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Fausset's Bible Dictionary


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1. In Syria, capital of its Greek kings, and of its Roman governors subsequently. Built where Lebanon running N. and Taurus E., meet at a bend of the river Orontes; partly on an island, partly on the level left bank. Near it was Apollo's licentious sanctuary, Daphne. Nicolas the deacon was a proselyte of Antioch. The Christians dispersed by Stephen's martyrdom preached at Antioch to idolatrous Greeks, not "Grecians" or Greekspeaking Jews, according to the Alexandrine manuscript (Acts 11:20; Acts 11:26), whence a church having been formed under Barnabas and Paul's care, the disciples were first called "Christians" there. From Antioch their charity was sent by the hands of Barnabas and Saul to the brethren at Jerusalem suffering in the famine.

Paul began his ministry systematically here. At Antioch Judaizers from Jerusalem disturbed the church (Acts 15:1). Here Paul rebuked Peter for dissimulation (Galatians 2:11-12). From Antioch Paul started on his first missionary journey (Acts 13:1-3), and returned to it (Acts 14:26). He began, after the Jerusalem decree, addressed to the Gentile converts at Antioch, and ended, his second missionary journey there (Acts 15:36; Acts 18:22-23). His third journey also began there. Ignatius was subsequently bishop there for forty years, down to his martyrdom A. D. 107.

Antioch was founded by Seleucus Nicator, and Jews were given the same political privileges as Greeks. Antiochus Epiphanes formed a great colonnaded street intersecting it from one end to the other. Pompey made it a free city. The citizens were framed for scurrility and giving nick-names. "Christian" was probably a name of their invention, and not of the disciples' origination. (See CHRISTIAN.) Now called Antakia, a poor mean place; some ancient walls remain on the crags of mount Silpius. A gateway still bears the name of Paul.

2. ANTIOCH IN PISIDIA: Also founded by Seleucus Nicator. Made a colony by Rome; called also Caesarea. Now Yalobatch, on a high ridge. When Paul, on his first missionary tour with Barnabas, preached in the synagogue there, many Gentiles believed. The Jews therefore raised a persecution by the wealthy women of the place, and drove him from Antioch to Iconium, and followed him even to Lystra (Acts 13:14; Acts 13:50-51; Acts 14:19; Acts 14:21). On his return from Lystra he revisited Antioch to confirm the souls of the disciples amidst their tribulations. In 2 Timothy 3:11 he refers to Timothy's acquaintance with his trials at Antioch of Pisidia; and Timothy's own home was in the neighborhood (Acts 16:1).

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Bibliography Information
Fausset, Andrew R. Entry for 'Antioch'. Fausset's Bible Dictionary. 1949.

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