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Christian teaching denounced. Paul’s offer to explain it to them is readily accepted.


28, 25-28: Paul’s final words in Acts reflect a major concern of Luke’s writing: how the salvation promised in the Old Testament, accomplished by Jesus, and offered first to Israel (13, 26), has now been offered to and accepted by the Gentiles. Quoting Is 6, 9-10, Paul presents the scriptural support for his indictment of his fellow Jews who refuse to accept the message he proclaims. Their rejection leads to its proclamation among the Gentiles.


28, 30-31: Although the ending of Acts may seem to be abrupt, Luke


has now completed his story with the establishment of Paul and the proclamation of Christianity in Rome. Paul’s confident and unhindered proclamation of the gospel in Rome forms the climax to the story whose outline was provided in 1,8: “You will be my witness in Jerusalem … and to the ends of the earth.”


Acts 28: 16-31


16 When he entered Rome, Paul was allowed to live by himself, with the soldier who was guarding him. Testimony to Jews in Rome 17 Three days later he called together the leaders of the Jews. When they had gathered he said to them, “My brothers, although I had done nothing against our people or our ancestral customs, I was handed over to the Romans as a prisoner from Jerusalem. 18 After trying my case the Romans wanted to release me, because they found nothing against me deserving the death penalty. 19 But when the Jews objected, I was obliged to appeal to Caesar, even though I had no accusation to make against my own nation. 20 This is the reason, then, I have requested to see you and to speak with you, for it is on account of the hope of Israel that I wear these chains.” 21 They answered him, “We have received no letters from Judea about you, nor has any of the brothers arrived with a damaging report or rumor about you. 22 But we should like to hear you present your views, for we know that this sect is denounced everywhere.”


REFLECTION:


Paul arrived in Rome after a hard and dangerous journey. His ship was wrecked and he suffered much. At least he was in Rome, the center of the world. Paul was under arrest but he could still preach the Good News to all who came to him. Paul tried again to win over the local Jewish leaders. He was eager for them to believe in Jesus.


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