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Friday, November 18 2011

Paul's Bay

Upon his return to Jerusalem after his third missionary journey (see Paul's First Missionary Journey, Paul's Second Missionary Journey and Paul's Third Missionary Journey), the apostle Paul was arrested at the behest of the very same "religious authorities" (of whom, ironically, Paul himself was a member, prior to his conversion - see Annas And Caiaphas and Was Paul Among Them?) who had brought about the arrest of the Messiah. Like Jesus Christ, Paul was also brought before the Roman occupation forces (see Pax Romana: The Birth Of The Roman Empire; the Romans called their anti-freedom empire "freedom" i.e. "the chief captain answered, With a great sum obtained I this freedom. And Paul said, But I was free born"), but unlike Christ, Paul claimed his "rights" as a Roman citizen (people in the conquered nations were declared as Roman citizens because the Romans regarded their nations to no longer exist). Paul's "I appeal to Caesar" (see The Politics Of Rome) would however be the means by which the LORD (see also The First Christian Church) would use Paul to bring true freedom, the Truth of the Gospel, to Rome itself.

Paul's Journey To Rome

"22:28 And the chief captain answered, With a great sum obtained I this freedom. And Paul said, But I was free born. 22:29 Then straightway they departed from him which should have examined him: and the chief captain also was afraid, after he knew that he was a Roman, and because he had bound him. 22:30 On the morrow, because he would have known the certainty wherefore he was accused of the Jews, he loosed him from his bands, and commanded the chief priests and all their council to appear, and brought Paul down, and set him before them.

23:1 And Paul, earnestly beholding the council, said, Men and brethren, I have lived in all good conscience before God until this day. 23:2 And the high priest Ananias commanded them that stood by him to smite him on the mouth. 23:3 Then said Paul unto him, God shall smite thee, thou whited wall: for sittest thou to judge me after the law, and commandest me to be smitten contrary to the law?

23:4 And they that stood by said, Revilest thou God's high priest?

23:5 Then said Paul, I wist not, brethren, that he was the high priest: for it is written, Thou shalt not speak evil of the ruler of thy people.

23:6 But when Paul perceived that the one part were Sadducees, and the other Pharisees [see The Origin Of The Essenes, Sadducees And Pharisees], he cried out in the council, Men and brethren, I am a Pharisee, the son of a Pharisee: of the hope and resurrection of the dead I am called in question. 23:7 And when he had so said, there arose a dissension between the Pharisees and the Sadducees: and the multitude was divided. 23:8 For the Sadducees say that there is no resurrection, neither angel, nor spirit: but the Pharisees confess both.

23:9 And there arose a great cry: and the scribes that were of the Pharisees' part arose, and strove, saying, We find no evil in this man: but if a spirit or an angel hath spoken to him, let us not fight against God. 23:10 And when there arose a great dissension, the chief captain, fearing lest Paul should have been pulled in pieces of them, commanded the soldiers to go down, and to take him by force from among them, and to bring him into the castle.

23:11 And the night following the Lord stood by him, and said, Be of good cheer, Paul: for as thou hast testified of me in Jerusalem, so must thou bear witness also at Rome." (Acts 23:1-11 KJV)

"25:12 Then Festus, when he had conferred with the council, answered, Hast thou appealed unto Caesar? unto Caesar shalt thou go." (Acts 25:12 KJV)

"The Lord stood by him, and said, Be of good cheer, Paul: for as thou hast testified of Me in Jerusalem, so must thou bear witness also at Rome"

The voyage began without incident, although the storm clouds of autumn were becoming noticeable.

Paul's Shipwreck

"27:1 And when it was determined that we should sail into Italy, they delivered Paul and certain other prisoners unto one named Julius, a centurion of Augustus' band. 27:2 And entering into a ship of Adramyttium, we launched, meaning to sail by the coasts of Asia; one Aristarchus, a Macedonian of Thessalonica, being with us.

