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J. B. Lightfoot :: St. Paul’s History after the Close of Acts

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THE conclusion, at which we have arrived in the last section, assumes St Paul's release from his captivity at Rome. We must suppose that he resumed his active missionary labours, and that these were terminated by a second captivity ending in his martyrdom, of which the Second Epistle to Timothy sounds the knell. In the present section it will be my business, first, to show that there are sufficient grounds independently for assuming this release, and secondly, considering this as established, to sketch out his movements by the help of the record in the Pastoral Epistles.

I. Of this release, with the subsequent events, there is no intimation in the New Testament beyond the notices in the Pastoral Epistles which seem to demand it. In the memoir of St Luke there is not the slightest intimation of the future. The Epistles of the First Roman Captivity hover between hope and fear, between anticipation of release and forebodings of condemnation. They contain nothing which leads directly to the result we are seeking.

One passage indeed has been adduced as conclusive against a subsequent visit of St Paul to Ephesus; and as, by surrendering this visit, we should be surrendering all the advantages gained by the assumption of his release, and should be thrown back upon our difficulties with respect to the Pastoral Epistles, it is important to consider what is the value of this argument. St Paul in his farewell address to the Ephesian Elders on the eve of the First Captivity, says, 'And now, behold, I know that ye all, among whom I have gone preaching the kingdom of God, shall see my face no more.' (Act 20:25) [1] This is supposed to be inconsistent with a later visit to Ephesus, and pro tanto with his release from captivity. But in no other province of history would it be allowable to convert a presentiment, however strongly expressed, into a fact; and as this is purely a personal matter, inspiration does not enter into the question. A presumption might indeed have been founded on this expression, if no intimation existed of a release; but the notices in the Pastoral Epistles to the contrary are in themselves more than sufficient to set this presumption aside. Then again, in what infinite difficulties does this supposition involve us! To the Romans he says; 'I will pass by you into Spain.' (Rom 15:28) This however, it may be said, was before the conviction (or the revelation) declared to the Ephesian elders had seized him. What are we to say of the expressions scattered through the Epistles of the First Captivity? Why does he waver between hope and fear, if the fatal result was certain? Why does he entreat the prayers of his converts for his release, if he knew that release to be absolutely impossible? Writing to the Philippians he says that he trusts in the Lord, that he himself (Phl 2:24). Nay, he even affirms positively that he will be released. 'Having this confidence,' he says, 'I know (touto pepoithôs oida) that I shall abide and continue with you all (Phl 1:25).' Why is the oida to be regarded as decisive in the one case, and disregarded in the other? But it may be urged that the supposed revelation did not negative his release in toto, that it is limited, that it referred only to his revisiting these Churches of Asia Minor. To this too St Paul's own language furnishes a reply. He bids Philemon 'prepare him a lodging' at Colossae, he 'trusts that through their prayers he shall be given unto them' (Phm 1:22)-language which he could not have held, if he had had a revelation to the contrary. And if here again it be urged that he might have gone to Colossae without revisiting the neighbouring Church of Ephesus, to this we should reply, firstly, that when the inference from oida is pared down to these dimensions, we have obtained such a concession as will explain the notices in the Pastoral Epistles, for, though a visit to Ephesus is much more probable, a visit to the neighbourhood would suffice; and secondly, that it will be felt that so limited an inference is meaningless, and of course value less to those who refuse to allow the release of St Paul.

But though the New Testament, with the single exception of the Pastoral Epistles, is silent about this release, it is most satisfactorily established from external tradition.

CLEMENT OF ROME [†c. A.D. 96], a contemporary of the Apostles, after mentioning several incidents in St Paul's life, and saying that he had preached in the East and the West, adds that he was 'a teacher of righteousness unto the whole world', and, before his decease 'reached the furthest bounds of the West and bore testimony before the ruling powers' (epi to terma t&ô#234;s dyseôs elthôn kai martyrêsas epi tôn hêgoumenôn). Considering that Clement was writing from Rome, and bearing in mind the common significance of the expression 'the extreme West' [2] at the time, as referring to the Pillars of Hercules [3], we can scarcely be wrong in concluding that St Paul was released from captivity and fulfilled his purpose, expressed years before, of visiting Spain. [4]

It might be urged indeed that Clement has here the passage in the Epistle to the Romans in his mind, and that he assumes the intention was carried out. But seeing that at least one of the facts mentioned in the context-the Apostle's seven captivities (heptakis desma phoresas)-is not recorded in the New Testament, he must be deriving his information from independent sources, as indeed, living at Rome and having perhaps known the Apostle personally, he was very competent to do. And it may be argued further that this fact obliges us to prolong the Apostle's labours beyond the captivity with which the Acts closes.

