Bible Study Notes

THE ACTS OF THE APOSTLES

 (Bible Study)

THE THIRD GREAT MISSION OF PAUL TO THE GENTILES: TO ASIA MINOR AND EUROPE

Acts 18:23-21:16

 Rev. Louis M. Murphy, Sr.

September 14, 2022

Ephesus, the Market and Religious Center of Asia Minor

(Part I): Apollos—Preparing the Way

Acts 18:23-28

Introduction:  This begins the third great mission of Paul. The mission includes…

  • a revisit to all the churches Paul had earlier founded in GALATIA and Phrygia. This one verse is the only information given about his third visit to these churches (Acts 18:23).
  • the ministry in Ephesus which lasted about three years (Acts 19:1-41).
  • a return to Europe and Asia Minor (Acts 20:1-5).
  • a return to Troas (Acts 20:6-12).
  • a stopover in Miletus where he was visited by the Ephesian elders (Acts 20:13-38).
  • the final miles to visit Jerusalem (Acts 21:1-16).

 

Apollos was one of the great servants of the early church. Note how he just burst upon the scene in this passage. He is a dynamic example of the strong disciple.

Outline:

  1. Two great ministers of the Lord (v.23-24).
  2. He was an eloquent man mighty in the Scriptures (v.24).
  3. He was instructed in the way of the Lord (v.25).
  4. He was fervent in spirit (v.25).
  5. He taught accurately, taught what he knew (v.25).
  6. He spoke boldly (v.26).
  7. He was teachable, willing to be taught even by those of less learning (v.26).
  8. He was faithful to his call (v.27-28).

Background on Ephesus: the city of the great trade centers of Asia. Ephesus sat at the mouth of the great river valley, Cayster, and was a fertile land. A description of the kind of trade that took place in the great cities of that day is descibed in Rev. 18:12-13.

The city had been founded to command one of the highways of Asia Minor. It was called the “Queen of Asia Minor,” “The Treasure House of Asia,” and “The Vanity Fair of Asia Minor.” It was the home of the Pan-Ionian Games. But its most reputable honor was its great temple, the Temple of Diana or Artemis, one of the seven wonders of the world. Pilgrims from all over the world became tourist-worshippers (cp. Acts 19:27). And the prosperous guild of silversmiths with their souvenir relics abounded and plied their trade of religious superstition all over the city. It was the silversmiths’ fear of losing their livelihood under the power of the gospel that was to cause Paul great trouble in the coming months.

The church at Ephesus had a small beginning. When Paul visited, he found only twelve believers. They had been won to the Lord by the immature but impressive preacher Apollos. But even they were misinformed on the presence of the Holy Spirit.

They seemed to lack a consciousness of the Spirit in the life of the believer and the awareness that He had already been sent into the world (Acts 19:1-7). After Paul’s instruction to these twelve, he began to teach in the synagogue.

He taught there for three months, but the Jews were hardened and did not believe and they murmured against the message. Therefore, Paul was forced to move the church into the school of a philosopher named Tyrannus. There he preached Christ for two whole years. During this time it is said that the church was instrumental in sounding forth the Word throughout all Asia:

  1. (18:23-24) Two great ministers of God, Paul and Apollos.
  2. The first great minister was Paul, who is seen beginning his third great mission. The first leg of the journey was a revisit to all the churches in GALATIA and Phrygia.

Note two points.

  1. Paul was alone. So far as we know, no one was travelling with him. This is symbolic of his faithfulness and commitment to the Lord’s call. Nothing could keep him from carrying out the Lord’s great mission…
  • not even the comforts of a home and the love of dear friends (Antioch).
  • not the dangerous trips into frontier areas.
  • not having to travel and minister all alone.

  1. Paul’s purpose in revisiting the churches was not to socialize or to enjoy good Christian fellowship. Although he and the disciples would have a wonderful time together, Paul’s purpose was more specific: to strengthen the disciples in the Lord. Note he had not seen them for many months. He loved them and longed to see them, but seeing and being with them was not enough for Paul. There was more to life than just socializing and fellowshipping together. He wanted them to grow in the Lord, to be strengthened in Him.

