Acts 17:1
Verse (Click for Chapter)
New International Version
When Paul and his companions had passed through Amphipolis and Apollonia, they came to Thessalonica, where there was a Jewish synagogue.

New Living Translation
Paul and Silas then traveled through the towns of Amphipolis and Apollonia and came to Thessalonica, where there was a Jewish synagogue.

English Standard Version
Now when they had passed through Amphipolis and Apollonia, they came to Thessalonica, where there was a synagogue of the Jews.

Berean Study Bible
When they had passed through Amphipolis and Apollonia, they came to Thessalonica, where there was a Jewish synagogue.

Berean Literal Bible
And having passed through Amphipolis and Apollonia, they came to Thessalonica, where there was a synagogue of the Jews.

New American Standard Bible
Now when they had traveled through Amphipolis and Apollonia, they came to Thessalonica, where there was a synagogue of the Jews.

King James Bible
Now when they had passed through Amphipolis and Apollonia, they came to Thessalonica, where was a synagogue of the Jews:

Holman Christian Standard Bible
Then they traveled through Amphipolis and Apollonia and came to Thessalonica, where there was a Jewish synagogue.

International Standard Version
Paul and Silas traveled through Amphipolis and Apollonia and came to Thessalonica, where there was a Jewish synagogue.

NET Bible
After they traveled through Amphipolis and Apollonia, they came to Thessalonica, where there was a Jewish synagogue.

New Heart English Bible
Now when they had passed through Amphipolis and Apollonia, they came to Thessalonica, where there was a Jewish synagogue.

Aramaic Bible in Plain English
They passed unto the cities Amphipolis and Apollonia and they came to Thessaloniqa where there was a synagogue of the Jews.

GOD'S WORD® Translation
Paul and Silas traveled through the cities of Amphipolis and Apollonia and came to the city of Thessalonica, where there was a synagogue.

New American Standard 1977
Now when they had traveled through Amphipolis and Apollonia, they came to Thessalonica, where there was a synagogue of the Jews.

Jubilee Bible 2000
Now when they had passed through Amphipolis and Apollonia, they came to Thessalonica, where the synagogue of the Jews was.

King James 2000 Bible
Now when they had passed through Amphipolis and Apollonia, they came to Thessalonica, where there was a synagogue of the Jews:

American King James Version
Now when they had passed through Amphipolis and Apollonia, they came to Thessalonica, where was a synagogue of the Jews:

American Standard Version
Now when they had passed through Amphipolis and Apollonia, they came to Thessalonica, where was a synagogue of the Jews:

Douay-Rheims Bible
AND when they had passed through Amphipolis and Apollonia, they came to Thessalonica, where there was a synagogue of the Jews.

Darby Bible Translation
And having journeyed through Amphipolis and Apollonia, they came to Thessalonica, where was the synagogue of the Jews.

English Revised Version
Now when they had passed through Amphipolis and Apollonia, they came to Thessalonica, where was a synagogue of the Jews:

Webster's Bible Translation
Now when they had passed through Amphipolis, and Apollonia, they came to Thessalonica, where was a synagogue of the Jews.

Weymouth New Testament
Then, passing through Amphipolis and Apollonia, they went to Thessalonica. Here there was a synagogue of the Jews.

World English Bible
Now when they had passed through Amphipolis and Apollonia, they came to Thessalonica, where there was a Jewish synagogue.

Young's Literal Translation
And having passed through Amphipolis, and Apollonia, they came to Thessalonica, where was the synagogue of the Jews,
Study Bible
Paul Preaches at Thessalonica
1When they had passed through Amphipolis and Apollonia, they came to Thessalonica, where there was a Jewish synagogue. 2As was his custom, Paul went into the synagogue, and on three Sabbaths he reasoned with them from the Scriptures,…
Cross References
Acts 17:10
As soon as night had fallen, the brothers sent Paul and Silas away to Berea. On arriving there, they went into the Jewish synagogue.

Acts 17:11
Now the Bereans were more noble-minded than the Thessalonians, for they received the message with great eagerness and examined the Scriptures every day to see if these teachings were true.