2. Two generations later (c. A.D. 180), the anonymous writer of the MURATORIAN CANON gives the following account of the Acts of the Apostles. 'Luke comprises in detail in histreatise addressed to the most excellent Theophilus the incidents in the lives of the Apostles of which he was an eye witness. As he does not mention either the martyrdom of Peter, or the journey of Paul to Spain, it is clear that these took place in his absence.' [5]

3. EUSEBIUS speaks of St Paul's release and second visit to Rome, which ended in his martyrdom, as a common report (logos echei). [6] It is true that he goes on to confirm this report by a false interpretation of 2Ti iv. 16, explaining the two apologies there mentioned of the Apostle's two captivities; but the worthlessness of his own comment does not affect the value of the tradition on which it is founded, and which must be held quite distinct. [7]

4. In his Epistle to Dracontius, ATHANASIUS holds up for imitation the earnestness of the Apostle of the Gentiles, whose zeal prompted him 'to preach as far as Illyricum, and not to hesitate to go even to Rome, nor to take ship for Spain, so that the more he laboured the greater reward he might receive for his labour.' [8]

5. CYRIL OF JERUSALEM, in his second catechetical lecture upon the Holy Spirit, adduces as a witness of the power of the Spirit St Paul's conversion, and his missionary labours, which he names in the following significant order, Jerusalem, Illyricum, Rome, Spain. [9]

6. EPIPHANIUS, in the account which he gives of the succession of the episcopate at Rome, explains his theory of the appointment of Linus, Cletus and Clement as bishops in the lifetime of the Apostles Peter and Paul by the frequent journeys which the Apostles had to take from Rome, and the impossibility of leaving the city without a bishop. 'For Paul,' he says, 'even went as far away as Spain, and Peter was frequently superintending Pontus and Bithynial.' [10]

7. JEROME appeals to the testimony of older writers in support of his statement of St Paul's release from his first imprisonment, which was arranged in God's providence 'that so he might preach the gospel of Christ in the West also.' [11]

8. THEODORE OF MOPSUESTIA speaks in the plainest way of St Paul's two visits to Rome in the reign of Nero. After relating how he was sent as prisoner there on his appeal from Festus, he goes on to say that he was 'set free by the judgment of Nero and ordered to depart in safety. But after stopping two years at Rome, he departed thence and appears to have preached to many the teaching of godliness. However, coming a second time to Rome, while still stopping there; it happened that by the sentence of Nero he was punished with death for his preaching of godliness.' [12] The passage is somewhat obscure owing to its survival in the Latin version only.

9. When we come down to the time Of PELAGIUS, we find the release from the first imprisonment generally main- tained. Commenting on the Apostle's request to Philemon 'to prepare him a lodging,' he says: 'Here it is shown that on the first occasion he was sent away from the city'; though of the journey to Spain he speaks more doubtfully. [13]

10. THEODORET, commenting on the Apostle's expression of confidence addressed to his Philippian converts that he would abide and continue with them, remarks: 'and the prediction was fulfilled; for at first he escaped the wrath of Nero.' Then, after quoting the passage in 2Ti iv. 16, 17, and appealing to the last verses in the Acts, he continues: 'Thence (i.e. from Rome) he departed to Spain, and carried the divine gospel to the inhabitants of that part also, and so he returned, and was then beheaded.' [14] Other references to his release and visit to Spain are given below.

