Blog Posts - Book Of Acts



Book Review: Carl R. Holladay, Acts: A Commentary

Holladay, Carl R. Acts: A Commentary. NTL; Minneapolis: Westminster John Knox, 2016. lxiv + 608 pages; Hb. $75.00.  Link to Westminster John Knox Press There have been several significant contributions to the New Testament Library series from Westmi...
by Reading Acts on Dec 19, 2016

Established in the Story

From the earliest days of the Church, theology (the study of God) has been a really big deal. And so it should be! As followers of Jesus we need to know what we believe and why we believe it. Therefore, men of every age have tried to articulate the f...
by Living in the Reign on Feb 2, 2016

Paul’s Missionary Strategy in Acts (Part 2)

[This is the second guest post from one of my Advanced Studies in Acts students, John Caprari. John is a senior undergraduate Biblical Studies major with an emphasis on Pastoral Ministry. He and his wife will be going to Africa soon after graduati...
by Reading Acts on Apr 1, 2015

Paul’s Missionary Strategy in Acts (Part 1)

[This is the third set of guest posts from my Advanced Studies in Acts class. Joe Caprari is a senior undergraduate Biblical Studies major with an emphasis on Pastoral Ministry. He and his wife will be going to Africa soon after graduation to explore...
by Reading Acts on Apr 1, 2015

Acts 19 – Exorcists in Ephesus

Acts 19:11-17 reports the amusing story of the Sons of Sceva who attempt to cast out demons in the name of Jesus and Paul. Jewish exorcists are well known in the ancient world. Legends about Solomon’s great power of demons were well-known. Josephus...
by Reading Acts on Mar 31, 2015

Acts 19 – The Ephesus Residency

Paul’s years in Ephesus are perhaps his most fruitful times in ministry. Witherington comments that Luke intends this unit to be a “lasting model of what a universalistic Christian mission ought to look like” (Acts, 573). It is perhaps strange...
by Reading Acts on Mar 30, 2015

Acts 18 – What Went Wrong in Corinth?

The city of Corinth was an important cosmopolitan city in the middle part of the first century. (Was Corinth more sinful than other Roman cities? Click the link for my comments about that longstanding misunderstanding of history, as well as a follo...
by Reading Acts on Mar 28, 2015

Acts 18 – Success Breeds Jealousy

After several very difficult experiences in Philippi and Thessalonica and an unfruitful visit to Athens, Paul finally experiences some good success in Corinth. After preaching in the synagogue he establishes a church that includes several key conv...
by Reading Acts on Mar 27, 2015

Acts 17:22-28 – Quoting the Philosophers?

Paul quotes two Greek writers as support for his case that the creator God does not need temples or temple services from humans. The use of this material has always prompted discussion among readers of Acts, especially with respect to application.
by Reading Acts on Mar 25, 2015

Acts 17:16-21 – Paul in the Marketplace of Ideas

The Athens of the first century was a shadow of its glorious past. The golden age of Athens was some 500 years before Paul visited the city, but it was nevertheless an impressive city. The emperors Augustus and Claudius both made generous donations t...
by Reading Acts on Mar 24, 2015

Acts 17:6 – Turning the World Upside Down

After a successful time in the synagogue in Thessalonica, charges are made against Paul before the local Roman authorities (Acts 17:1-9). The charges against Paul are significant: he is accused of “defying the decrees of Caesar” and “advocating...
by Reading Acts on Mar 24, 2015

Acts 16:16-18 – The Spirit of Python

While walking through the marketplace, Paul and Silas encounter a girl possessed with the “spirit of Python” (πνεῦμα πύθωνα). The Python was the serpent or dragon that guarded the Delphic oracle at Mt. Parnassus. Apollo was also the...
by Reading Acts on Mar 23, 2015

Acts 16:13-15 – Lydia of Thyatira

When Paul begins to work in a new location, he often visits a local synagogue first. But when Paul arrives in Philippi he visits worshipers by a river because there was no synagogue in the city. Access to water was an important factor for Diaspora Je...
by Reading Acts on Mar 20, 2015

Acts 16:3 – Was Paul a Hypocrite?

In Acts 16:3, Paul circumcised Timothy, a Hellenistic Jew who begins to travel with Paul during the second missionary journey.  The problem is Paul’s reasons for circumcising Timothy at this time. The whole point of the conference in Acts 15 was t...
by Reading Acts on Mar 18, 2015

Acts 15:37-40 – A Parting of the Ways: Part 2

[This is another post by a student in my Advanced Acts Studies seminar class, Camron Befus. Camron prepared a lecture on the conflict between Barnabas and Paul, so I asked him to write two blog posts on the topic.] Barnabas wishes to take his cousin...
by Reading Acts on Mar 18, 2015

Acts 15:37-40 – A Parting of the Ways: Part 1

[This is another post by a student in my Advanced Acts Studies seminar class, Camron Befus. Camron prepared a lecture on the conflict between Barnabas and Paul, so I asked him to write two blog posts on the topic.] The first conflict in Paul’s mini...
by Reading Acts on Mar 17, 2015

Acts 15:13-21 – James Emerges as a Leader

One of the most interesting things about the Jerusalem meeting is that it is James who appears as a key leader and is described as rendering a decision on the matter of Gentiles and the Law (Acts 15:13-21). The structure of the Jerusalem community se...
by Reading Acts on Mar 16, 2015

Acts 15:7-11 – Putting God to the Test

Peter reports his experience with Gentile salvation and argues that requiring Gentiles to keep the Law is placing an unnecessary yoke upon them (Acts 15:7-11).  He first briefly reminds the assembly of his encounter with Cornelius, a conversion whic...
by Reading Acts on Mar 16, 2015

Acts 15 – Defining “Christian”

The first major controversy the early church dealt with strikes the modern reader a strange.  Rather than debating who Jesus was or beginning to develop the doctrine of the Trinity, the first major theological problem they need to solve was the stat...
by Reading Acts on Mar 14, 2015

Acts 15 – The Significance of the Jerusalem Council

Darrell Bock makes an important observation concerning this “council.” He suggests it ought to be called a consultation rather than a council since it is not like the later “church councils” which decided doctrine for the church (Nicea, for e...
by Reading Acts on Mar 12, 2015


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