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Lecture 12 – Paul’s Journey to Rome

The Journey to Jerusalem

12 – Paul’s Journey to Rome The Journey to Jerusalem Acts 21:1-16 This literary unit is

Acts 21:1-16

This literary unit is notable for the way it features prophecy, or more generally, “Spirit” insight.

1. Note down each of the instances of prophecy in this literary unit. What things stand out to you as surprising or remarkable? What questions do you want to ask?

Lecture 12 – Paul’s Journey to Rome

2. What do the believers urge through the Spiritto Paul in 21:4? What does Paul do

as a result?

3. What does Agabus prophesy to Paul in 21:11? How do the people respond to the


4. How accurate was Agabusprophecy? (see Acts 21:27-33)

The Defence Speeches

Before the Crowd at Jerusalem (21:37-22:21)

1. What is the context of this speech (21:27-36)? How does this frame the defense

Paul gives?

2. What things does Paul particularly emphasise about himself and Ananias? Why?

3. What new information do we learn about Paul’s conversion/commissioning which we have not heard in the prior account (9:1-18)?

4. In one sentence/proposition, what is it that Paul is trying to convince the crowd of?

Before the Sanhedrin and Before Felix (22:30-23:11; 24:1-21)

1. What are the contexts of these two speeches? How do these contexts frame the

defenses Paul gives?

2. Why does Paul bring up the resurrection on both occasions, knowing the arguments

it will bring out?

Lecture 12 – Paul’s Journey to Rome

4. Is there anything significant in the way Paul defends himself in 24:10-21?

The Caesarean Imprisonment 24:27.

When were The Captivity Epistles(Ephesians, Colossians, Philemon and Philippians) written?

Eph 6:20

for which I am an ambassador in chains. Pray that I may declare it fearlessly, as I should.

Phil 1:7

It is right for me to feel this way about all of you, since I have you in my heart; for whether I am in chains or defending and confirming the gospel, all of you share in God’s grace with me.

Col 4:18

I, Paul, write this greeting in my own hand. Remember my chains. Grace be with you.

Philem 13

I would have liked to keep him with me so that he could take your place in helping me while I am in chains for the gospel.

The problem we have is that Acts narrates more than one imprisonment of Paul. We have the two year imprisonment in Caesarea. But we also have an imprisonment in Rome at the end of Acts (chapter 28).


Long held in external tradition

Paul was a prisoner in Rome under house arrest for at least two years (Acts


Although he had soldiers guarding him (28:16), yet he was given a certain degree of freedom to receive guests and gifts and to write and send off letters (28:17, 30).

The greetings from colleagues in Colossians 4 suggest they had direct access to him, and this is consistent with the Roman imprisonment of Acts 28:30.

Lecture 12 – Paul’s Journey to Rome


Philippians says Timothy was with Paul, but there is no indication in Acts that Timothy is with him.

Paul’s intent was to visit Philippi upon his release from prison (2:24), and yet his earlier-stated plan was to quit the East and focus on mission fields in the West, especially Spain (Rom 15:2428).


Paul’s imprisonment in Caesarea was a long one (Acts 24:27) allowing time for several communications to travel back and forth

Although Paul was kept in custody, he was nevertheless given considerable liberty with opportunity to be aided by his friends (Acts 24:23; cf. Phil 2:2530; 4:1020).

Philippians 1:7 implies that Paul had already been given a hearing and had made a defense for himself and his gospel, while Phil 1:16 indicates that Paul still lay in prison in spite of his defense. This harmonizes with the events that took place in Caesarea (Acts 24:127), whereas the story of Paul in Rome concludes by describing him as a prisoner, leaving no hint that he had made any defense of any kind (Acts 28:1631).

When Paul wrote to the Philippians he was confident he would be released from prison (1:2426) and would visit them on his journey west (2:24; cf. Rom 1:1315; 15:2329). Here again is a close correlation between the statements in Philippians and those in Acts (19:21; 23:11). Paul’s plans to move west were large in his thinking because he believed his work in the east was done (Rom 15:20, 2324).


The distance from Caesarea to Philippi is too great for the number of communications back and forth is overruled in part by the length of Paul’s stay in the Caesarean prison.

Paul was facing the very real possibility of death would this apply to Caesarea?

Lecture 12 – Paul’s Journey to Rome

25:112 Paul before Festus.

The Speech Before Agrippa (thats for your paper!)

Chapters 27 and 28 - Paul sails for Rome.

s for your paper!) Chapters 27 and 28 - Paul sails for Rome. The Conclusion -

The Conclusion - 28:1131 - Paul in Rome.

“The Holy Spirit spoke the truth to your forefathers when he said through Isaiah the prophet:

26 “ „Go to this people and say, “You will be ever hearing but never understanding; you will be ever seeing but never perceiving.”

Lecture 12 – Paul’s Journey to Rome

27 For this people‟s heart has become calloused; they hardly hear with their ears, and they have closed their eyes. Otherwise they might see with their eyes, hear with their ears, understand with their hearts and turn, and I would heal them.‟

28 “Therefore I want you to know that God‟s salvation has been sent to the Gentiles, and they will listen!” 30 For two whole years Paul stayed there in his own rented house and welcomed all who came to see him. 31 Boldly and without hindrance he preached the kingdom of God and taught about the Lord Jesus Christ.

Why end this way?

Its not biography.It is the progress of the word.

What Luke was defending he has successfully concluded: Gods fidelity to his people and to his own word(Luke Timothy Johnson)

The promise of Luke 2:29-32 has come true:

29 “Sovereign Lord, as you have promised, you now dismiss your servant in peace.

30 For my eyes have seen your salvation,

31 which you have prepared in the sight of all people,

32 a light for revelation to the Gentiles and for glory to your people Israel.”

Gods salvation has been sent.

The final image Paul chained, but the word of God without hindrance(2 Tim 2:9)

Acts 29?