On the statements of Eusebius and later writers however no stress should be laid. Even if it were clear that they relied on some independent testimony, and did not found their belief on deductions-in some cases erroneous deductions-from St Paul's own language, they are too far removed from the time of the events to be of any real value as guides. With Clement and the author of the Muratorian fragment the case is different. The former wrote from Rome, at a place where and at a time when the memory of the Apostle's labours was fresh, and his testimony is explicit, so far as relates to St Paul's preaching in the West. The latter, though living at a later period, is a Witness of some importance, for he too was probably a Roman, (Act 28:30, 31) and he distinctly attests the journey to Spain. Indeed, so irresistible has this evidence appeared to impartial critics, that the release has been accepted as a fact by many writers who cannot be suspected of any bias towards this result-by Hug, for instance, who places the Pastoral Epistles earlier in St Paul's life, and by Ewald, who denies their genuineness entirely.

But it has been urged that, though there is evidence for the journey to Spain after the Apostle's release, there is none for another visit to the East. This is true, if the notices in the Pastorals themselves are not to be put in evidence; but even then, how does the case stand? St Paul, while still a prisoner but anticipating his release, expresses his intention of visiting the Philippians again, and writes to Philemon at Colossae to prepare him a lodging. He does obtain his release. In the absence of evidence either way, is it not more probable that he did fulfil his intention of visiting Macedonia and Asia than the contrary?

II. Assuming then that St Paul was released from his first captivity at Rome and resumed his missionary labours, we shall have to sketch in the events which took place between this date and his final imprisonment, from the notices in the Pastoral Epistles, aided by such probabilities as circumstances suggest. If an intelligible and reasonable account of St Paul's doings during this interval can thus be given, we shall have found a possible place for the Pastoral Epistles, and shall have furnished an answer to objections raised from the point of view of historical unaccountability; and, in the absence of full and direct information, nothing more than this hypothetical solution can be expected.

Before entering into details, however, we must clear the way by settling two main questions; first, what was the probable length of this interval; and, secondly, supposing that St Paul visited both East and West, in what order did he make these journeys.

(1) According to the chronology I have adopted, [15] St Paul arrived in Rome early in the year 61. The closing verses of the Acts speak of his remaining there without any change in the circumstances of his captivity for two whole years. [16] Thi brings us to the beginning of the year 63 at least. Here St Luke's narrative ends abruptly; so that we are without information as to what occurred afterwards, but the natural inference is that at the end of the two years there was a change in the prisoner's condition-a change either for the better or for the worse, but a change of some sort. Perhaps the most probable supposition is that his trial came on then. If so, we may place his release not later than the summer of 63, at all events it must have taken place between that date and the summer of the following year, for the great fire which broke out in July 64 was a signal for a fierce persecution of the Christians in Rome, and a teacher of the hated religion so zealous and so distinguished could not have escaped the general fate, had he still remained a prisoner.

The data for determining the close of the period are still more vague. Ecclesiastical tradition fixes the martyrdom of St Paul in Nero's reign, and this is probable in itself, for, after the tyrant's death, the Romans were too much occupied with their own political troubles to pay any attention to the Christians, even supposing the succeeding emperors were animated by the same bitter spirit. It cannot therefore have been later than June 68, the date of Nero's death. Now, when we examine the Pastoral Epistles with a view to obtaining some result, opposing considerations present themselves. On the one hand, their marked difference in style leads us to prolong the interval between them and the earlier Epistles as far as possible, while on the other hand the mention of Timothy's youth is an ever-increasing difficulty as we postpone the date of the letters addressed to him. On the whole, perhaps, the later consideration must give place to the former. The death of the Apostle will then be placed at the very close of Nero's reign, and the Pastoral Epistles will have been written in the year 67 or 68.

(2) Next, as to the order in which St Paul visited the East and West. On the whole, it is probable that he went eastward immediately after his release. It is true that he had intended, when he first thought of visiting Rome, to proceed thence westward to Spain. (Rom 15:24, 28) But circumstances might have occurred in the intervening period of about five years to alter his purpose and determine him to revisit the troubled Churches of Asia, before he entered on a new mission field in the far West. Such is the impression left by his language to the Philippians and to Philemon (Phl 1:24; Phm 1:22). [17]

But if it is probable that St Paul was in the East immediately after his release, it is certain that he was there towards the very close of his life. The notices of his transactions in the East scattered through the Pastoral Epistles reach continuously to the time of his second imprisonment at Rome, which ended in his death. If this be so, the visit to Spain and the West must have intervened between two visits to the East. For these incidents there is ample time in the four or five years which elapsed before his martyrdom.

