Acts 21:1-40 Comments by Stephen Ricker
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Paul Arrested
Comments for Study 24

Acts 21:1-40
Memory Verse: 14


I. For the Name of the Lord Jesus (1-16)

>1. What route did Paul take to Jerusalem? (1-3)

* Acts 21:1-3 "After we had torn ourselves away from them, we put out to sea and sailed straight to Cos. The next day we went to Rhodes and from there to Patara. We found a ship crossing over to Phoenicia, went on board and set sail. After sighting Cyprus and passing to the south of it, we sailed on to Syria. We landed at Tyre, where our ship was to unload its cargo."

* "torn ourselves away from them" -The love and mutual respect was strong.

* "we" -Luke was still with Paul.

* "Cos" -Island between Miletus and Rhodes.

* "Rhodes" -Island off the south-west coast of Asia Minor. Standing with one foot on either side of the harbor entrance was the 105-foot-tall brass Colossus, one of the Seven Wonders of the World. Set up in 288 B.C., it fell during an earthquake about 64 years later.

* "Patara" -The seaport of Lycia near the mouth of the Xanithus in Asia Minor.

* "Phoenicia" -The small stretch of land between the Lebanon Mountains and the Mediterranean Sea from Tyre north to Arvad. The southern most part is in the Promised Land (tribe of Asher), but was never completely conquered by Joshua.

* "Cyprus" -The island Cyprus was the home of Barnabas, Paul's long time friend. They parted ways at the beginning of the second mission trip on bad terms. Paul did not stop to see him, though church history says that Barnabas' mission trip lead him to Northern Africa which became very important in the gospel work at this time.

* "Syria" -Antioch was its main city. Paul did not go there. He was on a mission to go to Jerusalem with the intent to arrive there by Pentecost, the last of the spring feast during the third month.

* "Tyre" -Tyre was Phoenician port assigned to Assure, but never obtained. Jesus had visited the region. (Mark 7:24) Many traveled from here to hear Jesus preach. (Luke 6:17)

>What was he told in Tyre? (4)

* Acts 21:4 "Finding the disciples there, we stayed with them seven days. Through the Spirit they urged Paul not to go on to Jerusalem."

* "Finding the disciples thee" -Neither Paul or any of his companions knew any of the disciples there. They had to find them.

* "seven days" -After a long non-stop trip they must have been tired and needed good food. See next verse.

* "Through the Spirit" -The Spirit had been telling believers all along what would happen to Paul.

* "they urged Paul not to go onto Jerusalem" -Some have said that Paul was not following God's direction here. Others disagree. Since Jesus appeared to him several times after this it does not really matter what others think. Jesus had told him when he first called him many years before this that he would appear before Kings, something that had not happened yet. This is how it happened. More on this in the next studies.

>What did they do before parting ways? (5-6)

* Acts 21:5-6 "But when our time was up, we left and continued on our way. All the disciples and their wives and children accompanied us out of the city, and there on the beach we knelt to pray. After saying good-by to each other, we went aboard the ship, and they returned home."

* "our time was up" -They were following the ships schedule, thus the reason for the seven day stay here and nowhere else.

* "we knelt to pray" -This posture is mentioned many times. Actually since we are told to pray without ceasing kneeling is not a requirement.

>2. Where did they go next?

* Acts 21:7 "We continued our voyage from Tyre and landed at Ptolemais, where we greeted the brothers and stayed with them for a day."

* "Ptolemais" -aka Accho. Place name for famous Mediterranean seaport north of Mount Carmel. Territory was assigned to tribe of Asher, but they could not conquer it (Judg. 1:31). The Greeks renamed Acco, Ptolemais. (Holman Bible Dictionary)

* "greeted the brothers" -Everywhere that Paul went there were believers. There must have been millions of believers by now. The gospel spread fast in those days.

>Who did they find there?

* Acts 21:8 "Leaving the next day, we reached Caesarea and stayed at the house of Philip the evangelist, one of the Seven."

* "Caesarea" -Caesarea is a Roman built seaport on the Mediterranean Sea. The Romans, including Herod, governed from the sea port of Caesarea, built by Herod the Great (25-13 B.C.) and named after Ceasar Augustus, who gave his family power in Palestine.

* "the evangelist" -Evangelist means one who announces good tidings.

* "one of the seven" -See 6:5, study 8.

>What kind of father was he?

* Acts 21:9 "He had four unmarried daughters who prophesied."

