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Chapter 24

24:1 And with an Orator, one Tertullus [kai rhētoros Tertullou tinos]. A deputation of elders along with the high priest Ananias, not the whole Sanhedrin, but no hint of the forty conspirators or of the Asian Jews. The Sanhedrin had become divided so that now it is probably Ananias (mortally offended) and the Sadducees who take the lead in the prosecution of Paul. It is not clear whether after five days is from Paul’s departure from Jerusalem or his arrival in Caesarea. If he spent nine days in Jerusalem, then the five days would be counted from then (verse 11). The employment of a Roman lawyer (Latin orator) was necessary since the Jews were not familiar with Roman legal procedure and it was the custom in the provinces (Cicero pro Cael. 30). The speech was probably in Latin which Paul may have understood also. [Rhētōr] is a common old Greek word meaning a forensic orator or advocate but here only in the N.T. The Latin rhetor was a teacher of rhetoric, a very different thing. Tertullus is a diminutive of Tertius (Ro 16:22). Informed [enephanisan]. Same verb as in 23:15, 22, somewhat like our modern “indictment,” certainly accusations “against Paul” [kata tou Paulou]. They were down on Paul and the hired barrister was prosecuting attorney. For the legal form see Oxyrhynchus Papyri, Vol. II., p. 162, line 19.

24:2 When he (Paul) was called [klēthentos autou]. Genitive absolute (as so often in Acts) with first aorist passive participle of [kaleō]. Seeing that by thee we enjoy much peace [pollēs eirēnēs tugchanontes dia sou]. Literally, obtaining much peace by thee. A regular piece of flattery, captatio benevolentiae, to ingratiate himself into the good graces of the governor. Felix had suppressed a riot, but Tacitus (Ann. XII. 54) declares that Felix secretly encouraged banditti and shared the plunder for which the Jews finally made complaint to Nero who recalled him. But it sounded well to praise Felix for keeping peace in his province, especially as Tertullus was going to accuse Paul of being a disturber of the peace. And that by thy providence [kai dia tēs pronoias]. Forethought, old Greek word from [pronoos] [pronoeō] in 1Ti 5:8; Ro 12:17; 2Co 8:21), in N.T. only here and Ro 13:14. “Providence” is Latin Providentia (foreseeing, provideo). Roman coins often have Providentia Caesaris. Post-Augustan Latin uses it of God (Deus). Evils are corrected for this nation [diorthōmatōn ginomenōn tōi ethnei toutōi]. Genitive absolute again, [ginomenōn], present middle participle describing the process of reform going on for this nation (dative case of personal interest). [Diorthōma] (from [diorthoō], to set right) occurs from Aristotle on of setting right broken limbs (Hippocrates) or reforms in law and life (Polybius, Plutarch). “Reform continually taking place for this nation.” Felix the Reform Governor of Judea! It is like a campaign speech, but it doubtless pleased Felix.

24:3 In all ways and in all places [pantēi te kai pantachou]. [Pantēi], old adverb of manner only here in N.T. [Pantachou] also old adverb of place, several times in N.T. But these adverbs most likely go with the preceding clause about “reforms” rather than as here translated with “we accept” [apodechometha]. But “with all gratitude” [meta pasēs eucharistias] does naturally go with [apodechometha].

24:4 That I be not further tedious unto thee [hina mē epi pleion se enkoptō]. Koinē verb (Hippocrates, Polybius) to cut in on (or into), to cut off, to impede, to hinder. Our modern telephone and radio illustrate it well. In the N.T. (Ac 24:4; 1Th 2:18; Ga 5:7; Ro 15:22; 1Pe 3:7). “That I may not cut in on or interrupt thee further [epi pleion] in thy reforms.” Flattery still. Of thy clemency [tēi sēi epieikeiāi]. Instrumental case of old word from [epieikēs] and this from [epi] and [eikos] (reasonable, likely, fair). “Sweet Reasonableness” (Matthew Arnold), gentleness, fairness. An [epieikēs] man is “one who makes reasonable concessions” (Aristotle, Eth. V. 10), while [dikaios] is “one who insists on his full rights” (Plato, Leg. 757 D) as translated by Page. A few words [suntomōs]. Old adverb from [suntemnō], to cut together (short), abbreviate. Like [dia bracheōn] in Heb 13:22. In N.T. only here and Mr 16 (shorter conclusion).