  1. The second great minister was Apollos. Apollos was a new minister appearing on the scene of Christian missions.

 Deeper Study on Apollos: was Jewish born in Alexandria, one of the great cultural and educational cities of the ancient world. There were about one million Jews in Alexandria, which means Apollos was steeped in Jewish religion, tradition, and Scripture. Somehow he either came into contact with John the Baptist or with his message on the baptism of repentance. This simply means that he knew of John’s declaration that Jesus was the Lamb of God, but he knew…

  • nothing of Jesus’ death and resurrection.
  • nothing of Jesus as the Savior.
  • nothing of the Holy Spirit coming to live within believers, empowering them to live righteously and to minister in power.

This, of course, means that his message was repentance only, coming short of salvation in Christ Jesus. But note his sincerity and commitment and fervor to what he knew. He was totally committed to what he knew, and God always honors those who diligently seek Him (Hebrews 11:6).

Therefore, God sees to it that believers who are able to instruct him cross his path. It is at this point that the present passage picks up Apollos’ ministry. His ministry in the New Testament includes…

Apollos was such a powerful preacher that a clique began to form in his name, causing problems within the Corinthian church. Paul loved him and longed for his companionship and ministry among the churches’

  1. (18:24) The strong disciple was an eloquent man, mighty in the Scriptures. The term “eloquent man” can mean either learned or eloquent. In this case it probably means both. But note the point: it was the Scriptures that Apollos…
  • learned so well.
  • spoke forth so eloquently or forcefully.

Apollos had learned the Old Testament Scriptures by memory and spent hours meditating on them. He understood and believed them, grasping the promises of the Messiah. Therefore, when he saw or heard the proclamation of John the Baptist, he was ready to receive the promises of the Savior and to proclaim them.

 “Study to show thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth” (2 Tim. 2:15).

“All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness” (2 Tim. 3:16).

  1. (18:25) The strong disciple had been instructed in “the way of the Lord.” He knew that John had declared Jesus to be the “Lamb of God,” the promised Messiah; but he had not yet learned of Jesus’ death and resurrection as the Savior of the world, nor of the Holy Spirit’s indwelling presence and power.

The point to see is twofold.

  1. Someone had instructed Apollos, either his parents or some godly teacher who was genuine and faithful in his teaching responsibility.

  1. Apollos was an obedient and faithful son and student.

This proclaims a loud message to all Christian parents and teachers and Christian children and students. A believer must be instructed in the “way of the Lord” in order to become a strong disciple of the Lord.

 “Then said Jesus to those Jews which believed on him, If ye continue in my word, then are ye my disciples indeed; and ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free” (John 8:31-32).

“And that from a child thou hast known the holy scriptures, which are able to make thee wise unto salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus” (2 Tim. 3:15).

  1. (18:25): The strong disciple was fervent in spirit. The word “fervent” means to be boiling, glowing, burning, passionate. His spirit was set aflame, filled with all fervency and zeal for God.

He was burning with a holy fire to proclaim the glorious promise that Jesus is the promised Messiah, the Lamb of God.

The strong disciple is fervent in Spirit. It is the command of the Lord.

 “Jesus saith unto them, My meat is to do the will of him that sent me, and to finish his work” (John 4:34).

“I must work the works of him that sent me, while it is day: the night cometh, when no man can work” (John 9:4).

 

“Not slothful in business; fervent in spirit; serving the Lord” (Romans 12:11).

 

“Wherefore I put thee in remembrance that thou stir up the gift of God, which is in thee by the putting on of my hands” (2 Tim. 1:6).

  1. (18:25): The strong disciple taught accurately, taught what he knew. As pointed out, Apollos knew only the baptism of repentance declared by John the Baptist. The stress of this point is that he taught diligently, that is, carefully and accurately.

⇒  He was true to the Scriptures, weighing carefully what they said.

 “And my speech and my preaching was not with enticing words of man’s wisdom, but in demonstration of the Spirit and of power: that your faith should not stand in the wisdom of men, but in the power of God” (1 Cor. 2:4-5).

 ⇒  He proclaimed what the Scriptures taught and all that they taught, not neglecting subjects his listeners might not like to hear.

 “For I give you good doctrine, forsake ye not my law” (Proverbs 4:2).

 ⇒  He did not twist the Scriptures, adding to or taking away from them.

 “Holding fast the faithful word as he hath been taught, that he may be able by sound doctrine both to exhort and to convince the gainsayers” (Titus 1:9).

