Acts to Revelation l Episode 9 | TBN

Acts to Revelation l Episode 9

Watch Acts to Revelation l Episode 9
June 6, 2018
27:31

Drive Thru History: Acts to Revelation

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Acts to Revelation l Episode 9

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  • Dave Stotts: In our last episode, Paul and his companions
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  • were spreading the gospel message through Macedonia.
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  • We visited incredible places such as Neapolis,
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  • Philippi, and Thessalonica.
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  • At the end of the episode, the Thessalonian followers of Christ
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  • sent Paul, Silas, and Timothy out of Thessalonica to protect
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  • them from an angry mob.
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  • According to Luke's account, the team was sent on
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  • to the remote city of Berea.
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  • Dave: The ancient city of Berea is known today as Veria.
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  • It's located about 45 miles west of Thessalonica
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  • in the region of Macedonia.
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  • Although little is known of this place prior to the Roman period,
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  • this city has been continuously occupied for nearly 2.500 years.
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  • There are almost no archeological ruins of Roman
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  • period Berea, however the discover of various monuments
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  • and inscriptions do confirm the location and name of this city,
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  • here in Roman province of Macedonia.
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  • According to Acts chapter 17, Paul, Silas, and probably
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  • Timothy arrived here in Berea one night in early 50 A.D.
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  • As was his custom, Paul went to the
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  • synagogue to preach the gospel.
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  • Dave: "Now, the Berean Jews were of more noble character
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  • than those in Thessalonica, for they received the message
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  • with great eagerness and examined the Scriptures
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  • every day to see if what Paul said was true.
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  • As a result, many of them believed, as did a number of
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  • prominent Greek women and many Greek men," Acts 17:11-12.
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  • Dave: According to Luke's account, the listeners at the
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  • synagogue here in Berea were described as people of noble
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  • character who eagerly received what Paul taught.
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  • However, they also examined the Scriptures themselves
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  • to verify what Paul was claiming, that Jesus Christ
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  • was the fulfillment of Old Testament prophecy
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  • of a promised Messiah.
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  • The example of the Bereans is a great reminder to all of us
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  • to compare what we hear in our churches and schools with
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  • the historical accounts that we find in the Bible itself.
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  • Dave: In addition to the Bereans in the synagogue,
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  • apparently many of the Greek men and women
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  • of the city also believed in Jesus Christ.
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  • Later in Acts, we learn that one of these
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  • Greeks was named Sopater, son of Pyrrhus of Berea.
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  • Sopater became a colleague of Paul and joined him during later
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  • travels in Greece and Macedonia, and finally when Paul returned
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  • to Jerusalem before his arrest.
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  • Dave: Now, after Paul spent some time preaching
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  • and teaching, the Christians here at Berea
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  • sent him out of the city for his own protection.
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  • It seems the unruly mob from Thessalonica made the
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  • 72-kilometer hike to Berea to cause trouble here too.
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  • Now, 72 klicks is a long way to walk.
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  • It seems to me anyway that your garden variety
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  • unruly mob is comprised of people who have a lot
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  • of spare time on their hands.
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  • Maybe things haven't changed that much in 2.000 years.
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  • It's like that old saying, you know, from ye olden time,
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  • "Mobs will be mobs."
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  • Dave: "The believers immediately sent Paul to the coast,
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  • but Silas and Timothy stayed at Berea.
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  • Those who escorted Paul brought him to Athens, and then left
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  • with instructions for Silas and Timothy to join him as soon
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  • as possible," Acts 17:14-15.
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  • Dave: According to Luke's account, Paul's
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  • next stop was the epic city of Athens.
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  • Now, most of that 300-mile journey was probably by boat,
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  • but we're gonna drive it and see what we find along the way.
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  • Dave: Just 20 minutes outside of Berea
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  • is the ancient city of Vergina.
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  • It was here in 336 B.C.
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  • that King Philip II was assassinated in the theater,
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  • and his son, Alexander the Great, was proclaimed king.
