Paul proclaimed repentance (Acts 26:20)

“I declared first

To those at Damascus,

Then in Jerusalem,

And throughout all the countryside

Of Judea,

As well as to the gentiles,

That they should repent!

They should turn to God!

They should perform deeds

Consistent with repentance.”

ἀλλὰ τοῖς ἐν Δαμασκῷ πρῶτόν τε καὶ Ἱεροσολύμοις, πᾶσάν τε τὴν χώραν τῆς Ἰουδαίας καὶ τοῖς ἔθνεσιν ἀπήγγελλον μετανοεῖν καὶ ἐπιστρέφειν ἐπὶ τὸν Θεόν, ἄξια τῆς μετανοίας ἔργα πράσσοντας.

The author of Acts indicated that Paul said that he first proclaimed (ἀπήγγελλον) to those at Damascus (ἀλλὰ τοῖς ἐν Δαμασκῷ πρῶτόν τε), then in Jerusalem (καὶ Ἱεροσολύμοις), as well as throughout all the countryside of Judea (πᾶσάν τε τὴν χώραν τῆς Ἰουδαίας), and also to the gentiles (καὶ τοῖς ἔθνεσιν), that they should repent or have a metanoia (μετανοεῖν).  They should turn (καὶ ἐπιστρέφειν) to God (ἐπὶ τὸν Θεόν).  They should perform deeds (ἔργα πράσσοντας) consistent (ἄξια) with repentance (τῆς μετανοίας).  Acts, chapter 9:20-29 described in detail Paul’s activity in Damascus, but in Acts chapter 22, there was nothing about his activities in Damascus.  Both Acts, chapter 9:26-29, and chapter 22:17-21, had Paul in Jerusalem, where he was forced to leave as in 9:30. The believing brothers (οἱ ἀδελφοὶ) learned (ἐπιγνόντες δὲ) of the proposed threats against Paul, so that they brought him down (κατήγαγον αὐτὸν) to Caesarea (εἰς Καισάριαν).  Then they sent him off (καὶ ἐξαπέστειλαν αὐτὸν) to Tarsus (εἰς Ταρσόν), his hometown.  In none of these other accounts was there any mention of Paul preaching in the Judean countryside.  However, most of the last ten chapters of Acts were about Paul’s missionary activities to the Jewish people in the diaspora and gentiles in Cyprus, Asia Minor, Greece, and Macedonia.  The message was always the same, to repent, turn to God, and do good deeds, like a repentant person.  Have you ever asked anyone to repent?

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