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Paul Arrested November 11, 2016

Posted by flashbuzzer in Books, Christianity.
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Here are my thoughts on Acts 21:27-36.

Summary: In this passage, Paul went to the temple – where he was seized by several Jews from the province of Asia. They solicited the assistance of the populace in their attempt to lynch him, asserting that he was guilty of:

  • blasphemy
  • desecrating the temple.

A large crowd gathered, dragging him out of the temple and beating him. Their efforts were checked, though, by the arrival of the Roman commander and his soldiers. They bound Paul and brought him toward the barracks in order to interrogate him.

Thoughts: Here, we see that the Jews leveled serious charges against Paul. Calvin offers some thoughts on this point in his commentary on verse 30:

Here, we see how irresponsible the common people were, treating Paul like a condemned man even before they heard him. It is not surprising the city was aroused over a religious matter, but this was perverse zeal and insane rashness. In this corrupt nature people willingly defend a bad cause, when many exhortations would hardly get them to do what is right.

It is disappointing, though not surprising, that the Jews attempted to kill Paul before he had the chance to defend himself. Evidently they were resolute in viewing him as a blasphemer who had to be put to death. I wonder if they were aware of his discussion with James and the elders in the previous passage regarding purification rites; if so, did they assume that he was being disingenuous when he went to the temple? In any event, I hope that they eventually realized the error of their ways and repented of their sins.

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