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Acts 18


Paul is leaving the city of Greek intellect and entering the city of Greek sexuality. The only book Corinth would have been interested in studying would be the Kama Sutra, unfortunately for them, the Kama Sutra was still a couple of centuries in the future.

Overlooking the city of Corinth was the Acrocorinth, which means Upper Corinth. The Acrocorinth was the acropolis of Corinth. Although the Acrocorinth was considered the last line of defense for the city the real highlight of the Acrocorinth was the Temple to Aphrodite. Aphrodite was the goddess of passion, love, lust, pleasure, fertility, as such, it is easy to see why Corinth was overly sexualized. Aphrodite was considered the guardian of Corinth. Besides the Temple to Aphrodite on the Acrocorinth, there were three Temples to Aphrodite in the city.1  Corinth had an Aphrodite cult going back as far as 500 B.C.

Paul has not encountered a city like Corinth in his previous travels.

Acts 18:1-2
After these things Paul departed from Athens and came to Corinth; and found a certain Jew named Aquila, born in Pontus, lately come from Italy, with his wife Priscilla; (because that Claudius had commanded all Jews to depart from Rome:) and came unto them.

It is late 51 A.D. to early 52 A.D. as Paul arrives in Corinth. God’s Word says he “found” a certain Judean named Aquila. The Greek word translated “found” is heyrisko. Blue Letter Bible defines this word as, “to find by enquiry or to come upon.” Considering the final words of this verse, “he came to them” it would appear he found Aquila by enquiry.

“For a guild always keeps together, whether in street or synagogue. In Alexandria, the different trades sat in the synagogue arranged into guilds; and St. Paul could have no difficulty in meeting in the bazaar of his trade with the like-minded Aquila and Priscilla, with whom to find a lodging. In these bazaars many of the workmen sat outside their shops, and, in the interval of labour, exchanged greetings or banter with the passers-by.”2  Paul could find Aquila through their guild since they had the same trade.

Acts 18:3
And because he was of the same craft, he abode with them, and wrought: for by their occupation, they were tentmakers.

The Greek text has tentmakers while the Aramaic text has saddle makers.

It was around 49-50 A.D. that Claudius expelled the Jews from Rome. Suetonius, a Roman historian (69-122 A.D.) mentions in “Lives of the Twelve Caesars” that Claudius expelled the Jews because they kept instigating trouble over a “Chresto.”3 

Verse one of chapter eighteen identifies Aquila as a Judean, not as a believer. Therefore, it is safe to think when Paul meets Aquila and Priscilla, they have not yet heard nor believed the Gospel of Grace.

Acts 18:4
And he reasoned in the synagogue every sabbath and persuaded the Jews and the Greeks.

We have seen Paul’s manner and in Corinth he follows his normal pattern, he begins with the synagogue. Where Paul will open a dialogue, a conversation beginning with the goodness of God. The word “reasoned” is once again dialegomai. But the synagogue is not receiving his message well. Then, like a breath of fresh air Silas and Timothy return from Macedonia.

Acts 18:5
And when Silas and Timotheus were come from Macedonia, Paul was pressed in the spirit, and testified to the Jews that Jesus was Christ.

We never find out where Silas went in Macedonia, but Timothy is returning from Thessalonica and Paul is anxious for that news.

1 Thessalonians 3:6-8
But now when Timotheus came from you unto us, and brought us good tidings of your faith [pistis = believing] and charity [agape = love of God], and that ye have good remembrance of us always, desiring greatly to see us, as we also to see you: Therefore, brethren, we were comforted over you in all our affliction and distress by your faith [pistis = believing]: For now we live, if [if should be understood as since – 1st class conditional clause] ye stand fast in the Lord.

You can see and even feel Paul’s excitement and joy in this glorious news.

1 Thessalonians 3:9-10
For what thanks can we render to God again for you, for all the joy wherewith we joy for your sakes before our God; night and day praying exceedingly that we might see your face, and might perfect that which is lacking in your faith?

We never read, in God’s Word, of Paul making another visit to Thessalonica, however he does spend time in Macedonia on at least three more occasions.