* Philip was a young man and most likely unmarried man in chapter 6. Now he was married and the father of four. He had moved from Jerusalem to Caesarea during the persecutions.

* "unmarried" -Perhaps Luke was unmarried at the time and made note of this.

* "who prophesied" -At this point the New Testament was still being written. The church had the Old Testament and the apostles could tell people what Jesus had taught. With this understanding it can be seen why prophets were important at this time.

* Women had positions of authority in the church of Jesus.

>3. What message did Paul get? (10-11)

* Acts 21:10-11 "After we had been there a number of days, a prophet named Agabus came down from Judea. Coming over to us, he took Paul's belt, tied his own hands and feet with it and said, "The Holy Spirit says, 'In this way the Jews of Jerusalem will bind the owner of this belt and will hand him over to the Gentiles.'"

* "a number of days" -I do not know the reason for the delay; perhaps to recover from the trip, perhaps so Luke could get information from Philip about the early days of the church, perhaps waiting on the OK from Jerusalem to come; or perhaps because one of the young men married one of the four daughters.

* "Agabus" -He had been the one who predicted the famine years earlier. (11:28)

* "from Judea" -Perhaps from the leaders and apostles.

* "Jews of Jerusalem" -Though they were Jews they used this term to mean the Jewish leadership who had not accepted Jesus as Messiah.

* "had him over to the Gentiles" -The Jews had to do the same with Jesus because they did not have the authority to kill anyone. This was not a threat but a warning of preparation for Paul and those with him. Perhaps many understood that like Jesus Paul would die.

>How did Paul respond to it?

* Acts 21:12-16 "When we heard this, we and the people there pleaded with Paul not to go up to Jerusalem. Then Paul answered, "Why are you weeping and breaking my heart? I am ready not only to be bound, but also to die in Jerusalem for the name of the Lord Jesus." When he would not be dissuaded, we gave up and said, "The Lord's will be done." After this, we got ready and went up to Jerusalem. Some of the disciples from Caesarea accompanied us and brought us to the home of Mason, where we were to stay. He was a man from Cyprus and one of the early disciples."

* Paul seems to stand on his own here. Each person is responsible for thier own actions. If we are convinced of God's leading we should keep it.

* Paul had shaved his head at the beginning of this voyage. (18:18) This is the way of the Nazirite vow which could not be broken. (Num. 6:1-21) Paul would keep the vow. More on this in the next study.

* "The Lord's be done" -They recognized that Paul going to Jerusalem was God's will. I do to.

* "one of the early disciples" -Thus could be trusted.

>What does this tell us about his faith and hope?

* Paul had made a vow to go to Jerusalem. He feared God more than the opinions and advice of men. He lived by faith in God.

* This concludes Paul third missionary trip.

II. At Jerusalem (17-26)

>4. What did they do when they arrived in Jerusalem? (17-19)

* Acts 21:17-19 "When we arrived at Jerusalem, the brothers received us warmly. The next day Paul and the rest of us went to see James, and all the elders were present. Paul greeted them and reported in detail what God had done among the Gentiles through his ministry.""

* "the brothers" -We are all brothers with Jesus, the elder. The apostles and disciples of Jesus are are brothers too.

* "received us warmly" -Jews accepted Gentiles in love.

* "James" -James is the English form of the Hebrew Jacob. The brother of Jesus is the James here for James, the apostles was killed years earlier. (12:2) Jesus' brothers had not supported his ministry. Later, he came to believe. Paul, telling of a meeting after his conversion in the already written to the Galatians wrote, "I saw none of the other apostles--only James, the Lord's brother.” (Gal. 1:19). In time, James assumed the leadership of the Jerusalem church, originally held by Peter. Peter we learned in an earlier study left Jerusalem when an angle lead him out of a prison awaiting death. Then James assumed leadership because of constancy with the church while Peter and other apostles traveled. He was given the title of an apostle. In a Jerusalem conference called regarding Paul’s Gentile mission, James presided as spokesman for the Jerusalem church (Acts 15).

* Apparently none of the other apostles were in Jerusalem at this time. Some believe that all of them had left for good, obeying Jesus' command to go to the ends of the earth. Thomas, for example went to India which God blessed so much that centuries later when western missionaries arrived in a certain province the people there were already Christians. When asked how they heard the gospel, they said a Jew named Thomas came to their ancestors. Also, Peter and John are known to have traveled into the regions that Paul and Barnabas had pioneered. (Gal. 2; and 1 Cor. 1:12; Rev. 1:9)

* "all the elders" -This was an important meeting.

