The Romans, like late-twentieth-century Americans or Koreans or Germans, were a "can-do" people. They would expect any gospel that promised its spread to all nations to show results (Lk 24:47; Acts 1:8). But in this episode Luke seems to paint himself into a corner. On the heels of a divine vision assuring Paul that he will witness in Rome comes a report of plotters determined to take the apostle's life. Is God able to fulfill his purposes to bring the gospel to all nations, especially to Romans? Like the book of Esther, without ever mentioning God, Luke reveals the divine hand, frustrating the schemes of human beings and ordering all things so that his purposes for the gospel's advance will come a step closer to fulfillment.
IVP New Testament Commentaries are made available by the generosity of InterVarsity Press.
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