Acts 18:5
And when Silas and Timotheus were come from Macedonia, Paul was pressed in the spirit, and testified to the Jews that Jesus was Christ.

“Was pressed” is synecho a compound Greek word of syn and echoSyn is together with, and echo is to hold, when used figuratively it could be translated compelled or urged. The Critical Greek Text omits “by the spirit” and instead reads “by the word.” So, after hearing the news from Thessalonica, Paul was urged or compelled by God’s Word to testify that Jesus is the Christ. “Testify” is the Greek word diamartyromai, which means, to confirm by testimony. In other words, Paul moved the conversation in the synagogue along to Jesus being the Christ.

Acts 18:6
And when they opposed themselves, and blasphemed, he shook his raiment, and said unto them, your blood be upon your own heads; I am clean; from henceforth I will go unto the Gentiles.

“When they opposed” is antitasso. Anti is to oppose, to be against, or in place of. It is used later in God’s Word to describe the antichrist, in place of Christ. Tasso means proper arrangement, or to put in order. Antitasso is saying they opposed the proper arrangement of putting themselves under Jesus THE Christ. Then, they took it a step further with blasphemy, blasphemeo. Speaking evil, to revile Jesus as the Christ and Paul his ambassador. (2 Corinthians 5:20)

So, Paul had a similar response to what happened in Antioch in Pisidia, he shook his raiment, equal to shaking the dust off his sandals. It means Paul will not return to this synagogue to teach. No anger, no animosity, a simple, we are done. Then, like as in Antioch in Pisidia, Paul never deals with this synagogue again. They have made their decision, their blood, or eternal destination, was upon their own decision, Paul tried to show them the way to the righteousness of God, they refused.

Acts 18:7
And he departed thence, and entered into a certain man's house, named Justus, one that worshipped God, whose house joined hard to the synagogue.

Paul moves out of the home of Aquila and Priscilla and into the home of Justus. You are given one reason in this verse as to why, location, location, location. Paul is not in the synagogue, but he is close enough that those in the synagogue who believed can find him and he can still teach them and speak with them. 

You have to understand that when Paul shakes the dust off his sandals or raiment and declares he is going to the Gentiles, he is only walking away from those in that synagogue who have made it impossible for him to be in the synagogue. Paul has not turned away from those in the synagogue who have believed, nor from those who are still listening, nor Judeans in general.

Acts 18:8
And Crispus, the chief ruler of the synagogue, believed on the Lord with all his house; and many of the Corinthians hearing believed, and were baptized.

The chief ruler of the synagogue believes! What a blow to the blasphemers in the synagogue that have made it unbearable for Paul.

This is confirmation that Paul is still talking with and teaching individuals that are a part of the synagogue. But when men start blaspheming, they were not going to allow Paul to hold a conversation in the synagogue. 

Acts 18:9
Then spake the Lord to Paul in the night by a vision, be not afraid, but speak, and hold not thy peace:

What is happening here that Jesus Christ needs to speak with Paul about not being afraid? There are no immediate signs of danger, Crispus believing may even be an indication of a good turning point, the chief ruler of the synagogue believes.

Remember though what Paul says, to the Corinthians, in his first epistle to them.

1 Corinthians 4:17
For this cause have I sent unto you Timotheus, who is my beloved son, and faithful in the Lord, who shall bring you into remembrance of my ways which be in Christ, as I teach everywhere in every church.

There is a statement that cuts two ways. “My ways which be in Christ,” that is to also say, he has ways that are not in Christ. What do I mean by that statement? Every believer is required to renew their mind (Romans 12:1-2). Why? Because every believer has been taught things that are worldly rather than godly.

Romans 7:18-19
For I know that in me (that is, in my flesh,) dwelleth no good [agathos] thing: for to will is present with me; but how to perform that which is good [kalos = beautiful in appearance] I find not. For the good that I would I do not: but the evil which I would not, that I do.