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  • The site was discovered in 1976 and excavations have now
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  • revealed an extensive royal palace and ancient tomb complex,
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  • including the undisturbed tomb of Philip II himself.
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  • Forty-five minutes outside of Berea
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  • is the ancient city of Pella.
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  • This was the capital of the Macedonian empire.
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  • It was the birthplace of Alexander the Great in 356 B.C.
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  • and the starting point for his ten-year campaign to conquer
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  • the world, beginning in 334 B.C.
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  • As we continue our drive south towards Athens, we cross from
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  • Macedonia into Achaia, the other Roman province that was
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  • important to early Christianity in this part of the world.
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  • [making car engine noises]
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  • [coughing]
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  • Dave: Wow.
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  • Dave: Achaia covered about two-thirds of modern-day Greece.
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  • During the Roman period, Corinth was the capital and largest city
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  • of this province, where the governor was stationed.
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  • Athens was the famous center of culture and learning.
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  • About an hour south of Berea is a special mountain
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  • that towers above the entire area, Mount Olympus.
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  • Dave: There she is, Mount Olympus,
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  • often shrouded in mystery.
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  • Huge fan.
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  • Dave: Sometimes in "Drive Thru History," we travel halfway
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  • around the world to get to a site that's covered in
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  • scaffolding, or in this case, shrouded in clouds.
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  • Well, behind those clouds is the stunning Mount Olympus,
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  • fabled home of the 12 Olympian gods led by Zeus.
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  • To the ancient Greeks, this location was the
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  • centerpiece of their mythological beliefs.
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  • A number of peaks formed Mount Olympus.
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  • Together, they comprised the realm of the gods, with the
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  • highest peaks considered off-limits to mere mortals.
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  • Today, the highest peak is known as Mytikas,
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  • rising to 9.570 feet.
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  • In Greek mythology, this peak was associated with the meeting
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  • place for Zeus and his pantheon of gods.
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  • This peak is known as Stefani.
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  • In ancient times, it was known as the throne of Zeus.
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  • Although the Greek gods were based in myth and legend, Mount
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  • Olympus was a very real place to the ancient Greeks.
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  • Continuing our drive south, our next stop is Thermopylae,
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  • about 100 miles north of Athens.
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  • Dave: I've made it to Thermopylae, here on
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  • the eastern coast of central Greece.
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  • Now, the name Thermopylae means "Hot Gates,"
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  • because of the hot sulfur springs in the area.
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  • According to Greek mythology, this was one of the gates
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  • to Hades, the underworld of the dead.
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  • In ancient times, Thermopylae was a very narrow land passage
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  • with those huge, steep mountains running down into the sea,
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  • leaving a thin marshy area along the coast.
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  • But silt, over the centuries, has pushed the coastline out,
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  • and you can see this road here, which will give you a pretty
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  • good indication of where the shoreline would
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  • have been during the 5th century B.C.
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  • Thermopylae was the location for the epic battle between
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  • the Persians and the alliance of Greek city-states
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  • led by King Leonidas of Sparta.
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  • Now, this battle has been made famous because of a
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  • number of movies, TV shows, and video games
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  • in the pop culture legend known as the 300.
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  • You see, in addition to being king, Leonidas commanded
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  • an elite group of 300 Spartan guards.
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  • And like all male Spartans, Leonidas had been trained
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  • since childhood to be a Hoplite warrior.
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  • Dave: The Spartans were known for their physical and mental
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  • toughness, and spent their entire lives preparing
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  • for the rigors of becoming warriors.
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  • Let's take a look at how the typical
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  • Spartan warrior was equipped.
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  • First, there were dreadlocks.
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  • Spartans thought they were both handsome and fear-inducing.
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  • Next came the beard, minus the mustache.
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  • Think Abraham Lincoln with dreadlocks.
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  • Working from the feet up, we add sandals, though while in
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  • training, they often went barefoot to toughen their feet.
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  • It is said that Spartan boys were forbidden to wear shoes,
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  • lest their feet become soft.
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  • Bronze greaves protected the shins.
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  • A pteruges, made of tough leather,
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  • protected the waist and groin.
