Priscilla

Priscilla was a zealous advocate of the Christian faith. She and her husband, Aquila, are mentioned in the New Testament, in Acts, chapter 18, Romans 16:3, 1 Corinthians 16:19, and 2 Timothy 4:19. Priscilla and her husband were forced to leave their home in Rome for Corinth when the emperor Claudius commanded all Jews to depart from the city (Acts 18:2).

Various historians have suggested that expulsion occurred in the year 49, 50 or 51. The extent to which Jews actually were pushed out of Rome is unknown. Some decrees in ancient times were never strictly enforced. Although the book of Acts does not explain the reason for the banishment, the ancient historian, Suetonius Tranquillus, wrote in his book, The Lives of the Twelve Caesers, in reference to Claudius that: "He banished from Rome all the Jews, who were continually making disturbances at the instigation of one Chrestus."

Some scholars have proposed that "Chrestus" was a reference to Christianity. We know from another Roman historian, Tacitus, within his 11th book of The Annals, that Claudius was concerned about "the growth of foreign superstitions."

Perhaps Claudius was alarmed by the rapid spread of Christianity in Rome and sought to expel the city's Jewish community as a way of protecting the Roman religions.

Whatever the reason or the extent of the expulsion, Priscilla and Aquila moved to Corinth, where Aquila worked as a tent maker. When Paul left Corinth, Priscilla and Aquila traveled with him as far as Ephesus (1 Corinthians 16:19). There, they met Apollos and instructed him more thoroughly in the Christian faith (Acts 18:24-26). It is believed that Priscilla and Aquila returned to Rome, because Paul sent them greetings in his letter to the Romans (Romans 16:3).

Click here for an online Bible showing the verses that mention Priscilla: BibleGateway.com - Priscilla

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