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The End Of Pauls Long Journey





The natives of the island showed us unusual kindness, for they kindled a
fire and welcomed us all, because of the pouring rain and the cold. Now
Paul had gathered a bundle of sticks and was laying it on the fire when
a poisonous snake, driven out by the heat, fastened itself on his hand.
When the natives saw the creature hanging from his hand, they said to
one another, "Surely this man is a murderer; although he has been saved
from the sea, justice will not let him live." But he shook the creature
off into the fire and was unhurt. They expected that he would at once
swell up or fall down dead; but after they had waited a long time and
saw that no harm had come to him, they changed their minds and said that
he was a god.

On the part of the island where we landed there was an estate belonging
to Publius the governor. He welcomed us and entertained us most
generously for three days. Now it happened that the father of Publius
was lying ill from fever and dysentery. So Paul went to see him and
prayed, and, laying his hands on him, cured him. After this the other
sick people in the island came and were cured. They also presented us
with many gifts, and when we sailed, they put on board everything we
needed.

After three months we set sail on a ship from Alexandria called "The
Twin Brothers," which had wintered at the island. We put in at Syracuse,
and remained there three days. Then we tacked around and came to
Rhegium. The next day a south wind sprang up, and we arrived on the
following day at Puteoli, where we found Christian brothers who asked us
to spend a week with them, and so we reached Rome.

The brothers there, when they heard about us, came as far as the Market
of Appius and the Three Taverns to meet us. When Paul saw them, he
thanked God and took courage.

When we reached Rome, Paul received permission to live by himself with
the soldier who guarded him. Three days after our arrival, Paul invited
the leading Jews to meet him and said to them, "Brothers, although I
have done nothing against the Jewish law or the customs of our fathers,
I was handed over as a prisoner from Jerusalem to the Romans, who, when
they had examined me, were willing to set me free, for I was innocent of
any crime deserving of death. But the Jews objected; so I was forced to
appeal to the Emperor--not that I had any charge to bring against my
nation. This is the reason why I have asked to see you and speak with
you, for it is on account of Israel's hope that I am bound."

They replied, "We have received no letters about you from Judea nor has
any brother come here with any bad report or statement about you; but we
wish to hear from you what you teach, for we know that the Christian
sect is everywhere attacked." So they fixed a day and many of them came
to him to the place where he was staying. Then from morning until
evening he explained his teachings and told them about the Kingdom of
God, and tried to lead them to believe in Jesus by proofs from the law
of Moses and from the prophets. Some believed what he taught and others
would not believe. When they could not agree among themselves they
departed after Paul had said to them: "Well did the Holy Spirit say to
your fathers through the prophet Isaiah:

"'Go to this people and say to them,
You will hear and hear but never understand,
You will look and look but never see;
For this people's mind is stupid,
And their ears are too dull to hear,
And they have closed their eyes,
To keep them from seeing with their eyes,
Or hearing with their ears,
Or understanding with their minds,
And turning back that I may heal them.'

"Remember, therefore, that this opportunity to be saved, that God has
given you, is given to other peoples, and they will listen to it."

For two whole years Paul lived in his own hired house. He welcomed all
who came to him, and preached the Kingdom of God, and taught about the
Lord Jesus Christ openly, no one stopping him.





Next: Pauls Last Words To His Friends

Previous: Pauls Shipwreck



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