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Thus, it was finally decided that Paul should be transported to Italy, where he would serve the LORD in unique circumstances (334).
Along with some other prisoners, Paul was delivered into the custody of a Roman officer, named Julius.
They put to sea on a ship bound for Adramyttium in northwestern Turkey, sailing along the southern coast of Turkey. Two other followers of Jesus — Luke the physician & Aristarchus from Thessalonika — traveled with Paul.
After the first day, their ship came to Sidon. Julius kindly gave Paul liberty to visit friends there.
From Sidon they sailed between Cyprus & the southern coast of Turkey, because the winds on the open sea were severe. They sailed on to Myra, a port city in the Lycian region of Turkey. There Julius found a ship (from Alexandria in Egypt) that was sailing directly to Italy. He transferred Paul & his companions, along with his other prisoners, onto that vessel — since their original ship was still sailing north to the Turkish city of Adramyttium.
Because of the severe winds, their new ship sailed along slowly, hugging the southern coast of Turkey. Eventually, they made it safely to the port of Cnidus, at the southwestern corner of Turkey. Rather than sail across the open sea toward Greece, the vessel now turned in a more southerly direction, passing down to the island of Crete & coming thus to Fair Havens, near the city of Lasea on the island’s southern coast.
The weather conditions promised to make further sailing that winter very dangerous. The Holy Spirit prompted Paul to warn the captain of the ship & Julius, the Roman officer: “Men, I perceive that this voyage may end in disaster and cost us not only the cargo & the ship, but also our lives!”
But Julius & the ship’s captain were not persuaded by Paul. Instead, because the harbor at Fair Havens was not ideal for staying the winter, they decided to set sail immediately.
They hoped to reach Phoenix, another harbor on the southern coast of Crete, and stay the winter there.
LORD, please help us to love hearing from You, even when others won’t.
(334) Acts 27:1-12