24:5 For we have found [heurontes gar]. Second aorist active participle of [heuriskō], but without a principal verb in the sentence. Probably we have here only a “summary of the charges against Paul” (Page). A pestilent fellow [loimon]. An old word for pest, plague, pestilence, Paul the pest. In N.T. only here and Lu 21:11 [loimoi kai limoi], pestilences and famines) which see. Latin pestis. Think of the greatest preacher of the ages being branded a pest by a contemporary hired lawyer. A mover of insurrections [kinounta staseis]. This was an offence against Roman law if it could be proven. “Plotted against at Damascus, plotted against at Jerusalem, expelled from Pisidian Antioch, stoned at Lystra, scourged and imprisoned at Philippi, accused of treason at Thessalonica, haled before the proconsul at Corinth, cause of a serious riot at Ephesus, and now finally of a riot at Jerusalem” (Furneaux). Specious proof could have been produced, but was not. Tertullus went on to other charges with which a Roman court had no concern (instance Gallio in Corinth). Throughout the world [kata tēn oikoumenēn]. The Roman inhabited earth [gēn] as in 17:6. A ringleader of the sect of the Nazarenes [prōtostatēn tēs tōn Nazōraiōn haireseōs]. [Prōtostatēs] is an old word in common use from [prōtos] and [histēmi], a front-rank man, a chief, a champion. Here only in the N.T. This charge is certainly true. About “sect” [hairesis] see on 5:17. [Nazōraioi] here only in the plural in the N.T., elsewhere of Jesus (Mt 2:23; 26:71; Lu 18:37; Joh 18:5,7; 19:19; Ac 2:22; 3:6; 4:10; 6:14; 22:8; 26:9). The disciple is not above his Master. There was a sneer in the term as applied to Jesus and here to his followers.

24:6 Assayed to profane [epeirasen bebēlōsai]. A flat untruth, but the charge of the Asian Jews (21:28-30). Verbum optum ad calumnian (Bengel). We seized [ekratēsamen]. As if the Sanhedrin had arrested Paul, Tertullus identifying himself with his clients. But it was the mob (21:28-31) that attacked Paul and Lysias who rescued him (21:32ff.).

24:7 This whole verse with some words at the end of verse 6 and the beginning of verse 8 in the Textus Receptus (“And would have judged according to our law. But the chief captain Lysias came upon us, and with great violence took him away out of our hands, commanding his accusers to come unto thee”) is absent from Aleph A B H L P 61 (many other cursives) Sahidic Bohairic. It is beyond doubt a later addition to the incomplete report of the speech of Tertullus. As the Revised Version stands, verse 8 connects with verse 6. The motive of the added words is clearly to prejudice Felix against Lysias and they contradict the record in Ac 21. Furneaux holds them to be genuine and omitted because contradictory to Ac 21. More likely they are a clumsy attempt to complete the speech of Tertullus.

24:8 From whom [par’ hou]. Referring to Paul, but in the Textus Receptus referring to Lysias. By examining him thyself [autos anakrinas]. Not by torture, since Paul was a Roman citizen, but by hearing what Paul has to say in defence of himself. [Anakrinō] is to examine thoroughly up and down as in Lu 23:14.

24:9 Joined in the charge [sunepethento]. Second aorist middle indicative of [sunepitithēmi], old verb, double compound, to place upon [epi] together with [sun], to make a joint attack, here only in the N.T. Affirming [phaskontes]. Alleging, with the accusative in indirect assertion as in 25:19; Ro 1:22 (nominative with infinitive, Robertson, Grammar, p. 1038). Were so [houtōs echein], “held thus,” common idiom.

24:10 When the governor had beckoned to him [neusantos autōi tou hēgemonos]. Genitive absolute again with first aorist active participle of [neuō], to give a nod, old word, in N.T. only here and Joh 13:24. “The governor nodding to him.” Forasmuch as I know [epistamenos]. Knowing, from [epistamai]. That thou hast been of many years a judge [ek pollōn etōn onta se kritēn]. The participle in indirect assertion after [epistamenos] (Robertson, Grammar, p. 1041). Paul goes as far as he can in the way of a compliment. For seven years Felix has been governor, [onta] being a sort of progressive present participle with [ek pollōn etōn] (Robertson, Grammar, p. 892). Cheerfully [euthumōs]. Old adverb from [euthumos] [eu] and [thumos], good spirit), here only in N.T. Make my defence [apologoumai]. Old and regular word for this idea as in Lu 21:14 which see.

