Pauline epistles. Paul was born in Tarsus, a city of Cilicia. (It is not improbable that he was born between A.D. 0 and A.D. 5.) Up to the time of his going forth as an avowed preacher of Christ to the Gentiles, the apostle was known by the name of Saul. This was the Jewish name which he received from his Jewish parents. But though a Hebrew of the Hebrews, he was born in a Gentile city. Of his parents we know nothing, except that his father was of the tribe of Benjamin, #Phm 3:5| and a Pharisee, #Ac 23:6| that Paul had acquired by some means the Roman franchise ("I was free born,") #Ac 22:23| and that he was settled in Tarsus. At Tarsus he must have learned to use the Greek language with freedom and mastery in both speaking and writing. At Tarsus also he learned that trade of "tent-maker," #Ac 18:3| at which he afterward occasionally wrought with his own hands. There was a goat's-hair cloth called cilicium manufactured in Cilicia, and largely used for tents, Saul's trade was probably that of making tents of this hair cloth. When St. Paul makes his defence before his countrymen at Jerusalem, #Ac 22:1| ... he tells them that, though born in Tarsus he had been "brought up" in Jerusalem. He must therefore, have been yet a boy when was removed, in all probability for the sake of his education, to the holy city of his fathers. He learned, he says, at the feet of Gamaliel." He who was to resist so stoutly the usurpations of the law had for his teacher one of the most eminent of all the doctors of the law. Saul was yet "a young man," #Ac 7:58| when the Church experienced that sudden expansion which was connected with the ordaining of the seven appointed to serve tables, and with the special power and inspiration of Stephen. Among those who disputed with Stephen were some "of them of Cilicia." We naturally think of Saul as having been one of these, when we find him afterward keeping the clothes of those suborned witnesses who, according to the law, #De 17:7| were the first to cast stones at Stephen. "Saul," says the sacred writer significantly "was consenting unto his death." Saul's conversion. A.D. 37.--The persecutor was to be converted. Having undertaken to follow up the believers "unto strange cities." Saul naturally turned his thoughts to Damascus. What befell him as he journeyed thither is related in detail three times in the Acts, first by the historian in his own person, then in the two addresses made by St. Paul at Jerusalem and before Agrippa. St. Luke's statement is to be read in #Ac 9:3-19| where, however, the words "it is hard for thee to kick against the pricks," included in the English version, ought to be omitted (as is done in the Revised Version). The sudden light from heaven; the voice of Jesus speaking with authority to his persecutor; Saul struck to the ground, blinded, overcome; the three-days suspense; the coming of Ananias as a messenger of the Lord and Saul's baptism, --these were the leading features at the great event, and in these we must look for the chief significance of the conversion. It was in Damascus that he was received into the church by Ananias, and here to the astonishment of all his hearers, he proclaimed Jesus in the synagogues, declaring him to be the Son of God. The narrative in the Acts tells us simply that he was occupied in this work, with increasing vigor, for "many days," up to the time when imminent danger drove him from Damascus. From the Epistle to the Galatians, #Ga 1:17,18| we learn that the many days were at least a good part of "three years," A.D. 37-40, and that Saul, not thinking it necessary to procure authority to teach from the apostles that were before him, went after his conversion to Arabia, and returned from thence to us. We know nothing whatever of this visit to Arabia; but upon his departure from Damascus we are again on a historical ground, and have the double evidence of St. Luke in the Acts of the apostle in his Second Epistle the Corinthians. According to the former, the Jews lay in wait for Saul, intending to kill him, and watched the gates of the city that he might not escape from them. Knowing this, the disciples took him by night and let him down in a basket from the wall. Having escaped from Damascus, Saul betook himself to Jerusalem (A.D. 40), and there "assayed to join himself to the disciples; but they were all afraid of him, and believed not he was a disciple." Barnabas' introduction removed the fears of the apostles, and Saul "was with them coming in and going out at Jerusalem." But it is not strange that the former persecutor was soon singled out from the other believers as the object of a murderous hostility. He was,therefore, again urged to flee; and by way of Caesarea betook himself to his native city, Tarsus. Barnabas was sent on a special mission to Antioch. As the work grew under his hands, he felt the need of help, went himself to Tarsus to seek Saul, and succeeded in bringing him to Antioch. There they labored together unremittingly for a whole year." All this time Saul was subordinate to Barnabas. Antioch was in constant communication with Cilicia, with Cyprus, with all the neighboring countries. The Church was pregnant with a great movement, and time of her delivery was at hand. Something of direct expectation seems to be implied in what is said of the leaders of the Church at Antioch, that they were "ministering to the Lord and fasting," when the Holy Ghost spoke to them: "Separate me Barnabas and Saul for the work whereunto I have called them." Everything was done with orderly gravity in the sending forth of the two missionaries. Their brethren after fasting and prayer, laid their hands on them, and so they departed. The first missionary journey. A.D. 45-49. --As soon as Barnabas and Saul reached Cyprus they began to "announce the word of God," but at first they delivered their message in the synagogues of the Jews only. When they had gone through the island, from Salamis to Paphos, they were called upon to explain their doctrine to an eminent Gentile, Sergius Paulus, the proconsul, who was converted. Saul's name was now changed to Paul, and he began to take precedence of Barnabas. From Paphos "Paul and his company" set sail for the mainland, and arrived at Perga in Pamphylia. Here the heart of their companion John failed him, and he returned to Jerusalem. From Perga they travelled on to a place obscure in secular history, but most memorable in the history of the Kingdom of Christ --Antioch in Pisidia. Rejected by the Jews, they became bold and outspoken, and turned from them to the Gentiles. At Antioch now, as in every city afterward, the unbelieving Jews used their influence with their own adherents among the Gentiles to persuade the authorities or the populace to persecute the apostles and to drive them from the place. Paul and Barnabas now travelled on to Iconium where the occurrences at Antioch were repeated, and from thence to the Lycaonian country which contained the cities Lystra and Derbe. Here they had to deal with uncivilized heathen. At Lystra the healing of a cripple took place. Thereupon these pagans took the apostles for gods, calling Barnabas, who was of the more imposing presence, Jupiter, and Paul, who was the chief speaker, Mercurius. Although the people of Lystra had been so ready to worship Paul and Barnabas, the repulse of their idolatrous instincts appears to have provoked them, and they allowed themselves to be persuaded into hostility be Jews who came from Antioch and Iconium, so that they attacked Paul with stones, and thought they had killed him. He recovered, however as the disciples were standing around him, and went again into the city. The next day he left it with Barnabas, and went to Derbe, and thence they returned once more to Lystra, and so to Iconium and Antioch. In order to establish the churches after their departure they solemnly appointed "elders" in every city. Then they came down to the coast, and from Attalia, they sailed; home to Antioch in Syria, where they related the successes which had been granted to them, and especially the opening of the door of faith to the Gentiles." And so the first missionary journey ended. The council at Jerusalem. --Upon that missionary journey follows most naturally the next important scene which the historian sets before us --the council held at Jerusalem to determine the relations of Gentile believers to the law of Moses. #Ac 15:1-29; Ga 2| Second missionary journey. A.D. 50-54. --The most resolute courage, indeed, was required for the work to which St. Paul was now publicly pledged. He would not associate with himself in that work one who had already shown a want of constancy. This was the occasion of what must have been a most painful difference between him and his comrade in the faith and in past perils, Barnabas. #Ac 15:35-40| Silas, or Silvanus, becomes now a chief companion of the apostle. The two went together through Syria and Cilicia, visiting the churches, and so came to Derbe and Lystra. Here they find Timotheus, who had become a disciple on the former visit of the apostle. Him St. Paul took and Circumcised. St. Luke now steps rapidly over a considerable space of the apostle's life and labors. "They went throughout Phrygia and the region of Galatia." #Lu 16:6| At this time St. Paul was founding "the churches of Galatia." #Ga 1:2| He himself gives some hints of the circumstances of his preaching in that region, of the reception he met with, and of the ardent though unstable character of the people. #Ga 4:13-15| Having gone through Phrygia and Galatia, he intended to visit, the western coast; but "they were forbidden by the Holy Ghost to preach the "word" there. Then, being on the borders of Mysia, they thought of going back to the northeast into Bithynia; but again the Spirit of Jesus "suffered them not," so they passed by Mysia and came down to Troas. St. Paul saw in a vision a man,of Macedonia, who besought him, saying, "Come over into Macedonia and help us." The vision was at once accepted as a heavenly intimation; the help wanted, by the Macedonians was believed to be the preaching of the gospel. It is at this point that the historian, speaking of St. Paul's company, substitutes "we" for "they." He says nothing of himself we can only infer that St. Luke, to whatever country he belonged, became a companion of St. Paul at Troas. The party thus reinforced, immediately set sail from Troas, touched at Samothrace, then landed on the continent at Neapolis, and thence journeyed to Philippi. The first convert in Macedonia was Lydia, an Asiatic woman, at Philippi. #Ac 18:13,14| At Philippi Paul and Silas were arrested, beaten and put in prison, having cast out the spirit of divination from a female slave who had brought her masters much gain by her power. This cruel wrong was to be the occasion of a signal appearance of the God of righteousness and deliverance. The narrative tells of the earthquake, the jailer's terror, his conversion and baptism. #Ac 16:26-34| In the morning the magistrates sent word to the prison that the men might be let go; but Paul denounced plainly their unlawful acts, informing them moreover that those whom they had beaten and imprisoned without trial; were Roman citizens. The magistrates, in great alarm, saw the necessity of humbling themselves. They came and begged them to leave the city. Paul and Silas consented to do so, and, after