18.1 After these things Paul departed from Athens, and came to Corinth; these words are the harbinger of the greatest revival in world history! The number of converts historians give varies from a low of 40,000 to a high of 80,000 in 18 months. That is 80 weeks. If these numbers can be trusted that is between 500-1000 people average each week. Not only were there great numbers but there were some very notable people. It is no coincidence the God of eternity sets these two cities side by side and show the results. Athens is humanism par excellence. Corinth is the power of God at it’s best! Somewhere on the road between Athens and Corinth the great Apostle Paul decided he would only preach Jesus Christ and him crucified. That would be his plan and only plan. Paul laid aside every human weapon of learning and wisdom. The first field of that mantra was Corinth and the results are unparalleled in human history. May we always remember revival is in the power of Jesus Christ!
The city of Corinth was the second largest city in the Roman Empire with a population of 700,000. It was a blue collar town with a working population. It had been destroyed and conquered by the Romans about 100 years before so it boasted some magnificent and new architecture. Corinth was a wide open sinful city much like Las Vegas in the United States today. There was a hodge podge of people from all over the Roman Empire. There were nobility, sailors, soldiers, and every strata of life. There was no place less likely to have a revival! The pagan temple sitting on the hill side used 1000 prostitutes to pander it’s sinful idolatry. When the Apostle arrived he was a beaten man by his own testimony. He spoke of despairing of life, 2 Cor 1.8. So you have the most least likely city to have a revival in the Empire, and the great Apostle at his weakest. This formula produced the world’s greatest revival of the New Testament era. The preaching of the cross and the wisdom of God produced thousands of transformed lives. It still does. 
18.3 Aquilla. His name means eagle. He and his wife were forced from Rome due to the edict from Emperor Claudius. (Suetonius, the Roman historian says Claudius was the fifth Emperor, and this was the 9th imperial edict. It was passed in 51ad). This man and his wife would become important parts of the Battle for Europe for Jesus Christ. They will eventually labor in various cities of New Testament note.

 

18.4 in every Great War there is always a battle that turns the tide and momentum. The war will not be over but the eventual outcome is on the horizon. This was the case with Corinth in the spiritual battle for Europe. Corinth was a turning point. It was Satan’s “Waterloo” so to speak. The march of the gospel of Jesus Christ through the Roman Empire was a foregone conclusion from this moment forward. Battles were still to be fought, but victory would never be doubted again. History now reflects that ten percent of the Roman Empire would become Christian in the next three hundred years. Corinth was the hinge that turned the triumph of the gospel into a rout for the gospel of Jesus Christ. The flame of the gospel burned across the Roman Empire like a prairie fire. The key to Satan’s soft underbelly was discovered at Corinth. The key was the preaching of the gospel of Jesus Christ in it’s most elemental form. Paul said And I, brethren, when I came to you, came not with excellency of speech or of wisdom, declaring unto you the testimony of God. For I determined not to know any thing among you, save Jesus Christ, and him crucified. And I was with you in weakness, and in fear, and in much trembling.And my speech and my preaching was not with enticing words of man’s wisdom, but in demonstration of the Spirit and of power: 
18.5-6 Paul continued to the synagogue on the Sabbath and and persuade the Jews and the Greeks. The coming of Silas and Timothy seemed to invigorate Paul and he was pressed in the spirit. Paul testified (Protest earnestly), to the Jews. They strongly opposed Paul and his message so Paul departs from them. Paul determines to go unto the Gentiles. It appears Paul changes his venue from the synagogue to the house of Justus. It would appear this is where Crispus was converted. This simple move seemed to open the door to many conversions.
18.7-11 The question remains’ did this move from the synagogue to the house of Justus preempt the conversion of many Gentiles? God seems to put the divine seal of approval upon this move for it is at this juncture God speaks to Paul in a vision about the many people God has in the city of Corinth.
18.12-17 the inclusion of the incident with Gallio is vintage Luke as the author. This attention to detail has been his signature style as the only gentile writer of the New Testament. He is the most accurate with titles of officials, dates, and names of any author in the Bible. The Jewish religion was an approved religion by the Roman government and the new sect of Christianity was considered a form of Judiasm. The Jews were attempting to strip Christianity away from the connection to their faith so they appeal to Gallio. The Roman official dismisses their appeal out of hand. The enraged Jews then beat Sosthenes the chief ruler of the synagogue as a protest. Paul grasps this opportunity to preach as well. Because this is happening at the Roman judgment seat of the the proconsul, Paul later uses this image to present the judgment seat of Christ for a world awaiting judgment.
18.18 Paul was there in Corinth for a great while longer. His inner spirit let Paul know it was time to continue the work God had sent him forth as an apostle to do. So with brevity, the Bible says he took his leave and sailed with Priscilla and Aquila for Syria. The greatest spiritual battle in the history of the world had been fought and won. Europe had been brought under the blood stained flag of Christianity! With five years behind him, and two missionary journeys, Paul was now a seasoned Apostle like the world had never before witnessed.

18.19-23 Ephesus was the famous city, capital of Ionia, and afterwards the scene of a large period of John’s labors. It stood not far from the sea on some hilly ground by a small river which flows into the sea. In Paul’s day it was by far the busiest and most populous city in Proconsular Asia. Paul leaves Aquila and Pricilla there and again enters the synagogue. Paul then travels to Caesarea, possibly to Philip the Evangelist’s house (Acts 21.8). He then visits Antioch and confirms the disciples in Galatia and Phrygia. Note: In unimportant matters Paul was still amenable to Jewish customs and rites. His desire was to conciliate his Jewish opponents so far as he could without surrendering vital principles.
18.24-28 Apollos; eloquent; The word in the original expresses not only ability as an orator, but also the possession of stores of learning. Hence the revised version gives learned. Either rendering only gives half the idea. He was learned and could use his learning with effect. Alexandria was a center of great study. The city was built under the direction of Dinocrates, the celebrated architect of the temple of Diana at Ephesus. It was there in Alexandria the Septuagint was compiled. As for Apollos, the study of the Old Testament flourished greatly in Alexandria, and Apollos had great power in the exposition and application of these Scriptures. The literary activity and philosophic pursuits of the Greek population of Alexandria were not without their effect on the more conservative Jews. We find from many sources that the Jewish writings were studied with all the literary exactness which marked the Greek scholarship of the time. The Jews, conscious of the antiquity of their own records and yet impressed with the philosophic character of their cultured fellow-citizens, gave themselves greatly to the writings and the teachings of the schools. In study like this Apollos had no doubt been fully trained.
Note: the author Luke takes this point in the narrative to document Apollos contribution to the journey. Luke has already included Jesus, Paul, Aquila, Priscilla, Claudius, Silas, Timothy, Justus, Crispus, Gallio, Sosthenes, Apollos, and John the Baptist in this chapter. It is this attention to detail that has caused the skeptics of Holy scripture to remain silent. No other New Testament writer gives this attention to names and offices. Luke could not have known the scrutiny the Bible would experience over the next two millenniums, but the Holy Ghost was well aware and prompted Luke to be exacting. 
The battle for Europe was not over but the victories were a roll call of New Testament churches. This three year period in New Testament history seems to be without parallel. From the day Paul had set foot on the continent of Europe until now there had been victories, defeats, hardships and challenges. From the first convert on the riverside at Philippi, to the journey back to Antioch, Paul had just completed the epic journey we now call his second missionary journey. Satan’s bastions had been scaled and conquered. The banner of Jesus Christ proudly flew over the continent of Europe! Paul had indeed proven to be a chosen vessel!

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