(uh pahl' uhs) GREEK: APOLLOS

A Jewish convert named Apollos, from Alexandria, Egypt, proved to be an articulate and effective early Christian preacher, missionary, and debater. He is introduced in the New Testament as "an eloguent man, well-versed in the Scriptures," boldly preaching in the Jewish synagogue at Ephesus, where "he spoke and taught accurately the things concerning Jesus, though he knew only the baptism of John" (Acts 18:24,25). While in Ephesus he encountered Prisca and Aquila, coworkers of the apostle Paul, who instructed him "more accurately" (Acts 18:26). Apollos then set out for Corinth, where he encouraged fellow believers and soon became as popular as Paul and Peter; parties loyal to each began to threaten church unity.

Paul's first letter to the Corinthians addresses the threat: "Each of you says, 'I belong to Paul,' or 'I belong to Apollos,' or 'I belong to Cephas (Peter),' or 'I belong to Christ'" (1 Cor. 1:12). Far from blaming Apollos for the divisions, Paul credits his work and appeals to the true basis for fellowship when he writes: "I planted, Apollos watered, but God gave the growth" (1 Cor. 3:6).

Further indication that Paul and Apollos were not rivals is found in Paul's urging Apollos to revisit the church in Corinth and in his requesting Titus to "speed Zenas the lawyer and Apollos on their way; see that they lack nothing" (Tit. 3:13).

{E2 Dictionary of Biblical People}

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