Acts 18:3

ESV and because he was of the same trade he stayed with them and worked, for they were tentmakers by trade.
NIV and because he was a tentmaker as they were, he stayed and worked with them.
NASB and because he was of the same trade he stayed with them, and they worked together, for they were tent-makers by trade.
CSB and since they were of the same occupation, tentmakers by trade, he stayed with them and worked.
NLT Paul lived and worked with them, for they were tentmakers just as he was.
KJV And because he was of the same craft, he abode with them, and wrought: for by their occupation they were tentmakers.
NKJV So, because he was of the same trade, he stayed with them and worked; for by occupation they were tentmakers.

What does Acts 18:3 mean?

Paul is in Corinth; he'd left Silas and Timothy in Berea. Although he had told his escort from Berea to Athens to send the two to him as quickly as possible (Acts 17:15), he seems to change his mind. He is worried about the harried church in Thessalonica and sends Timothy to check on them (1 Thessalonians 3:6); it's not clear if Silas went with Timothy or stayed in Berea. They don't rejoin Paul until he is well settled into a routine (Acts 18:5).

Fortunately, Paul meets a couple, Aquila and Priscilla, who share his trade of tentmaking. He joins them during the week and spends each Sabbath in the synagogue, trying to convince the Jews and God-fearing Gentiles that Jesus is the Messiah (Acts 18:4).

Paul's choice to work and preach has several different facets. The Jewish school founder Hillel believed a rabbi or scribe should not make money from teaching the Torah. Paul firmly believes otherwise (1 Timothy 5:17–18). But the church in Corinth is somewhat fragile. To keep their attention on his message, he does not ask them to support him (1 Corinthians 9:4, 6–15), even though they do provide support for the church in Jerusalem (1 Corinthians 16:1–3). This contrasts with the church in Philippi which provides Paul support even when he isn't with them (Philippians 4:15).

Paul's experience in Corinth has given us the term "tentmaking;" this means to work full-time at a secular job in order to fund one's ministry work. It usually refers to missionaries who take a job in their host country, such as teaching a language. The job allows them to support themselves without burdening those they serve or sponsors back home, and to get to know the people they are trying to reach in a non-threatening environment.
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