Exegetic Study #5- Acts 27-28
In Acts 26 we see Paul being arrested by the Jews in Rome and then being released but the Jews demand that Paul be put to death so Paul asserts his Roman citizenship and demands to be allowed to plead his case before Caesar. To do this Paul is put on a ship to sail to Rome but he is a prisoner and is under the guard of a centurion named Julius. However the ship runs into rather dreadful weather and the apostle is given a chance to care for the ship’s crew and to witness about Christ once again.
In Acts 27 Paul is put on a boat and under the custody of a centurion names Julius. Now centurions were Roman officers who had earned their rank and were used to being in command. We know from our prior reading that Romans are pagans and we can assume that Julius is also a pagan and he is now in charge of a Christian. Don’t forget the Romans enjoyed watching Christians being attacked by lions for sport so I would think that Paul is in rather dire straits. He is put on a ship as a prisoner, the lowest of the low, and a Roman centurion is his master. For all Paul knew this Roman would shackle him to the bowels of the ship and leave him there until the ship docked week’s later in Italy. But this is not the case. Instead Paul uses his time with Julius and makes him his friend post-haste! According to the bible it’s a bond formed overnight! (NIV, 1991)
Right here is a moment of cross-culture ministry. Paul is in the clutches of a Christian killer. But instead of being afraid, overnight he and Julius bond and are friends. The bible is not clear exactly what was done or said but the very next day Julius shows kindness to Paul when the ship docks by allowing Paul to go to his friends so they can attend to his needs. Paul has certainly acquired Julius’ trust if he lets Paul leave and believes Paul will return. Paul must have treated Julius with respect and honor in order to receive such freedom and trust. Anything less and it’s...
References: Dem, D. (2011, September 2). History of religion in Malta - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. Retrieved March 21, 2013, from http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/History_of_religion_in_Malta
Holton, C. (2011, July 4). Searching for Paul 's Shipwreck on Malta - World - CBN News - Christian News 24-7 - CBN.com. CBN.com - The Christian Broadcasting Network. Retrieved March 19, 2013, from http://www.cbn.com/cbnnews/world/2010/february/searching-for-pauls-shipwreck-on-malta/
Life application study Bible: New International Version. (Large print ed.). (1991). Wheaton, Ill.: Tyndale House ;.
Dina, D. N. (2009, February 8). Malta daily photo: St. Paul 's Shipwreck - Malta. Malta daily photo. Retrieved March 17, 2013, from http://maltadailyphoto.blogspot.com/2009/02/st-pauls-shipwreck-malta.html
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