Acts 13:7 Parallel Verses [⇓ See commentary ⇓]

Acts 13:7, NIV: "who was an attendant of the proconsul, Sergius Paulus. The proconsul, an intelligent man, sent for Barnabas and Saul because he wanted to hear the word of God."

Acts 13:7, ESV: "He was with the proconsul, Sergius Paulus, a man of intelligence, who summoned Barnabas and Saul and sought to hear the word of God."

Acts 13:7, KJV: "Which was with the deputy of the country, Sergius Paulus, a prudent man; who called for Barnabas and Saul, and desired to hear the word of God."

Acts 13:7, NASB: "who was with the proconsul, Sergius Paulus, a man of intelligence. This man summoned Barnabas and Saul and sought to hear the word of God."

Acts 13:7, NLT: "He had attached himself to the governor, Sergius Paulus, who was an intelligent man. The governor invited Barnabas and Saul to visit him, for he wanted to hear the word of God."

Acts 13:7, CSB: "He was with the proconsul, Sergius Paulus, an intelligent man. This man summoned Barnabas and Saul and wanted to hear the word of God."

What does Acts 13:7 mean? [⇑ See verse text ⇑]

Barnabas, Saul, and John Mark are spreading the saving message of Jesus' death, burial, and resurrection on the island of Cyprus (Acts 13:2–6). They have come to the headquarters of Sergius Paulus, the proconsul in Paphos. A proconsul governed in areas that did not quarter legions, with the authority of the counsel, not the emperor.

During Saul's reign of terror in Jerusalem, Jesus-followers fled the city, taking Jesus' story with them (Acts 8:1–3). Some of the Jesus-followers originally from Cyprus and Cyrene traveled north to Syrian Antioch and shared Jesus' offer of forgiveness with the Gentiles there. They were so successful, the leaders of the church in Jerusalem sent Barnabas, and Barnabas invited Saul to help (Acts 11:19–26).

It's unclear, however, if the message had already reached Cyprus, or if Gentiles had been invited into the church. Sergius Paulus may have heard of the influence of this new Jewish sect, but his continued association with Bar-Jesus (Acts 13:6) suggests he is not familiar with the message. His invitation to Barnabas and Saul may be for his own edification, but it may also be to gain information he needs to govern his people.