We obtain then
   (i) A visit to the East, probably brief, according with his intention expressed to the Philippians and to Philemon.
   (ii) The fulfilment of his long-cherished purpose of preaching in Spain and the West.
   (iii) A return to the East.



Eastward then the Apostle hastens after his release. First of all perhaps he revisited the Macedonian Churches, fulfilling his promise to the Philippians. We may imagine him next directing his steps towards the Churches of Asia and Phrygia. The unhealthy tone of religious speculation in these districts needed correction. And to Colossae moreover he was drawn by a personal motive. He was anxious to assure himself that Onesimus was fully restored to his master's favour, and to carry out his undertaking of staying with Philemon. We can scarcely suppose that he left these regions without a brief visit to the Church of Ephesus, which had occupied so much of his time and thoughts; and it is possible that some of the notices in the Pastoral Epistles refer to incidents which occurred on this occasion, though it is on the whole more probable that they took place on a later visit.

We may conjecture also that, before he left the neighbourhood of the Ægaean, he laid the first foundations of a Church in Crete. There was in this island a large Jewish population [18]-a circumstance which would press itself on the Apostle's attention. Possibly also St Paul's anchorage there (Act 27:7-12) [19] on his voyage to Rome may have been accompanied by incidents which dwelt on his mind, and stimulated his desire to preach the Gospel in Crete. At all events a few years later we find a Christian Church established here, and, if its foundation is to be attributed to St Paul, no occasion is more probable than this of his first visit to the East after his release.

Having thus taken a rapid review of the Churches of the East, the Apostle hastened to fulfil his long-postponed intention of visiting the hitherto unexplored region of Spain. There was a considerable Jewish population settled in many of the towns on the Spanish coast, [20] and the Apostle would make this his starting-point. This course had many advantages in itself, but a deeper principle of obligation commended it to the mind of the Apostle; who seems to have held sacred the maxim, 'To the Jew first, and then to the Gentile.' Whether St Paul extended his labours in the West beyond the limits of Spain must remain a matter of speculation. At the close of his life we find him sending Crescens on a mission to Gaul-for so we may perhaps understand by 'Galatia' (2Ti 4:10) [21]-and if this interpretation is correct, it would seem to imply some previous communication with this region. It is highly probable indeed that, either on his way to or from Rome, he should have visited the famous port of Marseilles, [22] and having once set foot in Gaul, he would naturally avail himself of the opportunity of furthering his Master's cause. At all events, the Churches of Spain and Gaul were founded at a very early date, so that Irenaeus appeals to them [23] along with others, as witnesses of the primitive tradition in matters of doctrine. On the other hand, had he remained long either in Spain or Gaul, we should have expected to find in those parts a more direct tradition of his visit. [24]

Moving eastward, perhaps passing through Rome, the Apostle may possibly have visited Dalmatia, for with this region again we find him in communication at the close of his life (2Ti 4:10). If so, he may have continued his journey along the Adriatic coast to Epirus, so that, by wintering at Nicopolis on a subsequent occasion (Tts 3:12), he purposed renewing an intimacy already formed, thus following out his general practice of confirming the Churches of his founding.

We find the Apostle then in the East once more. The slight fragmentary notices in the Pastoral Epistles may be pieced together variously, so that any particular plan of his journey must be more or less arbitrary. The object of framing such a plan is to show that it is possible to give a consistent and intelligible account of his movements, on the supposition of his release; and under the circumstances no more than this can reasonably be demanded. The scheme which I shall give differs from those generally adopted in assuming that the winter which he purposed spending in Nicopolis was in fact spent in Rome. [25] We may suppose that his abrupt arrest and imprisonment frustrated his previous plans. In this way the events are gathered within narrower limits of time; and, the Pastoral Epistles being thus brought into closer chronological connexion, the striking coincidences of thought and language between them are the more easily explained. This arrangement of the incidents seems to me slightly more probable than any other, but I lay no stress on it.