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  • A bronze cuirass protected the chest and back.
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  • By crouching closely together, Spartans could form a phalanx,
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  • which protected the group from arrows
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  • and other forms of attack.
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  • Finally, there was a felt helmet liner and then a
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  • Corinthian-style bronze helmet, which protected the head
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  • and gave a fearsome appearance.
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  • The helmet often had a stiff, horse hair crest,
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  • which made the warriors appear taller and added
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  • some protection from blows to the head.
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  • The crest could also signify one's rank and unit.
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  • Thus equipped, the Spartans were a most fearsome force.
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  • During the 5th century B.C., the Persians were out to conquer
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  • the world, including the powerful city-states of Greece.
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  • It started under Darius the Great, who is mentioned in the
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  • Old Testament books of Ezra and Nehemiah.
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  • After the death of Darius in 486 B.C., his son,
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  • Xerxes, took over world conquering duties.
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  • Xerxes is the Persian king mentioned in
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  • the Old Testament book of Esther.
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  • Dave: In 480 B.C., the Persians, under Xerxes, waged
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  • a second great military campaign against the Greeks.
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  • The pass here at Thermopylae was the only land route that the
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  • Persians could take in order to attack the lower city-states.
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  • Because of the narrow nature of the pass, this was where the
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  • Spartans set up their defenses.
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  • Now, legend has it that 300 Spartans held off a million
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  • Persian soldiers, but that's not exactly what happened.
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  • In reality, it was 300 elite Spartan bodyguards
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  • that served King Leonidas, and several other
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  • Greek city-states joined in the fight.
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  • A good estimate is about 7.000 soldiers from
  • 00:12:20.090 --> 00:12:23.020
  • about 14 different Greek city-states.
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  • Now, the Persian army was huge, but it was short of a million.
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  • Modern scholars today suggest it was a Persian army of between
  • 00:12:30.200 --> 00:12:33.150
  • 100.000 and 300.000.
  • 00:12:33.160 --> 00:12:36.280
  • Still, not great odds for the Greek allies.
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  • Dave: In any event, there was a three-day battle where the
  • 00:12:41.120 --> 00:12:43.260
  • Greeks held off the Persians with legendary feats of courage.
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  • The Persian army was primarily archers with wicker shields,
  • 00:12:47.240 --> 00:12:52.050
  • which is one of the reasons the Spartans were able
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  • to hold out as long as they did.
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  • The Persian arrows couldn't penetrate the
  • 00:12:56.160 --> 00:12:58.210
  • metal of the overlapped Hoplite shields.
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  • Dave: On the third day of the battle, it became obvious that
  • 00:13:02.120 --> 00:13:05.090
  • the Persians would overwhelm the outnumbered Greeks, so Leonidas
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  • pushed his elite Spartans into the widest part of the pass in
  • 00:13:09.270 --> 00:13:14.060
  • order to inflict maximum Persian casualties and to give
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  • the remaining Greek soldiers an avenue of escape.
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  • In the ensuing clash, Leonidas was killed in heroic fashion.
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  • His men fought furiously to retrieve his body
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  • but were unsuccessful.
  • 00:13:30.110 --> 00:13:32.020
  • Now, here at Thermopylae, you can see today
  • 00:13:32.030 --> 00:13:34.140
  • a monument with the phrase, "Go tell the Spartans," the phrase,
  • 00:13:34.150 --> 00:13:38.210
  • attributed to Leonidas, where he essentially was saying,
  • 00:13:38.220 --> 00:13:42.020
  • "Go tell the Spartans that I did what I had come to do."
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  • The battle of Thermopylae and the role of the 300 Spartans
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  • soon acquired legendary status.
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  • Free men sacrificed themselves in order to
  • 00:13:56.070 --> 00:13:59.260
  • protect the Greek way of life from foreign invasion.
  • 00:13:59.270 --> 00:14:03.170
  • 00:14:04.100 --> 00:14:06.260
  • 00:14:10.020 --> 00:14:18.240
  • Dave: This is the end of our 300-mile Greek
  • 00:14:19.120 --> 00:14:22.030
  • road trip from Berea.