Acts 17:13
But when the Jews from Thessalonica learned that Paul was also proclaiming the word of God in Berea, they went there themselves to incite and agitate the crowds.

Acts 20:4
Paul was accompanied by Sopater son of Pyrrhus from Berea, Aristarchus and Secundus from Thessalonica, Gaius from Derbe, Timothy, and Tychicus and Trophimus from Asia.

Acts 27:2
We boarded an Adramyttian ship about to sail for ports along the coast of Asia, and we put out to sea. Aristarchus, a Macedonian from Thessalonica, was with us.

Philippians 4:16
For even while I was in Thessalonica, you provided for my needs once and again.

1 Thessalonians 1:1
Paul, Silvanus, and Timothy, To the church of the Thessalonians in God the Father and the Lord Jesus Christ: Grace and peace to you.

1 Thessalonians 2:2
As you are aware, we had already endured suffering and shameful treatment in Philippi. But in the face of strong opposition, we were bold in our God to speak the gospel of God to you.

2 Thessalonians 1:1
Paul, Silvanus, and Timothy, To the church of the Thessalonians in God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ:

2 Timothy 4:10
because Demas, in his love of this world, has deserted me and gone to Thessalonica. Crescens has gone to Galatia, and Titus to Dalmatia.
Treasury of Scripture

Now when they had passed through Amphipolis and Apollonia, they came to Thessalonica, where was a synagogue of the Jews:

Thessalonica.

Acts 20:4 And there accompanied him into Asia Sopater of Berea; and of the …

Acts 27:2 And entering into a ship of Adramyttium, we launched, meaning to …

Philippians 4:16 For even in Thessalonica you sent once and again to my necessity.

1 Thessalonians 1:1 Paul, and Silvanus, and Timotheus, to the church of the Thessalonians …

2 Thessalonians 1:1 Paul, and Silvanus, and Timotheus, to the church of the Thessalonians …

2 Timothy 4:10 For Demas has forsaken me, having loved this present world, and is …

where.

Acts 14:1 And it came to pass in Iconium, that they went both together into …

Acts 15:21 For Moses of old time has in every city them that preach him, being …

Acts 16:13 And on the sabbath we went out of the city by a river side, where …

XVII.

(1) Now when they had passed through Amphipolis and Apollonia.--The two cities were both on the great Roman roads known as the Via Egnatia. Amphipolis, formerly known as Ennea Hodoi, or the Nine Ways, was famous in the Peloponnesian War as the scene of the death of Brasidas, and had been made, under the Romans, the capital of Macedonia prima. It was thirty-three Roman miles from Philippi and thirty from Apollonia, the latter being thirty-seven from Thessalonica. The site of Apollonia is uncertain, but the name is, perhaps, traceable in the modern village of Polina, between the Strymonic and Thermaic Gulfs. A more famous city of the same name, also on the Via Egnatia, was situated near Dyrrhacium. It seems clear that the names indicated the stages at which the travellers rested, and that thirty miles a day a somewhat toilsome journey for those who had so recently been scourged) was, as with most men of ordinary strength, their average rate of travelling. It would seem that there was no Jewish population to present an opening for the gospel at either of these cities, and that St. Paul, therefore, passed on to Thessalonica.

Thessalonica, where was a synagogue of the Jews.--The city, which had previously borne the names of Emathia, Halia, and Therma, had been enlarged by Philip of Macedon, and named after his daughter. It was situated on the Thermaic Gulf, and had grown into a commercial port of considerable importance. As such, it had attracted Jews in large numbers. The MSS. differ as to the presence or absence of the Greek article before "synagogue," but, on the whole, it is probable that we should read, "the synagogue," that which served for the Jews of the neighbouring cities, who were not numerous enough to have one of their own. The old name survives in the modern Saloniki, and there is still a large Jewish population there.