Once in the East then, he would naturally revisit the Churches of Phrygia and Asia, which had caused him so much anxiety. There he found that his gloomiest anticipations had been realised. Grievous wolves had indeed entered the fold, as he had predicted years before. His personal influence had gone. 'All in Asia turned away from him.' (2Ti 1:15 sq.) Phygellus and Hermogenes are especially named among these timid or recreant Christians. There was one bright exception however in Onesiphorus, whose attentions-repeated afterwards when the Apostle was a prisoner in Rome-are gratefully recorded (2Ti 1:15-17; cf. 4:19). It was probably at Ephesus too and on this occasion that St Paul encountered the opposition of Alexander the coppersmith (2Ti 4:14.). And this is perhaps the same Alexander whom, together with Hymenaeus, the Apostle 'delivered unto Satan, that they might learn not to blaspheme' (1Ti 1:20). If we are right in assigning all these notices to this one occasion, it would seem that the Apostle's residence was more or less prolonged. Altogether the visit was one of bitter trial. It was evident that the clouds were gathering about the Church, and that a period of storm and tempest was imminent.

From Ephesus the Apostle turned northward into Macedonia. At the same time he left Timothy behind to preside over the Church there in his absence (1Ti 1:3). He would gladly seek consolation after these sad experiences in the affection of that Philippian Church, of which he entertained the most tender remembrance, and which more than once had relieved his wants. [26]

What country St Paul visited next, we cannot say; it is not unnatural to suppose that, following his old route, he would turn towards the Churches of Achaia. Somewhere about this time we may perhaps place the writing of the First Epistle to Timothy. Its exact time and place cannot be ascertained, but the following data should be observed. (1) It cannot have been written very long after St Paul left Ephesus, as the whole tenour of the Epistle shows. It betrays a nervous anxiety such as might be expected from one who had recently delegated a very arduous task to a young and inexperienced successor. Such advice to have any value must be given at once, and indeed the Apostle's ardent temperament would admit of no delay in a matter so important. (2) It would seem to have been written before the incidents occurred which St Paul relates to Timothy in the Second Epistle (e.g. 2Ti 4:9-13, 20). When the letter was written, St Paul hoped to revisit Ephesus soon, but foresaw that he might possibly meet with some delays (1Ti 3:15).

About this time he also visited Crete. A hypothetical account of the origin of this Church I have given already. [27] Having been recently founded, its organization was still very imperfect; and, as St Paul himself could not stay to do all that was needful, he left Titus behind him to complete his arrangements there (Tts 1:5).

From Crete we may suppose that he went to Asia Minor, and somewhere about this time he directed a letter of advice and exhortation to Titus. For ascertaining the time of writing of the Epistle to Titus we have the following data. (1) As in the case of the First Epistle to Timothy, it cannot have been written long after St Paul left Crete. (2) Tychicus was still with him when he wrote; and therefore it is before the point of time noted in 2Ti iv. 12. (3) He has no forebodings of his coming fate, for he purposes wintering at Nicopolis, not expecting to have his movements constrained (Tts 3:12). (4) On the supposition that this winter is identical with that mentioned in his Second Epistle, the year cannot have been far advanced now. There is time for him to despatch a messenger to Titus, for Titus to join him (at Corinth or Nicopolis) and to leave him again for Dalmatia, for him to reach Rome himself, for several incidents at Rome, e.g. his trial, etc., for him to despatch a messenger from Rome to Timothy, for Timothy to join him in Rome; all this before the winter.

In this letter he tells Titus that he will send Artemas or Tychicus-perhaps to act as his deputy-and bids him hasten to join him at Nicopolis. He asks him to provide Zenas the lawyer and Apollos with the necessaries for their journey (Tts 3:12, 13).

From this point onwards we can trace the Apostle's course westward with some degree of continuity. [28] We find him at Miletus, where he dropped Trophimus on account of illness (2Ti 4:20). Hence perhaps he despatched Tychicus to Ephesus (2Ti 4:12). [29] Miletus was a convenient point from which to communicate with Ephesus, as he had found it on a former occasion, (Acts 20:17) and we may conjecture that, having abandoned his purpose of revisiting Ephesus, he sent Tychicus to Timothy to inform him of this (1Ti 3:14). From Miletus he sails northward to Troas, where he lodges with Carpus (2Ti 4:13). What were the intermediate stages, we do not know, but we next find him at Corinth, where he leaves Erastus behind (2Ti 4:20). He was now on his way to Nicopolis-probably the city of that name in Epirus, where he purposed passing the winter. Whether he reached Nicopolis or not must remain uncertain. A probable, though a conjectural, account seems to me this. While he was at Corinth, his old enemies, the Jews, informed against him, as the leader of the hated sect of male factors, who had roused the indignation of Rome; and on this information he was seized and imprisoned and ultimately carried to the Metropolis to await his trial. [30]