  • 00:14:22.040 --> 00:14:24.030
  • This is the epic city of Athens.
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  • Athens was established around 1.400 B.C. and rose quickly
  • 00:14:27.290 --> 00:14:32.230
  • to become the most prestigious
  • 00:14:32.240 --> 00:14:34.090
  • of the ancient Greek city-states.
  • 00:14:34.100 --> 00:14:36.110
  • The name of Athens is connected to the Greek goddess Athena,
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  • who according to legend won the right to give her name
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  • to the city after a competition with Poseidon.
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  • Dave: The initial settlement of the city was on the
  • 00:14:48.290 --> 00:14:51.150
  • Acropolis, which housed a palace, at least one temple,
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  • and had a wall encircling it.
  • 00:14:55.090 --> 00:14:57.290
  • Democracy emerged in Athens centuries later, beginning with
  • 00:14:58.000 --> 00:15:02.090
  • a constitution in the earth 6th century B.C.
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  • In the earth 5th century, Athens started developing
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  • its own navy to defend the region against the growing
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  • threat of invasion from Persia.
  • 00:15:12.180 --> 00:15:15.120
  • In addition to building over 200 warships,
  • 00:15:15.130 --> 00:15:18.090
  • a new harbor at Piraeus was constructed
  • 00:15:18.100 --> 00:15:21.190
  • and connected to Athens via a walled road.
  • 00:15:21.200 --> 00:15:25.170
  • Dave: In the wars with Persia that followed, the Athenians
  • 00:15:26.200 --> 00:15:29.060
  • were able to defend their homeland largely due
  • 00:15:29.070 --> 00:15:32.120
  • to its navy, its leadership, and its alliances
  • 00:15:32.130 --> 00:15:35.190
  • with other Greek city-states.
  • 00:15:35.200 --> 00:15:38.030
  • Although Athens was sacked twice, the Persians were
  • 00:15:38.040 --> 00:15:41.120
  • ultimately defeated, and the period that followed
  • 00:15:41.130 --> 00:15:44.130
  • was the Golden Age of Athens.
  • 00:15:44.140 --> 00:15:47.190
  • Dave: During this period, playwrights such as Aeschylus
  • 00:15:48.230 --> 00:15:51.250
  • and Euripides composed their masterpieces, which are still
  • 00:15:51.260 --> 00:15:55.110
  • read and performed today.
  • 00:15:55.120 --> 00:15:58.070
  • Herodotus and Thucydides recorded histories that continue
  • 00:15:58.080 --> 00:16:01.240
  • to be used by modern scholars.
  • 00:16:01.250 --> 00:16:04.120
  • Socrates trained a line of philosophers, including Plato,
  • 00:16:04.130 --> 00:16:08.180
  • that influenced many of the great thinkers for centuries.
  • 00:16:08.190 --> 00:16:12.220
  • Hippocrates established medicine as a distinct field of study in
  • 00:16:12.230 --> 00:16:16.290
  • Greece and Pericles led Athens into greatness,
  • 00:16:17.000 --> 00:16:21.290
  • promoting academics, art, architecture, and democracy,
  • 00:16:22.000 --> 00:16:26.160
  • and started construction projects on the Acropolis,
  • 00:16:26.170 --> 00:16:29.260
  • including the Parthenon.
  • 00:16:29.270 --> 00:16:32.070
  • The Parthenon soon became the most awesome and imposing
  • 00:16:32.210 --> 00:16:35.240
  • building on the Acropolis, housing a 37-foot statue of
  • 00:16:35.250 --> 00:16:40.030
  • Athena, covered with ivory and gold.
  • 00:16:40.040 --> 00:16:43.240
  • Another statue of Athena, even more massive, was made
  • 00:16:43.250 --> 00:16:47.060
  • of bronze and stood over 49 feet high outside the temple.
