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What is “the Way” in the Bible?


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Question: "What is ‘the Way’ in the Bible?"

“The Way” is mentioned several times in the book of Acts (Acts 9:2; 19:9, 23; 22:4; 24:14, 22) in connection with early followers of Christ. It was to take prisoner men and women who “belonged to the Way” (Acts 9:2; 22:4) that Saul of Tarsus went to Damascus. After Saul was converted, he became a missionary and went by the name of Paul. In Ephesus, Paul met some in the synagogue who “became obstinate; they refused to believe and publicly maligned the Way” (Acts 19:9). Paul left the synagogue and continued to preach the gospel where it would be heard rather than remain with those who denigrated the Way.

During his trial before Felix, Paul said, “I admit that I worship the God of our ancestors as a follower of the Way, which they call a sect” (Acts 24:14). We are also told that Felix knew about the Way (verse 22). It seems that the Romans considered the Way to be a sect of Judaism rather than a separate religion.

Presumably, the early followers of Christ referred to themselves as followers of the Way because of Jesus’ statement in John 14:6 that He is “the way and the truth and the life.” Luke says that Aquila and Priscilla explained to Apollos “the way of God” more fully (Acts 18:26). Peter refers to Christianity as “the way of truth” (2 Peter 2:2). And the writer of Hebrews says that Jesus’ broken body is the “new and living way” for us to enter the Most Holy Place (Hebrews 10:19–20).

Today there are various Bibles that include The Way in their titles. There is also a book by Josemaria Escriva, founder of the Catholic Opus Dei, titled The Way. Additionally, there is a cult called The Way or The Way International. For more information on this cult, please refer to our article “What is the Way International?”.

Recommended Resource: Paul: A Man of Grace and Grit by Charles Swindoll

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What were the different missionary journeys of Paul?

Why does Acts 9:7 say that those traveling with Paul heard a voice, but Acts 22:9 says that they heard no voice?

What happened at Mars Hill in the Bible?

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What is “the Way” in the Bible?

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