Apollos… (Day 29 Acts 19:1)

“While Apollos was in Corinth, Paul went through the inland regions and came to Ephesus.” (Acts 19:1 NET)

After I finished my reading for today in the New Testament challenge I could not stop thinking about Apollos for some strange reason.  As the day passed I felt more and more compelled to brush up on my knowledge of this Biblical character.  I read a few different resources that helped me understand who he was and what impact he had on the kingdom through his ministry.  I have included two of those resources below for you so you can know more about Apollos as well.  I hope you enjoy learning more about him. Apollos: a Jew “born at Alexandria,” a man well versed in the Scriptures and eloquent (Acts 18:24; R.V., “learned”). He came to Ephesus (about A.D. 49), where he spake “boldly” in the synagogue (18:26), although he did not know as yet that Jesus of Nazareth was the Messiah. Aquila and Priscilla instructed him more perfectly in “the way of God”, i.e., in the knowledge of Christ. He then proceeded to Corinth, where he met Paul (Acts 18:27; 19:1). He was there very useful in watering the good seed Paul had sown (1 Cor. 1:12), and in gaining many to Christ. His disciples were much attached to him (1 Cor. 3:4-7, 22). He was with Paul at Ephesus when he wrote the First Epistle to the Corinthians; and Paul makes kindly reference to him in his letter to Titus (Tit. 3:13). Some have supposed, although without sufficient ground, that he was the author of the Epistle to the Hebrews.[1]APOLLOS: Was an Alexandrian Jew who came to Ephesus following Paul’s first visit and was taught Christian doctrine by Priscilla and Aquila. An educated man, Apollos handled the OT Scriptures with forcefulness. However, he was lacking in a full understanding of the way of God, so Priscilla and Aquila took him aside and instructed him (Acts 18:26). Apollos became even more successful in his ministry. He went from Ephesus to Greece with the encouragement of the Asian believers and a letter of introduction (Acts 18:27). He greatly strengthened the believers by using the Scriptures to demonstrate that Jesus was the Christ (Acts 18:28).

Apollos is last mentioned in the book of Acts as being in Corinth (19:1). Paul referred to Apollos frequently, particularly in 1 Corinthians. Here the majority of the references (1 Cor. 1:12; 3:4-6,22) have to do with the schisms in the Corinthian church centering on personalities. Paul noted that some believers championed Paul; some, Apollos; and some, Cephas. What is important is that believers belong to Christ, not to individual leaders. Such references show that Apollos must have been a dynamic figure to be compared with Paul or Peter. In 1 Cor. 4:6 Paul placed Apollos on the same level as himself. They both sought to defeat the arrogance and superiority which comes from being self-centered rather than Christ-centered.

Paul referred to Apollos in 1 Cor. 16:12 as “our brother,” showing how much Paul considered him as one of the team. This is also demonstrated in Titus 3:13 where Paul asked Titus to help Apollos on his way. A learned and gifted preacher Apollos was willing to receive more instruction and be part of the team.

Because of Apollos’ knowledge of the OT, Luther suggested that Apollos might well be the writer of the letter to the Hebrews.[2]

[1]Easton’s Bible Dictionary, s.v. “APOLLOS,” n.p.

[2]Holman Illustrated Bible Dictionary, s.v. “APOLLOS,” n.p.


About Pastor Pete

Pete is the senior Pastor of Cowboy Fellowship in Pleasanton Texas. He is also the author of The Absolute Basics of Christianity, The Living Lamp, and a co-author of The Modern Day Disciple Bible Study series.
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One Response to Apollos… (Day 29 Acts 19:1)

  1. Royce Hart says:

    It’s refreshing to see church leadership (or anyone in a shared endeavor, for that matter) that doesn’t envy or seek to have the upper hand. These guys had a common desire to see Jesus glorified. Great stuff had to follow.

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