Verse 1. - Amphipolis. This was the ancient capital of that division of Macedonia (Macedonia Prima); see Acts 16:12, note. It was situated on the Via Egnatia, thirty-four miles southwest from Philippi, and three miles from the AEgean Sea. It lay in a peninsula, surrounded on three sides by the Strymon, whence its name, Amphipolis; its modern name is Neokhoria, now a village. Its original name was Ἐννέα  ῾οδοί, The Nine Ways. Originally a Thracian city, it was conquered by the Athenians, then by the Lacedaemonians, then fell under the dominion of Philip of Macedon, and finally, with the rest of Macedonia, became part of the Roman empire. Apollonia; now probably Polina, thirty miles due west of Amphipolis, on the Via Egnatia. The modern track from Amphipolis to Thessalonica does not pass through Polina, but beneath it. Thessalonica; on the Via Egnatia, now the important seaport of Saloniki, on the Aegean Sea or Archipelago, thirty-eight miles from Apollonia, and con-raining about sixty thousand inhabitants. Its ancient name was Therma (whence the Thermean Bay), but it took the name of Thessalonica under the Macedonian kings. It continued to grow in importance under the Romans, and was the most populous city of the whole of Macedonia. It was the capital of Macedonia Secunda under the division by AEmilius Paulus (Acts 16:12, note), and in the time of Theodosius the Younger, when Macedonia consisted of two provinces, it was the capital of Macedonia Prima. But from its situation and great commercial importance it was virtually the capital of "Greece, Macedonia, and Illyricum" (Howson, in ' Dict. of Geog.'). Its trade attracted a great colony of Jews from before the time of St. Paul, and through the Roman and Greek and Turkish empires, down to the present day, when "one-half of the population is said to be of Israelitish race "(Lewin). Thessalonica had a terrible celebrity from the massacre of its inhabitants by order of the Emperor Theodosius, in revenge for the murder of Botheric, his general, which led to the famous penance imposed upon the emperor by St. Ambrose (Gibbon,' Decline and Fall,' Acts 27.). It was also taken three times in the Middle Ages: by the Saracens, with fearful slaughter, A.D. 904; by the Normans, with scarcely less cruelty, A.D. 1185; and by the Turks, in 1430. Its ecclesiastical history under its archbishops is also of great interest (see 'Dict. of Greek and Roman Geog.'). Where was a synagogue. It is needless to point out the exact agreement of this brief statement with historical fact as pointed out above. There is said to have been twenty-two Jewish synagogues at Thessalonica after the expulsion of the Jews from Spain in the fifteenth century, and the number at the present time is stated to be thirty-six. The existence of a synagogue at this time was the reason of St. Paul's visit and sojourn there. Now when they had passed through Amphipolls,.... A city of Macedonia, where it is placed by Pliny (q); according to Ptolomy (r), it was in that part of Macedonia, which is called Edonis, and was near Philippi, and lay in the way from thence to Thessalonica; Harpocratian (s) says, it was a city of Thrace, formerly called "the Nine Ways"; it was upon the borders of Thrace, and had its name Amphipolis from the river Strymon running on both sides of it, making it a peninsula; it was also called Crademna, and Anadraemum; it is now in the hands of the Turks, and by them called Empoli; this city was originally built by Cimon the Athenian, into which he sent ten thousand Athenians for a colony, as the writer of his life reports (t). The apostle only passed through this place; it does not appear that he at all preached in it, or at any other time, nor do we read of it in ecclesiastical history, nor of the following place:

and Apollonia; this is also placed by Pliny (u) in Macedonia, and is said by him to have been formerly a colony of the Corinthians, and about seven miles from the sea; and by Ptolomy (w), in that part of Macedonia called Mygdonia, and with him its name is Apollonia of Mygdonia; it was situated by the river Echedorus, and was famous for Augustus Caesar's learning Greek here, and is now called Ceres: there was another of this name in the region of Pentapolis, and was one of the five (x) cities in it; and another in Palestine mentioned by Pliny (y), along with Caesarea; and by Josephus (z), with Joppa, Jamnia, Azotus, &c. but this was near Thessalonica; it is said to be about twenty miles from it: here also the apostle did not stay to preach the Gospel, nor is there any mention made of it elsewhere in the Acts of the Apostles, and yet Marcus, sister's son to Barnabas, is said to be bishop of Apollonia; See Gill on Luke 10:1, but whether the same place with this, or whether fact, is not certain;