24:11 Seeing that thou canst take knowledge [dunamenou sou epignōnai]. Genitive absolute again. The same word and form [epignōnai] used by Tertullus, if in Greek, in verse 8 to Felix. Paul takes it up and repeats it. Not more than twelve days [ou pleious hēmerai dōdeka]. Here [ē] (than) is absent without change of case to the ablative as usually happens. But this idiom is found in the Koinē (Robertson, Grammar, p. 666). Since [aph’ hēs]. Supply [hēmeras], “from which day.” To worship [proskunēsōn]. One of the few examples of the future participle of purpose so common in the old Attic.

24:12 Disputing [dialegomenon]. Simply conversing, discussing, arguing, and then disputing, common verb in old Greek and in N.T. (especially in Acts). Stirring up a crowd [epistasin poiounta ochlou]. [Epistasis] is a late word from [ephistēmi], to make an onset or rush. Only twice in the N.T., 2Co 11:28 (the pressure or care of the churches) and here (making a rush of a crowd). The papyri give examples also for “onset.” So Paul denies the two charges that were serious and the only one that concerned Roman law (insurrection).

24:13 Prove [parastēsai]. First aorist active infinitive of [paristēmi], to place beside. They have made “charges,” mere assertions. They have not backed up these charges with proof, “nor can they,” says Paul. Now [nuni]. As if they had changed their charges from the cries of the mob in Jerusalem which is true. Paul has no hired lawyer to plead for him, but he has made a masterly plea for his freedom.

24:14 I confess [homologō]. The only charge left was that of being a ringleader of the sect of the Nazarenes. This Paul frankly confesses is true. He uses the word in its full sense. He is “guilty” of that. After the Way [kata tēn hodon]. This word Paul had already applied to Christianity (22:4). He prefers it to “sect” [hairesin] which means a choosing, then a division). Paul claims Christianity to be the real (whole, catholic) Judaism, not a “sect” of it. But he will show that Christianity is not a deviation from Judaism, but the fulfilment of it (Page) as he has already shown in Ga 3; Ro 9. So serve I the God of our fathers [houtōs latreuō tōi patrōiōi theōi]. Paul has not stretched the truth at all. He has confirmed the claim made before the Sanhedrin that he is a spiritual Pharisee in the truest sense (23:6). He reasserts his faith in all the law and the prophets, holding to the Messianic hope. A curious “heretic” surely! Which these themselves also look for [hēn kai autoi houtoi prosdechontai]. Probably with a gesture towards his accusers. He does not treat them all as Sadducees. See Tit 2:13 for similar use of the verb [prosdechomenoi tēn makarian elpida], looking for the happy hope).

24:15 That there shall be a resurrection [anastasin mellein esesthai]. Indirect assertion with infinitive and accusative of general reference [anastasin] after the word [elpida] (hope). The future infinitive [esesthai] after [mellein] is also according to rule, [mellō] being followed by either present, aorist, or future infinitive (Robertson, Grammar, pp. 870, 877, 878). Both of the just and the unjust [dikaiōn te kai adikōn]. Apparently at the same time as in Joh 5:29 (cf. Ac 17:31f.). Gardner thinks that Luke here misrepresents Paul who held to no resurrection save for those “in Christ,” a mistaken interpretation of Paul in my opinion. The Talmud teaches the resurrection of Israelites only, but Paul was more than a Pharisee.

24:16 Herein [en toutōi]. His whole confession of belief in verses 14, 15. Do I also exercise myself [kai autos askō]. “Do I also myself take exercise,” take pains, labour, strive. Old word in Homer to work as raw materials, to adorn by art, then to drill. Our word ascetic comes from this root, one who seeks to gain piety by rules and severe hardship. Paul claims to be equal to his accusers in efforts to please God. Void of offence [aproskopon]. This word belongs to the papyri and N.T. (only in Paul), not in the ancient writers. The papyri examples (Moulton Milligan, Vocabulary) use the word to mean “free from hurt or harm.” It is a privative and [proskoptō] (to cut or stumble against). Page likes “void of offence” since that can be either active “not stumbling” as in Php 1:10 or passive “not stumbled against” as in 1Co 10:32 (the first toward God and the second toward men), the only other N.T. examples. Hence the word here appears in both senses (the first towards God, the second towards men). Paul adds “alway” [dia pantos], a bold claim for a consistent aim in life. “Certainly his conscience acquitted him of having caused any offence to his countrymen” (Rackham). Furneaux thinks that it must have been wormwood and gall to Ananias to hear Paul repeat here the same words because of which he had ordered Paul to be smitten on the mouth (23:1f.).