  1. (18:26) The strong disciple spoke boldly. Apollos followed a long train of faithful witnesses who proclaimed the truth boldly. Boldness is an absolute essential for effective witnessing, both boldness in seeking the presence of the Lord and in facing the men of the world.

 “Now when they saw the boldness of Peter and John, and perceived that they were unlearned and ignorant men, they marvelled; and they took knowledge of them, that they had been with Jesus” (Acts 4:13).

“In whom we have boldness and access with confidence by the faith of him” (Ephes. 3:12).

 

“For which I am an ambassador in bonds: that therein I may speak boldly, as I ought to speak” (Ephes. 6:20).

  1. (18:26) The strong disciple was teachable, willing to be taught even by those of less learning. Apparently, Priscilla and Aquila heard Apollos preach in the synagogue service.

They could tell he had not heard the full story of the gospel, so they took him aside to share the full message of the gospel with him. Note how humble and receptive Apollos was.

There was no air of haughtiness, of being above others. The young servant of God—so well educated, so well versed in the Scriptures, so capable as a preacher, so highly esteemed—was willing to learn from any who would teach him, even from two lowly tentmakers.

A strong disciple, one who is truly strong, is ever looking to be strengthened by all of God’s people, no matter their position.

 “And whosoever shall exalt himself shall be abased; and he that shall humble himself shall be exalted” (Matthew 23:12).

“For I say, through the grace given unto me, to every man that is among you, not to think of himself more highly than he ought to think; but to think soberly, according as God hath dealt to every man the measure of faith” (Romans 12:3).

  1. (18:27-28) The strong disciple is faithful to his call. Apollos was called to preach and evangelize; therefore, as soon as he had the full gospel he was set afire and wanted to go to Corinth (Achaia) and share the gospel there.

Apparently he felt the Ephesian church was in excellent hands under the leadership of Priscilla and Aquila and he could be more useful elsewhere. The Ephesian church encouraged him, even writing a letter of recommendation for him to the church at Corinth (cp. 2 Cor. 3:1).

A letter from Priscilla and Aquila would open the door to Corinth for him and assure his being received (Acts 18:1f).

The point to note is the fire to reach the world for Christ that burned in Apollos. And just think, prior to this he did not even have the full message of Christ. (What a dynamic example for us all!)

  1. He burned to help and serve other believers. He helped them much, edifying, exhorting, watering what Paul had planted (1 Cor. 3:6).

               “Let us therefore follow after the things which make for peace, and things wherewith one may edify another” (Romans 14:19).

  1. He burned to reach out to the lost. The words used in this verse show how deeply he burned with the message of the Lord.
  2. The word “mightily” means that he used the Scriptures with power, straining earnestly to prove that Jesus is the Christ, the true Messiah.

  1. The word “convinced” means confronted, argued down, refuted to the very last point, defeated in argument. And he did it publicly.

But note: he was not using human reason to argue; he was using the Scripture. And his purpose was to prove that Jesus is the Messiah.

 “Say not ye, There are yet four months, and then cometh harvest? behold, I say unto you, Lift up your eyes, and look on the fields; for they are white already to harvest” (John 4:35).

“For I determined not to know any thing among you, save Jesus Christ, and him crucified” (1 Cor. 2:2).

 

THE ACTS OF THE APOSTLES

 (Bible Study)

THE SECOND GREAT MISSION OF PAUL TO THE GENTILES: TO EUROPE

Acts 15:36-18:22

 Rev. Louis M. Murphy, Sr.

August 31, 2022

Corinth, the Bridge of Greece: An Indisputable Christian

Acts 18:1-17

Introduction: Paul’s ministry in Corinth holds many lessons for the Christian believer. Paul demonstrated forcibly what it takes to be an indisputable disciple of the Lord.

Outline:

  1. Paul left Athens and travelled to Corinth (v.1).
  2. He found and grew people (v.2).
  3. He worked when required (v.3).
  4. He worshipped and taught every Sabbath (v.4).
  5. He experienced terrible strain and rejection—but he marched on (v.5-6).
  6. He identified with people to whom he ministered (v.7).
  7. He witnessed to high and low (v.8).
  8. He faced terrible discouragement (v.9-11).
  9. He saw God’s hand at work (v.12-17).