paying a visit to "the brethren" in the house of Lydia, they departed. Leaving St. Luke, and perhaps Timothy for a short time at Philippi, Paul and Silas travelled through Amphipolis and Apollonia and stopped again at Thessalonica. Here again, as in Pisidian Antioch, the envy of the Jews was excited, and the mob assaulted the house of Jason with whom Paul and Silas were staying as guests, and, not finding them, dragged Jason himself and some other brethren before the magistrates. After these signs of danger the brethren immediately sent away Paul and Silas by night. They next came to Berea. Here they found the Jews more noble than those at Thessalonica had been. Accordingly they gained many converts, both Jews and Greeks; but the Jews of Thessalonica, hearing of it, sent emissaries to stir up the people, and it was thought best that Paul should himself leave the city whilst Silas and Timothy remained-behind. Some of the brethren went with St. Paul as far as Athens, where they left him carrying back a request to Silas and Timothy that they would speedily join him. Here the apostle delivered that wonderful discourse reported in #Ac 17:22-31| He gained but few converts at Athens, and soon took his departure and went to Corinth. He was testifying with unusual effort and anxiety when Silas and Timothy came from Macedonia and joined him. Their arrival was the occasion of the writing of the First Epistle to the Thessalonians. The two epistles to the Thessalonians--and these alone--belong to the present missionary journey. They were written from Corinth A.D. 52, 53. When Silas and Timotheus came to Corinth, St. Paul was testifying to the Jews with great earnestness, but with little success. Corinth was the chief city of the province of Achaia, and the residence of the proconsul. During St. Paul stay the proconsular office was held by Gallio, a brother of the philosopher Seneca. Before him the apostle was summoned by his Jewish enemies, who hoped to bring the Roman authority to bear upon him as an innovator in religion. But Gallio perceived at once, before Paul could "open his mouth" to defend himself, that the movement was due to Jewish prejudice, and refused to go into the question. Then a singular scene occurred. The Corinthian spectators, either favoring Paul or actuated only by anger against the Jews, seized on the principal person of those who had brought the charge, and beat him before the judgment-seat. Gallio left these religious quarrels to settle themselves. The apostle therefore, was not allowed to be "hurt," and remained some time longer at Corinth unmolested. Having been the instrument of accomplishing this work, Paul departed for Jerusalem, wishing to attend a festival there. Before leaving Greece, he cut off his hair at Cenchreae, in fulfillment of a vow. #Ac 18:18| Paul paid a visit to the synagogue at Ephesus, but would not stay. Leaving Ephesus, he sailed to Caesarea, and from thence went up to Jerusalem, spring, A.D. 54, and "saluted the church." It is argued, from considerations founded on the suspension of navigation during the winter months, that the festival was probably the Pentecost. From Jerusalem the apostle went almost immediately down to Antioch, thus returning to the same place from which he had started with Silas. Third missionary journey, including the stay at Ephesus. A.D. 54-58. #Ac 18:23 ... 21:17| --The great epistles which belong to this period, those to the Galatians, Corinthians and Romans, show how the "Judaizing" question exercised at this time the apostle's mind. St. Paul "spent some time" at Antioch, and during this stay as we are inclined to believe, his collision with St. Peter #Ga 2:11-14| took place. When he left Antioch, he "went over all the country of Galatia and Phrygia in order, strengthening all the disciples," and giving orders concerning the collection for the saints. #1Co 18:1| It is probable that the Epistle to the Galatians was written soon after this visit--A.D. 56-57. This letter was in all probability sent from Ephesus. This was the goal of the apostle's journeyings through Asia Minor. He came down to Ephesus from the upper districts of Phrygia. Here he entered upon his usual work. He went into the synagogue, and for three months he spoke openly, disputing and persuading concerning "the kingdom of God." At the end of this time the obstinacy and opposition of some of the Jews led him to give up frequenting the synagogue, and he established the believers as a separate society meeting "in the school of Tyrannus." This continued for two years. During this time many things occurred of which the historian of the Acts chooses two examples, the triumph over magical arts and the great disturbance raised by the silversmiths who made shrines Diana --among which we are to note further the writing of the First Epistle to the Corinth A.D. 57. Before leaving Ephesus Paul went into Macedonia, where he met Titus, who brought him news of the state of the Corinthian church. Thereupon he wrote the Second Epistle to the Corinthians, A.D. 57, and sent it by the hands of Titus and two other brethren to Corinth. After writing this epistle, St. Paul travelled throughout Macedonia, perhaps to the borders of Illyricum, #Ro 15:19| and then went to Corinth. The narrative in the Acts tells us that "when he had gone over those parts (Macedonia), and had given them much exhortation he came into Greece, and there abode three months." #Ac 20:2,3| There is only one incident which we can connect with this visit to Greece, but that is a very important one--the writing of his Epistle to the Romans, A.D. 58. That this was written at this time from Corinth appears from passages in the epistle itself and has never been doubted. The letter is a substitute for the personal visit which he had longed "for many years" to pay. Before his departure from Corinth, St. Paul was joined again by St. Luke, as we infer from the change in the narrative from the third to the first person. He was bent on making a journey to Jerusalem, for a special purpose and within a limited time. With this view he was intending to go by sea to Syria. But he was made aware of some plot of the Jews for his destruction, to be carried out through this voyage; and he determined to evade their malice by changing his route. Several brethren were associated with him in this expedition, the bearers no doubt, of the collections made in all the churches for the poor at Jerusalem. These were sent on by sea, and probably the money with them, to Troas, where they were to await Paul. He, accompanied by Luke, went northward through Macedonia. Whilst the vessel which conveyed the rest of the party sailed from Troas to Assos, Paul gained some time by making the journey by land. At Assos he went on board again. Coasting along by Mitylene, Chios, Samos and Trogyllium, they arrived at Miletus. At Miletus, however there was time to send to Ephesus, and the elders of the church were invited to come down to him there. This meeting is made the occasion for recording another characteristic and representative address of St. Paul. #Ac 20:18-35| The course of the voyage from Miletas was by Coos and Rhodes to Patara, and from Patara in another vessel past Cyprus to Tyre. Here Paul and his company spent seven days. From Tyre they sailed to Ptolemais, where they spent one day, and from Ptolemais proceeded, apparently by land, to Caesarea. They now "tarried many days" at Caesarea. During this interval the prophet Agabus, #Ac 11:28| came down from Jerusalem, and crowned the previous intimations of danger with a prediction expressively delivered. At this stage a final effort was made to dissuade Paul from going up to Jerusalem, by the Christians of Caesarea and by his travelling companions. After a while they went up to Jerusalem and were gladly received by the brethren. This is St. Paul's fifth an last visit to Jerusalem. St. Paul's imprisonment: Jerusalem. Spring, A.D. 58. --He who was thus conducted into Jerusalem by a company of anxious friends had become by this time a man of considerable fame among his countrymen. He was widely known as one who had taught with pre-eminent boldness that a way into God's favor was opened to the Gentiles, and that this way did not lie through the door of the Jewish law. He had thus roused against himself the bitter enmity of that unfathomable Jewish pride which was almost us strong in some of those who had professed the faith of Jesus as in their unconverted brethren. He was now approaching a crisis in the long struggle, and the shadow of it has been made to rest upon his mind throughout his journey to Jerusalem. He came "ready to die for the name of the Lord Jesus," but he came expressly to prove himself a faithful Jew and this purpose is shown at every point of the history. Certain Jews from "Asia," who had come up for the pentecostal feast, and who had a personal knowledge of Paul, saw him in the temple. They set upon him at once, and stirred up the people against him. There was instantly a great commotion; Paul was dragged out of the temple, the doors of which were immediately shut, and the people having him in their hands, were going to kill him. Paul was rescued from the violence of the multitude by the Roman officer, who made him his own prisoner, causing him to be chained to two soldiers, and then proceeded to inquire who he was and what he had done. The inquiry only elicited confused outcries, and the "chief captain" seems to have imagined that the apostle might perhaps be a certain Egyptian pretender who recently stirred up a considerable rising of the people. The account In the #Ac 21:34-40| tells us with graphic touches how St. Paul obtained leave and opportunity to address the people in a discourse which is related at length. Until the hated word of a mission to the Gentiles had been spoken, the Jews had listened to the speaker. "Away with such a fellow from the earth," the multitude now shouted; "it is not fit that he should live." The Roman commander seeing the tumult that arose might well conclude that St. Paul had committed some heinous offence; and carrying him off, he gave orders that he should be forced by scourging to confess his crime. Again the apostle took advantage of his Roman citizenship to protect himself from such an outrage. The chief captain set him free from bonds, but on the next day called together the chief priests and the Sanhedrin, and brought Paul as a prisoner before them. On the next day a conspiracy was formed which the historian relates with a singular fullness of detail. More than forty of the Jews bound themselves under a curse neither to eat nor drink until they had killed Paul. The plot was discovered, and St. Paul was hurried away from Jerusalem. The chief captain, Claudius Lysias determined to send him to Caesarea to Felix, the governor or procurator of Judea. He therefor put him in charge of a strong guard of soldiers, who took him by night as far as Antipatris. From thence a smaller detachment conveyed him to Caesarea, where they delivered up their prisoner into the hands of the governor. Imprisonment at Caesarea. A.D. 58-60. --St. Paul was henceforth to the end of the period embraced in the Acts, if not to the end of his life, in Roman custody. This custody was in fact a protection to him, without which he would have fallen a victim to the animosity of the Jews. He seems to have