Acts 19:8 Parallel Verses [⇓ See commentary ⇓]

Acts 19:8, NIV: "Paul entered the synagogue and spoke boldly there for three months, arguing persuasively about the kingdom of God."

Acts 19:8, ESV: "And he entered the synagogue and for three months spoke boldly, reasoning and persuading them about the kingdom of God."

Acts 19:8, KJV: "And he went into the synagogue, and spake boldly for the space of three months, disputing and persuading the things concerning the kingdom of God."

Acts 19:8, NASB: "And he entered the synagogue and continued speaking out boldly for three months, having discussions and persuading them about the kingdom of God."

Acts 19:8, NLT: "Then Paul went to the synagogue and preached boldly for the next three months, arguing persuasively about the Kingdom of God."

Acts 19:8, CSB: "Paul entered the synagogue and spoke boldly over a period of three months, arguing and persuading them about the kingdom of God."

What does Acts 19:8 mean? [⇑ See verse text ⇑]

Paul is in Ephesus, a large city on the western coast of modern-day Turkey. He had visited before for a very short time; the members of the synagogue had wanted him to stay, but he had to leave for Judea (Acts 18:19–21). Now he returns.

He has already met twelve men who were devoted followers of John the Baptist. After Paul explains that Jesus of Nazareth is the Messiah John prophesied, the men accept Jesus' offer of salvation, are baptized, and receive the Holy Spirit (Acts 19:1–7). When Paul returns to the synagogue, he has the beginning of a church (Acts 19:9).

"Reasoning" is from the Greek root word dialegomai. It means to ponder one or more ideas and to discuss to determine what is right. "Persuading" is from the Greek root word peithō. Persuasion uses the arguments of reason as part of a holistic discourse to get people to think what you want them to think. People are rarely persuaded by bare facts. They also need to know how the issue impacts them, the character of the speaker, and how the issue and the argument make them feel. In matters that are spiritual, the Holy Spirit is important: for convicting other people of biblical truth and helping us rightly determine what is true (John 16:8; 14:26).

Jesus spoke extensively about the "kingdom of God." He described it as evidence of God and His work in the world. When He cast out demons, people saw the kingdom of God (Matthew 12:28). When people listened to Jesus' offer of salvation and didn't let the world deafen them, they experienced the kingdom of God (Mark 4:1–9). Those who understood the kingdom of God included repentant tax collectors and prostitutes (Matthew 21:31), those who sacrificed to follow God (Mark 9:47), and trusting children (Mark 10:14–15). The kingdom of God includes the end of the Law and the offer of salvation through the work of Christ (Luke 16:16). Those who have put their faith in Christ belong to the kingdom of God (Philippians 3:20; 2 Corinthians 5:17–21). They strive to obey God as a response to His grace, not a way to earn salvation (Philippians 2:12–13).