Bruce, F.F. The Book of Acts Revised. Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 1988. Kindle Electronic Edition. “III. Paul in Acts” pp. 14-17 (followed by a select bibliography and end notes for the introduction).
Bruce notes the defenses made by the apostle Paul of his apostolic authority. These defenses are largely made unnecessary by Luke’s account. “No one could read Acts and doubt that Paul was really commissioned by the risen Christ as a ‘chosen instrument’ in his hand for the widespread proclamation of the gospel” (Bruce 1988, 14). While Luke’s primary purpose is not to demonstrate apostolicity, by the second century his writing was being used for that purpose. The apostleship of Paul, Peter, and the others is clearly described in Acts. Bruce also notes that the text of Acts makes no mention of Paul’s letters. Luke is focused on Paul’s actions, not his writing (Bruce 1988, 15).
Bruce asks why Christianity could be known as a European religion. For explanation, he finds none other than Paul. Since Paul was a Roman citizen and pivotal in the establishment of Christianity in Europe, Christianity easily became associated with a Roman culture (Bruce 1988, 16). Whether in Europe or in asia, Christianity grew more robust with paul’s attention. This record is Luke’s special contribution.
The text continues with a select bibliography and end notes.