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Paul Ministers in Ephesus and Elsewhere: Acts 18:19-25

October 31, 2021 Speaker: Bob DeWaay Series: Acts of the Apostles

Scripture: Acts 18:19-15

Acts 18:19-22  “Paul’s Preaching in Ephesus and Elsewhere”

By Bob DeWaay

The key topic of discussion is Paul’s “reasoning” and method of preaching Christ in various settings. Throughout Luke/Acts, Luke indicates who speaks for God through key repeated terms. One verb that is found more often in Acts than anywhere else in the Bible is dialegomai which often means to reason, teach, dispute, or give evidence. Since 10 of the 13 usages in the NT are in Acts, it is clearly thematic. The previous usages in Acts 17 included ministry in Athens. The value of refuting false ideas and giving evidence for the gospel is shown by Paul’s preaching in synagogues, marketplaces, and even to the philosophers on Mars Hill in Athens. In Ephesus Paul also “reasoned” in the synagogue with the Jews.

One important issue is understanding authorial intent in each case. Many have thought that Paul changed his message due to lack of results in Athens. Luke tells us that Paul’s preaching in Athens was important and effective. The truth of the gospel was proclaimed and Paul refuted those who have different ideas. The same is true in Ephesus which will be an important place in Luke’s narrative. From Ephesus, Paul moved on to Caesarea and then Antioch. The historicity of the events and places is reinforced in our discussion. The resurrection of Christ is emphasized in every sermon in Acts.