1 After these things Paul departed from Athens, and came to Corinth; 2 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. 3 And because he was of the same craft, he abode with them, and wrought: for by their occupation they were tentmakers.
The Doctrine of Missiology: Paul goes from city to city, and every once in a while picking up a godly man and/or woman to help him in the ministry, and, to, in turn, train for the ministry. As an Evangelist/Missionary, Paul was able to survive financially due to being a tentmaker; what was his occupation prior to this? Pharisee. Paul formed a Mission’s team with Aquila and Priscilla who were also tentmakers.
Should all Pastors/Evangelists/Missionaries have a ‘secular’ job (or at least training for such)? What about foreign Missionaries and ‘work’? Don’t you think it is reasonably possible for a man to find some way of getting an income while in a foreign country?…. Why not have a ‘trade’ that is universally marketable? What would be some examples of this? Tentmaking? Teaching, plumber, medical, carpentry, mechanic, hunter, mason, etc.. I believe that a foreign Missionary should at least make a reasonable effort at trying to generate income (other than ‘support’) while ‘on the field’ in that country.
4 And he reasoned in the synagogue every sabbath, and persuaded the Jews and the Greeks. 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. 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.
The Doctrine of Evangelism: Going evangelizing by yourself is hard; having someone with you gives you boldness; takes away some fear; also, it keeps you ‘accountable’. This is why it is wise to have at least one man (if not two) assisting you in the ministry (especially on a ‘new work’). It helps you to boldly say that Jesus is God, the Christ, the only Saviour of the world! Paul was ‘reasoning in the synagogue every sabbath’. But, the Jews there in Corinth would not accept Jesus, but rather, blasphemed. So Paul said ‘henceforth I will go unto the Gentiles’. Paul says the same thing in Acts 13:47, 28:28. He said it to Jews in different regions. Thus, it didn’t happen all at once; it was a process of changing a focus of ministry. The apostle to the Jews was Peter. It appears that a Missionary can ‘change fields’, or change their ‘calling’ (as did Paul here). Thus, if you set out as a Missionary to Mexico, you can at a later date have it be changed to a different people group (as God clearly leads).
What does being ‘pressed in the spirit’ mean? The spiritual side of Him was being pushed, pressed upon; this is via the Holy Spirit. Have you ever felt this before? Being greatly burdened by God for souls.
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. 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. 9 Then spake the Lord to Paul in the night by a vision, Be not afraid, but speak, and hold not thy peace: 10 For I am with thee, and no man shall set on thee to hurt thee: for I have much people in this city. 11 And he continued there a year and six months, teaching the word of God among them.
The Doctrine of Missiology: Missionaries might do well to enter (and lodge) with certain men’s homes as they minister in a city; you don’t necessarily have to have money for ‘housing’ or even for ‘food’; in fact, all your needs could be met by the people of any given city…so much for 3 years of deputation’s ‘support raising’. But how would that work if the man had his family with him?…
Getting a key leader of the main religion of an area (in a foreign field) to become a Christian can bring about many others to be saved also.
The Doctrine of Evangelism: This was the beginnings of the ‘church at Corinth’ (i.e., Paul left Athens and then evangelized at Corinth). Paul continued with them for 1.5 years; he spent a lot of time each week in teaching those new converts. Corinth was a city that had much people in it that were sympathetic to the truths of God’s word. And, I believe that there are different levels of receptiveness amongst individual cities; some cities will have ‘much people’ that will be saved and baptized, and some will have just a few people. How about Omak?….
12 And when Gallio was the deputy of Achaia, the Jews made insurrection with one accord against Paul, and brought him to the judgment seat, 13 Saying, This fellow persuadeth men to worship God contrary to the law.
14 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: 15 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. 16 And he drave them from the judgment seat. 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 Doctrine of Persecution: They basically made false accusations in order to stop the preacher (you worship via Jesus…falsely); they put forward a typical ‘smear campaign’. Today, they may say “Christians are anti-government” or they are “hatemongers” or they are “out to destroy all homosexuals”, etc., etc..
Would to God that the government would stay out of churches, religions, Christian’s lives (as was done here under Gallio’s leadership). Though, eventually, they will be greatly involved, sad to say; probably, mainly through ‘hate speech’ violations and ‘proseletyzing’ issues.
The Greeks might have been sympathizing with the Christians here; and Gallio, being a Roman, could care less about what the Greeks were doing to the most hated Jews.
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. 19 And he came to Ephesus, and left them there: but he himself entered into the synagogue, and reasoned with the Jews.
20 When they desired him to tarry longer time with them, he consented not; 21 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. 22 And when he had landed at Caesarea, and gone up, and saluted the church, he went down to Antioch. 23 And after he had spent some time there, he departed, and went over all the country of Galatia and Phrygia in order, strengthening all the disciples.
Paul usually travelled with ‘helpers’ and fellow evangelists/missionaries; here he had Priscilla and Aquila on his team. Should Paul have shorn his head? Should Paul have left for the feast?
Again, Paul, as an apostle/evangelist/missionary went back to strengthen churches (strenghtening all the disciples); i.e., those churches that he had started. He did this following a certain ‘order’; probably in order ‘logistically’. This should be only done by those that help plant and/or pastor the church, not by unknown famous ‘evangelists’ who are ‘good at preaching’ !!!
24 And a certain Jew named Apollos, born at Alexandria, an eloquent man, and mighty in the scriptures, came to Ephesus. 25 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. 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. 27 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: 28 For he mightily convinced the Jews, and that publickly, shewing by the scriptures that Jesus was Christ.
The Doctrine of Training: Who instructed Apollos? Was he a ‘preacher’? Apparently, Apollos only understood as far as John the Baptist had instructed him. A preacher should be fervent in spirit. A preacher should teach diligently and boldly what they know to be true. It is possible to be ‘eloquent and mighty in the scriptures’ but not be solid on doctrine….as was the case with Apollos. Did Priscilla teach Apollos some? Was it a husband wife tagteam here? They probably taught him for weeks or more. Are you willing and able to disciple new converts and Christians who have been involved in ‘not so good’ churches and need to be expounded the way of God more perfectly? It appears that Aquila and Priscilla had Apollos stay with them at their home (took unto them). They spent many hours day after day training this eloquent preacher. Do you think that most preachers would gladly allow someone to show them the way of the Lord more perfectly?…