They were troublemaking Jews disturbing the peace (Acts 16:20)

“They brought them

Before the magistrates.

They said.

‘These men are Jews.

They are trouble makers

In our city.’”

καὶ προσαγαγόντες αὐτοὺς τοῖς στρατηγοῖς εἶπαν Οὗτοι οἱ ἄνθρωποι ἐκταράσσουσιν ἡμῶν τὴν πόλιν, Ἰουδαῖοι ὑπάρχοντες,

The author of Acts indicated that when they had brought them (καὶ προσαγαγόντες αὐτοὺς) before the magistrates (τοῖς στρατηγοῖς), they said (εἶπαν) that these men (οἱ ἄνθρωποι) were troublemaker Jews (ὑπάρχοντες Ἰουδαῖοι).  They were disturbing (ἐκταράσσουσιν) their city (ἡμῶν τὴν πόλιν).  Acts was the only Greek biblical writing that used this word ἐκταράσσουσιν, that means to throw into great trouble, disturb greatly. They brought Paul and Silas to the local Roman magistrates, perhaps local honorific leaders.  Paul’s accusers said that these troublemaking Jewish guys were disturbing the peace in their city.  They assumed that they were Jewish, since they knew nothing about Christianity.  Besides, Christians were still considered a Jewish sect.  This may also have been anti-Jewish prejudice.  Have you ever been accused of being Jewish?

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