B – Paul’s Mission to Corinth, Acts 18: 7-11

[7] καὶ μεταβὰς ἐκεῖθεν ἦλθεν εἰς οἰκίαν τινὸς ὀνόματι Τιτίου Ἰούστου σεβομένου τὸν θεόν, οὗ ἡ οἰκία ἦν συνομοροῦσα τῇ συναγωγῇ. [8] Κρίσπος δὲ ὁ ἀρχισυνάγωγος ἐπίστευσεν τῷ κυρίῳ σὺν ὅλῳ τῷ οἴκῳ αὐτοῦ, καὶ πολλοὶ τῶν Κορινθίων ἀκούοντες ἐπίστευον καὶ ἐβαπτίζοντο. [9] Εἶπεν δὲ ὁ κύριος ἐν νυκτὶ δι᾽ ὁράματος τῷ Παύλῳ “Μὴ φοβοῦ, ἀλλὰ λάλει καὶ μὴ σιωπήσῃς, [10] διότι ἐγώ εἰμι μετὰ σοῦ καὶ οὐδεὶς ἐπιθήσεταί σοι τοῦ κακῶσαί σε, διότι λαός ἐστί μοι πολὺς ἐν τῇ πόλει ταύτῃ.” [11] Ἐκάθισεν δὲ ἐνιαυτὸν καὶ μῆνας ἓξ διδάσκων ἐν αὐτοῖς τὸν λόγον τοῦ θεοῦ.

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After Paul shakes his cloak and declares that he will take his mission to the Gentiles, he moves to the house of Titius Justus, a God-worshiper (σεβόμενος).  And just as the God-worshiper Lydia’s house serves as the gathering place for believers in Philippi (16: 15, 40), so might Titius Justus’ house in Corinth. Its location next door to the synagogue, moreover, may suggest a willingness by Paul to be more assertive in his message.

In verses 7-8, Paul has registered success by moving his base of operations to the house of Titius Justus and then baptizing the house of the synagogue leader Crispus.  So why does Luke insert the dream (ὅραμα) sequence in verses 9-11?  Is it meant to sum up the first half of the Corinth episode?  Is it divine affirmation in response to the trouble Paul experienced from those opposing him and insulting him (v. 6)?  Is it meant to be a doublet, echoing what Paul already said when he shook his cloak and declared that he would be the apostle of the gentiles (6)?  Or is it looking forward to Paul’s encounter with the proconsul Gallio in the next section and promising a positive outcome?

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