* "reported in detail what God had done among the Gentiles" -God not only brought the gospel to the Gentiles, but he moved greatly.

* "through his ministry" -God worked through Paul.


* Paul's report showed that God was indeed moving the hearts of Gentiles as well as Jews. In fact it even showed that the Gentiles were receiving the good news more than the Jews. Something no one had heard of or understood until the gospel started to be accepted by the Gentiles. (See studies 12 & 13.)

* The earlier Jerusalem church had everything in common as we saw in earlier studies. Paul showed that the Gentiles were also generous to others because of their hope in the kingdom of God. The gift was a testimony of faith and love.

* The gift the Gentiles gave was not apart of their tithes. Tithes supported the local congregation's full time shepherds (pastors). The gift the Gentiles gave went to a world mission fund of sorts. In the last few hundred years congregations have been doing this for similar reasons; supporting world missions.

>How did James and the elders respond?

* Acts 21:20a "When they heard this, they praised God."

* "they praised God" -They did not praise Paul.

>5. What did they tell Paul about their ministry?

* Acts 21:20b "Then they said to Paul: "You see, brother, how many thousands of Jews have believed, and all of them are zealous for the law."

* Paul told the Galatians in the first letter he ever wrote, "On the contrary, they saw that I had been entrusted with the task of preaching the gospel to the Gentiles, just as Peter had been to the Jews. For God, who was at work in the ministry of Peter as an apostle to the Jews, was also at work in my ministry as an apostle to the Gentiles. James, Peter and John, those reputed to be pillars, gave me and Barnabas the right hand of fellowship when they recognized the grace given to me. They agreed that we should go to the Gentiles, and they to the Jews. All they asked was that we should continue to remember the poor, the very thing I was eager to do." (Galatians 2:7-10)

* Now both parties were showing how God working in each ministry.

* "how many thousands" -Were they all in the meeting? No. 1) Having such a large number would have drawn a lot of attention. 2) Verse 19 states who was there; "Manes, and all the elder were present".

* "all of them are zealous for the law" -Law usually just means the first five books of the Bible (Jer. 18:18; Lam. 2:9; Zech. 7:12), but could also refer to all the Old Testament (2 Kings 17:13). Usually the Bible and Jesus said, "the Law and Prophets". (Matt. 5:17, 7:12, 11:13, 22:40; John 1:45; Acts 13:15, 24:15, 28:23; Rom. 3:21) Finally, Jesus also said, "This is what I told you while I was still with you: Everything must be fulfilled that is written about me in the Law of Moses, the Prophets and the Psalms." (Luke 24:44) Therefore, I believe that these men were zealous for keeping the laws of Moses. This begs the question; Why were the Messianic Jews keeping the law of Moses? The church has always studied from Paul and the other apostles that we are free from the law. To find the answer we must understand this freedom includes living by the law and living free from the law. Also, we better not judge each other, for only Jesus is judge. To understand where those who want to live by the law come from, we need to go to Israel's history and the promises that God made to Abraham and what that means to a Jew.

* Let me explain a very confusing subject. Here we can learn a very great principle. The Bible tells of two types of people; the saved and the unsaved. The saved are done so by faith alone. No work of the law is needed. The saved are made up of Israel and Gentile. The unsaved consist of anyone, whether Israel or Gentile who do not have true saving faith in God thru Jesus alone. Israel consists of the Jews (sons of Judea, Benjamin, and some Levites) and the other lost tribes scattered unto the nations after the exile if they are true believers. They have the promises of God through Moses. In this age the body of Christ are the saved consisting both of Jews and Gentiles. Paul states that under Christ there is not Jew or Gentile only one body. He also says the Gentiles are grafted into Israel by faith. The Bible does deal separately with the Jews, Israel, and the Gentile believer as we see in this chapter. Yes, this is all very complicated. Yet, I needed to bring the subject up because of this statement "zealous for the law."