  • 00:16:47.070 --> 00:16:52.260
  • The Parthenon functioned not only as a monument and temple
  • 00:16:52.270 --> 00:16:56.120
  • to Athena, but as a bank for the city of Athens.
  • 00:16:56.130 --> 00:17:00.240
  • Dave: In the 6th century A.D., the Parthenon
  • 00:17:01.180 --> 00:17:04.020
  • was converted into a church after Christianity became
  • 00:17:04.030 --> 00:17:07.020
  • widespread here in Athens.
  • 00:17:07.030 --> 00:17:09.070
  • Then, for a time, when the Ottomans controlled the region,
  • 00:17:09.080 --> 00:17:12.100
  • the Parthenon was used as a mosque.
  • 00:17:12.110 --> 00:17:14.250
  • It was also doubled as a warehouse for weapons.
  • 00:17:14.260 --> 00:17:18.010
  • Unfortunately, the large amounts of gunpowder stored here led to
  • 00:17:18.020 --> 00:17:21.280
  • an explosion in 1687, during a war with Venice, and the
  • 00:17:21.290 --> 00:17:27.080
  • structure was severely damaged.
  • 00:17:27.090 --> 00:17:30.050
  • It wasn't until 1983 that the massive restoration
  • 00:17:30.060 --> 00:17:34.000
  • project you can see going on here today was started,
  • 00:17:34.010 --> 00:17:37.180
  • with the goal of restoring the Parthenon to as
  • 00:17:37.190 --> 00:17:40.100
  • close to its ancient form as possible.
  • 00:17:40.110 --> 00:17:42.220
  • The Parthenon remains today an enduring symbol
  • 00:17:42.230 --> 00:17:46.140
  • of ancient Greece in Athenian democracy.
  • 00:17:46.150 --> 00:17:49.180
  • Visible from all over the city, its massive columns
  • 00:17:49.190 --> 00:17:52.200
  • still represent one of the world's great monuments.
  • 00:17:52.210 --> 00:17:56.030
  • During the Roman period, much of the monumental
  • 00:17:56.180 --> 00:17:58.290
  • architecture was expanded and rebuilt.
  • 00:17:59.000 --> 00:18:02.240
  • Now, the Golden Age of Athens was long gone, but the city
  • 00:18:02.250 --> 00:18:05.190
  • was still an important center of learning and philosophy.
  • 00:18:05.200 --> 00:18:09.170
  • Even Plato's Academy and Aristotle's Lyceum
  • 00:18:09.180 --> 00:18:12.260
  • were still in operation during the Roman period.
  • 00:18:12.270 --> 00:18:16.150
  • Dave: This is the Athens that Paul visited in about 50 A.D.
  • 00:18:18.140 --> 00:18:22.190
  • As you'll recall, Paul was forced to flee a mob in Berea,
  • 00:18:22.200 --> 00:18:27.180
  • and he was escorted here to Athens by some
  • 00:18:27.190 --> 00:18:29.240
  • of the new Berean Christians.
  • 00:18:29.250 --> 00:18:32.120
  • Paul was instructed to wait here in the city until Silas
  • 00:18:32.130 --> 00:18:36.050
  • and Timothy could join him.
  • 00:18:36.060 --> 00:18:38.140
  • According to chapter 17 of Acts, here's what happened next.
  • 00:18:38.150 --> 00:18:44.100
  • "While Paul was waiting in Athens, he was greatly
  • 00:18:44.110 --> 00:18:47.010
  • distressed to see that the city was full of idols.
  • 00:18:47.020 --> 00:18:51.120
  • So, he reasoned in the synagogue with both Jews and God-fearing
  • 00:18:51.130 --> 00:18:55.150
  • Greeks, as well as in marketplace day by day
  • 00:18:55.160 --> 00:18:59.050
  • with those who happened to be there.
  • 00:18:59.060 --> 00:19:01.190
  • A group of epicurean and stoic philosophers
  • 00:19:01.200 --> 00:19:04.220
  • began to debate with him.
  • 00:19:04.230 --> 00:19:06.260
  • Some of them asked, 'What is this babbler trying to say?'
