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the Asiatic seaports, we set sail—accompanied by a Macedonian, Aris

3 tarchus of Thessalonika—and put in, next day, at Sidon. There Julius acted humanely to Paul, by permitting him to visit his friends and be

4 attended to. Putting to sea from there, we sailed under the lee of Cyprus,

5 as the winds were against us: then sailing for fifteen * days through the Cilician and Pamphylian waters, we came to the town of Myrra in Lycia.

6 There the centurion found an Alexandrian ship bound for Italy, and put us

7 on board of her. Por many days we sailed slowly, and only arrived off Cnidus with difficulty. Then, as the wind checked our progress, we sailed

8 under the lee of Crete off Cape Salmon©, and by coasting along it we reached with difficulty a place called Fairhavens; near it lay a city called Lasea.

9 When a considerable time had elapsed and Bailing had now become dangerous (for the Fast was now over), Paul gave them his advice in these

10 words, '' Sirs, I see that the voyage is going to be attended with hardship and heavy loss, not merely to the cargo and the ship, but also to our own lives."

11 The centurion, however, was more influenced by the sailing-master and

12 the captain than by what Paul said; and, as the harbour was ill-adapted for wintering in, the majority proposed to set sail and try, if possible, to reach Phoenix and winter there—it is a Cretan harbour which looks SW and NW.

13 When a moderate southerly breeze sprang up, they imagined they had secured their end; and after weighing anchor, they sailed close inshore

1A along the Cretan coast. Presently down rushed a hurricane of a wind from

15 the island, called Euraquilo; and as the ship was caught and unable to

16 face the wind, we gave way and let her drive along. Sunning under the lee of a small island called Kauda, we managed with difficulty to

17 get the boat hauled in; and after it had been hoisted up, they made use of ropes2 to undergird the ship. Then, in fear of being swept upon the Syrtis sands, they lowered the sail, and let the ship drive as she was.

18 Terribly were we beaten by the storm. The very next day, they had to

19 jettison the cargo, and on the third day they threw the ship's gear over

20 board with their own hands. For many days neither sun nor stars were visible, the storm pressed heavily, and we were at last divested of all hope

21 of being saved. [Then after they had gone without food for some time, Paul stood up among them and said, "You should have obeyed me, sirs, and spared yourselves this damage and loss, by not setting sail from

22 Crete. And now my advice to you is, take heart; there shall be no

23 loss of life among you, only of the ship. For this night an angel from

24 God, the God whose I am and whom I serve, stood before me, saying, 'Fear not, Paul, thou must stand before Caesar. And lo, God has given thee

25 all thy fellow-voyagers!' Bo take heart, sirs; for I believe God that

26 it shall be exactly as I have been told. However, we must be cast upon

27 some island.'"] When the fourteenth night came, we were drifting to and fro in the sea of Adria, and about midnight the sailors surmised some

28 land was near. On taking soundings they found twenty fathoms; and a

29 little further on, when they sounded again, they found fifteen. Then fearing we might get cast upon a rocky coast, they let go four anchors

30 from the stern, and longed for daylight. The sailors, however, tried to escape from the ship; they had even lowered the boat into the sea

31 on the pretext of going to lay out anchors from the bow, when Paul said to the centurion and soldiers, "Unless these men stay by the ship, you

32 cannot be saved." Thereupon the soldiers cut away the ropes of the boat

33 and let her fall off. Now before the day broke, Paul besought them all to take some food. "For fourteen days," said he, "you have been con

1 Adding >i' V'£' iuwirirTi. "Reading (3«i''»<,

34 stantly on the watch without eating; you have taken nothing. I beseech you, therefore, to take Bome food; it will conduce to your safety—for not

35 one hair of your head shall perish." Saying this he took bread, gave

36 thanks to God before them all, broke it and began to eat. Then they all

37 cheered up and took food for themselves (there were about' seventy-six

38 souls of us in the ship, all told); and after eating their fill, they started

39 to lighten the ship by throwing out the provisions into the sea. When day broke, they did not recognise the land; however, they observed a sort of creek with a sandy beach, where they resolved (if possible) to run the

40 ship ashore. So the anchors were cast off and left in the sea, while at the same time the men unlashed the fastenings of the rudders, hoisted the

41 foresail to the breeze, and headed for the beach. Coming upon a place where two seas met, they drove the ship aground; but, while the prow struck and remained immovable, the stern began to break up under

42 the force of the waves. Now the soldiers' plan was to kill the prisoners,

43 in case of anyone swimming away and escaping. However, as the centurion wished to save Paul, he hindered them from their purpose, ordering those who could swim to jump overboard and get first to the land,

44 while the rest were to get upon planks or on pieces of the ship. And so it came to pass that all escaped safe to land.

28 1 Then after our escape we found out that the island was called Melita.

2 And the foreigners behaved with uncommon humanity to us; for, as rain had come on and as it was cold, they kindled a fire and welcomed us all to it.