All of us have thoughts, and habits, and teachings, we learned in and from the ungodly world. When it comes time to act, some of our actions come from those things the world has taught us. This applies to all of us. ALL OF US! Even Paul.

Therefore, we do not look at each other’s flesh. Those things that come from our flesh will always be lacking godliness and righteousness. If you look to the deeds of the flesh, you will always be disappointed. Whether you are looking at yourself or another.

The word “flesh” is the figure of speech synecdoche, which is the exchange of one idea for an associated idea. The word “flesh” is put to represent the idea of the entire old man nature, the nature we inherited from Adam. The word “good” is agathos. What is agathos? (Matthew 19:16-17) 

To be divinely good, you must have God’s nature. Romans chapter seven is saying there is nothing agathos in the nature we inherited from Adam.

The point of this stepping aside from Acts 18 was to show you that Paul also had a “flesh” nature he inhered from Adam and his was currently seeing trouble around the corner. Did he see a repeat of Antioch in Pisidia, the last place he shook the dust off his sandals? They chased him from Antioch to Iconium, even to Lystra, and then got him stoned. He may have been raised from the dead in Lystra, but those rocks and stones hitting him still caused pain.

Perhaps he thought of Philippi or Thessalonica where a mob grabbed other believers? The point is we can see where Paul had more than a few thoughts and incidents his mind could turn to for feeding a fear. But God does not share with us what bothered Paul, God shares with us the solution for Paul’s deliverance, and our deliverance if fear begins to invade our minds.

The solution for our deliverance is the opening of verse 10. Paul’s deliverance is the entire verse.

Acts 18:10a
For I am with thee…

The word “with” is the preposition meta and it means, in company with. His Lord Jesus Christ is with him. Figuratively, Christ is the Head and Paul is a member of Christ’s spiritual Body. The Head and the Body are always together, nothing can sever that connection. Consider this point deeply.

But what does it mean, “I am with thee?” It means whatever the circumstance, whatever the situation, whatever the conditions, his Lord will be there to deliver him (2 Timothy 4:18). There is an interesting aspect of this exchange between Paul and his Lord that, I believe, will come up later in this chapter.

Acts 18:9-10
Then spake the Lord to Paul in the night by 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.

What caused fear to enter his mind? We do not know because God did not share that with us. The best we have is, “no man shall set on you to hurt you.” He was physically hurt in Lystra, and in Philippi. But the fear was there, and his Lord acted to help him come to a place of peace once again. How? By asking Paul to focus on him rather than the world, or the thoughts of the world.

Acts 18:11
And he continued there a year and six months, teaching the word of God among them.

This shows us Paul changed his focus. Paul spent eighteen months in Corinth preaching and teaching the words of God. Whatever fear was gnawing at Paul’s mind, the vision from his Lord removed it.

Acts 18:12-13
And when Gallio was the deputy of Achaia, the Jews made insurrection with one accord against Paul, and brought him to the judgment seat, saying, this fellow persuadeth men to worship God contrary to the law.

The Judaizers from the synagogue finally acted against Paul. But these guys obviously never got the memos from Antioch in Pisidia or Thessalonica because they did not start a riot or hirer thugs to cause trouble. 

Insurrection is not the best translation because insurrection is something you do against an established authority. Paul was not an established authority. It is better translated “rose up against.” The Judaizes in the synagogue rose up against Paul and brought him to Gallio.

Acts 18:13
Saying, this fellow persuadeth men to worship God contrary to the law.

This was their charge against Paul. The Judean religion, Judaism, had the right, under Roman Law, to make proselytes, although not of Roman citizens. To convert a Roman citizen to Judaism was a crime. The Judeans are accusing Paul of breaking this Law of Rome. But they are presenting no evidence for this charge. Paul was ready to defend himself, but never got the opportunity.

Acts 18:14-15
And when Paul was now about to open his mouth, Gallio said unto the Jews, If it were a matter of wrong or wicked lewdness, O ye Jews, reason would that I should bear with you: But if it be a question of words and names, and of your law, look ye to it; for I will be no judge of such matters. 

