Category Archives: Paul’s 3rd missionary journey

Overview of Paul’s Journey to Jerusalem

Paul had intended to be in Jerusalem by the Passover but was prevented in doing so when a plot against his life was uncovered (Acts 20:3). His second plan was to be there by Pentecost (Acts 20:16). Obviously, he would have more time to spare on his journey than if his first plan was fruitful. Since he spent the winter months at Corinth (Acts 20:3; cp. 1Corinthians 16:6), he would have been ready to embark from there to the Province of Syria in late February or the first week in March. However, due to the plot on his life Paul spent three or four weeks journeying through Achaia and Macedonia visiting the churches there and didn’t set sail from Philippi until after the Days of Unleavened Bread (Acts 20:6). Read the rest of this entry »


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Paul and Believing the Holy Spirit

Awhile back I had addressed this in a blog entitled Did Paul Disobey the Holy Spirit. I haven’t changed my mind about what I said there, but I do believe I need to address certain implications that were perhaps not addressed in that blog. For example, the text says in Acts 21:4 the disciples in Tyre “said to Paul through the Spirit that he should not go up to Jerusalem.” This certainly seems like a direct command from God. Is it, and if so, why wouldn’t Paul be disobedient to the Holy Spirit by continuing on to Jerusalem? Read the rest of this entry »


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Wolves Shall Come in Among You

I used to wonder, at times, what it would look like if a wolf in sheep’s clothing entered my church or perhaps my denomination. Does anyone else think of these things? I think it must be important, because both Jesus and Paul and every other writer in the New Testament warn of men entering the flock of Christ in order to steal people away for themselves. If the idea weren’t worth mentioning, why would this warning be given by every writer in the New Testament, and wouldn’t it be naive to simply brush it off, saying ‘it could never happen to me’? Read the rest of this entry »


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Purchased by the Blood of God

Does God have blood? The Scriptures say the “life… is in the blood” (Leveticus 17:11). The actual quotation is the “life **of the flesh** is in the blood”, but Jesus tells us that God is Spirit (John 4:24), implying that God is not flesh. So, if this is an accurate conclusion, how should we understand Paul’s words – “Take heed therefore unto yourselves, and to all the flock, over the which the Holy Ghost hath made you overseers, to feed the church of God, which he hath purchased with his own blood” (Acts 20:28 – emphasis mine)? Read the rest of this entry »

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Posted by on April 22, 2013 in Gospel, Paul's 3rd missionary journey


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Paul, Bound in the Spirit

Paul told his believing audience from Ephesus, that they would see him no more (Acts 20:25), for he was committed in his spirit to going to Jerusalem, knowing full well that trouble, perhaps even death awaited him there (Acts 20:22-24). It seems that Luke intends to show in Paul’s life an image of Jesus going to Jerusalem to be rejected and killed (cp. Luke 9:51), and just as Jesus was committed to fulfill the plan of God, so was Paul. Paul conformed himself to the pattern he saw in Jesus, even to the point of betrayal (Acts 21:20-24)! Was it an accident or was it a conspiracy conducted by false brethren (cp. Galatians 2:4; 2Corinthians 11:26)? Luke doesn’t tell us, but leaves the whole matter shrouded in mystery undaunted by our curiosity. Read the rest of this entry »


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Paul’s Defense before Believers

In what remains of what we know as Acts 20, Luke treats us with Paul’s final speech as a free man. Furthermore, it is his only speech in Acts that is given before only a believing audience. So, we can expect his words here to be of greater depth than what he is shown to have said before at the Athenian Areopagus in Acts 17, for example or even before the Jews of Pisidian Antioch in Acts 13. Here at Miletus, a prosperous coastal city on the eastern Aegean Sea, Paul summoned the elders of the Ephesian church (Acts 20:17), for he sailed past the port at Ephesus not wanting to delay his course to Jerusalem longer than was necessary (Acts 20:16). Read the rest of this entry »


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Does the Church Ever Get ‘Lucky’?

I am reminded at this point in Paul’s third recorded missionary journey of the beginning of his second. Originally, Paul had intended to evangelize Asia about six years earlier, but was drawn away by the Spirit to minister to other areas (Acts 16:6). Now, he intended to sail to Syria with an offering for the poor at Jerusalem, but, after discovering a plot against his life, Paul began a tour of the churches he had planted in Europe and Asia Minor with messages of encouragement, comfort and warning. None of these things we have in Acts 20:4-38 would have occurred had Paul been able to leave for Syria from Corinth. Read the rest of this entry »

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Posted by on April 14, 2013 in Gospel, Paul's 3rd missionary journey


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