24:17 After many years [di’ etōn pleionōn]. “At an interval [dia] of more [pleionōn] years” (than a few, one must add), not “after many years.” If, as is likely Paul went up to Jerusalem in Ac 18:22, that was some five years ago and would justify “[pleionōn]” (several years ago or some years ago). To bring alms [eleēmosunas poiēson]. Another (see [proskunēsōn] in verse 11) example of the future participle of purpose in the N.T. These “alms” (on [eleēmosunas] see on Mt 6:1, 4; Ac 10:2, common in Tobit and is in the papyri) were for the poor saints in Jerusalem (1Co 16:1-4; 2Co 8; 9; Ro 15:26) who were none the less Jews. “And offerings” [kai prosphoras]. The very word used in 21:26 of the offerings or sacrifices made by Paul for the four brethren and himself. It does not follow that it was Paul’s original purpose to make these “offerings” before he came to Jerusalem (cf. 18:18). He came up to worship (verse 11) and to be present at Pentecost (20:16).

24:18 Amidst which [en hail]. That is, “in which offerings” (in presenting which offerings, 21:27). They found me (my accusers here present, [heuron me], purified in the temple [hēgnismenon en tōi hierōi]. Perfect passive participle of [hagnizō] (same verb in 21:24, 26) state of completion of the Jewish sacrifices which had gone on for seven days (21:27), the very opposite of the charges made. With no crowd [ou meta ochlou]. “Not with a crowd” till the Asiatic Jews gathered one (21:27). Nor yet with tumult [oude meta thorubou]. They made the tumult (27:30), not Paul. Till they made the stir, all was quiet.

24:19 But certain Jews from Asia [tines de apo tēs Alias Ioudaioi]. No verb appears in the Greek for these words. Perhaps he meant to say that “certain Jews from Asia charged me with doing these things.” Instead of saying that, Paul stops to explain that they are not here, a thoroughly Pauline anacoluthon (2Co 7:5) as in 26:9. “The passage as it stands is instinct with life, and seems to exhibit the abruptness so characteristic of the Pauline Epistles” (Page). Who ought to have been here before thee [hous edei epi sou pareinai]. This use of [epi] with genitive of the person is common. The imperfect indicative with verbs of necessity and obligation to express failure to live up to it is common in Greek (Robertson, Grammar, pp. 919-21). “The accusers who were present had not witnessed the alleged offence: those who could have given evidence at first-hand were not present” (Furneaux). There was no case in a Roman court. These Asiatic Jews are never heard of after the riot, though they almost succeeded in killing Paul then. If they had aught against me [ei ti echoien pros eme]. A condition of the fourth class or undetermined with less likelihood of being determined [ei] with the optative, Robertson, Grammar, p. 1021). This is a “mixed condition” (op.cit., p. 1022) with a conclusion of the second class.

24:20 These men themselves [autoi houtoi]. Since the Asiatic Jews are not present and these men are. Wrong doing [adikēma]. Or misdeed. Old word from [adikeō], to do wrong. In the N.T. only here and Ac 18:14; Re 18:5. Paul uses “[adikēma]” from the standpoint of his accusers. “To a less sensitive conscience his action before the Sanhedrin would have seemed venial enough” (Furneaux). When I stood [stantos mou]. Genitive absolute, second aorist active participle of [histēmi] (intransitive), “when I took my stand.” Before the council [epi tou sunedriou]. Same use of [epi] with genitive as in verse 19.

24:21 Except it be [e]. Literally, “than,” but after interrogative [ti = ti allo] “what else than.” For this one voice [peri mias tautēs phōnēs]. The normal Greek idiom with the attributive use of [houtos] calls for the article before [mias], though some inscriptions show it as here (Robertson, Grammar, p. 702). That [hēs]. Genitive of the relative attracted to the case of the antecedent phōnēs. I cried [ekekraxa]. Reduplicated aorist as is usual with this verb in the LXX (Jud 3:15). Robertson, Grammar, p. 348. Touching [peri]. Concerning (around, about). I am called in question [krinomai]. As in 23:6. Before you [eph’ humōn]. Same idiom as in verses 19, 20.

