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St. Jerom informs us. Near the place of Old Gaza, or CHAP, Gaza the Desert, it was, that Philip' baptized the Eunuch. 11.
This Eunuch was, we are informed, a man of Ethiopia, of great authority under Candace, Queen of the Ethiopians : OfEthi where by Ethiopia is to be understood, not the Asiatic Ethiopia, or part of Arabia so styled in the Old Testament, but the African Ethiopia, lying below Egypt, in the south part of Afric, where Candace had been long the name of the Queens, as we learn from Pliny, Strabo, and Dio. As soon as Philip and the Eunuch came out of the water,
Of Azotus. we reads that the Spirit of the Lord caught away Philip, that the Eunuch saw him no more; but that Philip was found at Azotus, the same which is called in the Old Testament Ashdod, memorable therein for the temple of Dagon. It lies near the shore between Gaza and Joppa. In the times that Christianity flourished in these parts it was made an episcopal fee, and continued a fair village till the days of St. Jerom. The Evangelist Philip being brought to Azotus, we are informed that from thence he preached in all the cities lying in that tract, till he came to Cæfarea; where we left St. Paul, whom now we shall follow in his voyage to Tarsus. For we read u that the brethren brought him down to Cæsarea, and thence sent him forth to Tarsus.
Tarsus is the same which in Hebrew is called Tarshish, 9. from whence the Heathens derived the common name Tarsus.
• goes from It took the original name from * Tarshish, one of the sons Cæsarea to of Javan, who settled in these parts, afterwards called Cilicia, native salaris being the south-east country of Asia Minor, and lying on the in Cilicia. northern coast, at 'the east end of the Mediterranean Sea. The city of Tarshish, or Tarsus, stands in a plain on the banks of the river Cydnus, and was all along in ancient tiines a great trading and rich town; whence all trading or merchant ships came to be denoted by the name of pips of Tarshish, so often mentioned in holy Writ. It was a town of
Acts viii. 26. 38. s Acts viii. 39, 40. t i Sam. V. 1, 2.
u A&ts ix. 30.
* Gen. x. 4. Joseph. Antiq. of the Jews, book i. chap. 7.
PART such note in the times of the Roman empire, that it was
was peculiarly honoured with the great privileges of a Roman
Y AEts xxii. 25. 28. . * Atts xxii. 3.
· Philipp. iii. 5.
St. Paul having staid some time at his native place, was CHAP. fetched from thence by < Barnabas to Antioch in Syria, called 11. by some Antiochia Epidaphne, to distinguish it from the fixteen other cities, which in Syria and elsewhere bore the name of St. Paul Antioch. It took this additional name from its neighbour- from Tarsus
goes to Anhood to Daphne, a village so denominated from a temple of tioch in Sy. Daphne standing therein. It had the name of Antioch given ria. it by Seleucus Nicanor, the first King of Syria after Alexander the Great, in memory of his father Antiochus, and was after that the royal seat of the succeeding kings of Syria. In the flourishing times of the Roman empire, it was the ordinary residence of the præfect or governor of the eastern provinces, and was also honoured with the residence of many of the Roman emperors, especially of Verus and Valens, who spent here greatest part of their time. But this place is famous for nothing more than giving the name d of Christians A. D. 39. to the disciples of Christ, who before this were commonly styled Nazarenes, as being the followers of Jesus of Nazareth; a name by which the Jews in scorn call them to this day, with the same intent that the Gentiles of old were wont to call them Galilæans. It is also famous among us Chriftians for being the birth-place of St. Luke the Evangelist, and of Theophilus, hence surnamed Antiochenus, and for its celebrated bishop, St. Ignatius the Martyr. Indeed in such reputation has this place been had in the earlier times of Christianity, that its bishop has been honoured with the title of Patriarch.
As to the situation of this city, it lay on both sides the river Orontis, about twelve miles distant from the shore of the Mediterranean Sea. By nature and art it was fortified even to admiration; it was adorned in former times with many sumptuous palaces and magnificent temples, answerable to the reputation of so great a city. But being taken by the Saracens, and afterwards by the Turks, it began to grow into decay, and is now in so desolate and ruinous a condition, that the Patriarch has long since removed his dwelling to Damascus. ? Acts xi, 25, 26.
Acts xi. 26.
PART We read that St. Paul and Barnabas staid preaching in 11. Antioch a whole year. And about this time there happened
· a terrible famine, foretold by Agabus, which afflicted several parts of the Roman empire, but especially Judea. The confideration hereof made the Christians at Antioch commiserate the case of their suffering brethren, and to raise considerable contributions for the relief and succour of them that dwelt in Judea, which they sent by St. Paul and Barnabas to Jeryfalem,
· Acts xi. 26, 30.
CHAP. CHA P. III.
Of St. Paul's Travels and Voyages to Cyprus, Pamphylia,
Pisidia, Lyčaonia, &c. till his third Return to Jerusalem after his Conversion.
CT. PAUL and St. Barnabas a having dispatched the errand 1. w they were sent about, leave Jerusalem and return to Turns to All
* St. Paul reAntioch b: where, while they were joining in the public tioch, and
: goes thence exercises of religion, the Holy Ghost, by special direction, to Seleucia ordered that these two should be set apart to preach the Gospel in Syria,
" A. D. 426 in other places. Which being accordingly done, by prayer, fasting, and imposition of hands, they departed to Seleuciac. This city lay to the west, or rather a little north-west, of Antioch, upon the Mediterranean Sea, and was so named from the founder of it, Seleucus, before mentioned under Antioch, and reputed to be the greatest builder in the world : for he is said to have founded nine cities called by his own name, fixteen in memory of his father Antiochus, fix by the name of Laodice his mother, and three in honour of Apamia his first wife; besides many others of great note in Greece and Afia, either new built, or beautified and repaired by him. From this Seleucia, the adjacent part of Syria had formerly the name of Seleucia.
From Seleucia St. Paul set sail with St. Barnabas for Cy- 2. prus, an island of the Mediterranean Sea, lying over-against Seleucia to the west. It is reputed to be distant from the main cia over to land of Syria about an hundred miles, and about sixty miles .cz from Cilicia; to be extended in length from east to west about two hundred miles, in breadth fixty; and therefore to be one of the largest isles in the Mediterranean. The first inhabitants
c Acts xiii. 4.' * d Ibid.