* The following is from The Interntional Bible Commentary. "When the Jerusalem elders said to Paul: you yourself are living in obedience to the law (24; cf. 1C. 9:20) they recalled the well-known fact that Paul, in Jewish circles, observed the customs so as to be able to continue his ministry among Jews to the end. When this is understood, there is no need for excuses on one hand or for condemning a compromise on the other. It is of interest to note that, apart from a passing reference in 24:17, Luke does not mention that primary purpose of the visit to Jerusalem; the handing over of the funds resulting from the offerings of the Gentiles, which occupied so much of Paul's thoughts at that time. What he does record is that Paul and his company were well received by James and the elders, and given ample opportunity to detail what God had done among the Gentiles, which motivated sincere praise.
   The problem and a proposed solution (20-26). Obviously the great majority of believers in Jerusalem (after the dispersion of 8:4) accepted Jesus as their Messiah, thinking of themselves as the 'faithful remnant', without understanding the universal nature of the church and its freedom from the shadows of the old regime. They were pious Jews confessing christ (20) and still practising the customs they had received."

>What did many of the Messianic Jews believe about Paul's preaching?

* Acts 21:21 "They have been informed that you teach all the Jews who live among the Gentiles to turn away from Moses, telling them not to circumcise their children or live according to our customs."

* "They have been informed" -Meaning the Jews who have believed and are zealous for the law. We are not told who told them, but we can assume it was unbelieving Jews who lived in the areas that Paul focused his ministry. This would imply that the believing Jews in Jerusalem maintained relationships with the unbelieving Jews in Jerusalem. If this is so that how they did not suffer as Peter and James did? Perhaps because they also kept the law.

* "teach the Jews... to turn away from Moses" -There is no evidence that Paul taught Jews to turn away from the Laws given to Israel through Moses anywhere in New Testament or extra Biblical texts.

* "live according to our customs" -Referring to not only the law but the cultural customs passed down from generation to generation. People want to hold onto customs as a kind of comfort of identity and belonging. God never outlawed customs, though Jesus did point out that the religious leaders considered some of their traditions and customs more important than God's law. Are we any different?

>What did they expect would happen to Paul?

* Acts 21:22 "What shall we do? They will certainly hear that you have come,"

* "They" -This has to refer to the "they" in verse 21. If so then James and the elders are saying that while they believe Paul is not teaching these things they cannot convince others who claim to be believers in Jesus away from their false beliefs. Not only that but they believe these "believers" will do harm to Paul, even kill him. What is James and the elders saying? How can these people be called believers even though they knew that they would do harm to innocent Paul?

* James and the elder said that there was no way that they could stop the news that Paul was in Jerusalem from leaking out.

>How does this explain one of the possible reasons Paul wanted to return to Jerusalem?

* The possibility exists that Paul had discovered what was being said about him as well as the congregations growing and expanding in Galatia, Asia Minor, Macedonia, and Greece when he received news of the poverty in the Jerusalem church. If so then the gift would not only help the poor but show God's blessings on Paul's ministry.

* Put ourselves in Paul's shoes. Look at the life that he lead. Working hard and constantly going through all that he did. I can relate because I have endured the same, though not to the degree that he did. He wanted to please God, and Jesus was pleased. Yet from humans all he received was much misunderstanding and tears. Jesus promised to wipe away the tears.

>6. What did they suggest Paul should do?

* Acts 21:23-24a "so do what we tell you. There are four men with us who have made a vow. Take these men, join in their purification rites and pay their expenses, so that they can have their heads shaved."

* "so do what we tell you" -They had already formulated a plan. This would explain the delay in Caesarea.

* "join in their purification" -See below. If someone taking a Nazirite vow becomes defiled by being near a dead body they must purify themselves. They wanted Paul not to join in their vow, but pay for their purification, thus obeying the law and proving to others that he still followed the Mosaic law.

>Why would someone shave their head? (18:18; Num. 6:1-2,9,18,21)

* Acts 18:18 "Paul stayed on in Corinth for some time. Then he left the brothers and sailed for Syria, accompanied by Priscilla and Aquila. Before he sailed, he had his hair cut off at Cenchrea because of a vow he had taken."

* Numbers 6:1-2 "The Lord said to Moses, "Speak to the Israelites and say to them: 'If a man or woman wants to make a special vow, a vow of separation to the Lord as a Nazirite,"

* Numbers 6:9 "'If someone dies suddenly in his presence, thus defiling the hair he has dedicated, he must shave his head on the day of his cleansing--the seventh day."

* Numbers 6:18 "'Then at the entrance to the Tent of Meeting, the Nazirite must shave off the hair that he dedicated. He is to take the hair and put it in the fire that is under the sacrifice of the fellowship offering."

