Joppa (Yafo, Jaffa) is about 35 miles northwest of Jerusalem on the coast of the Mediterranean Sea. Yafo is on the south side of Tel Aviv.
Joppa has a history dating back to the 15th century B.C. when it is mentioned in the town lists of Pharaoh Thutmose III.
In this post I will limit my comments to some of the significant events of the Book of Acts related to Joppa.
- Tabitha (Dorcas) lived in Joppa. When she died the disciples sent for Peter who was a Lydda. He came to Joppa and raised Dorcas (Acts 9:36-42). (Acts 10:6).
- Peter stayed many days in Joppa with Simon the tanner (Acts 9:43). His house was by the sea (Acts 10:6). A house near the port is shown as the house of Simon, but there is no way to know this with certainty.
- Peter received the housetop vision and learned that he was to go to Caesarea to preach the gospel to the Gentiles at the house of the Roman centurion Cornelius (Acts 10:23).
On one of the narrow streets of Joppa is a fairly modern house identified as the House of Simon the Tanner. Directly behind the house stands the lighthouse standing watch over the harbor. We take claims like this one with a grain of salt. But I often tell members of my tour groups, “It may not have been here, but it was not far from here.”
At least some houses during Bible times were build with a flat roof which could serve some practical uses. In the case of Peter it provided a good place to pray and to fall into a trance.