The Berean Expositor
Volume 31 - Page 137 of 181
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The trial fell into two parts, for he speaks of his "first defence" (II Tim. 4: 16).
Evidently he had been remanded: the presiding judge having pronounced the word
Amplius, an adjournment had taken place, and the Apostle seized the opportunity to write
his last letter to his beloved son Timothy. Hatred of the Christians now ruled men's
minds, and a charge of treason, from which there would be no hope of acquittal, would be
laid against the Apostle.
Somewhere outside the city walls, along the Via Ostiensis, where now stands the
church of San Paolo fouri le mura, the Apostle was led forth from his dungeon to
execution. In the days of the Republic this would have been effected by the lictor's axe,
but under Nero, it was accomplished by the sword. It is not for us to follow the traditions
of men as to what became of Paul's body after his death. He had finished his course, he
had kept the faith, he was assured that there awaited him "at that day" a crown. We can
rejoice that what seemed most like defeat, was victory. He was "more than conqueror"
through Christ Who loved him.
While there are other features that are of interest, we feel that enough has been said for
the object in view, and that we have proved the value of knowing something of
contemporary history as we study the Acts and Epistles. With the good fight ending with
Paul's martyrdom we therefore bring this series of studies to a close.
Where actual quotations have been made, the author's name is given, but in a subject
of this character which can be prepared only by consulting authorities, indebtedness to
the writings of others for much of the information cannot be formally acknowledged. A
list of the works chiefly consulted in the acquisition of most of the historic material used
is, however, appended, and the interested reader who is inclined to pursue the subject
further will find that this will afford good ground from which to make deeper research
than can be attempted here, where we are but writing a series of brief articles.
The Works of Josephus (Witson's translation).
The Life and Epistles of St. Paul (Lewin).
The Life and Epistles of St. Paul (Conybeare and Howson).
The Herods (Farrar).
The Life and Work of St. Paul (Farrar).
Cyclopaedia of Biblical Knowledge (Kitto).
St. Paul and Roman Law (W. E. Ball).
Historical Commentary on Galatians (Sir William Ramsay).
The Church in the Roman Empire (Sir William Ramsay).
Roman Law and History in the New Testament (Septimus Buss).
The Greek New Testament (Alford).
The Greek New Testament (Bloomfield).
The Greek New Testament (Webster and Wilkinson).
The Greek Testament (Wordsworth).
The History of the World (Edited by J. A. Hammerton).
The Biographical Treasury (Samuel Maunder).
The Works of Dr. John Lightfoot.
Light from the Ancient East (Deissmann).
Universal Encyclopedia (Harmsworth's).
Roman History, Literature and Antiquities (A. Petrie).
Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire (Gibbon).