* Numbers 6:21 "'This is the law of the Nazirite who vows his offering to the Lord in accordance with his separation, in addition to whatever else he can afford. He must fulfill the vow he has made, according to the law of the Nazirite.'"

* Paul himself had kept the Nazirite vow. That vow was not related to this plan. In this time period Jews usually kept the vow for thirty days. Yet no time is given in Numbers. If they became defiled by being exposed to a

>How did they believe this would help Paul?

* Acts 21:24b "Then everybody will know there is no truth in these reports about you, but that you yourself are living in obedience to the law."

* They wanted Paul to make a public display of his obedience to the Law of Moses hoping to solve the problem. They did not realize that their idea would be the catalyst to Paul's arrest. Didn't they get the prophecies that Paul and his group had been getting from the Lord? Didn't a prophet come from Judea to tell Paul he would be arrested? Did they remember that Jesus, Peter, John and James had all been arrested because of jealousy and the Law problem was just rationalization for the crime? If Paul and his companions had accepted the Lord's words how could they think that they could subside the Jews emotions? I can only say that their zeal for the Law must have made them dull to the Spirit. Paul said this could happen in his letters. "But if you are led by the Spirit, you are not under law... Since we live by the Spirit, let us keep in step with the Spirit. Let us not become conceited, provoking and envying each other." Gal. 5:18, 25-26)

>What did Paul do? (26)

* Acts 21:26 "The next day Paul took the men and purified himself along with them. Then he went to the temple to give notice of the date when the days of purification would end and the offering would be made for each of them."

* "The next day" -The men must have been waiting to do this.

* "purified himself along with them" -Paul joined in even though he had not taken their vow originally.

* "to give notice of the date when the days of purification would end" -The length of time for the Nazirite vow is not specified in Numbers. However, the time for purification was set.

* "offering would be made" -The offering would them be sacrificed. Here some find problems in what Paul did. They ask, "Since Jesus is the final sacrifice, and Paul knew this why did he subject himself to this law?" (Rom. 6:10; Heb. 5:9, 10:10) I've addressed this type of question above.

>7. Did this affect their earlier decision about the Gentiles? (25)

* Acts 21:25 "As for the Gentile believers, we have written to them our decision that they should abstain from food sacrificed to idols, from blood, from the meat of strangled animals and from sexual immorality."

* The Messianic Jews made a distinction between them and their brothers in Christ as far as conduct goes. We are saved by faith alone. (Rom. 3:30; Gal. 5:1-6) Yet we are free to keep the law of Moses or live by the Spirit. But who would accept the less thing (living by the law) for the greater thing (living by the Spirit)?

>Is their a difference between Christians, whether Jewish or Gentile?

* Romans 10:12-13 " For there is no difference between Jew and Gentile--the same Lord is Lord of all and richly blesses all who call on him, for, "Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved."

III. Paul Arrested (27-40)

>8. Who recognized Paul?

* Acts 21:27a "When the seven days were nearly over, some Jews from the province of Asia saw Paul at the temple."

* "some Jews from the providence of Asia" -The problem did not come from unbelieving or believing Jews from Judea.

* The Jews were required to visit the temple during the Feasts of the Lord. Pentecost was one of the Feasts. (20:16)

>What did they do?

* Acts 21:27b "They stirred up the whole crowd and seized him"

* They had done this to Paul when he was in their area.

>What claims did they make about Paul?

* Acts 21:28-29 "shouting, "Men of Israel, help us! This is the man who teaches all men everywhere against our people and our law and this place. And besides, he has brought Greeks into the temple area and defiled this holy place." (They had previously seen Trophimus the Ephesian in the city with Paul and assumed that Paul had brought him into the temple area.)"

* "Shouting" -The crowd had gotten very loud. The temple would have been filled with many Jews and Jewish converts.

* "against our people" -Not true especially since he and many of his converts were Jews.

* "against our law" -Not true as is evident by him following the law.

* "against this place" -Not true as is evident by his presence.

* "Greeks into the temple area" -The temple was built on Mt. Moriah, a rocky outcropping in Jerusalem located just north of the ancient city of David. Mt. Moriah is not the highest elevation in the area. (2 Chron. 3:1-3) The natural formation was impossible to build anything on. So David planned and his son Solomon stacked up large blocks to create a flat platform to build the temple on. When finished the only part one small part of Moriah stuck out of the platform. The temple was not built on this rock outcrop. Today the Dome of the Rock covers that out crop. The flat platform the temple was built on consisted of large step areas, each elevation designated for different groups of people. The farthest from the temple and the lowest was for everyone including Gentiles. The next highest area was for Israel only. The Israelite women were separated from the men by another higher area. Within the area designated for Israelite men was the area designated for the priests only. (2 Chron. 4:9) Anyone going in an area that they were not allowed could be stoned to death.