been treated throughout with humanity and consideration. The governor before whom he was now to be tried, according to Tacitus and Josephus, was a mean and dissolute tyrant. After hearing St, Paul's accusers and the apostle's defence, Felix made an excuse for putting off the matter, and gave orders that the prisoner should be treated with indulgence and that his friends should be allowed free access to him. After a while he heard him again. St. Paul remained in custody until Felix left the province. The unprincipled governor had good reason to seek to ingratiate himself with the Jews; and to please them, be handed over Paul, as an untried prisoner, to his successor, Festus. Upon his arrival in the province, Festus went up without delay from Caesarea to Jerusalem, and the leading Jews seized the opportunity of asking that Paul might be brought up there for trial intending to assassinate him by the way. But Festus would not comply with their request, He invited them to follow him on his speedy return to Caesarea, and a trial took place there, closely resembling that before Felix. "They had certain questions against him," Festus says to Agrippa, "of their own superstition (or religion), and of one Jesus, who was dead, whom Paul affirmed to be alive. And being puzzled for my part as to such inquiries, I asked him whether he would go to Jerusalem to be tried there." This proposal, not a very likely one to be accepted, was the occasion of St. Paul's appeal to Caesar. The appeal having been allowed, Festus reflected that he must send with the prisoner a report of "the crimes laid against him." He therefore took advantage of an opportunity which offered itself in a few days to seek some help in the matter. The Jewish prince Agrippa arrived with his sister Bernice on a visit to the new governor. To him Festus communicated his perplexity. Agrippa expressed a desire to hear Paul himself. Accordingly Paul conducted his defence before the king; and when it was concluded Festus and Agrippa, and their companions, consulted together, and came to the conclusion that the accused was guilty of nothing that deserved death or imprisonment. "Agrippa"s final answer to the inquiry of Festus was, "This man might have been set at liberty, if he had not appealed unto Caesar." The voyage to Rome and shipwreck. Autumn, A.D. 60. --No formal trial of St. Paul had yet taken place. After a while arrangements were made to carry "Paul and certain other prisoners," in the custody of a centurion named Julius, into Italy; and amongst the company, whether by favor or from any other reason, we find the historian of the Acts, who in chapters 27 and 28 gives a graphic description of the voyage to Rome and the shipwreck on the Island of Melita or Malta. After a three-months stay in Malta the soldiers and their prisoners left in an Alexandria ship for Italy. They touched at Syracuse, where they stayed three days, and at Rhegium, from which place they were carried with a fair wind to Puteoli, where they left their ship and the sea. At Puteoli they found "brethren," for it was an important place and especially a chief port for the traffic between Alexandria and Rome; and by these brethren they were exhorted to stay a while with them. Permission seems to have been granted by the centurion; and whilst they were spending seven days at Puteoli news of the apostle's arrival was sent to Rome. (Spring, A.D. 61.) First imprisonment of St. Paul at Rome. A.D. 61-63. --On their arrival at Rome the centurion delivered up his prisoners into the proper custody that of the praetorian prefect. Paul was at once treated with special consideration and was allowed to dwell by himself with the soldier who guarded him. He was now therefore free "to preach the gospel to them that were at Rome also;" and proceeded without delay to act upon his rule --"to the Jews first," But as of old, the reception of his message by the Jews was not favorable. He turned, therefore, again to the Gentiles, and for two years he dwelt in his own hired house. These are the last words of the Acts. But St. Paul's career is not abruptly closed. Before he himself fades out of our sight in the twilight of ecclesiastical tradition, we have letters written by himself which contribute some particulars to his biography. Period of the later epistles. --To that imprisonment to which St. Luke has introduced us --the imprisonment which lasted for such a tedious time, though tempered by much indulgence --belongs the noble group of letters to Philemon, to the Colossians, to the Ephesians and to the Philippians. The three former of these were written at one time, and sent by the same messengers. Whether that to the Philippians was written before or after these we cannot determine; but the tone of it seems to imply that a crisis was approaching, and therefore it is commonly regarded us the latest of the four. In this epistle St. Paul twice expresses a confident hope that before long he may be able to visit the Philippians in person. #Phm 1:25; 2:24| Whether this hope was fulfilled or not has been the occasion of much controversy. According to the general opinion the apostle was liberated from imprisonment at the end of two years, having been acquitted by Nero A.D. 63, and left Rome soon after writing the letter to the Philippians. He spent some time in visits to Greece, Asia Minor and Spain, and during the latter part of this time wrote the letters (first epistles) to Timothy and Titus from Macedonia, A.D. 65. After these were written he was apprehended again and sent to Rome. Second imprisonment at Rome. A.D. 65-67. --The apostle appears now to have been treated not as an honorable state prisoner but as a felon, #2Ti 2:9| but he was allowed to write the second letter to Timothy, A.D. 67. For what remains we have the concurrent testimony of ecclesiastical antiquity that he was beheaded at Rome, by Nero in the great persecutions of the Christians by that emperor, A.D. 67 or 68.
paul in Fausset's Bible Dictionary
frontACTS, THE BOOK OF.) The leading facts of his life which appear in that history, subsidiary to its design of sketching the great epochs in the commencement and development of Christ's kingdom, are: his conversion (Acts 9), his labours at Antioch (Acts 11), his first missionary journey (Acts 13; 14), the visit to Jerusalem at the council on circumcision (Acts 15), introduction of the gospel to Europe at Philippi (Acts 16),: visit to Athens (Acts 17), to Corinth (Acts 18), stay at Ephesus (Acts 19), parting address to the Ephesian elders at Miletus (Acts 20), apprehension at Jerusalem, imprisonment at Casesarea, and voyage to Rome (Acts 21-27). Though of purest Hebrew blood (Philemon 3:5), "circumcised the eighth day, of the stock of Israel, of the tribe of Benjamin, (bearing the name of the eminent man of that tribe, king Saul), an Hebrew of the Hebrew," yet his birthplace was the Gentile Tarsus. (Acts 21:39, "I am a Jew of Tarsus in Cilicia, a citizen of no mean city.") His father, as himself, was a Pharisee (Acts 23:6). Tarsus was celebrated as a school of Greek literature (Strabo, Geogr. 1:14). Here he acquired that knowledge of Greek authors and philosophy which qualified him for dealing with learned Gentiles and appealing to their own writers (Acts 17:18-28. Aratus; 1 Corinthians 15:33, Menander; Titus 1:12, Epimenides). Here too he learned the Cilician trade of making tents of the goats' hair cloth called "cilicium" (Acts 18:3); not that his father was in straitened circumstances, but Jewish custom required each child, however wealthy the parents might be, to learn a trade. He possessed the Roman citizenship from birth (Acts 22:28), and hence, when he commenced ministering among Gentiles, he preferred to be known by his Roman name Paul rather than by his Hebrew name Saul. His main education (probably after passing his first 12 years at Tarsus, Acts 26:4-5, "among his own nation." Alexandrinus, Vaticanus, Sinaiticus manuscripts read "and" before "at Jerusalem") was at Jerusalem "at the feet of Gamaliel, taught according to the perfect manner of the law of the fathers" (Acts 22:3). (See GAMALIEL.) Thus the three elements of the world's culture met in him: Roman citizenship, Grecian culture, Hebrew religion. Gamaliel had counseled toleration (Acts 5:34-39); but his teaching of strict pharisaic legalism produced in Saul's ardent spirit persecuting zeal against opponents, "concerning zeal persecuting the church" (Philemon 3:6). Among the synagogue disputants with Stephen were men "of Cilcia" (Acts 6:9), probably including Saul; at all events it was at his feet, while be was yet "a young man," that the witnesses, stoning the martyr, laid down their clothes (Acts 6:9; Acts 7:58; Deuteronomy 17:7). "Saul was consenting unto his death" (Acts 6; 7); but we can hardly doubt that his better feelings must have had some misgiving in witnessing Stephen's countenance beaming as an angel's, and in hearing his loving prayer for his murderers. But stern bigotry stifled all such doubts by increased zeal; "he made havock of (elumaineto, 'ravaged as a wild beast') the church, entering into the houses (severally, or worship rooms), and haling men and women committed them to prison" (Acts 8:3). But God's grace arrested Paul in his career of blind fanaticism; "I obtained mercy upon, because I did it ignorantly in unbelief" (1 Timothy 1:12-16). His ignorance was culpable, for he might have known if he had sought aright; but it was less guilty than sinning against light and knowledge. There is a wide difference between mistaken zeal for the law and willful striving against God's Spirit. His ignorance gave him no claim on, but put him within the range of, God's mercy (Luke 23:34; Acts 3:17; Romans 10:2). The positive ground of mercy is solely God's compassion (Titus 3:5). We have three accounts of his conversion, one by Luke (Acts 9), the others by himself (Acts 22; 26), mutually supplementing one another. Following the adherents of "the (Christian) way ... unto strange cities," and "breathing out threatenings and slaughter," he was on his journey to Damascus with authoritative letters from the high priest empowering him to arrest and bring to Jerusalem all such, trusting doubtless that the pagan governor would not interpose in their behalf. At midday a light shone upon him and his company, exceeding the brightness of the sun; he and all with him fell to the earth (Acts 26:14; in Acts 9:7 "stood speechless," namely, they soon rose, and when he at length rose they were standing speechless with wonder), "hearing" the sound of a "voice," but not understanding (compare 1 Corinthians 14:2 margin) the articulate speech which Paul heard (Acts 22:9, "they heard not the voice of Him that spoke") in Hebrew (Acts 26:14), cf6 "Saul, Saul, why persecutest thou Me?" (in the person of My brethren, Matthew 25:40). "It is hard for thee to kick against the goads" (not in Acts 9:5 the Sinaiticus, Vaticanus, Alexandrinus manuscripts, but only in Acts 26:14), which, as in the case of oxen being driven, only makes the goad pierce the deeper (Matthew 21:44; Proverbs 8:36). Saul trembling (as the jailer afterward before him, Acts 16:30-31) said, "Lord, what wilt Thou have me to do?" the usual question at first awakening (Luke 3:10), but here with the additional sense of unreserved surrender of himself to the Lord's guidance (Isaiah 6:1-8). The Lord might