Tag Archives: Ananias

A Contrast of Paul’s Conversion Accounts

Luke records Paul’s conversion three times in Acts, first in chapter 9 where he simply narrates the event, and secondly, through Paul’s testimony in chapter 22 before the Jews after they tried to kill him, and finally before Festus and King Agrippa in chapter 26. Each have similarities, but there are also differences in the accounts, and some have tried to make a point that the differences prove either the event never occurred, or that one cannot know for certain what happened. Is this true? The simple answer is, no; there are reasons for the differences in the accounts, just as there are reasons for the similarities. Read the rest of this entry »

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Posted by on June 12, 2013 in Gospel, Paul in bonds


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The Plot on Paul’s Life

It would be a mistake to believe that life in the Middle East was less complex in the first century than it is today. Today, it is oil that turns the wheels of political and commercial intrigue, but back then it was food. The eastern provinces of the Roman Empire, especially Egypt, provided the necessary food supplies to keep Rome living in abundance and luxury, while the rest of the world struggled to get by. The province of Syria, which included Galilee and Judea, provided the needed buffer for Rome between its control over the rich provisions of Egypt and any threat from the Parthian Empire, further east (largely Iran today), who would also have liked to control the Middle East. Read the rest of this entry »

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Posted by on May 22, 2013 in Paul in bonds, Paul in Jerusalem


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Paul Before the Sanhedrin

It has been argued that, due to a lack of a plaintiff argument, the Sanhedrin proceedings were informal.[1] However, strictly speaking Claudius Lysias, the Roman tribune who commanded the Roman army in the Antonia and second in authority only to Felix, called the court together. How informal could that have been? Whether the intention was to hear Paul as a kind of grand jury to determine whether or not Paul had committed a crime or whether the court was convened in the manner in which Festus had thought to do in Acts 25:9 is uncertain. Nevertheless, a formal hearing was called, and judging from the cry of innocence by some of the members of the court (Acts 23:9), it functioned as either an authentic trial on Paul’s life or as a kind of grand jury. Read the rest of this entry »

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Posted by on May 20, 2013 in Gospel, Paul in bonds, Paul in Jerusalem


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Who Was the High Priest in 56 AD?

Josephus offers us a list of the Jewish high priests extending from the Hasmonians to the destruction of the Temple in 70 AD. Dating them for the most part is not very difficult, if one follows along in his history of the Jewish people, and if one compares his work with the works of others that concern common personalities such as Roman emperors, and the presidents of Syria and governors of Judea etc. There are, however, difficult places in the list that are a bit confusing, where a strict reading leads to contradictions. One of those places in the list occurs when Paul was taken captive by the Romans cir. 56 AD. Read the rest of this entry »

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Posted by on May 18, 2013 in Paul in bonds, Paul in Jerusalem


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The Wolf Shall Dwell with the Lamb

Wolf and lamb

from Google Images

I wonder how often, if ever, that we think of the prospect of coming into fellowship with one who hurt us badly. Most often, I suspect, we would simply seek to avoid such a person. People who seem to live to or at least enjoy hurting those who trust in Jesus are too often simply written off as unreachable, and perhaps unforgivable. Certainly, it would be very difficult to forgive such a one under normal circumstances who had beaten or killed a friend or a loved one, especially a harmless, gentle friend or loved one. Yet, as the Scripture keeps telling us, the thoughts of God are higher than our thoughts (Isaiah 55:8-9); yes, the depth and height of his wisdom is beyond our full comprehension (Romans 11:33). Read the rest of this entry »

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Posted by on March 16, 2012 in Religion


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Jonathan the High Priest—Twice?

Jonathan was the high priest over Jerusalem for only one year or less in 36 AD Josephus says he was offered to serve again under King Agrippa I, but declined asking the king to consider his brother Matthias, which the king did and appointed Matthias high priest. He was the brother of Jonathan and fourth son of Annas, the Jews’ first high priest appointed by Rome when Judea became a Roman province. The question is, however, did Jonathan ever reign again as high priest. I didn’t think so, but after rereading Josephus’ account of Jewish history around the time of Paul’s imprisonment, I’ve had to change my point of view. Read the rest of this entry »

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Posted by on February 19, 2010 in New Testament History, Religion


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