Before Paul could speak, Gallio rendered a verdict. Since they produced no evidence against Paul for breaking this Roman Law, Gallio assumed they meant their own Law. The word Law carries a double meaning in the statement from the Judaizers. It could mean the Law of Moses or Roman Law.

The atmosphere in the synagogue turned completely sour when Paul proclaimed Jesus is the Christ. This must be some of the evidence that the Judaizers supplied although it is not stated in a verse. But Gallio’s response of, “if it be a question of words and names” must be in reference to Jesus as the Christ. Therefore, Gallio saw this as a matter of Judaism, not Roman Law.

Acts 18:16
And he drave them from the judgment seat.

“Drave” means to dismiss.

Acts 18:17
Then all the Greeks took Sosthenes, the chief ruler of the synagogue, and beat him before the judgment seat. And Gallio cared for none of those things.

“The Greeks” is not in the Critical Greek text. So, who beat Sosthenes, we are not sure? Was it the Romans, the Gentiles, other Judeans, a combination of all three groups? But as the new chief ruler of the synagogue, Sosthenes was beaten by the crowd in the agora before the seat of judgment, the bema.

Acts 18:17
Then the crowd there turned on Sosthenes the synagogue leader and beat him in front of the proconsul; and Gallio showed no concern whatever.
New International Version

Acts 18:17
Then they all seized Sosthenes, the leader of the synagogue, and beat him in front of the judge's bench. But none of these things concerned Gallio.
Holman Christian Standard Bible

Whoever was in the crowd around the judgment seat grabbed Sosthenes and beat him and Gallio could not care less. Sosthenes was not a Roman citizen, so Gallio was not concerned.

Later Sosthenes becomes a believer. Consider Paul’s greeting in his first epistle to the Corinthians.

1 Corinthians 1:1
Paul called to be an apostle of Jesus Christ through the will of God, and Sosthenes our brother,

Even though Paul was in Corinth for a year and a half, he was unable to move into teaching the Corinthians the depth of the mystery.

What was the problem?

1 Corinthians 3:1-2
And I, brethren, could not speak unto you as unto spiritual, but as unto carnal, even as unto babes in Christ. I have fed you with milk, and not with meat: for hitherto ye were not able to bear it, neither yet now are ye able.

Even while Paul was personally in Corinth, he fed them with milk because they were babes in Christ. Then after Paul left Corinth, divisions arose concerning who had called the Corinthians, I am of Paul, I am of Apollos, I am of Cephas, I am of Christ. 

Let’s look at I am of Cephas first. 

There is no record or even a slight indication that Peter ever traveled to Achaia. God’s Word gives us a record of Peter traveling to Pontus and Cappadocia. After that, Peter writes his epistles from Babylon. (We will look more closely at this later in Acts 18). But we have no record of Peter ever coming close to Achaia.

Why use the name Cephas? Because Cephas is the name associated with Peter’s leadership of the twelve, and his leadership of the Church in Jerusalem, and his stewardship of the Revealing Administration. (John 1:42, Matthew 16:17-20, 1 Corinthians 9:5, Galatians 2:9)

Since Peter did not travel to Achaia personally, for Corinthians to be of Cephas, it must be Pentecost.

On the Day of Pentecost Judeans of the diaspora are in Jerusalem from around the known world.

Acts 2:9-10
Parthians, and Medes, and Elamites, and the dwellers in Mesopotamia, and in Judaea, and Cappadocia, in Pontus, and Asia, Phrygia, and Pamphylia, in Egypt, and in the parts of Libya about Cyrene, and strangers of Rome, Jews and proselytes.

This listing of cities or areas, when spread out on a map, show us the reach and the effect of the Day of Pentecost. They show us places to the north in Pontus and Cappadocia. We can see the south down into Egypt and Arabia. They show us places to the east out in Babylon, Mesopotamia, and Persia. We see westward out to Asia and even Rome. Judeans from all over the Roman Empire and even beyond. Many who follow Judaism heard Peter open the Revealing Administration with an awesome teaching about what God accomplished for Israel in Jesus Christ.

