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Spain is located on the western peninsula of Europe, bounded by the Atlantic Ocean and the Mediterranean Sea. It was variously inhabited in earlier times by Basques, Iberians, Celts, Phoenicians, Carthaginians, and Greeks (see Ancient Empires - Greece), among others. The Romans took much of it after the second Punic War (218-201 BC) and by the time of the New Testament, Spain was fully a part of the Roman Empire (see Ancient Empires - Rome).

The Roman Empire

Paul, The Apostle To The Gentiles

Spain is specifically mentioned only once in the Bible, by the apostle Paul in his epistle (see Epistles) to the gentile Romans, according to his calling. In his letter to them, he expresses his intention to carry the Gospel beyond them, to gentile Spain as well.

"I myself am satisfied about you, my brethren, that you yourselves are full of goodness, filled with all knowledge, and able to instruct one another. But on some points I have written to you very boldly by way of reminder, because of the grace given me by God to be a minister of Christ Jesus to the Gentiles in the priestly service of the Gospel of God, so that the offering of the Gentiles may be acceptable, sanctified by the Holy Spirit." (Romans 15:14-16 RSV)

"But now, since I no longer have any room for work in these regions, and since I have longed for many years to come to you, I hope to see you in passing as I go to Spain, and to be sped on my journey there by you, once I have enjoyed your company for a little. At present, however, I am going to Jerusalem with aid for the saints. For Macedonia and Achaia have been pleased to make some contribution for the poor among the Saints at Jerusalem; they were pleased to do it, and indeed they are in debt to them, for if the Gentiles have come to share in their spiritual blessings, they ought also to be of service to them in material blessings. When therefore I have completed this, and have delivered to them what has been raised, I shall go on by way of you to Spain; and I know that when I come to you I shall come in the fulness of the blessing of Christ."

"I appeal to you, brethren, by our Lord Jesus Christ and by the love of the Spirit, to strive together with me in your prayers to God on my behalf, that I may be delivered from the unbelievers in Judea, and that my service for Jerusalem may be acceptable to the saints, so that by God's will I may come to you with joy and be refreshed in your company. The God of peace be with you all. Amen." (Romans 15:23-33 RSV)

Fact Finder: Where did the apostle Paul go on each of his 3 major missionary journeys?
Paul's First Missionary Journey
Paul's Second Missionary Journey
Paul's Third Missionary Journey

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