Meanwhile, finding his plan of wintering at Nicopolis frustrated, he despatches his messenger-probably Artemas, (Tts 3:12) since he had left Tychicus behind (2Ti 4:12)-to Titus in Crete to join him, not in Nicopolis, as he had intended, but either in Corinth or in Rome itself, whither he was soon to be conveyed. At all events Titus did join him at some point in his route (2Ti 4:10).

Arrived at Rome, the Apostle found himself almost deserted. Onesiphorus, who lived in Ephesus (2Ti 4:19), and whose kind services the Apostle had experienced during his stay there, coming to Rome sought him out and with some difficulty found him (2Ti 1:17). But these friendly offices ceased with the departure of Onesiphorus. Of all his more intimate friends and companions in travel Luke alone remained with him (2Ti 4:9 sq.) (2Ti 1:17). Titus had gone to Dalmatia, Crescens to Gaul, probably despatched thither by the Apostle on some missionary errand. Demas had forsaken him, and gone to Thessalonica, probably his native place. [31] Certain Christians of Rome, Eubulus, Pudens, Linus and Claudia, join in the salutation, but these must have been comparative strangers. [32] In this forlorn condition he writes his Second Epistle to Timothy. He urges Timothy to join him as soon as possible (2Ti 4:9), at all events to come before the winter sets in and while the sea is yet navigable (2Ti 4:21). At the same time he charges him to perform a commission at Troas; he had left his cloak with some books and parchments, and he requests Timothy, as he passes, to fetch these (2Ti 4:13). He evidently contemplates that Timothy will follow the coast to Macedonia, and then take the great Egnatian Road from Philippi to Dyrrachium and cross over the straits thence to Italy. It was perhaps already late in the season, and a voyage on the high seas was hazardous. Timothy is to pick up Mark on the way and to bring him with him (2Ti 4:11). Timothy appears to be still at Ephesus, for the Apostle in this letter salutes the household of Onesiphorus, doubtless resident there (2Ti 4:19, 1:16); [33] he also salutes Aquila and Priscilla (2Ti 4:19), and they too seem to have had connexion with Ephesus (1Cr 16:19).

The legal proceedings have already commenced when the Apostle writes. He has had his first hearing, and has a respite for a time (2Ti 16:16). But he is full of gloomy forebodings, or rather he foresees but one termination to the trial. And here, with the notes of his dying strain ringing in our ears, we take leave of the Great Apostle.