act directly, but He chooses to employ ministerial instruments; such was Ananias whom He sent to Saul, after he had been three days without sight and neither eating nor drinking, in the house of Judas (probably a Christian to whose house he had himself led, rather than to his former co-religionists). Ananias, whom he would have seized for prison and death, is the instrument of giving him light and life. God had prepared Ananias for his visitor by announcing the one sure mark of his conversion, "behold he prayeth" (Romans 8:15). Ananias had heard of him as a notorious persecutor, but obeyed the Lord's direction. In Acts 26:16-18 Paul condenses in one account, and connects with Christ's first appearing, subsequent revelations of Jesus to him as to the purpose of his call;" to make thee a minister and witness of these things ... delivering thee from the Gentiles, unto whom now I send thee." Like Jonah, the outcast runaway, when penitent, was made the messenger of repentance to guilty Nineveh. The time of his call was just when the gospel was being opened to the Gentiles by Peter (Acts 10). An apostle, severed from legalism, and determined unbelief by an extraordinary revulsion, was better fitted for carrying forward the work among unbelieving Gentiles, which had been begun by the apostle of the circumcision. He who was the most learned and at the same time humblest (Ephesians 3:8; 1 Corinthians 15:9) of the apostles was the one whose pen was most used in the New Testament Scriptures. He"saw" the Lord in actual person (Acts 9:17; Acts 22:14; Acts 23:11; Acts 26:16; 1 Corinthians 15:8; 1 Corinthians 9:1), which was a necessary qualification for apostleship, so as to be witness of the resurrection. The light that flashed on his eyes was the sign of the spiritual light that broke in upon his soul; and Jesus' words to him (Acts 26:18), "to open their eyes and to turn them from darkness to light" (which commission was symbolized in the opening of his own eyes through Ananias, Acts 9:17-18), are by undesigned coincidence reproduced naturally in his epistles (Colossians 1:12-14; 2 Corinthians 4:4; Ephesians 1:18, contrast Ephesians 4:18; Ephesians 6:12). He calls himself "the one untimely born" in the family of the apostles (1 Corinthians 15:8). Such a child, though born alive, is yet not of proper size and scarcely worthy of the name of man; so Paul calls himself" least of the apostles, not meet to be called an apostle" (compare 1 Peter 1:3). He says, God's "choice" (Acts 9:15; Acts 22:14), "separating me (in contrast to his having been once a "Pharisee", from pharash, i.e. a separatist, but now 'separated' unto something infinitely higher) from my mother's womb (therefore without any merit of mine), and calling me by His grace (which carried into effect His 'good pleasure,' eudokia), revealed His Son in me, that I might preach Him among the pagan," independent of Mosaic ceremonialism (Galatians 1:11-20). Ananias, being "a devout man according to the law, having a good report of all the Jews there," was the suitable instrument of giving him bodily and spiritual sight in his transition stage. His language accords, "the God of our fathers (compare Paul's own, 2 Timothy 1:3; Galatians 1:14) hath chosen thee ... that thou shouldest see that Just (righteous, a legal term) One." Saul directly, on his conversion "preached Christ in the synagogues that He is the Son of God," to the astonishment of his hearers (Acts 9:20-21); then followed his retirement to Arabia for a considerable part of the whole "three years" between his conversion and his visit to Jerusalem. From Arabia he returned to Damascus, where with his increased spiritual "strength" he confounded the Jews. Then on their watching to kill him lie was "let down by the wall in a basket," under Aretas (2 Corinthians 11:32; Galatians 1:15-18). (See ARETAS.) His three years of direction by the Lord alone answer to the about three years' intercourse of Jesus with His twelve apostles. This first visit to Jerusalem is that mentioned Acts 9:26, at which occurred the vision (Acts 22:17-18). His "increase in strength" (Acts 9:22) was obtained in communion with the Lord in Arabia near the scene of giving the law, a fit scene for the revelation of gospel grace which supersedes it (Galatians 4:25). Ananias his first instructor, esteemed for his legal piety, was not likely to have taught him the gospel's independence of the Mosaic law. Paul received it by special revelation (1 Corinthians 11:23; 1 Corinthians 15:3; 1 Thessalonians 4:15). The "many days" (Acts 9:23) answer to "three years" (Galatians 1:18), as in 1 Kings 2:38-39. In Arabia he had that retirement after the first fervor of conversion which great characters need, preparatory to their life work for God, as Moses in Midian (Acts 7:20; Acts 7:22). His familiarity with Mount Sinai in Arabia, the scene of the giving of the law, appears in Galatians 4:24-25; Hebrews 12:18; here he was completely severed from his former legalism. Thence He returned to Damascus; then he went to Jerusalem to see Peter. He saw only Peter and James, being introduced by Barnabas not to seek their sanction but to inform them of Jesus' independent revelation to him (Acts 9:26-29; Galatians 1:18-19). His Grecian education adapted him for successfully, like Stephen, disputing against the Grecians. He had a vision later than that of Acts 22:17-18, namely, in 2 Corinthians 12:1, etc., six years after his conversion, A.D. 43. Thus Paul was an independent witness of the gospel. When he compared his gospel with that of the apostles there was found perfect harmony (Galatians 2:2-9). After staying only 15 days at Jerusalem, wherein there was not time for his deriving his gospel commission from Peter with whom he abode, having had a vision that he should depart to the Gentiles (Acts 22:18-19), and being plotted against by Hellenistic Jews (Acts 9:29), he withdrew to the seaport Caesarea (Acts 9:30), thence by sea to Tarsus in Cilicia (Galatians 1:21), and thence to Syria. His journey by sea, not land, accounts for his being "unknown by face unto the churches of Judaea" (Galatians 1:22), so that he could not have derived his gospel from them. lie puts "Syria" before "Cilicia," as it was a geographical phrase, the more important being put first. Meantime at Antioch the gospel was preached to Gentile "Greeks" (Hellenas in the Alexandrinus manuscript, not "Grecians," Acts 11:20) by men of Cyprus and Cyrene scattered abroad at the persecution of Stephen; Barnabas went down then from Jerusalem, and glad in seeing this special grace of God, "exhorted them that with purpose of heart they would cleave unto the Lord." (See CHRISTIAN.) Desiring a helper he fetched Saul from Tarsus to Antioch, and for a whole year they laboured together, and in leaving for Jerusalem (Paul's second visit there, not mentioned in Galatians, being for a special object and for but "few days," Acts 11:30; Acts 12:25) brought with them a token of brotherly love, a contribution for the brethren in Judaea during the famine which was foretold by Agabus and came on under Claudius Caesar (Acts 11:22-30; A.D. 44). Returning from Jerusalem to Antioch, after having fulfilled their ministry, they took with them John Mark as subordinate helper (Acts 12:25). Here (Acts 13) while their minds were dwelling on the extraordinary accession of Gentile converts, "as they ministered to the Lord and fasted, the Holy Spirit said, "Separate Me Barnabas and Saul for the work whereunto I have called them," namely, to labors among the Gentiles, such as was the specimen already given at Antioch, in which these two had taken such an efficient part. Very striking is the patient humility with which Paul waited for the Lord's time, as he had already received his call to be "a chosen vessel to bear His name before the Gentiles." In going forth on his first missionary journey he was subordinate to Barnabas; but after preaching the word in Cyprus, where in the Lord's name he had smitten with blindness Elymas the sorcerer (even as he had tried to blind spiritually the governor), and when Sergius Paulus who had sent for Barnabas and Saul believed, he thenceforth under the name Paul takes the lead. Peter's smiting Simon Magus (Acts 8), who sought spiritual powers for gain, corresponds. The unity of God's dealings with His people is the true explanation of the parallelism between the histories of Paul and Peter, just as profound resemblances of form and typical structure exist between species and genera of both plants and animals which in many respects are widely divergent. Peter heals the man lame from birth at the temple gate, Paul the man impotent in feet from birth at Lystra; both fixed their eyes upon the men. As Peter at midnight was miraculously delivered from Herod's prison, so Paul at Philippi was loosed from his chains with an earthquake. As Peter raised Dorcas, so Paul Eutychus. Peter's striking Ananias and Sapphira dead answers to Paul's striking Elymas blind. As Peter's shadow healed the sick, so Paul's handkerchiefs. As Peter confirmed with the laying on of hands the Samaritans, and the Holy Spirit came on them, so Paul the Ephesian disciples of John Baptist (Acts 19). Luke marks the transition point between Saul's past ministrations to Jews and his new ministry among Gentiles, which was henceforth to be his special work, by his Gentile designation, borne from infancy but now first regularly applied to him, Paul. At Perga in Pamphylia Mark forsook him and Barnabas. frontMARK.) In Antioch in Pisidia, as in Cyprus, they began their preaching in the synagogue on the Sabbath. In Paul's remarkable address we have a specimen of his mode of dealing with "the Jews ... men of Israel ... and religious proselytes ... ye that fear God." He bases all on the covenant God made with "our fathers," brings out God's "raising up of David to be king, a man after His own heart," shows that it was "of his seed" that" God according to promise raised unto Israel a Savior Jesus," applies the message of salvation to them, proves that the rulers in condemning Him in spite of themselves fulfilled the prophecies read every Sabbath concerning Him; for instance the promise of the second psalm, "Thou art My Son, this day have I begotten Thee," God fulfilled in raising Jesus. These are "the sure mercies" (the holy or gracious promises, osia Greek, chacid Hebrew) of the covenant made with David; hence (Psalm 16:10) he anticipates "Thou wilt not suffer Thy Holy ("Gracious": chacid, "in God's favour": John 1:14; John 1:16, osion) One to see corruption," which cannot apply to David (for he saw corruption) and can only apply to Christ. He winds up with the characteristically Pauline doctrine of the epistles to Romans and Galatians: "by Him all that believe are justified from all things from which ye could not be justified by the law of Moses." On the other hand a work of wonder and destruction is foretold by the prophets against all "despisers." After the congregation was broken up many Jews and proselytes followed Paul and Barnabas, and heard more of "the grace of God." But when almost the whole city came together the next Sabbath to hear the word of God, envy of the admission of Gentiles to gospel privileges without being first proselytized to Judaism incited the Jews to blaspheme and to contradict Paul. This caused Paul to wax bolder and say, It was necessary