The first of two post on Apostle Paul’s Peregrinations
Paul’s First Apostolic Peregrination as described in the Acts (chapters 13-14) included Cyprus, Antioch and cities of South Galatia (Iconio, Lystra and Thervi). He was accompanied by Apostle Varnavas and the latter’s nephew John-Mark who abandoned the peregrination in Pergue for unknown reasons. They decided to address first on synagogues but after the hostility they faced, they addressed to the gentiles. Converted gentiles and the Jewish people managed to live together in harmony for quite a while. Even though the creation of such a mixed church was a great accomplishment at the time, it caused an agitation on behalf of the Jewish who demanded from the gentiles to circumcise before joining the church. This dispute led to the first Apostolic Council where it was decided for the gentiles not to circumcise but only to avoid any idolatry practices of the past.
The Second Apostolic Peregrination started right after the Apostolic Council and was coincided with the new era that began in the association between Christianity and Hellenism. It began in Antioch along with Sylas this time. On Lystra Timotheus is added and after Phrygia and Galatia they went to Macedonia driven by the vision of a Macedonian man who appeared on Paul asking him for help. At this point Luke joins them. They went through Thessaloniki and Veria establishing churches along the way and leaving relatively soon due to persecutions from the Jewish people.
Their next destination was Athens. In spite of Paul’s famous speech in Placka and his efforts to approach the Athenians through more philosophic paths he didn’t manage to create a Church. A small tour through Ephesus, Palestine and Antioch interceded and Paul began his third Apostolic Peregrination.
By that time Apostle Paul had founded Churches in Asia Minor and in Greece with a substantial centre in Corinth and he began to work on Ephesus – a very significant place as well.
After his return to Antioch, Paul left for Galatia and Phrygia to support the churches he founded there.
His third apostolic peregrination started from Ephesus around 52 A.D. He left for Jerusalem after a year escorted by pupils from Caesarea. He faced an uprising from the Jewish people of Jerusalem when he was preaching inside the Temple. They attacked him but he was saved from certain death thanks to Roman military tribune Claudius Lycias. The latter relegated him to the Roman commander of Caesarea Felix who kept him in prison for two years. Phestus succeeded Felix and the Jewish people asked him to deliver them Paul so that he would be put to trial according to the Jewish laws. Facing the certainty of an execution Paul used his Roman citizen’s rights and asked to be judged by Cesar. He was transferred to Rome where he remained under house restriction; however he was able to accept visitors and preach without any obstacles.