Background on Corinth: the city was a major city of Greece, a peninsula at the southern tip of Greece with land stretching only about five miles across. It was bordered by two harbors, one lying on the west coast and the other on the east coast. All traffic north and south passed right through the city. It was known as the lookout, the guard, the eye of Greece; and as such it naturally became a city of vast wealth. It was cosmopolitan, made up of Greeks, Romans, Jews, and adventurers who plied and transacted their business by day and frequented the night clubs by night. It was a pleasure-mad city, wallowing in sensuality, drunkenness, and extortion. Its temples were consecrated to the goddess of fertility, Aphrodite. It was a sports-minded city, the home of the Isthmian Games, second only to the Olympic Games. It was just the kind of metropolitan city Paul looked for to spread the gospel world-wide. The church at Corinth furnishes us with the longest writings of Paul’s epistles, 1 and 2 Corinthians. When Paul entered Corinth, he entered “in weakness, and in fear, and in much trembling” (1 Cor. 2:3)—apparently discouraged. He had faced severe opposition in his three ministries immediately prior to Corinth. The Judaizers had run him out of Philippi, Thessalonica, and Berea. Even in Athens he had experienced little success. Now, facing Corinth, he was confronting a hodge-podge of every sort, a city of diverse population and culture, a population that was proud, intellectual, busy, and immoral. He was apparently alone, with Silas and Timothy having remained in Macedonia to minister. He was, so to speak, at the mercy of God alone.

  1. (18:1): Paul left Athens and travelled to Corinth. The decision was by choice. There had been some results in Athens, but the philosophical and intellectual pride made most people close-minded and self-sufficient when considering God and eternity. Apparently, Paul felt his time could be spent more profitably in Corinth. No doubt he stayed in Athens long enough to ground the Athenian believers in the faith, then he struck out for Corinth.

Note three lessons.

1)  Intellectual pride closes a person’s mind to the truth of God and eternity.

2)  A person’s time needs to be spent where the most fruit can be borne unless specifically shown otherwise by God.

3)  The servant of God must root the young believer in the faith, even if it is under difficult circumstances.

  1. (18:2): the Christian disciple finds and develops people. Note the word found. Wherever Paul went he looked for people who either needed Christ or needed to grow in Christ. Whether Aquila and Priscilla were believers or not at this time is not known. But Paul found this couple, stayed with them, and either led them to the Lord or into a deeper commitment to the Lord.

The point to see is how Paul was always reaching out to find people who needed Christ. A dynamic example for us all!

 “Go ye therefore, and teach [make disciples of] all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost: teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world” (Matthew 28:19-20).

“And the things that thou hast heard of me among many witnesses, the same commit thou to faithful men, who shall be able to teach others also” (2 Tim. 2:2).

 DEEPER STUDY of Priscilla and Aquila— Hospitality

Priscilla and Aquila were companions of Paul. They were originally residents of Rome. But the Roman emporer, Claudius, had the Jews banished from Rome in A.D. 52. Priscilla and Aquila moved to Corinth. They were the couple who opened their home to Paul the apostle when he first entered Corinth. They were also the couple who went into business with Paul as tent-makers.

They later travelled with Paul to Ephesus where they settled (Acts 18:18). The chief characteristic of this couple was an open heart and an open house. Wherever we find them, we find that their home is the center for Christian worship and fellowship.

  1. They received the young preacher, Apollos, into their home to instruct him in the faith (Acts 18:24-26).
  1. They had a church meeting in their home in Ephesus (1 Cor. 16:19).
  1. They had another church meeting in their home in Rome (Romans 16:13).
  1. Paul called them “my helpers [fellow-workers] in Christ Jesus (Romans 16:3), and he explained what he meant. They risked their lives in order to save him. This probably refers to the attacks made upon Paul and the church in Corinth (Acts 18:6, 12-17), or to some other severe persecution that took place in Ephesus (1 Cor. 15:32; cp. 2 Cor. 1:8). In either case, this godly couple, Priscilla and Aquila, risked their lives in order to save the life of one of God’s dear servants, Paul himself.
  2. (18:3): the Christian disciple worked at secular employment when required. Paul was usually supported in his ministry and did not have to work at secular work. In fact, he was soon to receive financial support from the Philippian church when Silas and Timothy arrived, and the support would free him to preach the gospel and minister full time (Acts 18:5; cp. 1 Thes. 3:6; 2 Cor. 11:9; Phil. 4:15).

