Apollos: Wikis


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Apollos (Απολλως; contracted from Apollonius) was an early Alexandrian Jewish Christian mentioned several times in the New Testament. After the Christian couple Priscilla and Aquila corrected his incomplete Christian doctrine, his special gifts in preaching Jesus persuasively made him an important person in the congregation at Corinth, Greece after Paul's first visit there.[1 Cor. 3:6] He was with Paul at a later date in Ephesus.[16:12]


Helper to Paul of Tarsus

Paul considered Apollos to be a valuable helper in carrying on his work in the important Corinthian congregation.[1 Cor 3:6] [4:6] [16:12] In harmony with Paul's notices are the statements in Acts that Apollos was a highly educated Alexandrian Jew, who "spoke and taught accurately enough about Jesus, even though he knew only the baptism of John." [Acts 18:24-28] He came to Ephesus (probably in the year 54). After Christians in Ephesus first wrote to their counterparts recommending Apollos to them, he went to Achaia.[1]

Christian doctrines

It is difficult to get a correct idea of his religious standpoint, although it probably was that of the so-called disciples of John the Baptist that Paul encountered in Ephesus.[Ac. 19:1-7] These twelve had never heard of the Holy Spirit[Ac. 19:2] which had been poured out on the believers in Jerusalem on the day of Pentecost.[Ac. 2:4] This was the baptism of the Holy Spirit that Jesus said would follow the water baptism of John.[Ac. 1:5] Priscilla and Aquila, who accompanied Paul to Ephesus, correctively instructed the eloquent and brilliant Apollos. He knew and preached boldly to the crowds only the baptism of John and nothing of salvation through Christ. "When Priscilla and Aquila heard him, they invited him to their home and explained to him the way of God more adequately."[Acts 18:26]

Possible preaching style

Apollos may have captivated his hearers by teaching "wisdom" in the allegorical style of Philo. He was evidently a man of unusual magnetic force. This suggestion has been recently repeated by Jerome Murphy-O'Connor: "It is difficult to imagine that an Alexandrian Jew ... could have escaped the influence of Philo, the great intellectual leader ... particularly since the latter seems to have been especially concerned with education and preaching."[2]

Divisions in Corinthian church

In 1 Cor. 1:10-12 are references to four parties in the Corinthian church, of which two attached themselves to Paul and Apollos respectively, using their names, though the "division" can hardly have been due to conflicting doctrines. There is no indication that Apollos favored or approved an overestimation of his person.

Retirement and bishop status

Jerome states that Apollos was so dissatisfied with the division at Corinth, that he retired to Crete with Zenas, a doctor of the law; and that the schism having been healed by Paul's letter to the Corinthians, Apollos returned to the city, and became its bishop. Less probable traditions assign to him the bishopric of Duras, or of Iconium in Phrygia, or of Caesarea. In the Epistle to Titus, [3:13] Apollos is mentioned with Zenas as bearer of the letter to Crete.


Martin Luther proposed Apollos as the author of the Epistle to the Hebrews

Apollos is regarded as a saint by several Christian churches, including the Lutheran Church - Missouri Synod, which hold a commemoration for him, Aquila and Priscilla on February 13.


  1. ^ So the Alexandrian recension; the text in \mathfrak{P} 38 and Codex Bezae indicate that Apollos went to Corinth. Joseph Fitzmyer, The Acts of the Apostles (New York: Doubleday, 1998), p. 639
  2. ^ J Murphy-O'Connor. Paul: A critical life. Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1996, p. 275



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  1. Plural form of Apollo.

Bible wiki

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From BibleWiki

a Jew "born at Alexandria," a man well versed in the Scriptures and eloquent (Acts 18:24; R.V., "learned"). He came to Ephesus (about A.D. 49), where he spake "boldly" in the synagogue (18:26), although he did not know as yet that Jesus of Nazareth was the Messiah. Aquila and Priscilla instructed him more perfectly in "the way of God", i.e., in the knowledge of Christ. He then proceeded to Corinth, where he met Paul (Acts 18:27; 19:1). He was there very useful in watering the good seed Paul had sown (1Cor 1:12), and in gaining many to Christ. His disciples were much attached to him (1Cor 3:4-7, 22). He was with Paul at Ephesus when he wrote the First Epistle to the Corinthians; and Paul makes kindly reference to him in his letter to Titus (3:13). Some have supposed, although without sufficient ground, that he was the author of the Epistle to the Hebrews.

This entry includes text from Easton's Bible Dictionary, 1897.

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