Acts 23 — Photo Illustrations — Antipatris

The site of Antipatris was known as Aphek in Old Testament times. It it is the place where the Philistines were encamped when they took the ark of the covenant from the Israelites who had camped at nearby Ebenezer (1 Samuel 4:1).

Antipatris was built by Herod the Great and named in honor of his father.

Herod was also a lover of his father, if any other person ever was so; for he made a monument for his father, even that city which he built in the finest plain that was in his kingdom, and which had rivers and trees in abundance, and named it Antipatris. He also built a wall around a citadel that lay above Jericho, and was a very strong and very fine building, and dedicated it to his mother, and called it Cypros. (Jewish Wars 1:417)

Because Aphek/Antipatris sat on a major south-north and west-east routes, it was dominated by many nations. The dominant feature of the site today is the Turkish fort. Inside are the excavated ruins of buildings from Canaanite to Herodian/Roman times.

Turkish fort at Aphek-Antipatris. Photo by Ferrell Jenkins.

Turkish fort at Aphek/Antipatris. Photo by Ferrell Jenkins.

Aphek/Antipatris is known by the modern name Ras el-Ain because it is located at the source of the Yarkon River which flows a few miles into the Mediterranean.

Source of the Yarkon River at Aphek-Antipatris. Photo by Ferrell Jenkins.

Source of the Yarkon River at Aphek-Antipatris. Photo by Ferrell Jenkins.

When a plot was raised against Paul while he was in the Fortress of Antonia in Jerusalem, he was sent by night to Antipatris. The next day he was escorted to Caesarea.

So the soldiers, according to their instructions, took Paul and brought him by night to Antipatris.  And on the next day they returned to the barracks, letting the horsemen go on with him.  When they had come to Caesarea and delivered the letter to the governor, they presented Paul also before him. (Acts 23:31-33 ESV)

From Jerusalem to Antipatris is about 30 miles. From there to Caesarea is an additional 27 miles.

Paul would remain in custody at Caesarea for two years.

One response to “Acts 23 — Photo Illustrations — Antipatris

  1. Pingback: Aphek, Setting of 1 Samuel 4 | Leon's Message Board

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