  • 00:19:06.270 --> 00:19:10.040
  • Others remarked, 'He seems to be advocating foreign gods.'
  • 00:19:10.050 --> 00:19:14.200
  • They said this because Paul was preaching the good
  • 00:19:14.210 --> 00:19:17.000
  • news about Jesus and the resurrection," Acts 17:16-18.
  • 00:19:17.010 --> 00:19:23.220
  • Dave: While waiting in Athens, Paul immediately noticed
  • 00:19:24.230 --> 00:19:27.180
  • that the city was filled with idols, shrines, and altars,
  • 00:19:27.190 --> 00:19:32.250
  • and temples dedicated to Pagan gods.
  • 00:19:32.260 --> 00:19:35.100
  • According to Luke's account, this troubled him greatly.
  • 00:19:35.110 --> 00:19:38.160
  • Altars in Greece were often dedicated to specific gods,
  • 00:19:38.170 --> 00:19:42.170
  • such as Zeus, Athena, Apollo, or Poseidon.
  • 00:19:42.180 --> 00:19:46.250
  • Altars here in Athens were even dedicated
  • 00:19:46.260 --> 00:19:49.070
  • to the demons of the underworld.
  • 00:19:49.080 --> 00:19:52.000
  • Walking around ancient Athens today, you still see shrines,
  • 00:19:53.200 --> 00:19:56.260
  • and temples, and altars everywhere.
  • 00:19:56.270 --> 00:19:59.180
  • These Pagan places of worship were so common that virtually
  • 00:19:59.190 --> 00:20:03.050
  • every block had an association with some god,
  • 00:20:03.060 --> 00:20:06.190
  • goddess, spirit, or demon.
  • 00:20:06.200 --> 00:20:09.100
  • A Roman official serving under Emperor Nero
  • 00:20:09.110 --> 00:20:12.140
  • in the 1st century A.D. once said of Athens,
  • 00:20:12.150 --> 00:20:15.260
  • "Truly, our neighborhood is so well stocked with
  • 00:20:15.270 --> 00:20:19.030
  • deities to hand, you will easier meet with a god than a man."
  • 00:20:19.040 --> 00:20:23.250
  • Dave: Therefore, just as Luke described in Acts, Paul
  • 00:20:24.220 --> 00:20:28.020
  • was truly experiencing a city, quote, "Full of idols."
  • 00:20:28.030 --> 00:20:33.080
  • Dave: During his time in Athens, Paul taught and probably
  • 00:20:33.090 --> 00:20:36.190
  • worked in the commercial section of the agora, or marketplace,
  • 00:20:36.200 --> 00:20:41.140
  • right below the Acropolis.
  • 00:20:41.150 --> 00:20:44.010
  • Now, his time in the marketplace allowed Paul
  • 00:20:44.020 --> 00:20:46.160
  • to come into contact with people from all walks of life.
  • 00:20:46.170 --> 00:20:50.080
  • As you can see, the agora from the Roman period, right next
  • 00:20:50.090 --> 00:20:53.140
  • to the ancient agora, has been remarkably preserved,
  • 00:20:53.150 --> 00:20:57.000
  • including buildings, streets, statues, and altars.
  • 00:20:57.010 --> 00:21:02.020
  • At some point, Paul caught the attention of the local
  • 00:21:04.030 --> 00:21:06.210
  • philosophers and became an instant curiosity in the city.
  • 00:21:06.220 --> 00:21:11.070
  • They asked Paul to come before the Council of the Areopagus
  • 00:21:11.080 --> 00:21:16.010
  • and explain his new way of thinking.
  • 00:21:16.020 --> 00:21:18.190
  • They said, "You are bringing some strange ideas to our ears
  • 00:21:18.200 --> 00:21:22.280
  • and we would like to know what they mean," Acts 17:20.
  • 00:21:22.290 --> 00:21:27.160
  • The Areopagus of Athens, also known as Mars Hill,
  • 00:21:29.080 --> 00:21:32.230
  • is located just northwest of the Acropolis.