Acts 2:41
Then they that gladly received his word were baptized: and the same day there were added unto them about three thousand souls.

How many of those about 3,000 souls returned to their homelands with a new gospel?

1 Corinthians 3:21-23
 Therefore, let no man glory in men. For all things are your's; Whether Paul, or Apollos, or Cephas, or the world, or life, or death, or things present, or things to come; all are your's; And ye are Christ's; and Christ is God's.

If they are walking in what Peter has taught, then they are looking forward to the return of Christ, like the angel proclaimed in Acts chapter 1. They are awaiting the King of kings and Lord of lords; they are awaiting the New Covenant; they are awaiting the kingdom restored.

Paul arrives in Corinth 25 years after the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ, 25 years after the Day of Pentecost. Peter’s teaching on Pentecost has had 25 years to be heard and believed in Corinth. 

1 Corinthians 1:11-13
For it hath been declared unto me of you, my brethren, by them which are of the house of Chloe, that there are contentions among you. Now this I say, that every one of you saith, I am of Paul; and I of Apollos; and I of Cephas; and I of Christ. Is Christ divided? was Paul crucified for you? or were ye baptized in the name of Paul?

There are three points to consider in these verses; First, understanding the word “contentions.” Second, what is the reason for the contentions. Third, there are three questions asked and answered in the last verse. 

For the word “contentions” we turn to Helps Word-studies, which says, “éris – literally quarrel, strife; properly, a readiness to quarrel (having a contentious spirit), affection for dispute.”

These are spiritual men, they have God’s gift of holy spirit within, a new nature, and they are ready to quarrel over the leadership of the person who issued God’s call to them (1 Corinthians 1:26). They want to quarrel over who is the better leader, this is the reason for their contention.

Then, the three questions are each the figure of speech erotesisErotesis is the asking of a question, in this case, in the affirmative negation. That means the automatic and only answer to the question is an emphatic, NO!

Is Christ divided? NO!
Was Paul crucified for you? NO!
Were you baptized in the name of Paul? NO!

Paul is tying the leadership question in with a question of baptism.

1 Corinthians 1:14-16
I thank God that I baptized none of you, but Crispus and Gaius; Lest any should say that I had baptized in mine own name. And I baptized also the household of Stephanas: besides, I know not whether I baptized any other.

What we are talking about here is water baptism. Crispus was the chief ruler of the synagogue. Gaius, we know nothing about except to say when Paul is back in Corinth in 58 A.D. Gaius is his host when Paul writes the Epistle to the Romans (Romans 16:23). As for Stephanas, he is the firstfruits of Achaia and he and his household have addicted themselves to serve other believers.

1 Corinthians 1:17
For Christ sent me not to baptize, but to preach the gospel: not with wisdom of words, lest the cross of Christ should be made of none effect.

John was sent to baptize with water, but not holy spirit.
The twelve were sent to baptize with holy spirit.
Paul was not sent to baptize at all.

Regarding baptism Paul does not mention Apollos, the leader identified as eloquent and mighty in scriptures knowing only the baptism of John. So, if any of the contention or division in Corinth is over baptism, Paul leaves that at his own feet.

A question you might have at this point is, who is Apollos? We have not met Apollos in our travels in Acts. Apollos is the leader who came to Corinth soon after Paul left. 

Let’s skip ahead and meet Apollos, we can come back to Paul in Corinth after we meet Apollos.

Acts 18:24-25
And a certain Jew named Apollos, born at Alexandria, an eloquent man, and mighty in the scriptures, came to Ephesus. This man was instructed in the way of the Lord; and being fervent in the spirit, he spake and taught diligently the things of the Lord, knowing only the baptism of John.