27:3 And the next day we touched at Sidon. And Julius courteously entreated Paul, and gave him liberty to go unto his friends to refresh himself. 27:4 And when we had launched from thence, we sailed under Cyprus, because the winds were contrary. 27:5 And when we had sailed over the sea of Cilicia and Pamphylia, we came to Myra, a city of Lycia. 27:6 And there the centurion found a ship of Alexandria sailing into Italy; and he put us therein. 27:7 And when we had sailed slowly many days, and scarce were come over against Cnidus, the wind not suffering us, we sailed under Crete, over against Salmone; 27:8 And, hardly passing it, came unto a place which is called The fair havens; nigh whereunto was the city of Lasea." (Acts 27:1-8 KJV)

With the delay, "sailing was now dangerous." It was the season for the Euroclydon, also known as a gregale (i.e. a "Greece gale") - a strong wind system that blows down from Europe into the Mediterranean Sea, mostly in autumn and winter.

"27:9 Now when much time was spent, and when sailing was now dangerous, because the fast was now already past [i.e. the Day of Atonement; see The Day Of Atonement: It's All About Christianity and The Biblical History Of Christian Fasting], Paul admonished them, 27:10 And said unto them, Sirs, I perceive that this voyage will be with hurt and much damage, not only of the lading and ship, but also of our lives. 27:11 Nevertheless the centurion believed the master and the owner of the ship, more than those things which were spoken by Paul. 27:12 And because the haven was not commodious to winter in, the more part advised to depart thence also, if by any means they might attain to Phenice, and there to winter; which is an haven of Crete, and lieth toward the south west and north west.

27:13 And when the south wind blew softly, supposing that they had obtained their purpose, loosing thence, they sailed close by Crete. 27:14 But not long after there arose against it a tempestuous wind, called Euroclydon. 27:15 And when the ship was caught, and could not bear up into the wind, we let her drive. 27:16 And running under a certain island which is called Clauda, we had much work to come by the boat: 27:17 Which when they had taken up, they used helps, undergirding the ship; and, fearing lest they should fall into the quicksands, struck sail, and so were driven. 27:18 And we being exceedingly tossed with a tempest, the next day they lightened the ship; 27:19 And the third day we cast out with our own hands the tackling of the ship. 27:20 And when neither sun nor stars in many days appeared, and no small tempest lay on us, all hope that we should be saved was then taken away." (Acts 27:9-20 KJV)

The voyage to Rome became a storm-driven crossing of the Mediterranean, from east to west. At last, land was sighted - so they made for a crash landing on the shore.

Malta Map

"27:27 But when the fourteenth night was come, as we were driven up and down in Adria, about midnight the shipmen deemed that they drew near to some country; 27:28 And sounded, and found it twenty fathoms: and when they had gone a little further, they sounded again, and found it fifteen fathoms. 27:29 Then fearing lest we should have fallen upon rocks, they cast four anchors out of the stern, and wished for the day. 27:30 And as the shipmen were about to flee out of the ship, when they had let down the boat into the sea, under colour as though they would have cast anchors out of the foreship, 27:31 Paul said to the centurion and to the soldiers, Except these abide in the ship, ye cannot be saved. 27:32 Then the soldiers cut off the ropes of the boat, and let her fall off.

27:33 And while the day was coming on, Paul besought them all to take meat, saying, This day is the fourteenth day that ye have tarried and continued fasting, having taken nothing. 27:34 Wherefore I pray you to take some meat: for this is for your health: for there shall not an hair fall from the head of any of you. 27:35 And when he had thus spoken, he took bread, and gave thanks to God in presence of them all: and when he had broken it, he began to eat. 27:36 Then were they all of good cheer, and they also took some meat. 27:37 And we were in all in the ship two hundred threescore and sixteen souls. 27:38 And when they had eaten enough, they lightened the ship, and cast out the wheat into the sea.

