Paul and the Dispersion
Richard J. Willoughby Sr., author
PAUL AND THE DISPERSION The Teacher?s Edition Paul and The Dispersion is for Bible students. Maps are provided for students to follow Paul?s journeys to foreign nations. By tracing his land and sea voyages, students will learn the reason why Paul carried Jesus? name to those far off places. Students will discover exactly to whom Paul was sent by Jesus. For example, Paul also evangelized Jews in their synagogues. (Acts 9:20; 17:1,2; Romans 1:16) They were Jews who had scattered from Israel many years before and who are also known as The Dispersion. This is rarely or never emphasized by traditional teaching, a teaching that emphasizes Paul?s apostleship to Gentiles only. What was special about Paul that enabled him to teach in synagogues? First, Paul was a Jew himself and would know Jewish laws, customs and history. He spoke their Hebrew language and possibly Greek. He was able to communicate directly with them. Secondly, Paul was a Pharisee and knew God?s law cold. (Acts 22:2, 3) He was able to quote Hebrew scripture, the Christian?s Old Testament. (Isaiah 59:20; Romans 11:26) Students will find that there is overwhelming Biblical evidence that Paul was not solely an apostle to Gentiles but that he was also sent out to Jews who had scattered to foreign nations. Then, ask yourself this: Why would a non-Jew, Gentile, be expected to know or have an interest in a Jewish God?s Bible and follow Paul?s teaching? Did Paul turn Gentiles away? By no means! He did not turn away his vital travel companion, Aristarchus, when he asked for help. (Acts 16:9; 27:2) Jews of the Dispersion had scattered and worshipped in their Synagogues at Damascus, Salamis, Antioch of Pisidia, Iconium, Philippi, Thessalonica, Berea, Athens, Corinth, Ephesus.