Acts 18 Bible Commentary

The Geneva Study Bible

(Read all of Acts 18)
18:1 After 1 these things Paul departed from Athens, and came to Corinth;

(1) The true ministers are so far from seeking their own profit, that they willingly depart from what is rightfully theirs, rather than hindering the course of the Gospel in the slightest way.

18:2 And found a certain Jew named Aquila, born in Pontus, lately come from Italy, with his wife Priscilla; (because that a Claudius had commanded all Jews to depart from Rome:) and came unto them.

(a) Suetonius records that Rome banished the Jews because they were never at rest, and that because of Christ.

18:4 2 And he reasoned in the synagogue every sabbath, and b persuaded the Jews and the Greeks.

(2) The truth ought always to be freely uttered, yet nonetheless the doctrine may be moderated in accordance with the hearers, so that they are most profited.
(b) Exhorted so that he persuaded, and that is what the word signifies.

18:5 And when Silas and Timotheus were come from Macedonia, Paul c was pressed in the spirit, and testified to the Jews [that] Jesus [was] Christ.

(c) Was very much grieved in mind: by which is signified the great earnestness of his mind, which was greatly moved: for Paul was so zealous that he completely forgot himself, and with a wonderful courage gave himself to preach Christ.

18:6 3 And when they opposed themselves, and blasphemed, he shook [his] raiment, and said unto them, Your d blood [be] upon your own heads; I [am] clean: from henceforth I will go unto the Gentiles.

(3) Although we have tried all possible means, and yet in vain, we must not stop our work, but forsake the rebellious, and go to those that are more obedient.
(d) This is a type of speech taken from the Hebrews, by which he means that the Jews are the cause of their own destruction, and as for him, that he is without fault in forsaking them and going to other nations.

18:9 4 Then spake the Lord to Paul in the night by a vision, Be not afraid, but speak, and hold not thy peace:

(4) God does confirm and maintain the steadfastness of his servants.

18:11 And he e continued [there] a year and six months, teaching the word of God among them.

(e) Literally, "sat", whereupon they in former time took the name of their bishop's seat: but Paul sat, that is, continued teaching the word of God: and this type of seat does not belong to those who never took their seats with a mind to teach in them.

18:12 5 And when Gallio was the deputy of f Achaia, the Jews made insurrection with one accord against Paul, and brought him to the judgment seat,

(5) The wicked are never weary of doing evil, but the Lord wonderfully mocks their endeavours.
(f) That is, of Greece, yet the Romans did not call him deputy of Greece, but of Achaia, because the Romans brought the Greeks into subjection by the Achaians, who in those days were Princes of Greece, as Pausanias records.

18:14 And when Paul was now about to open [his] mouth, Gallio said unto the Jews, If it were a matter of wrong or wicked lewdness, O [ye] Jews, g reason would that I should bear with you:

(g) As much as I rightly could.

18:15 But if it be a question of h words and i names, and [of] your law, look ye [to it]; for I will be no judge of such [matters].

(h) As if a man has not spoken well, as judged by your religion.
(i) For this profane man thinks that the controversy of religion is merely a fight about words, and over nothing important.

18:18 6 And Paul [after this] tarried [there] yet a good while, and then took his leave of the brethren, and sailed thence into Syria, and with him Priscilla and Aquila; k having shorn [his] head in l Cenchrea: for he had a vow.

(6) Paul is made all to all, to win all to Christ.
(k) That is, Paul.
(l) Cenchrea was a haven of the Corinthians.

18:20 7 When they desired [him] to tarry longer time with them, he consented not;

(7) The apostles were carried about not by the will of man, but by the leading of the Holy Spirit.

18:21 But bade them farewell, saying, I must by all means keep this feast that cometh in Jerusalem: but I will return again unto you, m if God will. And he sailed from Ephesus.

(m) So we should promise nothing without this clause, for we do not know what the following day will bring forth.

18:24 8 And a certain Jew named Apollos, born at Alexandria, an eloquent man, [and] n mighty in the scriptures, came to Ephesus.

(8) Apollos, a godly and learned man, does not refuse to profit in the school of a base and abject handicraftsman, and also of a woman: and so becomes and excellent minister of the Church.
(n) Very well instructed in the knowledge of the scriptures.

18:26 And he began to speak boldly in the synagogue: whom when Aquila and Priscilla had heard, they took him unto [them], and expounded unto him the o way of God more perfectly.

(o) The way that leads to God.

18:27 And when he was disposed to pass into Achaia, the brethren wrote, exhorting the disciples to receive him: who, when he was come, helped them much which had believed through p grace:

(p) Through God's gracious favour, or by those excellent gifts which God had bestowed upon him.