For our lesson of Priscilla, Acts 18-19, Romans 16:3-4, I Corinthians 16-19, Timothy 4:19 on pages 221-224, in our main text Women of the Bible by Jean E Syswerda.
1. Her name, diminutive of “Prisca”, means “worthy” or “venerable.” (1.)
2. Aquila and Priscilla are mentioned six times in four different books of the New Testament and they are always named as a couple and never individually. (See number 4)
3. Of those six references, Priscilla’s name is mentioned first, four times, which is unusual for such a male dominated society. (2.)
4. Through out Scripture the man is usually named first: Adam and Eve, and Ananias and Sapphira, making the four appearances of Priscilla’s name first, a notable exception. Examples:
A. Acts 18:2-3: “There he met a Jew named Aquila, a native of Pontus, who had recently come from Italy with his wife Priscilla, because Claudius had ordered all Jews to leave Rome. And because he was a tentmaker as they were, he stayed and worked with them.”
B. Acts 18:18: “Paul stayed on in Corinth for some time. Then he left the brothers and sailed for Syria, accompanied by Priscilla and Aquila. Before he sailed, he had his hair cut off at Cenchrea because of a vow he had taken.”
C. Acts 18:26: “He began to speak boldly in the synagogue. When Priscila and Aquila heard him, they invited him to their home and explained to him the way of God more adequately.”
D. Romans 16:3-4: “Greet Priscilla and Aquila, my fellow workers in Christ Jesus. They risked their lives for me. Not only I but all the churches of the Gentiles are grateful to them.”
E. I Corinthians 16:19: “The churches in the province of Asia send you greetings. Aquila and Priscilla greet you warmly in the Lord, and so does the church that meets at their house.”
F. 2 Timothy 4:19: “Greet Priscilla and Aquila and the household of Onesiphorus.”
5. While this view is not likely among scholars, some scholars have suggested that Priscilla was the author of Hebrews. Hebrews is the only book in the New Testament with author anonymity. (3)
6. Paul met them in Corinth, Acts 18:2: “There he met a Jew named Aquila, a native of Pontus, who had recently come from Italy with his wife Priscilla, because Cladius had ordered all Jews to leave Rome. Paul went to see them.” Priscilla and Aquila were tent makers, as was Paul. Priscilla and Aquila had been among the Jews expelled from Rome by Roman Emperor Claudius in the year 49. They ended up in Corinth for many months.
7. Priscilla and Aquila were among known the earliest known missionaries. Acts 18:24-26: “Meanwhile a Jew named Apollos, a native of Alexandria, came to Ephesus. He was a learned man, with a thorough knowledge of the Scriptures. He had been instructed in the way of the Lord, and he spoke with great fervor and taught about Jesus accurately, though he knew only the baptism of John. He began to speak boldly in the synagogue. When Priscilla and Aquila heard him, they invited him to their home and explained to him the way of God more adequately”.
1. Women of the Bible, 52 Bible Studies for Individuals and Groups, Jean E Syswerda, Zondervan, 1999, pg. 221.
2. Beyond Sex Roles:What the Bible Says about a Woman’s Place in Church and Family, Gilbert Bilezikian, Baker Academy, 2006, pp 200-201.
3. NIV Study Bible (All Scriptures)