But note this verse. Paul did not hesitate to work with his hands in order to get the gospel out to people. He would do whatever was necessary to reach people and meet their desperate need for Christ and the glorious life of joy and eternity that Christ gives. (Acts 20:34)

 “For though I preach the gospel, I have nothing to glory of: for necessity is laid upon me; yea, woe is unto me, if I preach not the gospel!” (1 Cor. 9:16).

  1. (18:4): the Christian disciple worshipped and taught every Sabbath. Note where Paul was on the day of worship. He was where he should be—worshipping the Lord and serving Him by preaching and teaching others just as the Lord had gifted him to do.
  2. Paul “reasoned”: presented sound, thoughtful, logical points; answered and settled questions in a reasonable way. The tense is continuous action. Paul reasoned and reasoned doing all he could to convince the listeners that Jesus Christ was the Son of God. Note there was no sense of bombarding a person in a demanding, forceful, fiery, argumentative spirit.

 “But sanctify the Lord God in your hearts: and be ready always to give an answer to every man that asketh you a reason of the hope that is in you with meekness and fear” (1 Peter 3:15).

  1. Paul “persuaded”: prevailed, urged, induced, pleaded, begged, sought to move and bring about a change of heart and mind. Paul reasoned and reasoned, doing all he could to reach and help people to trust Christ Jesus the Lord. Again, the tense is continuous action. Paul continued to persuade.

 “For Zion’s sake will I not hold my peace, and for Jerusalem’s sake I will not rest, until the righteousness thereof go forth as brightness, and the salvation thereof as a lamp that burneth” (Isaiah 62:1).

  1. (18:5-6): the Christian disciple experienced terrible strain and rejection, but he marched on. Silas and Timothy arrived from Macedonia, Silas coming from Philippi and Berea and Timothy from Thessalonica.

⇒  They brought financial support which freed Paul to preach Christ full time.

⇒  They brought wonderful news about the churches of Macedonia growing in the Lord.

Such blessings stirred Paul to minister and proclaim Christ with new vigor. Note three points.

  1. Paul was pressed in the spirit, constrained by the Word to give himself completely to preaching and teaching the Word. Note what he was proclaiming: that Jesus is the Messiah.
  1. Paul was rejected. The Jews opposed and blasphemed the name of Jesus. The idea is that they organized and opposed the preaching and teaching of Jesus as the Messiah, and they reviled and spoke reproachfully of Christ.
  1. Paul turned from the Jews to the Gentiles. This was a turning point in the ministry at Corinth. Some Jews were saved, but the vast majority of those reached would be Gentiles. The scene was dramatic and forceful. Paul was not pronouncing a curse upon the Jews, but declaring he had fulfilled his responsibility to them. He was free of their blood, of the responsibility for their salvation. Their blood, the responsibility for their salvation, was now upon their own heads.

The Christian disciple is to turn from those who continue to reject the gospel; but when rejected, he is to continue on, not quitting or slacking up. Note: Paul did exactly what Christ said for us to do. He shook off the dust of those who had rejected him.

 “And when ye come into an house, salute it. And if the house be worthy, let your peace come upon it: but it if be not worthy, let your peace return to you. And whosoever shall not receive you, nor hear your words, when ye depart out of that house or city, shake off the dust of your feet” (Matthew 10:12-14).

  1. (18:7): the Christian disciple identified with those to whom he ministered. Rejected by the Jews, Paul could no longer preach in the synagogue. Note what he did: he began to preach in the home of a convert named Justus. This says two significant things.
  2. Paul strategically planned and located his ministry. He had been preaching to the people attending the synagogue, so he wanted to be located nearby in order to continue reaching those already familiar with the message. Under the leadership of the Lord, he was able to secure quarters in the most favorable location, right next door to the synagogue itself.
  1. Paul identified with those to whom he ministered. He was not removed from his congregation, not high-minded or above others in any sense of the word. He was one with the flock of God.

 “For I say, through the grace given unto me, to every man that is among you, not to think of himself more highly than he ought to think; but to think soberly, according as God hath dealt to every man the measure of faith” (Romans 12:3).

  1. (18:8): the Christian disciple witnessed to high and low. This is clearly seen in that the chief ruler of the synagogue and his family were reached for Christ, but so were many of the other citizens of Corinth. And remember, many of these would be coming from the most sinful backgrounds imaginable, for Corinth was one of the cesspools of immorality and night club life in the ancient world.