Apollos was eloquent, this word carries with it the understanding that Apollos was educated in history and the arts. But scripturally he only knew the baptism of John. Remember, John’s baptism dealt with confession of sin and water baptism. John did not teach about the spirit because God’s gift of holy spirit was not part of John’s ministry. God’s gift of holy spirit was by God’s prerogative in John’s day. Holy spirit by believing was not yet available. (John 7:37-39)

John wanted the Judeans to confess their sins, Paul wants people to confess Jesus as Lord. John never spoke of Jesus’ resurrection from the dead because John died before Jesus. Paul wants people to believe God raised Jesus from the dead. John’s witness also did not allow for Gentiles. I say these things for your consideration, considering what Apollos must change in his thinking after speaking with Aquila and Priscilla. Keep these things in mind as we continue in Acts chapter 18.

Acts 18:26
And he began to speak boldly in the synagogue: whom when Aquila and Priscilla had heard, they took him unto them, and expounded unto him the way of God more perfectly.

Aquila and Priscilla sat with Apollos and exposed him to the Word of God more fully, more accurately, akribos, is translated “more perfectly” in this verse. That Apollos could receive from Aquila and Priscilla speaks volumes about the humility of Apollos.

Acts 18:27-28
And when he was disposed to pass into Achaia, the brethren wrote, exhorting the disciples to receive him: who, when he was come, helped them much which had believed through grace: For he mightily convinced the Jews, and that publicly, shewing by the scriptures that Jesus was Christ.

God tells us Apollos helped the believers. This tells us that Aquila and Priscilla carried the Gospel of Grace effectively. But with Paul being rude of speech and Apollos being eloquent some believers became more divided and more carnal. Their new area of carnality, to argue over the leadership that issued God’s calling to them, I of Paul, I of Apollos, I of Cephas, I of Christ. (1 Corinthians 1:26).

We have already looked at I am of Cephas, now Paul deals with I am of Paul, and I am of Apollos.

1 Corinthians 3:4-6
For while one saith, I am of Paul; and another, I am of Apollos; are ye not carnal? Who then is Paul, and who is Apollos, but ministers by whom ye believed, even as the Lord gave to every man? I have planted, Apollos watered; but God gave the increase [auxano – the growth].

Paul tries to redirect their gaze, off men and back to God.

1 Corinthians 3:7-9a
So then neither is he that planteth anything, neither he that watereth; but God that giveth the increase. Now he that planteth and he that watereth are one: and every man shall receive his own reward according to his own labour. For we are labourers together with God: ye are God's husbandry…

Paul and Apollos have never met. Yet they were able to work together to edify the believers in Corinth. That is working with and listening to the Head of the Body. Still division occurred. The believers in Corinth quarreling about leadership simply added to the carnality already in Corinth. You cannot see the greatness of the Body of Christ when you are looking at the “flesh” of other believers.

To meet Apollos, we took a step to the side. But now, back to Paul. Paul was standing at the Corinthian bema, he had just been found not guilty by Gallio and Sosthenes was just getting beat up.

Acts 18:18
And Paul after this tarried there yet a good while, and then took his leave of the brethren, and sailed thence into Syria, and with him Priscilla and Aquila; having shorn his head in Cenchrea: for he had a vow.

Paul, Silas, Timothy, with Aquila and Priscilla walked to Cenchrea to gain passage on a ship to Syria. But before they sailed, a vow had been fulfilled.

The statement about Priscilla and Aquila should be understood as a parenthetical statement. So that, the phrase about a vow and “shorn his head” relates to the Apostle Paul. What vow could Paul have taken and why would he take a vow? He is no longer under the Old Testament Law. Why would Paul make a vow?

Any believer, in any administration can make a vow to God.

Have you ever studied or looked into the vow of a Nazarite?

Numbers 6:2
Speak unto the children of Israel, and say unto them, when either man or woman shall separate themselves to vow a vow of a Nazarite, to separate themselves unto the LORD:

Either a man or a woman can make a vow to God, even in the Administration of Grace. The vow can be a long-term commitment or a short-term commitment. The length of time is dependent upon what you are making a vow to do. 

For example, some Christian organizations have a type of mission field whereby an individual will make a one-year commitment to serve God’s Word to others. This would be like the vow of a Nazarite for one year. Except, no one is shaving their head at the end of the year because it is like a Nazarite vow, it is not a Nazarite vow. Marriage would be another example, however that commitment is much longer than one year. The length of time was dependent on the vow that is made and for the person in Israel making the vow, a shaved head always signaled the fulfillment or end of the vow.