to speak the word first to you, but seeing ye judge yourselves unworthy (it is not God who counted them" unworthy": Matthew 20:19; Matthew 22:8) of everlasting life, lo, we turn to the Gentiles. This too accords with the prophets (Isaiah 42:6; Isaiah 49:6). The Gentiles rejoiced, and many believed; but the Jews influenced their proselyte women of the higher class, and chief men, to drive Paul and Barnabas away. The apostles proceeded to Iconium cheered by the joy with which the Holy Spirit filled the disciples. There "long time abode they speaking boldly in the Lord, which gave testimony unto the word of His grace and granted signs and wonders to be done by their hands" (Acts 14:3). But persecution drove them thence, and they fled to Lystra and Derbe of Lycaonia. (See LYSTRA.) Again as at Cyprus Paul's ministry resembles Peter's, the cure of' the impotent man in Lystra corresponding to Peter's cure of the same disease at the Beautiful gate of the temple (3); indeed the parallelism probably led three very old manuscripts, C, D, E, to insert from Acts 3:8, in Acts 14:10, "I say unto thee in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ," etc. His mode of address is happily suited to the heathen of Lystra in turning them from their purpose of sacrificing to him and Barnabas as Mercury (for Paul was the chief speaker) and Jupiter respectively. frontMERCURY.) Instead of appealing to the Scriptures, he appeals to what they knew, the witness of God in His gifts of "rain and fruitful seasons "; he urges them to "turn from these vanities ("dead idols") to serve the living God who made all things," in undesigned coincidence with Pauline language (1 Thessalonians 1:9-10). His address to the pagan Athenians corresponds (Acts 17:24-29); there he says "God winked at the times of ignorance, but now commandeth all to repent," as here, "who in times past suffered all nations to walk in their own ways," and Romans 3:25, "on account of the praetermission (passing by without judicial cognizance) of the past sins in the forbearance of God." With characteristic fickleness the mob stoned him whom just before they idolized. But he arose and went into the city, and next day to Derbe and to Lystra again, and to Iconium and Antioch, ordaining elders in every church, and confirming the disciples by telling them "that we must through much tribulation enter into the kingdom of God." From Pisidia they came to Perga and Attalia; thence to Antioch, where they reported at what may be called the first missionary meeting or covention "all that God had done with them, opening the door of faith unto the Gentiles"; and so ended Paul's first missionary tour. Next (Acts 14:28; Acts 15), during Paul's stay at Antioch, men from Judaea came teaching that the Gentile converts must be circumcised. He and Barnabas strenuously opposed them, and were selected to go to Jerusalem and lay the question before the apostles and elders. Paul had also a divine" revelation" (Galatians 2:2) that he should go, besides his public commission. On their way they announced in Phenice and Samaria the conversion of the Gentiles, "causing great joy unto all the brethren." At Jerusalem "they declared all things that God had done with them," the facts and miracles of their mission among the Gentiles in general to the Christian multitude there; "but privately" to the apostles the details of his doctrine, in order to compare it with their teaching, to let them see that he was not "running in vain," in not requiring circumcision of Gentile converts. Certain Pharisees however rose up, insisting on it, but Paul would not yield "for an hour" (Galatians 2); the council followed, in which Peter silenced arguments by the logic of facts, God having given the Holy Spirit to the Gentiles, who believed through him, even as He did to the believing Jews. Why then should the burdensome legal yoke be imposed on them, which God had not made a necessary preliminary to their salvation? Barnabas and Paul confirmed by their experience the fact: of God's work among the Gentiles. James wound up by showing that Amos' prophecy (Amos 9:11-12) of the call of the Gentiles, consequent on the building again of David's tabernacle, accords with the facts just stated. The decree followed, binding the Gentiles only to abstinence from idol pollutions, fornication, and, in deference to the Jews' feelings, from things strangled and blood. So Judas Barsabas and Silas, chosen men of their own company, were sent with Paul and Barnabas to carry the decree to Antioch, the apostles having previously "given Paul the right hand of fellowship" as a colleague in the apostleship, and having recognized that the apostleship of the uncircumcision was committed to Paul as that of the circumcision to Peter. The realization of the brotherly bond uniting the whole church (circumcision no longer separating the Jew from the Gentile) was further to be kept up by alms for the poor brethren (Galatians 2). The nonreference in Galatians to the decree is (1) because Paul's design in that epistle was to show Paul's own independent apostolic authority, which did not rest upon their decision; (2) he argues on principle not authority; (3) the decree did not go the length of his position, it merely did not impose Mosaic ordinances, but, he here maintains the Mosaic institution itself is at an end; (4) the Galatians Judaized, not because they thought it necessary to Christianity, but necessary to higher perfection (Galatians 3:3; Galatians 4:21). The decree would not disprove their view. Paul confutes them more directly, "Christ is become of no effect unto you whosoever are justified by the law" (Galatians 5:4; Galatians 5:11). If Paul had proselytized Gentiles as the Jews always received proselytes, namely, with circumcision, persecution would have ceased. But the truth was at stake, and he must not yield (Galatians 6:13). The Judaizers soon followed Paul to Antioch, where Peter had already come. Unable to deny that Gentiles are admissible to the Christian covenant without circumcision, they denied that they were so to social intercourse with Jews; pleading the authority of James, they induced Peter, in spite of his own avowed principles (Acts 15:7-11) and his practice (Acts 11:2-17), through fear of man (Proverbs 29:25), to separate himself from those Gentiles with whom he had heretofore eaten; this too at Antioch, the stronghold of universality and starting point of Paul's missions to Gentiles. He betrayed his old character, ever the first to recognize and the first to draw back from great truths (Matthew 14:30). The rest of the Jews there "dissembled" with Peter, and "Barnabas was carried away with their dissimulation"; then Paul "before them all withstood to the face" (compare 1 Timothy 5:20) and charged Peter, "seeing that thou a Jew habitually from conviction livest as a Gentile, eating of every food and with every one, how is it that now thou by example virtually compellest the Gentiles to Judaize?" In 2 Peter 3:15 we see how thoroughly their misunderstanding was cleared up, Peter praising the epistles of Paul which condemned him. At his second missionary tour BARNABAS, desiring to take Mark against Paul's judgment, parted company with him. frontMARK.) Their "sharp contention" shows they were not always infallible or impeccable. Silas or Silvanus became Paul's companion through Syria and Cilicia where he confirmed the churches, his circumcising Timothy at Derbe (Acts 16:1-3, "whom he would have to go forth with him"), on the ground of his mother being a Jewess, was that by becoming, when principle was not at stake, "to the Jews a Jew, he might gain the Jews." Titus on the contrary, being a Greek, he would not circumcise "because of false brethren" (Galatians 2:3-4) who, had he yielded, would have perverted the case into a proof that he deemed circumcision necessary. To insist on Jewish usages for Gentile converts would have been to make them essential to Christianity; to violate them abruptly, before that the destruction of the temple and Jewish polity made them to cease, would have been against Christian charity (1 Corinthians 9:22; Romans 14:1-7; Romans 14:13-33). Paul Silas, and Timothy went through Phrygia and Galatia. Bodily infirmity detained him in Galatia (Galatians 4:13 translated "on account of an infirmity," the "thorn in the flesh" 2 Corinthians 12:7-10), and was overruled to his preaching the gospel there. The impulsive Galatians "received him as an angel of God, as Christ Jesus," at first, but with Celtic fickleness heeded other teachers who with Judaizing doctrine supplanted the apostle in their affections (2 Corinthians 12:12-29). "Where is your former felicitation of yourselves on having the blessing of my ministry?" Ye once "would have plucked out your eyes and have given them to me" (Matthew 5:29). Sensitiveness may have led him to overrate his bodily defect; at all events it did not prevent his enduring hardships which few could bear (2 Corinthians 10:10; 2 Corinthians 11:23-33). His "eyes" may have been permanently weakened by the blinding vision (Acts 22:11), hence the "large letters" (Greek) he wrote (Galatians 6:11). Paul intended to visit western Asia, but was "forbidden by the Holy Spirit." From the border of Mysia he essayed to go N.E. into Bithynia, "but the Spirit of Jesus (the Sinaiticus, Vaticanus, and Alexandrinus manuscripts) suffered them not" (Acts 16:6-7; Acts 16:10). Passing by Mysia they came to Troas, and here the "man of Macedonia appeared, saying, Come over into Macedonia and help us." At this point Luke the historian intimates his presence by the "we"; "the beloved physician" probably ministered to Paul's "infirmity" in Galatia. The party from Troas sailed by Samothrace to Neapolis, then proceeded to Philippi. The conversion of Lydia was the first in Europe, though she was an Asiatic. (See LYDIA.) Then followed Paul's casting out the spirit of divination from the damsel, and her master's violence to Paul because of their loss of gains, under the old plea against saints that they "trouble" the commonwealth (1 Kings 18:17); his imprisonment after scourging (referred to 1 Thessalonians 2:2); his feet fastened in the stocks; the midnight cheerful hymns (Ephesians 5:20; Job 35:10; Psalm 42:8); the earthquake loosing their bonds (so Acts 12:6-10; Acts 5:19); the intended suicide; the jailer's trembling question, the answer, and his joy in believing, and his fruits of faith, love, washing Paul's stripes (John 13:14; Matthew 25:36), and entertaining him. The apostle's self-respect appears in declining to allow the magistrates to thrust him out privily, after having beaten and imprisoned a Roman citizen uncondemned, for Cicero (in Verrem, 66) informs us it was counted "a daring misdemeanor to bind, a wicked crime to scourge, a Roman citizen." Upon their beseeching re. quest he went out, and after a visit to the brethren in Lydia's house he left Philippi (Luke and perhaps Timothy staying behind for a time) for Thessalonica by way of Amphipolis and Apollonia. The fervent attachment of the Philippian church was evinced by their sending supplies for his temporal wants twice shortly after he left them, "in the beginning of the gospel," to Thessalonica (Philemon 4:15-16), and a third time by Epaphroditus shortly before writing the epistle (Philemon 4:10; Philemon 4:18; 2 Corinthians 11:9). Few Jews were at Philippi