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From Caesarea to Rome (27:1-28:15)
Festus arranged for a centurion and a unit of Roman soldiers to take Paul, along with a number of other prisoners, to Rome. Two Christians also went with Paul, his loyal friend Luke and a church leader from Thessalonica named Aristarchus (27:1-2; cf. 19:29; 20:4). They began the journey on a ship that took them as far as Myra in Asia Minor. There they changed to one of the huge grain ships that sailed between Alexandria and Italy. After several days they came to the island of Crete (3-8).
At the port of Fair Havens (Safe Harbours), Paul advised the ship’s officers not to sail any further till the dangerous winter season had passed. But they rejected Paul’s advice and decided to move on to the next Cretan port, Phoenix, which they considered to be a better place to spend the winter (9-12).
Soon all were sorry that they had not listened to Paul. A fierce storm struck, and it seemed certain that the ship would sink and all on board would drown (13-20). Paul believed otherwise. God had assured him that, although the ship would be lost, all on board would be saved, and Paul himself would eventually reach Rome (21-26).
Paul’s natural qualities of leadership soon saw him take control of the situation, in spite of his being a prisoner. When the ship was about to run aground and some sailors tried to escape, the Roman guard acted on Paul’s advice and stopped them (27-32). When Paul warned that people were endangering their lives by going so long without eating, the ship’s officers likewise heeded his words (33-38). Only the centurion’s respect for Paul stopped the soldiers from killing the prisoners when the ship broke up. In the end all those on board the ship escaped safely to land (39-44).
The island on which they landed was Malta. The local people were kind and helpful to them all, but again Paul was the one who created the most interest (28:1-6). Although he was legally a prisoner, he and his party spent three days with the island’s chief official as his special guests. In return for the hospitality received from the islanders, Paul and Luke attended to many of their medical needs (7-10).
Three months after landing on Malta, when winter was over and sailing was again safe, Paul’s party boarded another Alexandrian grain ship and sailed for Puteoli in Italy. From there they went by road to Rome, being met by Christians from Rome at a number of places along the way (11-15).
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Flemming, Donald C. "Commentary on Acts 27". "Fleming's Bridgeway Bible Commentary". https://www.studylight.org/
the Second Week after Epiphany