24:22 Having more exact knowledge [akribesteron eidōs]. “Knowing” (second perfect active participle of [oida] “more accurately” (comparative of adverb [akribōs]. More accurately than what? Than the Sanhedrin supposed he had “concerning the Way” [ta peri tēs hodou], the things concerning the Way, common in Acts for Christianity). How Felix had gained this knowledge of Christianity is not stated. Philip the Evangelist lived here in Caesarea and there was a church also. Drusilla was a Jewess and may have told him something. Besides, it is wholly possible that Felix knew of the decision of Gallio in Corinth that Christianity was a religio licita as a form of Judaism. As a Roman official he knew perfectly well that the Sanhedrin with the help of Tertullus had failed utterly to make out a case against Paul. He could have released Paul and probably would have done so but for fear of offending the Jews whose ruler he was and the hope that Paul (note “alms” in verse 17) might offer him bribes for his liberty. Deferred them [anebaleto autous]. Second aorist middle indicative of [anaballō], old verb (only here in N.T.) to throw or toss up, to put back or off, in middle to put off from one, to delay, to adjourn. Felix adjourned the case without a decision under a plausible pretext, that he required the presence of Lysias in person, which was not the case. Lysias had already said that Paul was innocent and was never summoned to Caesarea, so far as we know. Since Paul was a Roman citizen, Lysias could have thrown some light on the riot, if he had any. Shall come down [katabēi]. Second aorist active subjunctive of [katabainō]. I will determine your matter [diagnōsomai ta kath’ humās]. Future middle of [diaginōskō], old and common verb to know accurately or thoroughly [dia]. In the N.T. only here (legal sense) and 23:15. “The things according to you” (plural, the matters between Paul and the Sanhedrin).

24:23 And should have indulgence [echein te anesin]. From [aniēmi], to let loose, release, relax. Old word, in the N.T. only here and 2Th 1:7; 2Co 2:13; 7:5; 8:13. It is the opposite of strict confinement, though under guard, “kept in charge” [tēreisthai]. Forbid [kōluein]. To hinder “no one of his friends” [mēdena tōn idiōn]. No one of Paul’s “own” (cf. 4:23; Joh 1:11) or intimates. Of these we know the names of Luke, Aristarchus, Trophimus, Philip the Evangelist.

24:24 With Drusilla his wife [sun Drousillēi tēi idiāi gunaiki]. Felix had induced her to leave her former husband Aziz, King of Emesa. She was one of three daughters of Herod Agrippa I (Drusilla, Mariamne, Bernice). Her father murdered James, her great-uncle Herod Antipas slew John the Baptist, her great-grandfather (Herod the Great) killed the babes of Bethlehem. Perhaps the mention of Drusilla as “his own wife” is to show that it was not a formal trial on this occasion. Page thinks that she was responsible for the interview because of her curiosity to hear Paul. Sent for [metepempsato]. First aorist middle of [metapempō] as usual (Ac 10:5).

24:25 Was terrified [emphobos genomenos]. Ingressive aorist middle of [ginomai], “becoming terrified.” [Emphobos] [en] and [phobos] old word, in the N.T. only Lu 24:5; Ac 10:5; 24:25; Re 11:13. Paul turned the tables completely around and expounded “the faith in Christ Jesus” as it applied to Felix and Drusilla and discoursed [dialegomenou autou], genitive absolute) concerning “righteousness” [dikaiosunēs] which they did not possess, “self-control” or temperance [egkrateias] which they did not exhibit, and “the judgment to come” [tou krimatos tou mellontos] which was certain to overtake them. Felix was brought under conviction, but apparently not Drusilla. Like another Herodias her resentment was to be feared (Knowling). Go thy way for this time [to nun echon poreuou]. The ancient Greek has this use of [to nun echon] (Tobit 7:11) in the accusative of time, “as for the present or holding the now.” When I have a convenient season [kairon metalabōn]. Second aorist active participle of the old verb [metalambanō], to find a share in, to obtain. It was his “excuse” for dodging the personal turn that Paul had given.

24:26 He hoped withal [hama kai elpizōn]. “At the same time also hoping.” Paul had mentioned the “alms” (24:17) and that excited the avarice of Felix for “money” [chrēmata]. Roman law demanded exile and confiscation for a magistrate who accepted bribes, but it was lax in the provinces. Felix had doubtless received them before. Josephus (Ant. XX. 8, 9) represents Felix as greedy for money. The oftener [puknoteron]. Comparative adverb of [puknos], old word, in N.T. only here and Lu 5:33 which see and 1Ti 5:23. Kin to [pugmē] (Mr 7:3) which see from [pukō], thick, dense, compact. Paul kept on not offering a bribe, but Felix continued to have hopes (present tense [elpizōn], kept on sending for him (present tense [metapempomenos], and kept on communing (imperfect active [hōmilei] from [homileō], old word as in Ac 20:11; Lu 24:14, which see, only N.T. examples of this word). But he was doomed to disappointment. He was never terrified again.

