Trying Paul or Trying Rome? Judges and Accused in the Roman Trials of Paul in Acts

By: Steve Walton in Luke-Acts and Empire: Essays in Honor of Robert L. Brawley. ed. Rhoads, D., D. Esterline, & J. W. Lee (Princeton Theological Monographs 151; Eugene, OR: Pickwick, 2011) 122-41.

An essay engaging with the Roman trials of Jesus (Luke 23) and Paul (Acts 18:12-17; 23-24; 25-26) in order to consider how Luke portrays the Roman empire in these stories. A mixed picture of the empire and its servant emerges, "the empire can act justly to give gospel proclamation the space to spread and flourish, but it can also act unjustly and thus seek to hinder the gospel's outward movement. It is in the midst of this setting that Luke both tells the story of the spread of the Christian testimony and encourages his readers to become part of the story themselves." (141)

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