to excite distrust of Paul. There was no synagogue, but a mere oratory or "prayer place" (proseuchee) by the river side. Only there no opposition was offered by the Jews. His sufferings there strengthened the union between him and them, as they too suffered for the gospel's sake (1 Thessalonians 2:2). At Thessalonica (Acts 17) for three Sabbaths Paul, "as his manner was," reasoned in the synagogue out of the Scriptures, showing that the Messiah to fulfill them must suffer and rise again, and that Jesus is that Messiah. A multitude of Gentile proselytes and chief women, with some Jews, joined him. In consequence the unbelieving Jews incited the rabble ("fellows of the baser sort," literally, loungers in the market place, 'agoraious': Acts 17:5, in harmony with 1 Thessalonians 2:14) to assault the house of Jason, Paul's host. Failing to find Paul they dragged Jason and certain brethren before the rulers, crying "these that have turned the world upside down are come here also" (South quaintly remarks, "Considering how the world then stood, with idolatry at the head and truth under foot, turning it upside down was the only way perhaps to restore it to its right position"); "these do contrary to Caesar's decrees, saying that there is another King, one Jesus." It is an undesigned coincidence that Jesus' coming kingdom is the prominent thought in the epistles to the Thessalonians (1 Thessalonians 2:12; 2 Thessalonians 1:10). They perverted the doctrine of Christ's coming to reign with His saints into treason against Caesar; so in Jesus' case (John 18:33-37; John 19:12). He writes to them as mostly Gentiles (1 Thessalonians 1:9-10); he had worked night and day, not to be chargeable unto them (1 Thessalonians 2:9-10; 2 Thessalonians 3:8), and had guarded against the abuse of the doctrine of Christ's coming (1 Thessalonians 4:11-12; 2 Thessalonians 2:1-3; 2 Thessalonians 3:5-13). The magistrates contented themselves with taking security of Jason, and the brethren sent away Paul and Silas to Berea by night. Here too they entered the Jews' synagogue. The Bereans are praised as "more noble" than the Thessalonians generally, for (1) their ready reception of the preached word, and (2) their searching the Scriptures daily whether it accorded with them. frontBEREANS.) Accordingly many believed, Jews as well as Greeks, men and honourable women. But the Thessalonian Jews followed him, and the brethren sent away Paul by sea, Silas and Timothy staying behind. Some brethren escorted Paul to Athens, then returned with a message from him to Silas and Timothy to join him "with all speed." He had intended to defer preaching until he had them by his side, but "his spirit was stirred within him when he saw the city wholly given to idolatry," so he began at once disputing in the synagogue with the Jews and proselytes, and in the market daily with them that met him. Among the latter were Epicurean and Stoic philosophers. To the Epicureans, the ancient materialists, who denied a future life and made the supreme good consist in a calm enjoyment of the present, Paul offered "the peace which passeth understanding," through Him who through self denying agony and death secures life eternal to us. To the Stoics, the ancient pantheists and fatalists, who made man independent on any being but self, he preached self renunciation and reliance on the personal Jesus, and the resurrection through Him. Some said, "what will this babbler (Greek spermologos, 'seed picker,' as a bird; so market loungers, ready to pick up droppings from loads of ware; so one babbling what he has picked up from others) say?" Others said, as was the charge against Socrates who similarly used to reason in the market with those he met, "he seemeth a setter forth of strange gods" (namely, God and Jesus, Acts 17:24; Acts 17:31) "because he preached unto them Jesus and the resurrection." Curiosity and love of novelty were noted characteristics of Athenians. So they took him to Mars' hill, arranged with benches and steps of stone in the open air. They had charged him with setting forth strange gods: he begins by gently retorting, "I perceive in every point of view you are religious to a fault" (deisidaimonestorous, not such censure as "too superstitious" would convey). Taking their "altar to an unknown god" (for such altars were erected in times of plague, when the known gods failed to help) as his text, "what (the Sinaiticus, Vaticanus, Alexandrinus manuscripts for whom) ye worship confessing your ignorance of, that (the divinity) I declare unto you." "Whom, ... Him," would contradict 1 Corinthians 10:20; John 4:22. God may be known. He is the Creator, Preserver, and Governor of all things, has made all men of one blood, assigning them their times and habitations, that they should feel after Him (pseelfeeseian; as thoughtful pagan will do, but it is only groping in the dark until revelation comes; contrast 1 John 1:1), though He is really near every one of us (Romans 10:8-9), having our being in Him, as your own poet sings, "we are His offspring." God has overlooked the times of ignorance (huperidon; looking on to Christ's sacrifice which vindicates God's righteousness in passing by the intermediate transgressions: Romans 3:25), but now commands all everywhere to repent, since He will judge all by that Man whom He hath ordained as the Savior and Judge, raising Him from the dead as the pledge of assurance. At the mention of the resurrection some mocked, others deferred (compare Acts 24:25) the further hearing of the subject. A few believed, including the Areopagite Dionysius and Damaris, a woman. Next, he came to Corinth, the commercial and stirring capital of Greece, and so more alive to his serious message than the dilettanti philosophers and quidnuncs of Athens. His tentmaking here brought him into close connection with Jews just expelled by Claudius from Rome, Aquila and Priscilla. When Silas and Timothy came from Macedon, Paul was earnestly occupied with the word frontSinaiticus, Vaticanus, Alexandrinus manuscripts Acts 18:5 for "the spirit"), the crisis of their acceptance or else rejection of his message having come. Timothy he bad sent from Athens to Thessalonica (1 Thessalonians 3:1-2), Silas elsewhere. Their arrival at Corinth suggested his writing the first epistle to Thessalonians. It and 2 Thessalonians were the only epistles he wrote on this missionary journey, both from Corinth. The epistles to Galatians, Romans, and Corinthians belong to his next journey. The epistles to Philemon, Colossians, Ephesians, and Philippians belong to his first captivity at Rome. His versatility appears in his being able to write 1 Thessalonians when earnestly occupied with the Corinthians; and in his writing 1 and 2 Corinthians between the kindred epistles to the Galatians and Romans; if Galatians was written at Ephesus on his first arrival, and not subsequently at Corinth. frontGALATIANS.) He attested all his genuine letters with his autograph at the close, to enable the churches to distinguish them from spurious ones (2 Thessalonians 2:2; 2 Thessalonians 3:17). When the Jews opposed and blasphemed Paul shook his raiment (Nehemiah 5:13; Acts 13:51), and said, "your blood be upon your own heads (Ezekiel 33:4), henceforth I will go unto the Gentiles." So he withdrew to the house of a Gentile next the synagogue, Justus. Crispus the ruler of the synagogue believed, and was baptized by Paul himself (1 Corinthians 1:14); many Corinthians too were baptized. Paul's fear of the Jews' consequent wrath was dispelled by the Lord in a vision: "be not afraid, but speak and hold not thy peace, for I am with thee and no man shall set on thee to hurt thee, for I have much people in this city." He therefore continued at Corinth a year and a half, teaching. The Jews with one accord set on and brought him before Gallio's judgment seat, saying, this fellow persuadeth men to worship God contrary to the law. (See GALLIO.) But Paul experienced God's faithfulness to His promise that none should beat him, for Gallio without waiting for Paul to plead drave his enemies from the judgment seat and winked at the beating the Greeks gave Sosthenes, the Jews' ringleader and ruler of the synagogue. Paul's compassion to his enemy in distress probably won Sosthenes, for we find him associated with Paul in 1 Corinthians 1:1. Paul left Corinth to keep the feast (probably Pentecost) at Jerusalem (Acts 20:16). At Cenchreae he cut off his hair in fulfillment of a vow, made probably in some sickness (Galatians 4:13) like the Nazarite vow, and ending with a sacrifice at Jerusalem to which he therefore hastened. Staying at Ephesus a very brief time, and going forward by Caesarea, he saluted the church at Jerusalem. Thence he went to Antioch, the place of his starting originally with Silas (Acts 15:35; Acts 15:40). Third missionary tour. Acts 18:23-21;Acts 18:17. His aim at this period was to vindicate Christians' freedom from the law, yet unity through the higher bond of love. Hence he gives prominence to the collections of the Gentile churches for the relief of the poor brethren at Jerusalem (Galatians 2:10). The epistles of this time, Galatians, Corinthians, and Romans, mainly discuss the relations of the believer to the Jewish law. From Antioch Paul went over all Galatia and Phrygia in order, strengthening all the disciples (Acts 18:23) and ordering the collection (1 Corinthians 16:1). Then on reaching Ephesus he wrote epistle to Galatians, else later at Corinth. frontGALATIANS.) Ephesus Paul reached from the upper regions (Phrygia: Acts 19:1). Being the metropolis of Asia and the meeting ground of oriental, Jew, Greek, and Roman, Paul stayed at Ephesus two or three years (Acts 19:10; Acts 20:31), so that he founded in it a mother church for the whole Asian region. Here he met the 12 disciples who had been, like Apollos (Acts 18:25-26), baptized only unto John's baptism. On his asking "did ye receive the Holy Spirit when ye became believers?" they answered, "we did not so much as hear whether the Holy Spirit is (given)." Paul taught them the further truths, baptism into the Lord Jesus and the outpouring of the Holy Spirit; and in laying hands on them after baptism the Holy Spirit came on them, just as upon the Samaritans when Peter and John laid hands on them (Acts 8:15; Acts 8:17). The first three months Paul spoke boldly in the synagogue at Ephesus; then, on many hardening themselves in unbelief, he separated the disciples from the synagogue and disputed daily in the school of Tyrannus (whether a "private synagogue," bet midrash, where he might assemble the believing Jews privately and receive inquiring Gentiles, or more probably the school of a Gentile sophist). This continued for two years, so that all both Jews and Greeks had the opportunity of hearing the word of the Lord Jesus. God wrought special miracles by Paul, so that handkerchiefs and aprons from his body were used to heal the sick and cast out demons. So "the shadow of Peter" (Acts 5:15), the hem of Christ's garment (Matthew 9:20-21). So far from confirming the virtue of "relics," his case disproves them; they were "special" and extraordinary instances; all miracles having generally ceased, a fortiori, what even then were rarest must have now ceased also. Sorcery abounded at Ephesus; seven sons of Sceva, a Jew, exorcists, having presumed to call over the demon-possessed