  • 00:21:32.240 --> 00:21:35.210
  • Basically, it's a small mountain of marble where people met.
  • 00:21:35.220 --> 00:21:39.290
  • During the classical period, it was used as an
  • 00:21:40.000 --> 00:21:42.190
  • assembly place for judicial tribunals for major crimes.
  • 00:21:42.200 --> 00:21:46.160
  • When Paul was in Athens, the Areopagus had become a popular
  • 00:21:46.170 --> 00:21:50.140
  • gathering place for people to discuss and debate ideas.
  • 00:21:50.150 --> 00:21:55.090
  • The Council of the Areopagus consisted of 100 members,
  • 00:21:55.100 --> 00:21:59.090
  • including philosophers, scholars,
  • 00:21:59.100 --> 00:22:02.000
  • and former officials of Athens.
  • 00:22:02.010 --> 00:22:05.100
  • Dave: According to Acts chapter 17, it was here at the Areopagus
  • 00:22:06.200 --> 00:22:10.160
  • that Paul engaged the professional thinkers of Athens.
  • 00:22:10.170 --> 00:22:14.260
  • Paul very wisely acknowledged the broad spiritual curiosity
  • 00:22:14.270 --> 00:22:19.170
  • of the Athenians, which provided a natural opening
  • 00:22:19.180 --> 00:22:22.170
  • for a conversation about God.
  • 00:22:22.180 --> 00:22:25.190
  • "People of Athens!
  • 00:22:25.200 --> 00:22:27.170
  • I see that in every way, you are very religious, for as I walked
  • 00:22:27.180 --> 00:22:31.190
  • around and looked carefully at your objects of worship,
  • 00:22:31.200 --> 00:22:34.210
  • I even found an altar with this inscription,
  • 00:22:34.220 --> 00:22:38.000
  • 'To an unknown god.'
  • 00:22:38.010 --> 00:22:40.150
  • So, you are ignorant of the very thing you worship,
  • 00:22:40.160 --> 00:22:43.290
  • and this is what I am going to proclaim to you.
  • 00:22:44.000 --> 00:22:47.140
  • The God who made the world and everything in it is the Lord of
  • 00:22:47.150 --> 00:22:52.040
  • heaven and earth, and does not live in temples built
  • 00:22:52.050 --> 00:22:55.220
  • by human hands, and he is not served by human hands
  • 00:22:55.230 --> 00:22:59.210
  • as if he needed anything.
  • 00:22:59.220 --> 00:23:02.030
  • Rather, he himself gives everyone life, and breath,
  • 00:23:02.040 --> 00:23:05.290
  • and everything else," Acts 17:22-25.
  • 00:23:06.000 --> 00:23:11.120
  • Dave: In Paul's speech to the Areopagus Council, he used an
  • 00:23:11.290 --> 00:23:15.260
  • altar to the unknown god to illustrate that the god unknown
  • 00:23:15.270 --> 00:23:21.070
  • to the Athenians was really the one true God of the Bible.
  • 00:23:21.080 --> 00:23:25.140
  • Greek philosophers such as Plato and Aristotle used the generic
  • 00:23:25.150 --> 00:23:30.280
  • term "theos" or "god" in their ancient writings.
  • 00:23:30.290 --> 00:23:34.100
  • So, Paul's explanation would have been extremely interesting
  • 00:23:34.110 --> 00:23:38.030
  • to the educated philosophers here in Athens.
  • 00:23:38.040 --> 00:23:41.090
  • Paul went on to make the gospel understandable
  • 00:23:41.100 --> 00:23:45.000
  • within the Athenian context.
  • 00:23:45.010 --> 00:23:47.160
  • He referred to Greek gods, Greek philosophers,
  • 00:23:47.170 --> 00:23:50.160
  • and Greek poets in his talk, delivering a masterful example
  • 00:23:50.170 --> 00:23:54.240
  • that the gospel of Jesus Christ applies to everyone.