 “And he said unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature” (Mark 16:15).

  1. (18:9-11): the Christian disciple faced terrible discouragement. This is a striking picture of just how human Paul was and how dependent he was upon the Lord’s presence and encouragement. What happened to this Christian servant is a glorious lesson for every Christian servant when facing terrible discouragement.
  2. Paul sensed fear, terrible fear. Apparently when Crispus, the chief synagogue leader, and so many others were saved, the Jews began to be stirred; and the potential storm of persecution once again lay on the horizon for Paul. Keep in mind how severely he had been persecuted, suffering so much for his precious Lord…
  • his life had been threatened in Damascus (Acts 9:23).
  • his life had been threatened again in Jerusalem (Acts 9:29).
  • he had been persecuted and run out of Antioch of Pisidia (Acts 13:50).
  • he had faced possible stoning in Iconium (Acts 14:5).
  • he had been stoned and left for dead in Lystra (Acts 14:19).
  • he had been opposed and made the center of controversy by the church itself (Acts 15:1f).
  • he had experienced the loss of his closest friend and companion Barnabas (Acts 15:39).
  • he had been beaten with rods and imprisoned in Philippi (Acts 16:23f).
  • he had been cast out of Philippi (Acts 16:39).
  • his life had been threatened in Thessalonica (Acts 17:5-7, 10).
  • he had been forced out of Berea (Acts 17:13-14).
  • he had been mocked in Athens (Acts 17:18).

The dear servant of God was shrinking from having to face the uproar of persecution again. He was apparently thinking about moving on or else keeping silent for awhile, hoping the storm would pass. This is seen in the very first words which the Lord spoke to Paul…

  • Be not afraid
  • Speak
  • Hold not thy peace
  1. God met the need of His dear servant with a vision of the Lord Jesus Himself. Note: it was the presence of the Lord that encouraged Paul. The Lord gave Paul a most glorious promise, “I am with thee.” It is the very same promise He gives to us (Matthew 28:20). Paul needed nothing else, just the perfect assurance and sense of the Lord’s presence, the presence of the One who had done so much for him and whom he loved so much.
  1. The Lord assured Paul that he would be kept safe and bear much fruit while in Corinth.

 “Fear thou not; for I am with thee: be not dismayed; for I am thy God: I will strengthen thee; yea, I will help thee; yea, I will uphold thee with the right hand of my righteousness” (Isaiah 41:10).

“For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind. Be not thou therefore ashamed of the testimony of our Lord, nor of me his prisoner: but be thou partaker of the afflictions of the gospel according to the power of God” (2 Tim. 1:7-8).

  1. Paul was faithful to the Lord’s call, remaining in Corinth for eighteen months teaching the Word of God. Paul continued on by faith, enduring in the ministry. He did not live on spiritual highs but by faith. God gave him spiritual highs, deep experiences with Himself when Paul needed such encouragement and guidance. But the deep spiritual experiences were not common occurrences. Paul had to walk by faith and not feeling. What a lesson for us!

 “And I thank Christ Jesus our Lord, who hath enabled me, for that he counted me faithful, putting me into the ministry” (1 Tim. 1:12).

  1. (18:12-17): the Christian disciple saw God’s hand at work. God fulfilled His promise. This is clearly seen in these verses. Some months later a new deputy, Gallio, began his rule in the district of Achaia of which Corinth was a part. The Jews, thinking they might be able to manipulate this new ruler, rose up against Paul and dragged him before Gallio. But note what happened.

⇒  Gallio would have nothing to do with these religious hair-splitters. He had them removed from the court.

⇒  The Jews, embarrassed and shamed, turned against the leader Sosthenes, who had aroused them against Paul; they beat him right there in the judgment hall before Gallio.

Note: Sosthenes later became a convert to Christ. He also became a minister of the gospel with Paul (1 Cor. 1:1). How marvelously the Lord fulfilled His promise to Paul, not only in protecting him from harm, but the Lord converted the very leader of those who would harm His dear servant.

 “And the Lord shall deliver me from every evil work, and will preserve me unto his heavenly kingdom: to whom be glory for ever and ever” (2 Tim. 4:18).

“So that we may boldly say, The Lord is my helper, and I will not fear what man shall do unto me” (Hebrews 13:6).