3 Now Paul had gathered a bundle of sticks and laid them on the fire, when

4 a viper came out with the heat and fastened on his hand. When the foreigners saw the creature hanging from his hand, they said to one another, "This man is certainly a murderer. He has escaped the sea,

5 but Justice will not let him live." However, he shook off the creature

6 into the fire, and was none the worse. Now they were waiting for him to sweU or drop down suddenly a corpse; but after waiting a long while and seeing that no harm came to him, they changed their minds and said

7 he was a god. And in the neighbourhood of that place there were lands belonging to the head man of the island, whose name was Publius. He bade us welcome and entertained us courteously for three

8 days. Now it so happened that the father of Publius was laid np with fever and dysentery; but Paul went in to him, prayed, laid his hands

9 on him, and cured him. When this took place, the rest in the island who

10 had diseases also came and got cured. And they paid us many honours, and furnished us, when we set sail, with necessaries.

11 We set sail, after three months, in an Alexandrian vessel which had

12 wintered In the island (her sign was "The Twin Brothers"), and putting

13 in at Syracuse we stayed for three days. Tacking round from there we arrived at Bhegium; and as one day later a south wind sprang up, we

14 came upon the second day to Puteoli. There we fell in with brothers, in whose company we found refreshment during our stay 2 of seven days.

15 And so to Rome we came. As the brothers there had heard about us, they came out as far as Appil Forum and Tres Tabernae to meet us; and

1G when Paul saw them, he thanked God and took courage. When

we entered Home, Paul was given permission to stay by himself, with the soldiers who guarded him.

17 Now it came to pass after three days that he called the leading Jews together; and when they had assembled, he said to them, "Men and brothers, though I have done nothing against the People or the customs 1 Beading it. » Beading tn/Mlrmmt.

of our fathers, I have been handed over to the Romans as a prisoner

18 from Jerusalem. They examined me and meant to release me, as I

19 was clear of any crime deserving death. The Jews, however, objected, and I was compelled to appeal to Caesar—not that I had any charge

20 to bring against my own nation. This, then, is my reason for asking to see you and to speak with you, namely, because it is for the sake of

21 Israel's hope that I wear this chain." They said to him, " We have had no letters about thee from Judaea, and no brother has come here with any

22 bad report or tale of thee. However, we think it only ri<iht to hear thee state thy opinions ; for, the fact is, we know that everywhere this party

23 is objected to." So they fixed a day with him, and came in large numbers to meet him in his lodging; and from morning to evening he unfolded and attested to them the reign of God, trying to convince them

24 about Jesus, from the law of Moses and from the prophets. And some

25 were convinced by what, was said, but others disbelieved; so, disagreeing among themselves, they went away. But not till Paul said one word more; "Right well did the holy Spirit speak through Isaiah the prophet to your fathers:

26 Go to this people and say,

'You shall hear and hear, yet never understand,
You shall see and see, yet never perceive.'

27 For dulled is the heart of this people,
Their ears are heavy of hearing,

Their eyes have they shut,
Lest haply they should see irith their eyes,
And hear with their ears,

And understand with their hearts and turn again.
For me to cure them.

28 Be it known to you then, that this salvation of God has been sent to

30 the Gentiles: they will listen." Now for two whole years he remained in his private lodging and welcomed all who went to see him,

31 preaching the reign of God, and teaching about the Lord Jesus Christ with perfect confidence, unhindered.


The really cogent data for determining the period of this hook's composition are (a) the interpretation of special allusions like the "seven heads" (IT10), as a historical series of Roman Emperors, the "beast," the number 666, and so forth; (6) the evidence of severe and recent persecution, of wars, physical disturbances, occupation of Jerusalem by foreigners, famine, pestilence, etc.; (c) the implied condition of the Christian communities addressed. These data have been variously read, and point apparently in different directions, either to the period 68-70 or to the later reign of Domitian, 81-96, when early Christian literature was drawn into the whirlpool of apocalyptic.

The former period was once widely accepted, chiefly on account of the curious and definite way in which the circumstances and personality of Nero seem to fit the apocalyptic conception of the antichrist. Between June 68, when Nero died, and September 70, when Jerusalem fell, it is held that this book was composed. In this event, it reflects the passion of the Christians against Rome ( = Babylon, drunken with the blood of the saints and of the martyrs of Jesus), the contemporary existence of the temple (ll1), and the flight of the Christians to Pella (126-14). So formerly Liieke, Keim (i. 63, v. 227), and Weiss (INT, ii. 81-84), followed more recently by Beck (Erkliirung d. Offcnbaruny Joh. 1885, who dates the book 65-69); Reuss (pp. 154-162), and Farrar (Early Days of Christianity, pp. 404-436); W. H. Simcox (CGT, 1890), Hort (Judaistic Cliristianity, p. 160 f.), and unfortunately bv A. Reville (i. p. 261 f.). It is the period adopted also bv Hausrath(iv."pp. 171, 256-282), Beyschlag (NTTli, ii. pp. 347-361), and Scholten (JpTh, 1883, pp. 608-610); but of course a statement like that made by Mr. T. B. Strong (DB ii. 690), that "the majority of modern critics are of opinion that the book was written in the time of Nero," becomes true only if the word "not" be read between "was" and "written." The former popularity of this date was probably due in some degree to Renan's presentment, in what forms the most brilliant volume of his series upon early Christianity, L'anUchrist (espec. chaps, xv.-xvii.). Besides, the lapse of years which intervenes between the Neronic period of the apocalypse, and the much later date of the fourth gospel, obviously helped to remove some of the difficulties felt by those who were anxious to accept both as works of the same author.

