Paul was on his third missionary journey through Asia Minor, the peninsula of western Asia between the Black Sea and the Mediterranean Sea.
Paul’s mission had begun in at Ephesus, a little over 3 years prior, and included Luke, Timothy, Aristarchus and Secundus of Thessalonica, Gaius of Derbe and Tychicus and Trophimus of Asia. The missionaries had been serving in Troas where Paul brought a young man back to life after he fell to his death from a third story window.
“13 Then we went ahead to the ship and sailed to Assos, there intending to take Paul on board; for so he had given orders, intending himself to go on foot.” (Acts 20:13)
Along the Mediterranean Sea, the sailing distance between Troas and Assos around Cape Lectum was about 40 miles, while the trip on foot was about 20 miles. Assos was a thriving harbor city and key shipping station along the channel, widely used for commerce.
“14 And when he met us at Assos, we took him on board and came to Mitylene.” (Acts 20:14)
From Assos, accompanied by Paul and his delegation, the missionaries sailed 30 miles south to Mitylene, the capital of Lesbos the third largest Greek island located in the northeastern Aegean Sea.
Located on the southeast edge of the island, Mitylene was inhabited by two third of the island’s population. The densely populated city was surrounded by farmlands, and millions of olive trees, with mountains to the west and the north.
“15 We sailed from there, and the next day came opposite Chios. The following day we arrived at Samos and stayed at Trogyllium. The next day we came to Miletus.” (Acts 20:15)
Also located on the Aegean Sea, Chios was the fifth largest of the Greek islands, about 5 miles off the Anatolian coast. Paul and his fellow missionaries sailed passed it on their way to Samos, another Greek island south of Chios.
That night, the disciples stayed at Trogyllium, a Greek promontory located approximately 15 miles southwest of Ephesus.
The next day, the missionaries sailed south from Trogyllium to Miletus, the Greek city located on the western coast of Anatolia.
“16 For Paul had decided to sail past Ephesus, so that he would not have to spend time in Asia; for he was hurrying to be at Jerusalem, if possible, on the Day of Pentecost.” (Acts 20:16)
Paul’s love and passion for Ephesus certainly played a role in his decision to sail past the city so he could continue his journey to Jerusalem where he had planned to celebrate Pentecost, the week long feast commemorating the descent of the Holy Spirit upon the Apostles and other followers of Jesus Christ. Let’s pray!
We thank you for your blessings in our lives and for your servant Luke,
We praise you Lord for his wisdom and for his works through this scripture,
We ask you Lord to inspire us to use these verses in our lives
As we grow in you through the teachings of your faithful apostle.
Lord we ask you to strengthen us each day as we endure through battles,
Allow us to praise and love each other through faith in you Jesus,
Shield us from evil through truth, the gospel, salvation and prayer,
Guide us to abide by your word as we spread your gospel to one and all
Becoming examples of faith through our character as we walk the narrow path.
God we pray that you will continue to bless us, to bless our lives and fill us with hope
We ask you Lord to guide our footsteps and lead us to the way everlasting,
Through faith in you Lord we seek salvation and a place with you in heaven
According to your word, your everlasting wisdom and strength.
May your will be done
In our lives, for your life.
We thank you for your love and all you bless us with each day.
This message was written by Daniel St.Pierre