John Kilgallen, «Hostility to Paul in Pisidian Antioch (Acts 13,45) — Why?», Vol. 84 (2003) 1-15
Throughout Acts 13–14 Luke brings to the reader’s knowledge opponents of Paul who are called " the Jews" . The present essay attempts to clarify the meaning of this short-hand identification of Paul’s Jewish opponents. It seems best to understand these particular Jews in the light of zealotry which has its roots in centuries of vigorous defense of Jewish religious convictions.
‘jealousy’ and ‘zeal’2. Without prejudice as to the goodness or badness of the jealousy or zeal, one looks for its cause and object in vv. 44 and 45. One at first looks in vain. But, as one reads on beyond v. 44, the conviction grows that we are concerned about something which the Gentiles or pagans enjoy and which incites the jealousy or zeal of a group now, in this episode, for the first time identified as ‘the Jews’3.
II. The Sense of to_n lo/gon tou= Kuri/ou
The only identification of this ‘something’ is wrapped in the phrasing a)kou=sai to_n lo/gon tou= kuri/ou (vv. 44 and 48), which appears as well under the guise of toi=j u(po_ Pau=lou legome/noij (v. 45) and to_n lo/gon tou= Qeou= (v. 46).
‘Jealousy’ and ‘zeal’, then, center upon the pagans who gather to hear willingly4 the ‘word of the Lord’5. Those who are zealous and jealous are so in regard to the ‘word of the Lord’6; they ‘speak abusively’ against and ‘oppose’ the words spoken by Paul, to which words authorial authority gives no other identity than ‘the word of the Lord’, or, one must finally conclude, that very concrete lo/goj paraklh/sewj which the reader has just read. One searches in vain for some indication that, on this subsequent Sabbath, when ‘almost all the