24:27 But when two years were fulfilled [dietias de plērōtheisēs]. Genitive absolute first aorist passive of [plēroō], common verb to fill full. [Dietia], late word in LXX and Philo, common in the papyri, in N.T. only here and Ac 28:30. Compound of [dia], two [duo, dis] and [etos], year. So Paul lingered on in prison in Caesarea, waiting for the second hearing under Felix which never came. Caesarea now became the compulsory headquarters of Paul for two years. With all his travels Paul spent several years each at Tarsus, Antioch, Corinth, Ephesus, though not as a prisoner unless that was true part of the time at Ephesus for which there is some evidence though not of a convincing kind. We do not know that Luke remained in Caesarea all this time. In all probability he came and went with frequent visits with Philip the Evangelist. It was probably during this period that Luke secured the material for his Gospel and wrote part or all of it before going to Rome. He had ample opportunity to examine the eyewitnesses who heard Jesus and the first attempts at writing including the Gospel of Mark (Lu 1:1-4). Was succeeded by [elaben diadochon]. Literally, “received as successor.” [Diadochos] is an old word from [diadechomai], to receive in succession [dia, duo], two) and occurs here alone in the N.T. Deissmann (Bible Studies, p. 115) gives papyri examples where [hoi diadochoi] means “higher officials at the court of the Ptolemies,” probably “deputies,” a usage growing out of the “successors” of Alexander the Great (Moulton and Milligan’s Vocabulary), though here the original notion of “successor” occurs (cf. Josephus, Ant. XX. 8, 9). Luke does not tell why Felix “received” a successor. The explanation is that during these two years the Jews and the Gentiles had an open fight in the market-place in Caesarea. Felix put the soldiers on the mob and many Jews were killed. The Jews made formal complaint to the Emperor with the result that Felix was recalled and Porcius Festus sent in his stead. Porcius Festus [Porkion Phēston]. We know very little about this man. He is usually considered a worthier man than Felix, but Paul fared no better at his hands and he exhibits the same insincerity and eagerness to please the Jews. Josephus (Ant. XX. 8, 9) says that “Porcius Festus was sent as a successor to Felix.” The precise year when this change occurred is not clear. Albinus succeeded Festus by A.D. 62, so that it is probable that Festus came A.D. 58 (or 59). Death cut short his career in a couple of years though he did more than Felix to rid the country of robbers and sicarii. Some scholars argue for an earlier date for the recall of Felix. Nero became Emperor Oct. 13, A.D. 54. Poppaea, his Jewish mistress and finally wife, may have had something to do with the recall of Felix at the request of the Jews. Desiring to gain favour with the Jews [thelōn te charita katathesthai tois Ioudaiois]. Reason for his conduct. Note second aorist (ingressive) middle infinitive [katathesthai] from [katatithēmi], old verb to place down, to make a deposit, to deposit a favour with, to do something to win favour. Only here and 25:9 in N.T., though in some MSS. in Mr 15:46. It is a banking figure. Left Paul in bonds [katelipe ton Paulon dedemenon]. Effective aorist active indicative of [kataleipō], to leave behind. Paul “in bonds” [dedemenon], perfect passive participle of [deō], to bind) was the “deposit” [katathesthai] for their favour. Codex Bezae adds that Felix left Paul in custody “because of Drusilla” [dia Drousillan]. She disliked Paul as much as Herodias did John the Baptist. So Pilate surrendered to the Jews about the death of Jesus when they threatened to report him to Caesar. Some critics would date the third group of Paul’s Epistles (Philippians, Philemon, Colossians, Ephesians) to the imprisonment here in Caesarea, some even to one in Ephesus. But the arguments for either of these two views are more specious than convincing. Furneaux would even put 2Ti 4:9-22 here in spite of the flat contradiction with Ac 21:29 about Trophimus being in Jerusalem instead of Miletus (2Ti 4:20), a “mistake” which he attributes to Luke! That sort of criticism can prove anything.

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