27:39 And when it was day, they knew not the land: but they discovered a certain creek with a shore, into the which they were minded, if it were possible, to thrust in the ship. 27:40 And when they had taken up the anchors, they committed themselves unto the sea, and loosed the rudder bands, and hoisted up the mainsail to the wind, and made toward shore. 27:41 And falling into a place where two seas met, they ran the ship aground; and the forepart stuck fast, and remained unmoveable, but the hinder part was broken with the violence of the waves." (Acts 27:27-41 KJV)

The island was Melita, or Malta. The bay in which the shipwreck took place is today called St. Paul's Bay.

"27:42 And the soldiers' counsel was to kill the prisoners, lest any of them should swim out, and escape. 27:43 But the centurion, willing to save Paul, kept them from their purpose; and commanded that they which could swim should cast themselves first into the sea, and get to land: 27:44 And the rest, some on boards, and some on broken pieces of the ship. And so it came to pass, that they escaped all safe to land." (Acts 27:42-44 KJV)

Fact Finder: Paul eventually resumed his voyage and arrived at Rome (Acts 28:11-31). Along with all of the corrupt "Christians" in Rome (see Constantine's Crusades In History And Prophecy), were there, and are there, also some true Christians in Rome?
See The Church Of God At Rome


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This Day In History, November 18

1095: Pope Urban II opened the Council of Clermont. Summoned to plan the First Crusade (see Constantine's Crusades In History And Prophecy), it was attended by over 200 bishops of the Church of Rome (all of whom had earlier been equal in rank to the bishop of Rome; see The Struggle For The Papacy).

1302: Pope Boniface VIII proclaimed his "Unam Sanctam." It decreed that the Church of Rome was superior in authority to all national governments and that obedience to the pope was necessary for salvation.

1307: The famous (and extremely dangerous) incident in Switzerland when William Tell shot an apple off his son's head.

1421: The Zuider Zee flooded 72 villages in the Netherlands, killing an estimated 10,000 people.

1477: William Caxton produced the first printed book in the English language, "The Dictes and Sayengis of the Phylosophers."

1497: Portuguese explorer Bartolomeu Dias became the first to round the Cape of Good Hope, thereby opening a sea route to India from Europe.

1755: The worst recorded earthquake on the Massachusetts Bay area struck Boston.

1883: Canada and U.S. adopted standard time. Standard Time was the invention of Sir Sanford Fleming, who came to Canada from Scotland and was Canada's foremost railway surveyor and construction engineer in the 19th century. The standard time system was adopted by the rest of the world in 1884 at an international conference in Washington.

1916: During the First World War (listen to our Sermon The European World Wars), General Douglas Haig of Britain called off the First Battle of The Somme after 5 months of futile battle, which included the first use of tanks in actual conflict. The allied advance of just 125 square miles cost 420,000 British, 195,000 French and 650,000 German casualties.

1936: Germany under Adolf Hitler (see Presidential Quotes On War, Terrorism, Religion) and Italy under Mussolini recognized General Francisco Franco's provisional government in Spain.

1941: Britain opened its second Western Desert offensive in Libya when the 8th Army advanced into Cyrenaica.

1966: The Roman Catholic Church ended its "meatless Friday" requirement.

1970: West Germany and Poland initialed a treaty recognizing the Oder-Neisse line as a common border and pledging each other to territorial integrity.

1978: U.S. Congressman Leo Ryan was shot and killed in Jonestown, Guyana by members of Jim Jones' "People's Temple." Ryan's murder was followed by the mass suicide of 912 member of the cult (see also Is Your Church A Cult?).

1991: British peace envoy Terry Waite and U.S. academic Thomas Sutherland were released after 5 years of captivity in Lebanon by the Islamic Jihad terrorist group.

1993: White and black leaders in South Africa approved the new constitution which gave blacks the right to vote and ended white minority rule.





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Copyright © Wayne Blank