  • 00:23:54.250 --> 00:23:59.130
  • Dave: Paul concluded, "Therefore, since we are
  • 00:24:03.140 --> 00:24:06.010
  • God's offspring, we should not think that the divine
  • 00:24:06.020 --> 00:24:09.020
  • being is like gold, or silver, or stone, an image made
  • 00:24:09.030 --> 00:24:13.160
  • by human design and skill.
  • 00:24:13.170 --> 00:24:16.010
  • In the past, God overlooked such ignorance, but now he commands
  • 00:24:16.020 --> 00:24:20.100
  • all people everywhere to repent.
  • 00:24:20.110 --> 00:24:23.120
  • For he has set a day when he will judge the world with
  • 00:24:23.130 --> 00:24:26.210
  • justice by the man he has appointed.
  • 00:24:26.220 --> 00:24:30.020
  • He has given proof of this to everyone by raising him
  • 00:24:30.030 --> 00:24:33.260
  • from the dead," Acts 17:29-31.
  • 00:24:33.270 --> 00:24:37.230
  • Dave: Many people rejected Paul's message here on Mars Hill
  • 00:24:43.170 --> 00:24:47.000
  • that day, but Luke records that a number of people
  • 00:24:47.010 --> 00:24:49.220
  • became believers, including a man named Dionysius,
  • 00:24:49.230 --> 00:24:53.100
  • who himself was a member of the Areopagus Council,
  • 00:24:53.110 --> 00:24:56.110
  • along with a woman named Damaris.
  • 00:24:56.120 --> 00:24:58.240
  • Now, we don't know much about these first Christians here
  • 00:24:58.250 --> 00:25:01.290
  • in Athens, but history records that Christianity
  • 00:25:02.000 --> 00:25:05.070
  • grew here in the late 1st century.
  • 00:25:05.080 --> 00:25:08.030
  • Over the years, one of the big symbols of the expansion of
  • 00:25:08.040 --> 00:25:11.050
  • Christianity was the number of Orthodox churches built over
  • 00:25:11.060 --> 00:25:15.050
  • Pagan temples throughout the city.
  • 00:25:15.060 --> 00:25:18.220
  • This is the church of Panagia Kapnikarea,
  • 00:25:19.110 --> 00:25:22.080
  • built over an ancient temple to Athena.
  • 00:25:22.090 --> 00:25:25.280
  • Panagia refers to the Virgin Mary.
  • 00:25:25.290 --> 00:25:28.260
  • Now, this church is located on the street of Ermou,
  • 00:25:28.270 --> 00:25:33.060
  • Athens's most lively and crowded downtown street.
  • 00:25:33.070 --> 00:25:37.080
  • 00:25:37.250 --> 00:25:47.200
  • Dave: This is the Church of the Holy Apostles,
  • 00:25:48.150 --> 00:25:51.050
  • built right here in the middle of the ancient agora
  • 00:25:51.060 --> 00:25:54.130
  • in the 10th century.
  • 00:25:54.140 --> 00:25:56.000
  • I love this setting of this church, with the Acropolis
  • 00:25:56.010 --> 00:25:59.000
  • rising up in the background.
  • 00:25:59.010 --> 00:26:01.170
  • According to Acts chapter 18, it was shortly after Paul's
  • 00:26:05.120 --> 00:26:08.130
  • presentation of the gospel on the Areopagus that he left
  • 00:26:08.140 --> 00:26:12.030
  • Athens and traveled to the capital city of Corinth.
  • 00:26:12.040 --> 00:26:15.200
  • So, it's time for us to hit the road for the next stop
  • 00:26:15.210 --> 00:26:18.260
  • in our epic journey.
  • 00:26:18.270 --> 00:26:20.210
  • 00:26:21.040 --> 00:26:26.290
  • 00:26:29.040 --> 00:26:39.040
  • 00:26:39.100 --> 00:26:49.070
  • 00:26:49.140 --> 00:26:59.060
  • 00:26:59.090 --> 00:27:07.190
  • [engine revving]
  • 00:27:10.100 --> 00:27:13.080
  • 00:27:14.160 --> 00:27:24.020
  • 00:27:24.130 --> 00:27:30.160