* From J.B. Lightfoot. Biblical Essays. London: Macmillan Press, 1893 and 1904, pp. 419-437. (All the Greek has been Transliterated.)
[1] kai nyn idou egô oida hoti ouketi opsesthe to prosôpon mou hymeis pantes.
[2] For the expression, referring to the western extremity of Spain, the pillars of Hercules, comp. Strabo ii.1 (p. 67) perata de autês (tês oikoumenês) tithêsi pros dysei men tas Hêrakleious stêlas, ii. 4 (p. 106) mechri tôn akrôn tês Ibêrias haper dysmikôtera esti, iii. 1 (p. 137) touto (to hieron akrôtêrion) esti to dytikôtaton ou tês Eurôpês monon alla kai tês oikoumenês hapasês sêmeion. peratoutai gar hypo tôn dyein êpeirôn hê oikoumenê pros dysin, tois te tês Eurôpês akrois kai tois prôtois tês Libuês, iii. 5 (p. 169) epeidê kata ton porthmon egenonto ton kata tên Kalpên, nomisantas termonas einai tês oikoumenês...ta akra, ib. (p. 170) zêtein epi tôn kyriôs legomenôn stêlôn tous tês oikoumenês horous (these references are corrected from Credner's Kanon, p. 53), and see Strabo's whole account of the western boundaries of the world and of this coast of Spain. Similarly Vell. Paterc. i. 2, 'In ultimo Hispaniae tractu, in extremo nostri orbis termino.'
[3] It is instructive to mention some interpretations by which the force of these words has been evaded: (1) 'to his extreme limit towards the west, (Baur Paulus der Apost. p. 230, Schenkel Studien und Kritiken p. 71, Otto can Pastoralbr.) taking the word subjectively, (2) 'the sunset of his labours' (Reuss Gesch. des N.T. Schrift. p. 124) explaining metaphorically, (3) 'to the boundary between the East and West' (Hilgenfeld Ap. Vät. p. 109, Schrader Paulus), (4) 'to the goal or centre of the west' (Matthies Pastoralbr.), (5) 'before (hypo for epi) the supreme power of the west' (Wieseler Chron. der ap. Zeitalt. p. 533, followed by Schaff History of Apost. Ch. I. p. 400). Such attempts are a strong testimony to the plain inference which follows from the passage simply interpreted. Had the expression been epi ta termata tou kosmou, it might be explained (as Meyer proposes) as a rhetorical exaggeration, but not as it stands. [See the notes on the passage in Apostolic Fathers, Pt. I. Vol. II. p. 30 ed. 2, from which the above are explained.]
[4] It has been urged (e.g. by Davidson Introd. II. p. 101 ed. 1) that Clement cannot have meant this, because in that case Eusebius (H. E. iii. 4) would certainly have adduced the passage, which he does not. To this the reply is twofold: (1) that all arguments drawn from the silence of a writer are in the highest degree precarious; and (2) that we are quite as competent to judge what Clement meant, as Eusebius was.
[5] 'Lucas obtime Theofile (l. optimo Theophilo) comprindit, quia (l. quae) sub praesentia eius singula gerebantur sicuti et semote passionem Petri evidenter declarat, sed et profectionem Pauli ab urbe ad Spaniam proficiscentis, Fragm. Murat. (pp. 19, 40 ed. Tregelles Oxon. 1867; Westcott Hist. of Canon pp. 517, 528 ed. 4). The drift of the latter part of the sentence seems to have been generally misunderstood. I take 'semote' to be opposed to 'sub praesentia eius,' in the sense 'at a distance,' 'in his absence.' Other solutions, either in the way of interpretation or of correction of the text, may be found in Routh R. S. p. 394, Bunsen Anal. Antenic. I. p. 125, Westcott p. 528, Credner Kanon p. 141 (ed. 1860) and Wieseler Chron. p. 536.
[6] Eus. H. E. ii. 22, tote men oun apologêsamenon authis epi tên tou kêrygmatos diakonian logos echei steilasthai ton apostolon, deuteron d' epibanta tê autê polei tô kat' auton teleiôthênai martyriô.
[7] Meyer's inference (on Romans Einl. § 1, p. 15) from Origen's silence that he was ignorant of this release is quite arbitrary. At least it did not strike Eusebius so, who quotes Origen in the following words: Ti dei peri Paulon legein apo Hierousalêm mechri tou Illyrikou peplêrôkotos to euaggelion tou Christou, kai hysteron en tê Rhômê epi Nerônos memartyrêkotos; (H. E. iii. 1).
[8] Anthanas. Ep. ad Dracont. § 4, I. p. 265 ed. Bened. dia touto kai spoudê tôn hagiôn (l. tô hagiô) mechri tou Illyrikou kêryttein kai mê oknein mêde eis tên Rhômên apelthein, mêde eis tas Spanias anabênai, hina hoson kopia tosouton kai tou kopou ton misthon meizona apolabê.
