Paul

(Acts 13:6-9)

During the biblical account of Paul’s first missionary journey, Luke writes: “Then Saul, who was also called Paul…” (Acts 13:9). From this point forward, Luke only refers to the apostle as “Paul.” This shift does not reflect a name change, as has often been said, but rather a conscious decision on Paul’s part to use a name he already had. Since Paul was a Roman citizen, he would have been given three names at birth. The third was Paul’s Latin name, Paullus. Paul’s Latin name was a better fit for the predominantly Roman environment. “Saul the Pharisee” chose to be known as “Paul, citizen of Rome.”

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