The true period of the book, however, is indicated by Mommsen (Provinces of Ii. E. ii. p. 199), although he does not come down beyond 69-79 A.d. The book, as he rightly finds, is "written demonstrably after Nero's fall, and when his return from the East was expected. . . . The foundation of the apocalypse is indisputably the destruction of the earthly Jerusalem, and the prospect thereby for the first time opened up of its future ideal restoration." On this view the loading ideas of the book and its situation are (a) the Imperial cultus advocated by the provincial authorities of the State, and (ft) the belief in Nero's reappearance,

which did not prevail to any wide extent earlier than 70, and sprang up to its luxuriant maturity in all likelihood (Suetonius, Nero, 67) some twenty years later than his death.1

Hence, as the Neronic reference of the "beast "-pictures does not absolutely require the composition of the book c. 70 A.d., and as other elements—mainly though not decisively that of the Imperial cultus, which had grown like a fungus beside the earlier local cults (Ac 1927)— urge a considerably later date, modern criticism has heartily adopted the traditional date (cp. e.g. especially the remark in Euseb. HE, v. 8. 6 [Iren. Adv. Haer. v. 30, 3]: oiiSc yap wpo Jtoxxog xpovov capaBij, aXXa <Tx*8bv Ctti Ttjs Tiptrepas yiveas, npos T(3 reXci rijs &op.criavov apx*js), i-Cc. 95 A.d. Under Domitian, tradition unmistakably fixed the banishment of John; his retirement, voluntary or compulsory, was due very probably to the acute persecution varying from death to exile,8 which seems to have attended the enforcement of the Imperial cultus, especially in the Asiatic provinces (Rushforth, Latin Inscriptions, pp. 47, 48). Then it was that Christians were persecuted on definitely religious grounds (1315 149 204); and not only, as in Nero's day, was the persecution active in the capital, but also throughout the provinces (Neumann, Der B&m* Stoat und die allgemeine Kirche bis aujf Diocletian, 1890, I. pp. 9, 11, 15). The situation and prospects of Christianity during the later period of Domitian's reign ("quum jam semianimum laceraret Flavius orbem ultimus et calvo serviret Roma Neroni") are the subject of the apocalypse. It reflects the music of humanity, sad but not still, within Christendom, during the earlier stages of that settled and serious policy adopted by Rome towards those who, like the Christians, were indisposed to worship the Emperor as Deus ac Dominus noster, and thus incurred the charge of high treason. The full-blown procedure {Cognitiones de Christianis) which prevailed under Trajan (Plin. Ep. 1098) was little in advance of what must have been experienced during Domitian's reign (Neumann, pp. 13-15). Traces of this age,3 with its hues of earthquake and eclipse, its current agony and bitterness, are obvious in Apoc 2-3, where the figurative language discloses not merely, as in Hebrews, a considerable retrospect and partial decline, but a persecution (l8 310), general and varying in severity.* Most editors and critics therefore find them

1 The belief in Nero's existence and in his return from Parthia was not confined to Roman superstition. It passed into Jewish (cp. especially 4th bk. of Sibyll. iv. 119,137) and Christian (Apoc 17) circles in Asia Minor during the last quarter of the first century, and lasted till c. 100 A.d. (Dio Chrysost. Orat. 21. 10).

* "Plenum exsiliis mare, infeeti caedibus scopuli" (Tacit. Ann. xv. 44; Mist. i. 2). If the allusion in Apoc 1" refers to this, the last note of the prophetic literature resembles in its origin the earliest, and the exiled John is brother across eight centuries to the gagged Amos (Apoc 1', dradxv^it. . . Sii?«u nts iaixtit «4t»d (107)=Amos 37, t£f y-' a-r«a/^r>: ToiSi/Kv Tpii; rwt it6\«tt elvr*u), who sped a written message to the world from under an official ban. On Domitian's attitude to and effect upon the church, cp. Victor Schultze, JtTK, pp. 787, 788, and Ramsay, ORE, chap. xiii.

8 rkt etiQvtiiKf xxi tTCL\Xv,).9vt yittpuvKf fltuV n/ixQapSis x») xipiTrirHf (Clem. Rom. i.).

Also Dio Cassius, Epit. lrrii. 14. The Apocalypse is the stormy petrel of ancient literature. A rough era produced apocalypses and sent people back to read the older pieces of apoualyptic romance. Prof. Rendel Harris declares that after the recent massacres in Armenia a similar tendency could be observed ; the "renewed and devout study" of the people was directed not merely to the Bible but to the apocalyptic parts, and especially the book of Daniel (Contemp. Rev. Dec. 1899, p. 812).

4 Cp. Church Quart. Rev. (1898), pp. 39-52 ; and generally Zahn, Apok. Studien, ZKWL (1885), pp. 523 f., 561 f.

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