the name of the Lord Jesus preached by Paul, as a magic formula, two of them (Acts 19:16, "prevailed against both" in the Sinaiticus, Vaticanus, Alexandrinus manuscripts) were wounded and driven out of the house by the man, the demon saying, "Jesus I know and Paul I know, but who are ye?" (Matthew 12:27.) Such fear fell on those who, along with Christianity, secretly practiced magic arts that they confessed openly their sin and brought their costly books of incantations (the notorious Ephesia grammata) and burnt them publicly, at the sacrifice of their estimated value, 50,000 drachmas, 1,770 British pounds. "So mightily grew the word of God. During the first half of his stay at Ephesus he paid. a second short visit to Corinth, alluded to in 2 Corinthians 1:15-16; 2 Corinthians 2:1; 2 Corinthians 12:14; 2 Corinthians 12:21; 2 Corinthians 13:1-2. frontCORINTHIANS, FIRST EPlSTLE.) After this visit he wrote a letter alluded to in 1 Corinthians 5:9; 1 Corinthians 4:18. He purposed in spirit going through Macedon and Achaia (Corinth) to Jerusalem, then to Rome; meanwhile he sent Timothy and Erastus to Macedon, but stayed himself in Ephesus for a season. His first epistle to the Corinthians was written while still at Ephesus (1 Corinthians 16:8), about the Passover time (1 Corinthians 16:7-8), shortly before the outbreak that drove him away at Pentecost time (Acts 19:23-41), when he had already encountered beast-like "adversaries" (1 Corinthians 15:32), a premonitory symptom of the final tumult (1 Corinthians 16:9; 2 Corinthians 1:8; Romans 16:4); not after it, for immediately after it he left Ephesus for Macedon. How large his heart was, to be able to enter so warmly into the minute interests of the Corinthian churches in the midst of his engrossing ministry amidst threatening storms at Ephesus. In 1 Corinthians 4:9-13 he sketches the hardships of his apostolic life. His tact in dealing with the questions submitted to him by the Corinthians and those also omitted by them, but known otherwise, as well as his singleness of aim for Christ, shine conspicuously in this epistle. (See DEMETRIUS on the outbreak; also see EPHESUS; ASIARCHS; ALEXANDER; DIANA.) Demetrius' hypocritical zeal for Diana while his "wealth" (euporia only here "easy means"; equivalent to the ominous 666 (See ANTICHRIST)); 1 Kings 10:14; 2 Chronicles 9:13; Revelation 13:18) was his real concern, the wild and blind excitement of the mob, "the more part not knowing wherefore they were come together," the unreasoning religious party cry "great is Diana of the Ephesians," the tact and good sense of the secretary of state ("the town clerk") in calming the mob while incidentally testifying to Paul's temperance in assailing the idol of the town, vividly appear in the narrative. It can have been no light impression that Paul's preaching made, and no small danger he daily incurred. From Macedonia (probably Philippi) he wrote 2 Corinthians. frontCORINTHIANS.) He had a door of preaching opened to him in Troas (2 Corinthians 2:12); but his anxiety to meet Titus, who had disappointed him in not coming to Troas, urged him forward to Macedon. Having there met, and heard from him the tidings which he so eagerly longed for, namely, the good effect of his first epistle on the Corinthians, he wrote his second epistle, in which he glances at those Judaizing emissaries (especially one) who had tried to disparage his apostolic authority (2 Corinthians 12:11-12; 2 Corinthians 3:1; 2 Corinthians 11:4; 2 Corinthians 11:12-15) and malign his personal motives (2 Corinthians 1:12; 2 Corinthians 12:17-18); scoffing at his want of courage as evinced by his delay in coming, and at his threats as impotent (2 Corinthians 1:17; 2 Corinthians 1:23), and at his weak personal appearance and simple speech (2 Corinthians 10:10). His sensitive, affectionate tenderness appears in the anguish with which he wrote the first epistle, using the authority which some had denied, and threatening soon to enforce it in person (2 Corinthians 2:2-4; 2 Corinthians 2:13; 2 Corinthians 7:5; 2 Corinthians 7:8); also in his shrinking from going as soon as he had intended (rather he would wait to see the effect of his letter 2 Corinthians 1:15-16; 2 Corinthians 2:1), that his visit might be a happy instead of a sorrowful one; and in his triumphant joy at the news of their better state of mind (2 Corinthians 2:18; 2 Corinthians 2:14). His list of hardships in 2 Corinthians 11:23-28 shows how much more he endured than the book of Acts records: "of the Jews five times I received 40 stripes save one; thrice was I beaten with rods(whereas elsewhere only one scourging is recorded, that at Philippi); once was I stoned (Acts 14:19); thrice I suffered shipwreck; a night and a day I have been in the deep." Not one of these sea perils is recorded in Acts; that of Acts 27, was subsequent. The" perils of rivers" (Greek for" waters") would be in fording them in floods, bridges in mountain roads traversed by torrents being rare. The perils of robbers: the Pisidians (Acts 13:14), Pamphylians, and Cilicians of the mountains separating the tableland of Asia from the coast were notorious for robbery (Strabo, xii. 6-7). The "thorn in the flesh (2 Corinthians 12:7), a messenger of Satan (compare Job 2:7; Luke 13:16) to buffet me, lest I should be exalted above measure through the abundance of the revelations," was probably some painful, tedious, bodily malady, which shamed him before those to whom he ministered (Galatians 4:13-15); it followed the revelation wherein he was caught up to the third heaven (perhaps at his second visit to Jerusalem: Acts 22:17). (See PARADISE.) "Thorn" implies bodily pain; "buffet," shame (1 Peter 2:20); after hearing and seeing the joys of holy angels, he is buffeted by an emissary of the evil one. But he was enabled to glory in infirmities, when his thrice offered prayer for the thorn's removal was answered by Christ's promise of His all sufficient grace and strength having its perfect manifestation in man's weakness. God needs our weakness as the arena for displaying His power, not our strength, which is His rival. Notwithstanding the continued infirmity, Paul was enabled to sustain manifold wearing hardships. Traveling through Macedon, probably as far as to Illyricum (Romans 15:19), he at least visited Greece and stayed three months (Acts 20:2-3). From Corinth he wrote the epistle to the Romans. frontROMANS.) He had longed to see the church which already existed at Rome, and whose faith was celebrated throughout the world, also to impart some spiritual gift to them (Romans 1:8; Romans 1:11-13). Hereto he had been hindered coming to them; he intends to come, and go on from Rome to Spain (Romans 15:16; Romans 15:24; Romans 15:28), and so to preach to the Gentiles of the remote West to whom, as to Rome itself, he feels himself a debtor as to the gospel, being the apostle of the uncircumcision, a spiritual priest, offering up the Gentile converts as a sacrifice acceptable unto God (Romans 1:14-15-16). He must now first go to Jerusalem, to take the offerings of the Macedonian and Achaian Christians for the relief of the poor saints there. Meantime he writes, begging their prayers that he may be delivered from the unbelieving in Judaea (Romans 15:25-32). The awful unrighteousness of the world, whose capital was Rome, suggested his subject, the righteousness of God, condemning Jew and Gentile alike (Romans 1; 2), but capable of being appropriated by faith in Jesus whom God set forth as a propitiation through faith in His blood. Before leaving Corinth Luke joined him, as the "us" implies (Acts 20:1-5). He had intended to sail direct to Syria (Acts 20:3; Acts 19:2; 1 Corinthians 16:3-7), but to avoid a Jewish plot against him he went through Macedon. Several were appointed with him as the joint bearers of the churches' contributions for the poor brethren at Jerusalem. These went before by sea to Troas while he and Luke went through Macedonia. From Philippi, after the Passover, in five days Paul and Luke reached Troas, and stayed seven days. At the meeting there "to break bread" (i.e. to keep the lovefeast with which the eucharist was joined) on the first day of the week Paul preached earnestly until midnight, and the youth Eutychus in deep sleep fell from the third left, and was taken up dead, but was restored by Paul. (See EUTYCHUS.) Preachers ought to be considerate of their hearers, avoiding undue length and lateness! Hearers should avoid Carelessness, inattention, and drowsiness! Paul on returning proceeded to "break bread and eat" the love-feast meal (geusamenos, "having made a meal"), which closed the meeting. Paul made the journey from Troas to Assos by land on foot alone, while the rest went before in ship. At Assos he went on board with them, and by Mitylene, Chios, Samos, and Trogyllium, came to Miletus. Instead of calling to see the chief church of Asia, at Ephesus, which might have made him too late for the Pentecost at Jerusalem, he invited their elders to him at Miletus and gave the striking address recorded in Acts 20:18-35. He reminds them of his manner of ministry among them with many tears, and amidst temptations owing to the Jews' plots, his keeping back nothing profitable, but without reserve teaching both publicly and from house to house the gospel testimony, repentance toward God and faith toward our Lord Jesus. "Now," says he, "I go bound in the spirit unto Jerusalem, not knowing the things that shall befall me there, save that the Holy Spirit witnesseth in every city that bonds and afflictions abide me; but none of these things move me, neither count I my life dear unto myself, so that I might finish my course with joy, and the ministry which I have received of the Lord Jesus, to testify the gospel of the grace of God." This accords with his epistles (2 Corinthians 4:1; 2 Corinthians 4:16; 2 Timothy 4:7; Philemon 2:17). His inspired knowledge (for the words "I know" can hardly be a mere surmise, as Alford thinks from the use of the word in Acts 26:27; Romans 15:29; Philemon 1:19-20) that they all should not see his face again was what most affected them. He visited Miletus and no doubt Ephesus again (1 Timothy 1:3; 2 Timothy 1:18; 2 Timothy 4:20). His being "pure from the blood of all" he rests on his "not having shunned to declare all the counsel of God"; a warning to ministers against having an esoteric teaching for the few, not imparted to the multitude, and against one-sidedness in teaching. The safeguard lies in taking heed (1) to themselves, (2) to all the flock; none is to be neglected, for the Holy Spirit makes overseers for the purpose of feeding the church of God (the Vaticanus, Sinaiticus manuscripts, but Alexandrinus manuscript "of the Lord") bought with His own blood. (1) The best manuscript evidence favors the reading "God"; (2) being the more difficult it is less likely to be an interpolation than the easier reading, "Lord"; (3) "the church of God" is a common expression in Paul's epistles, "church of the Lord" never. His prophecy of "grievous wolves not sparing the flock," and of "men arising of their own selves speaking perverse things, drawing away disciples," is the germ expanded further in 1 Timothy 4; 2 Timothy 2:17-19; 2 Timothy 2:3; 2 Timothy 2:2 Thessalonians 2; the antichrist in 1 John 2:22-23; 1 John 4:1-3; Revelation 11-19. His warning for three years every