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Acts 27:1

Paul and Company Sail for Rome

27:1 When it was decided we 1  would sail to Italy, 2  they handed over Paul and some other prisoners to a centurion 3  of the Augustan Cohort 4  named Julius.

Acts 27:3

27:3 The next day we put in 5  at Sidon, 6  and Julius, treating Paul kindly, 7  allowed him to go to his friends so they could provide him with what he needed. 8 

1 sn The last “we” section in Acts begins here and extends to 28:16 (the previous one ended at 21:18).

2 sn Sail to Italy. This voyage with its difficulty serves to show how God protected Paul on his long journey to Rome. From the perspective of someone in Palestine, this may well picture “the end of the earth” quite literally (cf. Acts 1:8).

3 sn See the note on the word centurion in 10:1.

4 tn According to BDAG 917 s.v. σεβαστός, “In σπεῖρα Σεβαστή 27:1 (cp. OGI 421) Σεβαστή is likew. an exact transl. of Lat. Augusta, an honorary title freq. given to auxiliary troops (Ptolem. renders it Σεβαστή in connection w. three legions that bore it: 2, 3, 30; 2, 9, 18; 4, 3, 30) imperial cohort.” According to W. Foerster (TDNT 7:175), “In Ac. 27:1 the σπεῖρα Σεβαστή is an expression also found elsewhere for ‘auxiliary troops.’” In no case would this refer to a special imperial bodyguard, and to translate “imperial regiment” or “imperial cohort” might give this impression. There is some archaeological evidence for a Cohors Augusta I stationed in Syria during the time of Augustus, but whether this is the same unit is very debatable.

sn The Augustan Cohort. A cohort was a Roman military unit of about 600 soldiers, one-tenth of a legion. There is considerable debate over the identification of this particular cohort and the meaning of the title Augustan mentioned here. These may well have been auxiliary (provincial) troops given the honorary title.

5 tn BDAG 516 s.v. κατάγω states, “Hence the pass., in act. sense, of ships and seafarers put in εἴς τι at a harborεἰς Σιδῶνα Ac 27:3.”

6 sn Sidon is another seaport 75 mi (120 km) north of Caesarea.

map For location see Map1 A1; JP3 F3; JP4 F3.

7 tn BDAG 1056 s.v. φιλανθρώπως states, “benevolently, kindly φιλανθρώπως χρῆσθαί (τινι) treat someone in kindly fashionAc 27:3.”

sn Treating Paul kindly. Paul’s treatment followed the pattern of the earlier imprisonment (cf. Acts 24:23).

8 tn Grk “to go to his friends to be cared for.” The scene is an indication of Christian hospitality.

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