Numbers 6:5
All the days of the vow of his separation there shall no razor come upon his head: until the days be fulfilled, in the which he separateth himself unto the LORD, he shall be holy, and shall let the locks of the hair of his head grow.

I believe Paul took a “kind of” Nazarite vow, when his Lord confronted him about being afraid. Look at it like the figure of speech gnome, an aspect of the Old Testament, but with a different application. Here is where I believe Paul, using his knowledge of scripture made a type of Nazarite vow, to stay, to stand, to speak in Corinth the Word of God, until the mission there was completed. He would not hold back or leave because of fear.

He shaved his head, like a Nazarite, in Cenchrea because his vow had been completed. 

Acts 18:18
And Paul after this tarried there yet a good while, and then took his leave of the brethren, and sailed thence into Syria, (and with him Priscilla and Aquila); having shorn his head in Cenchrea: for he had a vow. 

Paul said the Corinthians were babes in Christ. Babes is the Greek word nepiosBible Hub, using Strong’s Concordance defines “babes” as an infant or simple-minded. Paul was there for eighteen months, and they were still struggling with the concept of how to practice the doctrine of Romans. After Paul, Apollos came and taught. The Corinthians were struggling but they were not forgotten nor written off. Later, Paul will send Timothy, and after that Titus to minister to them. Paul will also send them two epistles to help them grow in the words of God.

If you do not grow in the knowledge you have received, then you will lose the knowledge you received. Most people had to study a language, (Spanish, German, French) in school. Years later, after not using that language, how much is remembered? The same question could be asked about Math or Grammar. And what would the world do if there was no spellcheck?

If knowledge is not used and applied, it fades until it is forgotten. When it comes to spiritual knowledge this is especially true. For the world, under the direction of the Adversary, is designed to prevent people from hearing about the goodness of God, and what God has given through His grace and mercy, and the accomplishments of Christ. The world is designed to make you doubt God and His Word.

1 Corinthians 15:12
Now if Christ be preached that he rose from the dead, how say some among you that there is no resurrection of the dead?

This is a foundational belief! Confess Jesus as Lord and believe God raised him from the dead. For some, this is now being questioned. The world is designed to challenge and then negate the words of God.

A child of God must feed upon the words of God, or the world will over crowd the mind with the things of the world that are contrary to God. As we feed upon those thoughts and concepts that are from God, we must lock them into the mind while directing their way into the heart. Then as we speak it forth the spiritual growth will be apparent.

Acts 18:19
And he came to Ephesus and left them there: but he himself entered into the synagogue and reasoned with the Jews.

Once again, as Paul’s second journey is ending, we see Paul’s manner of entering into yet another city. Paul goes to a synagogue, and he “reasoned” with them. Again, reasoned is dialegomai.

Acts 18:20-21
When they desired him to tarry longer time with them, he consented not; but bade them farewell, saying, I must by all means keep this feast that cometh in Jerusalem: but I will return again unto you if God will. And he sailed from Ephesus.

So, in the Spring of 53 A.D. Paul, Silas, Timothy, with Aquila and Priscilla leave Corinth for Ephesus, and then on to Jerusalem and Antioch in Syria. Paul was not able to take the Corinthians as far into the Gospel of Grace as he desired, but he set, and they believed, the foundational doctrine of their identification in Christ.

1 Corinthians 1:30
But of him [God] are ye in Christ Jesus, who [Christ Jesus] of God is made unto us wisdom, and righteousness, and sanctification, and redemption:

1. Ancient Corinth I: Gods and Goddesses - Wisdom Words (
2. Sketches of Jewish Social Life, Chapter 6, Jewish Homes, 1876, Alfred Edersheim
3. The Church in Rome: Jews and Greeks • Bible Study With Randy McCracken, 2015
4. Strong's Greek: 2054. ἔρις (eris) -- strife (

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A Journey through the Book of Acts