- Acts 28:11-15
- Acts 28:11 (KJB)
- And after three months we departed in a ship of Alexandria, which had
wintered in the isle, whose sign was Castor and Pollux.
- Their time on the island had finally come to an end and another ship
from Alexandria, Egypt was in port which had wintered there also. Its
figurehead was the Dioscuri. The sign of the ship was Castor and Pollux,
which were the twin sons of the mythical god Zeus and Leda, and also the
patron saints of the sailors and their protectors when in distress. The
constellation Gemini is named after them and the two brightest stars are
named Castor and Pollux.
- Acts 28:12 (KJB)
- And landing at Syracuse, we tarried there three days.
- The ship then took a course north by northeast till they came to the
port of Syracuse on the island of Sicily. It would have been about a 100
mile (161 km) trip. Syracuse was founded and colonized by the Greeks and the
Romans made it the capital of the province.
- Acts 28:13 (KJB)
- And from thence we fetched a compass, and came to Rhegium: and after one
day the south wind blew, and we came the next day to Puteoli:
- The ship had left Syracuse but the winds were not favorable. So what
they did was they “tacked” against the contrary winds all the way to Rhegium,
which is the modern Reggio which is on the toe of the boot of Italy.
Basically to tack was to follow a zigzag course so you can progress against
the contrary wind. Then the next day, the winds changed and it was favorable
to them. They only needed one day to sail the 180 miles (290 km) to the port
of Puteoli. Puteoli was on the west coast of Italy, about 10 miles (16 km)
north of Pompeii and about 100 miles (160 km) south of Rome.
- Acts 28:14 (KJB)
- Where we found brethren, and were desired to tarry with them seven days:
and so we went toward Rome.
- As they disembarked in Puteoli, they had found Christians who wanted
Paul to stay with them for at least seven days. They probably wanted Paul to
stay to not only refresh him after that ordeal but they probably wanted to
hear some teaching and fellowship from the Apostle. Julius probably granted
Paul the permission to visit with the brethren for those seven days. Then
after the seven days of fellowship were over, Paul then continued his
journey toward Rome.
- Acts 28:15 (KJB)
- And from thence, when the brethren heard of us, they came to meet us as
far as Appii forum, and The three taverns: whom when Paul saw, he thanked
God, and took courage.
- The next part of the journey would be traveling by foot. They would have
taken the Appian way, the famous Roman Road. Paul knew the Lord wanted him
in Rome but he had no idea what awaited him. Was his trial before Nero going
to be an acquittal or will it cost him his life. I am sure that while he was
walking, he thought on the events of the last three years and how weary they
made him. Then God had a surprise for Paul, when he was about 40 miles south
of Rome, at the Appii forum, a group of Christians had come out to give him
a big welcome. They would have been able to talk with him on his journey and
help refresh him. Even those who are mature in the faith can always use the
company of Christians. Then when he went another ten miles, 30 miles south
of Rome, another delegation of Christians met him at the Three Taverns. This
was also the regular expression of welcome for a visiting dignitary.