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Category Archives: Chronology

The Beginning of Messianic Persecution

The persecution of the Jesus Movement began only months after that first Pentecost when Peter preached his sermon accusing the people and their leaders of killing the Elect One—Jesus. Some accuse Luke of great exaggeration in his claims of the thousands of new believers repenting and coming to Jesus after each of Peter’s sermons. In a matter of days the only unbelievers in Jerusalem would have been the ruling class. But, this is a gross misunderstanding of the text. Luke highlights the history of the growth of the body following the Way. Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on March 14, 2011 in Acts of the Apostles, Chronology

 

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The End of Apostolic Authority in Jerusalem

Most folks think of the Apostolic Age as a period between Pentecost, cir. 31 CE, and the death of the last of the original twelve Apostles. To some degree this is true, but as far as the New Testament is concerned, the centrality of apostolic authority is a dwindling one and ended much earlier—at least as far as the Jerusalem church was concerned. Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on March 13, 2011 in Acts of the Apostles, Chronology

 

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Who Were the Men From James?

At first when Paul tells us that men from James arrived in Antioch and drew Peter and Barnabas away from the table fellowship of Jewish and Gentile believers (Galatians 2:11-13), one thinks that James actually sent these men, but it is something he specifically denied in Acts 15. I think we should probably understand the phrase as being equal to “…men from the Jerusalem church.” James seems to have been the acknowledged leader of the Jerusalem community of believers by this time, which was after the expulsion of the Apostles under the Agrippa persecution of the early 40s CE (Acts 12). Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on March 13, 2011 in Acts of the Apostles, Chronology

 

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The Persecution Under Agrippa I

Luke tells us in Acts 12:3 that Herod (Agrippa I) executed James, the son of Zebedee, with a sword. The problem is Luke never tells us why. He simply records the event. So, what prompted Herod to lift up his hand against certain disciples? Can we know? I don’t think it is possible to know with certainty, but I do believe we can come close to the truth by interpreting wisely some of what we find in Luke’s record. Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on March 13, 2011 in Acts of the Apostles, Chronology

 

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The Apostles Were Persecuted for Treason

King Agrippa I was king over Judea for at least 3 years from January or February of 41 CE to 44 CE. It is possible that he reigned 3 ½ years, depending upon whether he died immediately after the summer games (Acts 12:19-23; see Josephus, Antiquities of the Jews: 19.8.2), or approximately 6 months later. We know he died in 44 CE, but did he die in January (approximately 6 months after the summer games of 43 CE honoring Caesar) or immediately after the summer games of 44 CE? If his death was quick, then he reigned 3 ½ years. On the other hand, if his death followed a six month illness, he reigned only three years over Judea. Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on March 11, 2011 in Acts of the Apostles, Chronology

 

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The Turbulent 30s CE

“Life is queer with its twists and turns, as everyone of us sometimes learns…” That’s a line from probably my favorite poem “Don’t Quit” written by one of my favorite authors—anonymous! It sort’a, kind’a fits Paul’s life in many ways at various times in his walk with Christ. However, through it all Paul didn’t quit, rather he committed his way to the Lord, and God made all things work together for his, that is, Paul’s own good as he, himself, testifies (Romans 8:28). Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on March 11, 2011 in Acts of the Apostles, Chronology

 

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We were Called Christians First in Antioch!

This graffiti can be found on a plaster wall in Palatine, Rome. It reads: "Alexamenos worships [his] god"

This graffiti can be found on a plaster wall near the Palatine Hill in Rome. It reads: “Alexamenos worships [his] god”

Did you ever wonder how we got our name Christian? I have several nicknames and I know how I received each one. Some of the reasons are quite funny, while others are a bit embarrassing. Some were used for a short period of time, and others I am known by to this day. Nevertheless, all of them are mine, and I know the reason why and by whom I had been called by each name that was used to identify me. So, since we had begun to be known as followers of the Way or Nazarenes, how is it we finally became known as Christian? Who gave us this name and why, and can we know? Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on March 11, 2011 in Acts of the Apostles, Chronology

 

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