they came to Thessalonica; a free city of Macedonia (a); it was formerly called Halis (b), and sometimes Therme; it had its name of Thessalonica from the victory which Philip king of Macedon obtained over the Thessalians; and not from his daughter Thessalonica, the wife of Cassander, who also had her name from the same victory: in this place a sedition being raised, and some magistrates killed, Theodosius the Roman emperor suffered seven thousand men to be slain; and when he came to Milain, Ambrose bishop of that place having heard of it, would not suffer him to enter into the church and receive the Lord's supper, until he repented of his sin, and made public confession of it (c). Thessalonica has been since the head of a new kingdom erected by Boniface marquis of Montferrat; it was for some time in the hands of the Venetians, but was taken from them by Amurath emperor of the Turks (d). The Italians call it now Saloniki; it has been since inhabited by Christians, Turks, and Jews, and chiefly by the latter, their number, according to their own account, is fourteen thousand, and their synagogues fourscore. There always were many Jews in this place, and so there were when the apostle was here, for it follows;

where was a synagogue of the Jews; it seems as if there was none, neither in Philippi, nor in Amphipolis, nor in Apollonia: why these two last places should be passed through by the apostle, without making any stay at them, cannot be said; it is very likely he had, as in some other instances before, some particular directions from the Spirit of God, there being none of the chosen vessels of salvation to be called there, at least, at this time, when there were many at Thessalonica.

(q) Nat. Hist. l. 4. c. 10. (r) Geograph. l. 3. c. 13. (s) Lexic. Decem. Orat. p. 20, 104. Vid. Plin. Nat. Hist. l. 10. c. 8. (t) Cornelius Nepos in Vita Cimon. c. 2.((u) Nat. Hist. l. 3. c. 23. (w) Geograph. l. 8. c. 13. Vid. Plin. l. 4. c. 10. (x) Plin. Nat. Hist. l. 5. c. 5. (y) Ib. c. 13. (z) Antiqu. l. 13. c. 15. sect. 4. & de Bello Jud. l. 1. c. 8, sect. 3.((a) Plin. l. 4. c. 10. (b) Ptolom. l. 3. c. 13. (c) Magdeburg. Hist. Eccles. cent. 4. c. 3. p. 82. (d) Petav. Rationar. Temp. par. 1. p. 462, 475. CHAPTER 17

Ac 17:1-15. At Thessalonica the Success of Paul's Preaching Endangering His Life, He Is Despatched by Night to Berea, Where His Message Meets with Enlightened Acceptance—A Hostile Movement from Thessalonica Occasions His Sudden Departure from Berea—He Arrives at Athens.

1. when they had passed through Amphipolis—thirty-three miles southwest of Philippi, on the river Strymon, and at the head of the gulf of that name, on the northern coast of the Ægean Sea.

and Apollonia—about thirty miles southwest of Amphipolis; but the exact site is not known.

they came to Thessalonica—about thirty-seven miles due west from Apollonia, at the head of the Thermaic (or Thessalonian) Gulf, at the northwestern extremity of the Ægean Sea; the principal and most populous city in Macedonia. "We see at once how appropriate a place it was for one of the starting-points of the Gospel in Europe, and can appreciate the force of what Paul said to the Thessalonians within a few months of his departure from them: "From you, the word of the Lord sounded forth like a trumpet, not only in Macedonia and Achaia, but in every place,"" (1Th 1:8) [Howson].

where was a synagogue of the Jews—implying that (as at Philippi) there was none at Amphipolis and Apollonia.17:1-9 The drift and scope of Paul's preaching and arguing, was to prove that Jesus is the Christ. He must needs suffer for us, because he could not otherwise purchase our redemption for us; and he must needs have risen again, because he could not otherwise apply the redemption to us. We are to preach concerning Jesus that he is Christ; therefore we may hope to be saved by him, and are bound to be ruled by him. The unbelieving Jews were angry, because the apostles preached to the Gentiles, that they might be saved. How strange it is, that men should grudge others the privileges they will not themselves accept! Neither rulers nor people need be troubled at the increase of real Christians, even though turbulent spirits should make religion the pretext for evil designs. Of such let us beware, from such let us withdraw, that we may show a desire to act aright in society, while we claim our right to worship God according to our consciences.
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