Theophilus

Who is Theophilus in the Bible?

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Theophilus
ACTS CHAPTER 1 ◄

Acts 1:1-3 Theophilus

ACTS 1:1  1 The former account I made, O Theophilus, of all that Jesus began both to do and teach,

Who is "Theophilus" (Acts 1:1)?
Theophilus was a gentile official whose name means "loved of (philus) God (Theo)." The Bible contains two letters that Luke wrote to Theophilus. The first is what we today call the Gospel of Luke, which Luke himself called, "the former account." (Acts 1:1) Luke's second letter to Theophilus is what we today call The Acts of the Apostles. By the time Luke wrote his second letter to Theophilus, the two men may have become better acquainted since Luke addresses him simply as "O Theophilus" (Acts 1:1) to begin Acts after having formally addressed him as "most excellent Theophilus" to begin his first letter to him: "Inasmuch as many have taken in hand to set in order a narrative of those things which have been fulfilled among us, just as those who from the beginning were eyewitnesses and ministers of the word delivered them to us, it seemed good to me also, having had perfect understanding of all things from the very first, to write to you an orderly account, most excellent Theophilus, that you may know the certainty of those things in which you were instructed." (Luke 1:1-5)

ACTS 1:2-3  2 until the day in which He was taken up, after He through the Holy Spirit had given commandments to the apostles whom He had chosen, 3 to whom He also presented Himself alive after His suffering by many infallible proofs, being seen by them during forty days and speaking of the things pertaining to the kingdom of God.

What does "taken up" (Acts 1:2) refer to?
Jesus' ascension into heaven, which we will read about shortly.

How long did Jesus stay on earth between His resurrection and ascension?
"forty days" (Acts 1:3)

How many people saw Him during those 40 days?
"Over five hundred" as indicated in 1 Corinthians 15:3-6: "For I delivered to you first of all that which I also received: that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, and that He was buried, and that He rose again the third day according to the Scriptures, and that He was seen by Cephas, then by the twelve. After that He was seen by over five hundred brethren at once, of whom the greater part remain to the present, but some have fallen asleep."

What else did Jesus do besides appear to them during those 40 days?
He taught them as mentioned in Acts 1:3 above, walked with them (see 24-35), ate in front of them (see Luke 24:36-43), as well as with them, and even cooked them breakfast (see John 21:1-14). So He wasn't just some vision. He was with them physically.

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