Temple Warming Plaque

* See a picture of a Temple warning plaque from the temple to the right. Paul was accused of having brought Greeks into the temple, thus disregarding this notice which has since been rediscovered in Jerusalem. It was inscribed on the Court of the Gentiles in the temple and forbade any non-Jew on pain of death to pass beyond that point into the inner courts. "Whoever is caught doing so will have himself to blame that his death ensues" -thus the inscription in red letters on a block of white limestone which dates from the time of Jesus and his disciples. (The Bible as History in Pictures, Werner Keller)

>9. What did they do?

* Acts 21:30 "The whole city was aroused, and the people came running from all directions. Seizing Paul, they dragged him from the temple, and immediately the gates were shut."

* "The whole city" -Not just those in the temple area. Paul's reputation was well known by many.

* "came running from all directions" -Everyone wanted to join in on the stoning.

* "they dragged him from the temple" -They had to move his quickly out of the temple to stone him for it was illegal to kill anyone in the temple and unwise to do it in the city. Dragging a person from to temple would have been down stairs.

* "immediately the gates were shut" -So no one could be where they were not suppose to be.

>Who found out? (31)

* Acts 21:31 "While they were trying to kill him, news reached the commander of the Roman troops that the whole city of Jerusalem was in an uproar."

* "trying to kill him" -Stoning was not an immediate death. It was a slow and painful death.

* "news reached the commander of the Roman troops" -Herod had build a place called Antonia Fortress which was attached to the northern west side of the temple mount to house Roman troupes. A tower in the fortress overlooked the temple area.

* "commander" -over one thousand soldiers, a regiment. (23:20)

>What did he do? (32)

* Acts 21:32 "He at once took some officers and soldiers and ran down to the crowd. When the rioters saw the commander and his soldiers, they stopped beating Paul."

* "officers" -More than one centurion, men over one hundred men.

* "ran down to the crowd" -The Roman troops were responsible to keep Roman peace.

* "they stopped beating Paul" -The Romans would have arrested anyone killing anyone. The Jews would have killed Paul and then cover it up so that the Romans would not have known.

>Describe the scene. (33-36) What does this reveal about those who tried to kill him?

* Acts 21:33-36 "The commander came up and arrested him and ordered him to be bound with two chains. Then he asked who he was and what he had done. Some in the crowd shouted one thing and some another, and since the commander could not get at the truth because of the uproar, he ordered that Paul be taken into the barracks. When Paul reached the steps, the violence of the mob was so great he had to be carried by the soldiers. The crowd that followed kept shouting, "Away with him!"

* "taken into the barracks" -called Antonia Fortress.

* "the violence of the mob was so great he had to be carried by the soldiers" -They were not even afraid of the Roman soldiers.

* "Away with him" -Meaning keep him out of the temple.

>10. Who did the commander think Paul was?

* Acts 21:37-38 "As the soldiers were about to take Paul into the barracks, he asked the commander, "May I say something to you?" "Do you speak Greek?" he replied. "Aren't you the Egyptian who started a revolt and led four thousand terrorists out into the desert some time ago?"

* "Do you speak Greek" -Paul was speaking to him in Greek, something an Egyptian wouldn't do. The only Jews who would speak Greek would be those from outside of Judea. Even then the Jews prejudice against Greece for previous occupation lead them to speak Aramaic before Greek.

* "the Egyptians who started a revolt" -Josephus tells of an Egyptian false prophet who come years earlier feeding four thousand out to the Mount of Olives. Roman soldiers killed hundreds, but the leader escaped.

>How did Paul identify himself?

* Acts 21:39 "Paul answered, "I am a Jew, from Tarsus in Cilicia, a citizen of no ordinary city. Please let me speak to the people."

* "a Jew" -So he was allowed in the temple.

* "Tarsus" -Tarsus was ten miles inland and thirty miles from the mountains.

>What did Paul want to do?

* Acts 21:40 "Having received the commander's permission, Paul stood on the steps and motioned to the crowd. When they were all silent, he said to them in Aramaic:"

* Paul wanted to give his life testimony probably for the sake of the Jerusalem congregation.


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