[9] Cyrill. Hier. Catech. xvii. pp. 276, 7, apo Hierosolymôn men kai mechri tou Illyrikou peplêrôkota to euaggelion. katêchêsonta de kai tên basilida Rhômên kai mechri Spanias tên prothymian tou kêrygmatos ekteinanta.
[10] Epiphan. Haer. xxvii. p. 107 ed. Pet. ho men gar Paulos kai epi tên Spanian aphikneitai, Petros de pollakis Ponton te kai Bithynian eneskepsato.
[11] Hieron. de Eccles. Script. § 5, Vol. II. p. 823 ed. Vallarsi, 'Sciendum autem in prima satisfactione, necdum Neronis imperio roborato, nec in tanta erumpente scelera, quanta de eo narrant historiae, Paulum a Nerone dimissum, ut evangelium Christi in occidentis quoque partibus praedicaret'; cf. Comm. in Amos v. 8, 9 Vol. vi. p. 291.
[12] Theod. Mops. Argum. in Eph. I. p. 116 ed. Swete, 'Inde judicio Neronis liberatus, securus abire jussus est. duobus vero annis commoratus Romae, exinde egressus, multis pietatis doctrinam praedicasse visus est. secunda vero vice Roman accedens dum illo adhuc moraretur, contigit ut sententia Neronis ob praedicationem pietatis capite puniretur.'
[13] Pelagius Comm. in Philemon v. 22, 'hic ostenditur quia prima vice sit ex urbe dimissus'; in Rom. xv. 24, 'utrum in Hispania fuerit incertum habetur.'
[14] Theodoret Comm. in Phil. i. 25, Vol. III. p. 451 ed. Schulze, kai telos hê prorrhêsis elabe. diephyge gar to prôton tou Nerônos ton thymon...ekeithen de eis tas Spanias apelthôn, kai to theion kakeinois prosenegkôn euaggelion epanêlthe, kai tote tên kephalên apemêthê: in Ps. cxvi. Vol. I. p. 1425, hysteron mentio kai tês Italias epebê, kai eis tas Spanias aphiketo, kai tais en tô pelagei diakeimenais vêsois tên ôpheleian prosênegke: in 2Ti iv. 17, apologisamenos hôs athôos aphethê kai tas Spanias katelabe kai eis hetera ethnê dramôn tên tês didaskalias lampada prosênegke.
[15] His use of the expression 'ab urbe,' referring to Rome, shows this.
[16] See above, pp. 217 sq., 222.
[17] This conclusion however must not be regarded as absolutely certain. It may be that we should not press the tacheôs of Phil 2:24. And the injunction to Philemon to prepare him a lodging may point rather to the certainty than to the nearness of the visit. It is as if the Apostle had said, 'You may certainly expect to see me. I shall myself observe what treatment Onesimus has received from you.' With delicate tact, the Apostle's language, suggested by some slight misgiving, assumes the form of an appeal to Philemon's hospitality and kindly feeling towards himself.
[18] Philo. Leg. ad Caium ii. p. 587 (ed. Mangey), ou monon hai êpeiroi mestai tôn Ioudaikôn apoikiôn eisan alla kai nêsôn hai dokimôtatai, Euboia, Kypros, Krêtê.
[19] Esp. Act 27:9, hikanou de chronou diagenomenou.
[20] See Remond Ausbreitung des Judenthums § 31.
[21] See Galatians pp. 3, 31. On Crescens see esp. Gerarius Mogunt. Resp. p. 225, and on the early Church in Gaul, Neander Ch. Hist. I. p. 116 (Eng. transl. by Torrey).
[22] See the interesting speculations of Blunt The First Three Centuries, p. 184 sq. (1861).
[23] Iren. Haer. i. 10. 2.
[24] The journey to Britain must be abandoned, as highly improbable, though maintained with a patriotic urgency by many able advocates (Stillingfleet, Burgess, etc.); see the references in Soames Anglo-Saxon Church, p. 21 sq. (1844).
[25] Thus the winter of Titus 3:12 becomes identical with that of 2Ti 4:21.
[26] See above, pp. 249, 260.
[27] See above, p. 431.
[28] The journey is the reverse of that in Acts 20:13 sq.
[29] Tychicus and Trophimus were Asianoi; cf. Acts 20:4, 21:29.
[30] We know that Nero was in Greece at this time, and that he was still there in August 67, though he was recalled to Rome towards the close of the year by Helius (see Clinton Fasti Romani I. p. 50). Perhaps the Emperor himself sent the Apostle to the capital.
[31] See above, p. 247.
[32] [On the supposed connexion of Pudens and Claudia with Britain see Apostolic Fathers Pt. I. Clement of Rome I. p. 76 (1890)].
[33] Onesiphorus himself seems to be absent (1:17.




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