one, night and day, with tears, accords with his character in the epistles (Philemon 3:18; 2 Timothy 1:3). So his appeal to their consciousness of his having coveted nothing of theirs, and of his setting them the example of manual labour to support others as well as himself, remembering "it is more blessed to give than to receive" (1 Corinthians 4:12; 1 Corinthians 9:12; 2 Corinthians 7:2; 2 Corinthians 11:9; 2 Corinthians 12:14; 2 Corinthians 12:17; 1 Thessalonians 2:9; 2 Thessalonians 3:8). It was an affecting parting, when after prayer together on bended knee they wept sore, and fell on Paul's neck and kissed him, and accompanied him to the ship. By Cos, Rhodes, Patara, and past Cyprus, Paul sailed to Tyre, where the ship unladed her cargo. Finding disciples there, by a kind of freemasonry of Christianity, he stayed seven days, and was warned by them through the Spirit not to go to Jerusalem. The parting scene would form an exquisite picture. All with wives and children escorted them until they were out of the city; then he and they kneeled down on the shore and prayed. By Ptolemais Paul reached Caesarea, and there abode with Philip the evangelist, whose four prophesying daughters probably repeated the warning. Lastly Agabus from Judaea (compare Acts 11:28), symbolically binding his hands and feet with Paul's girdle, foretold so should the Jews bind Paul and deliver him to the Gentiles. All then, both his fellow travelers and the Christians of the place, besought him not to go forward. His resolution was unshaken; "what mean ye to weep and break my heart? I am ready not to be bound only, but also to die at Jerusalem for the Lord Jesus" (Philemon 1:21-23). So Jesus Himself (Luke 9:51; Luke 9:57; Luke 9:61-62; Isaiah 50:7). At last all recognized it as of God's ordering, "the will of the Lord be done"; the way of realizing his desire to visit the church at Rome, not what man would have chosen but what proved ultimately best, being God's appointment (Philemon 1:12-13). After tarrying "many days" in Caesarea, not to be too long at Jerusalem before the feast, as a prudent precaution, Paul went to Jerusalem (his fifth and probably last visit), where Mnason lodged him. (See MNASON.) In compliance with the counsel of James and the elders, in order to silence the false charges against him of teaching the JEWS to forsake the law and not to circumcise their children, he next day put himself under the vow with four Nazarites, signifying to the temple priests their intention to fulfill the days of purification, he defraying the charge of their offerings, which was accounted a meritorious act. The process required seven days for completion; toward their close Jews of Asia stirred up the people against him in the temple, saying he had brought Greeks into it, meaning Trophimus, whom they had seen with Paul but not in the temple. They dragged Paul out of the temple, and would have killed him with blows, but "the chief captain" commanding the garrison rescued him, and chained him to two soldiers. His speaking Greek undeceived Lysias, who had guessed him to be the notorious Egyptian insurrection leader of that time (Josephus, Ant. 20:8, section 6; B. J. 2:13, section 5). Being permitted to speak from the stair, Paul delivered his "defence" to the people with admirable tact in Hebrew, the language of their fathers, and selecting such points as vindicated his faithfulness to the God of their fathers: e.g. his rearing under Gamaliel; his Christian instructor Ananias' devoutness according to the law, and good report of all the Jews; his vision in the temple at Jerusalem, where his own desire was to stay, witnessing for Christ where he had most bitterly persecuted His followers, but the Lord said, "I will send thee far hence unto the Gentiles" (Ephesians 3:7-8). The name was enough; the mob was infuriated at the wall of Jewish exclusive privileges being broken down. "Away with such a fellow from the earth," etc. (1 Thessalonians 2:16.) Lysias supposing Paul must have perpetrated some heinous crime would have scourged him, but Paul's Roman citizenship saved him. Lysias would not give up a Roman citizen to a Jewish court, yet in courtesy he convened their council the following day (Acts 22:30; Acts 22:23), to give them the opportunity of hearing and answering his defense, as he had given the same opportunity to the mob. Paul, fixing his eyes intently as was his wont (probably from having never recovered the blinding at his conversion: Acts 13:9; Galatians 4:13; Galatians 4:15; Galatians 2:11; 2 Corinthians 12:7; 2 Corinthians 12:9; which may account for his not recognizing the high priest), proceeded to say that he had lived a conscientious loyal life before God (pepoliteumai) as a Jew up to that day (2 Timothy 1:3). Ananias commanded the bystanders to smite him on the mouth. (See ANANIAS.) Paul said, "God shall smite thee, thou whited sepulchre," etc. So Jesus, Matthew 23:27; Luke 11:44; but His calm majesty when smitten contrasts with Paul's natural indignation at hypocrisy and injustice in the seat of judgment (John 18:22-23). Paul apologized for his strong language on the ground of his not knowing, from imperfect sight or otherwise, that it was the high priest who gave the order. Adroitly Paul enlisted on the side of the truth, against Sadduceanism, a large portion of his audience by saying, "I am a Pharisee ... of the hope of the resurrection I am called in question." Contrast Jesus' dealing with the Sadducees, "ye do err greatly, not knowing the Scriptures." The Lord in vision cheered him that night, as at Corinth (Acts 18:9), promising he should testify for Him as at Jerusalem so at Rome. More than 40 Jews next day plotted not to eat or drink until they killed Paul, when the chief priests should induce Lysias to bring him again before the council. By his sister's son Paul heard and communicated the plot to Lysias. The chief captain sent Paul under escort of 200 soldiers, 70 horsemen, and 200 bodyguard to Antipatris by night, thence with the 70 horsemen alone to Caesarea, with an explanatory letter to Felix the governor, in which, in fear of consequences, he suppresses his command to scourge Paul, and on the contrary represents his reason for rescuing him "having understood that he was a Roman," though he did not know that until afterward. Felix kept Paul in Herod's judgment hall until his accusers came; thus Providence overruled his Roman imprisonment to be his safeguard against Jewish plots. (See FELIX.) After five days (Acts 24) Ananias the high priest came from Jerusalem, and through a hired orator accused Paul of being a mover of sedition and ringleader of the Nazarenes, who sought to profane the temple. Tertullus begun his address (which is Latin in its characteristics, according to the usage before Roman magistrates) with a studied exordium of gross flattery: "seeing that by thee we enjoy great quietness, and that very worthy deeds are done unto this nation by thy providence" (as if Felix were a god, "the providence of Caesar" is found on coins), the reverse being notoriously the case, Felix often receiving plunder from the bands of robbers that pillaged and plundered in Samaria, "exercising the authority of a king with the disposition of a slave in all cruelty and lust" (Tacitus, Annals xii. 54, Hist. 5:9). The only color for Tertullus' compliment was, Felix had put down some rebels and assassins (Josephus, Ant. 20:8, section 4), himself being worse than they. Paul replied with courtesy to Felix without sacrifice of truth: "forasmuch as I know that thou hast been of many years (seven) a judge unto this nation (so, well acquainted with Jewish usages), I do the more cheerfully answer for myself." An alleged offense so recent as "twelve days" ago one so versed in Jewish affairs would easily adjudicate upon. Paul admitted he came to the temple, but it was "for to worship"; the Jews may call it "heresy," but it is "the God of his fathers he worships, believing the law and the prophets, and that there shall be a resurrection of just and unjust," and "exercising himself to have always a conscience void of offense toward God and men." So in his epistles: 1 Corinthians 4:4; 2 Corinthians 1:12; 2 Corinthians 4:2; Hebrews 13:18. His coming to Jerusalem to bring alms to his nation, and his purification in the temple, proved his loyalty to the faith of Israel. Felix, though "knowing accurately about the (Christian) way," put them off until Lysias should come; his real motive being hope of a bribe, which Paul's mention of his bringing "alms and offerings" suggested. Hence he gave Paul's acquaintances free access to him, as they might provide him with money for a bribe. Felix gave Paul another hearing before Drusilla his wife, a Jewess. (See DRUSILLA.) But as Paul reasoned of "righteousness, temperance, and judgment to come" before one unrighteous, lustful, and who durst not face his own conscience (contrast Acts 24:16) much less the judgment to come, Felix "trembled" and sent Paul away for the present. Tacitus (Annals xii. 54) says Felix thought he might do all crimes with impunity; so it was a sharp thrust that reached the conscience of such a reprobate. A "convenient season" Felix never sought for his soul; interviews with Paul to get a bribe he did seek, but Paul was proof against his temptations. So Felix left Paul a prisoner for two years at Caesarea. Porcius Festus, succeeding (A.D. 60), was solicited to bring him to Jerusalem, the Jews plotting to kill him in the way, but refused. frontFESTUS.) At the hearing that followed in Caesarea, on Festus' proposing (in compliment to the Jews) that he should be tried at Jerusalem, Paul appealed to Caesar, a Roman citizen by the Valerian law having the right to appeal from a magistrate to the people or tribunes, and subsequently to the emperor. In order that Festus might have some definite report of the charges against Paul to send with him to Rome, he gave Paul a hearing before Herod Agrippa and Berenice, who came with characteristic pomp (Acts 25, translated Acts 25:19 "questions of their own religious system," for Festus would not to Agrippa a Jew call his creed a "superstition," deisidaimonia; Acts 26). frontHEROD AGRIPPA; BERENICE.) Paul a third time narrates his conversion, dwelling before Herod Agrippa, as one well versed in Jewish questions, on "the hope of the promise made of God unto the fathers" (Acts 26:6-7), namely, Messiah, and on His resurrection, which Paul attested as an eye witness, not only not prejudiced in His favor but once bitterly hating Him. To the Herodian family, tinged with Sadduceeism, the resurrection seemed "incredible"; but why should it be so, seeing that God has actually raised Jesus? The doctrines in the epistles appear here in germ: "the inheritance to the sanctified" (Ephesians 1:11; Colossians 1:12); Christ "the first" who rose, a pledge of the saints' resurrection (1 Corinthians 15:20; Colossians 1:18); the "Light to the people (Israel) and to the Gentiles" (Luke 2:32, whose Gospel Paul in part suggested). With the charge of being "beside himself" with zeal compare 2 Corinthians 5:13; 2 Corinthians 11:16-17; 1 Corinthians 1:23; 1 Corinthians 2:14. Festus attributed to Paul "much learning," judging from his acquaintance with Old Testament, and probably from his having had many parchments in prison; croup (?), subsequently 2 Timothy 4:13. How graceful a turn