Paul immediately contacts the leaders of the Jewish community to acquaint them with his situation and apparently to determine where they stand on his case (vv. 17-20). The Roman Jews know nothing about the charges against Paul, only the accusations against Christianity about which they desire to know more (vv. 21-22). It is most interesting, presuming a Christian community in Rome (Romans was written prior to Paul's arrest in Jerusalem), that the Jews of Rome seem to be ignorant of Christianity. Had the Christian community already become so distanced from Judaism? Did Christianity in Rome begin with Gentiles and not Jews, thus not causing disturbances among the Jews? We simply do not know.
The closing scene with the Jews is a reprise of Paul's ministry and Luke's account of Christian history. As throughout his ministry, Paul seeks to convince the Jews from Moses and the Prophets regarding the kingdom and the Messiah. As throughout his ministry, some believe; others reject. And, as throughout his ministry, Paul announces his outreach to the Gentiles (vv. 23-29). The success of the gentile mission is epitomized in Paul's open and unhindered preaching and teaching in Rome for two years (v. 30). Thus Luke closes his account with a vignette that summarizes the whole work, revealing how the new covenant community emerges out of Judaism to impact the gentile world of Rome.
Aune, David E. The New Testament in Its Literary Environment. Philadelphia: Westminster, 1987.
Bruce, F. F. The Acts of the Apostles. Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 1952.
Cadbury, H. J. The Style and Literary Method of Luke. Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 1920.
_______. The Book of Acts in History. New York: Harper, 1955.
Conzelmann, H. Acts of the Apostles. Philadelphia: Fortress, 1987.
Eusebius. Ecclesiastical History. Loeb Classical Library. Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 1965.
Guthrie, D. New Testament Introduction. Downers Grove: InterVarsity, 1970.
Haenchen, E. Acts of the Apostles. Philadelphia: Westminster, 1971.
Hawkins, J. C. Horae Synopticae. Reprint. Grand Rapids: Baker, 1968.
Harnack, A. The Acts of the Apostles. New York: Putnam, 1909.
_______. Luke the Physician. New York: Putnam, 1907.
Hengle, M. Acts and the History of Earliest Christianity. Philadelphia: Fortress, 1979.
Hobart, W. K. The Medical Language of St. Luke. Dublin: Hodges, Figgis, 1882.
Knox, W. K. The Acts of the Apostles. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1948.
Kümmel: Feine, Behm, Kümmel. Introduction to the New Testament. Nashville: Abingdon, 1966.
Ramsay, W. Pauline and Other Studies. London: Hodder and Stoughton, 1908.
_______. The First Christian Century. London: Hodder and Stoughton, 1911.
Sherwin-White, A. N. Roman Society and Roman Law in the New Testament. Grand Rapids: Baker, 1978.
Smith, J. The Voyage and Shipwreck of St. Paul. Baker, 1978r.
Step 1 - Create an account or log in to start your free trial.
Starting your free trial of Bible Gateway Plus is easy. You’re already logged in with your Bible Gateway account. The next step is to enter your payment information. Your credit card won’t be charged until the trial period is over. You can cancel anytime during the trial period.
Click the button below to continue.
Step 1 - Create an account or log in to start your subscription.
You’ve already claimed your free trial of Bible Gateway Plus. To subscribe at our regular subscription rate of $3.99/month, click the button below.
For the best Bible Gateway experience, upgrade to Bible Gateway Plus. For less than the cost of a latte each month, you'll gain access to a vast digital Bible study library and reduced banner ads to minimize distractions from God's Word. Try it free for 30 days!